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Unshushable: a community drag storytime event set for May 6

Timothy Schafer Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
By Timothy Schafer Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
April 23rd, 2023

Drag Storytime is back on the schedule in Nelson after enduring a one-month postponement predicated by threats and online intimidation.

Hosted by a coalition of Nelson non-profits, “Unshushable” — a family friendly, child-centered celebration of inclusion, diversity, self-expression and literacy — will take place on Saturday, May 6 (10:30 a.m.) at the Nelson United Church. 

“A coalition of Nelson-based non-profit organizations have joined forces to stand in solidarity with 2SLGBTQIA+ people, as well as other members of equity deserving communities, and to plan a bigger and better Drag Storytime,” said Nelson Public Library’s children’s services coordinator Jackie Barber in a press release.

She said Drag Storytimes are family friendly events that “model inclusiveness, kindness and acceptance, and promote a love of reading.”

Staged as a voluntary event for people who may identify as 2SLGBTQIA+, people in same-sex caregiver(s) families, their allies, and interested members of the public, the guest storytellers are parents with experience working with children.

“(T)he stories chosen for the event are vetted by a professional librarian with many years of experience delivering age-appropriate programming to children,” said Barber.

A look back

The “Drag Storytime Children’s Program” at the Nelson Library was postponed on Saturday March 11 by organizers before the event was schedule to happen after staff and storytellers received threats and online intimidation.

Nelson Police said in a media release at the time that there were several ongoing investigations related to incidents that occurred on or about March 11, and all these investigations are being treated as suspected hate-motivated incidents.

“The Nelson Police Department takes a proactive stance against hate crimes and is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for all community members,” Nelson Police said in the emailed statement. “We are dedicated to addressing bias-motivated incidents in our community.

Nelson Police said officers work with Crown prosecutors to determine the most appropriate charges, and that investigations support all elements of the offence to ensure a successful prosecution.

Source: The Nelson Daily files

Getting there

Tickets for this event are free, or by donation, and are available through the Capitol Theatre’s box office, either in person during opening hours (Tuesday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), or by phone at 250-352-6363.

Please note that priority will be given to families and adults accompanying children. Remaining tickets will only be available to all at the door if they do not sell out at the Capitol. 

Cash donations will be collected on the day of the event, with all proceeds going to ANKORS Trans Connect, a health and community program supporting transgender, two spirit, intersex and gender diverse people in the East and West Kootenay regions. 

Source: coalition of Nelson-based non-profit organizations

The list

Several organizations have put their support behind the drag storytime event, including: The Capitol Theatre; Intercultural Kootenays Society; Kootenay Kids Society; Nelson Pride (formerly Kootenay Pride); Nelson and District Arts Council; Nelson Civic Theatre Society; Nelson Museum Archives and Gallery; Nelson Public Library; and the Nelson United Church.

Categories: General

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