If you ever wondered what it would be like to jump through the wig of a drag queen and swim around in her brain for a few hours, this was your lucky weekend. RuPaul’s Drag Con, the annual 2-day drag extravaganza, sashayed into the Los Angeles Convention Center and transformed it into a wash of pink adorned with wigs, leather, pleather, boas, babies, celebrities, and, of course, a who’s who of drag queens and Drag Race illuminati.
Thousands of queens and the like-minded from across the US and beyond roamed the aisles of exhibitors, which include make-up, hair and wig vendors as well as so much more. Celebrities like Lori Petty and drag queen Supernovas, along with socially-minded panel discussions with the likes of the ACLU drew lines that lasted for days.
Some of the panel discussions include: ‘The Truth About Trolls,’ an honest chat about how proud trans women survive the world of social media; Drag Race alum Ginger Minj gave Jerry O’Connell a drag makeover; and social media stars like Christine Sydelko and Elijah Daniel gave advice on how to build your brand. And, of course, there was a popular panel on Wiggery; Teen Vogue, the famously prescient blog, presented a panel called “What Is Drag In Trump’s America?” And the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence enlightened everyone about protests of past, how our community can fight back today, and the political power of drag in their panel called “#Resist with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.”
Attendees at Drag Con are just as much an attraction as some of the super star drag queens and undoubtedly some of them will one day have a booth and line of people waiting to see them.
“It’s an experience of a lifetime, you don’t see this anywhere in the States, it’s definitely worth travelling from D.C. to see,” says Quinton Embly aka Siren Kelly says.
“I come to be amongst the freaks like me and to be crazy and to show off looks,” Xanadu Darling says.
The event isn’t only for adults and even has a Kid Zone with bounce house and programming for the kiddos. Drag Race fans recently saw Eureka being sent home due to leg injury on RuPaul’s Drag Race, and on Sunday she appeared well while enchanting a flock of kids with an inspirational story time.
The owners of children’s boutique La La Ling on Vermont Ave. were invited by event organizers to promote their store, which sells baby and kids clothes, books, toys and accessories for kids ages up to 10, with a booth in the Kid Zone. Owners Kara and Celine were excited to see many of their LGBTQ customers and hope to return next year.
Local drag queen super fan Isabel Balboa came to Drag Con because of her “general love for the God RuPaul and all of the drag queens on heaven and earth.” She attended with her 14-year old daughter Dalyan Johnston and best friend of 30 years Lisette Rubio. The quirky trio moved downtown for the weekend to experience each and every glittery moment of the event.
Asked whether her love of drag was something she enjoyed with her friends as well as her family, Johnston replied, “It’s mostly a family thing, most of my friends aren’t as committed as I am.”