Drag Queen Story Hour at Port Richey bookstore draws protests

Tensions rose between supporters and detractors at The Paperback Exchange.

click to enlarge Drag Queen Story Hour at Port Richey bookstore draws protests
Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

The second installment of Port Richey bookstore The Paperback Exchange's monthly Drag Queen Story Hour reportedly drew busloads of protesters over the weekend. The protesters were met by supporters of the event, in which a drag queen reads to children on the first Saturday morning of the month, and according to a Bay News 9 story tensions rose to the point at which cops had to be called to intervene.

Protesters showed up at the first installment of the series last month as well, but while no arrests were made this time either, Saturday's installment had some concerned that future episodes might escalate further. Apparently not everyone in Pasco County is warming to the idea of local children spending their weekend morning in the company of a man dressed as a woman, no matter how educational or entertaining the book being featured.

The owners of The Paperback Exchange have no plans to discontinue the series, which has seen success in other U.S. markets, but they've decided to move Drag Queen Story Hour to the first Sunday of the month instead, in order to keep any possible "disturbances" (read: homophobes becoming increasingly agitated) from negatively affecting nearby local businesses.


Since 1988, CL Tampa Bay has served as the free, independent voice of Tampa Bay, and we want to keep it that way.

Becoming a CL Tampa Bay Supporter for as little as $5 a month allows us to continue offering readers access to our coverage of local news, food, nightlife, events, and culture with no paywalls.

Join today because you love us, too.

Scroll to read more Tampa Bay News articles

Join Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.