Public Libraries Hosting ‘Drag Queen Story Hour’ for Children

BROOKLYN, N.Y. — “Who wants to be a drag queen when they grow up?” That’s the question a man dressed as a woman recently asked children attending “Drag Queen Story Hour” (DQSH) at a public library in New York.

Since last fall, the Brooklyn Public Library in Park Slope has been offering the storytime for children, bringing in various drag queens to read children’s books about homosexuality, gender identity and “non-conformity,” and “general youth discomfort.”

It’s one of several cities across the country—including San Francisco and Los Angeles—who have signed on to the program, created by Michelle Tea of Radar Productions.

“DQSH captures the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and gives kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models,” the website for the effort reads.

Last Saturday, a man who dresses as a woman and identifies as “Lil Hot Mess” appeared at the Brooklyn Public Library in a silver sequin dress smathered with rainbow stickers. He read the book “Worm Loves Worm”—a story about “marriage equality”—to the group of children and their parents.

Following the reading, he led the children in a song and dance, singing, “The hips on the drag queen go swish, swish, swish” and “The heels on the drag queen go higher, higher.”

Kate Savage, a representative at the library, praised the event as being “fantastic.”

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