The world’s biggest “drag queen story time,” scheduled for January 21, 2023, in St. Petersburg, Florida, intends to break the Guinness World Record for the largest gathering of this kind. Activists, political debate, and, of course, there will be drag queens reading to kids will be featured at the event.
Organizers are calling the gathering “a great family-friendly festival of literacy” as will also be a “extremely family-friendly festival,” according to the Florida Standard.
While the event has already been planned for five years, with Facebook posts going all the way back to 2017, just over 200 individuals have RSVP’d, with another 1,300 expressing interest.
However, there is a strong emphasis on progressive politics at the event. The most recent comment promises a protest and debate of the group’s worst Florida policies.
“We’ll start the afternoon off by holding a short march to oppose Florida’s newest discriminatory, oppressive and troublesome regulations. (Don’t Say Gay, Stop Woke, 15-week abortion restriction, and so on.) Then, we’ll try to break the record for the World’s Largest Drag Queen Story Time, with Florida drag entertainers sharing stories and books with children.”
Some of the event organizers work for Wordier Than Thou, a literary arts and culture organization in Florida that aims to “bend the limits of what a literary event is.”
The organization isn’t afraid to organize adult or sex-themed events, claiming to have “organized literary pub crawls, authored murder mystery games, presented literary themed drag and burlesque shows,” but this event will include children.
The president and creator of the literary club also works as an editor for Patch, a Florida news website.
The event looks to have been scheduled for 2021, but the organizers canceled it owing to COVID-19.
“This event will not take place today,” the message states. “It was a COVID-19 victim, moved to this placeholder date at the beginning of the epidemic. We never proceeded with it since we are not yet prepared to host something of this magnitude. It will most likely take place during Children’s Book Week next year,” the organizers said.
In June 2022, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that he would assign his staff to start investigating whether charges can be brought against parents that are bringing their children to drag events, stating that “it just appears that there may be a coordinated effort to expose kids to things that aren’t age appropriate.”
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