Drag show coming to Holland, mayor says ‘it’s hard’ for her

HOLLAND, Mich. — A drag show coming to the Holland Civic Center is drawing criticism from some residents, including the mayor, who say they are concerned about the values of their city.

When the theater announced Michigan Drag Brunch would be performing two shows in Holland on July 28, Holland Mayor Nancy De Boer expressed her feelings during an appearance on WHTC's "Talk of the Town" on July 18.

“I can’t tell you how hard, how hard that is for me," De Boer said in response to a listener who called in to the radio show to express her own concerns about Michigan Drag Brunch.

The listener said Michigan Drag Brunch is a "girly show" that is "downgrading to the city of Holland." De Boer said she agrees.

Host Gary Stevens said the show makes him feel uncomfortable.

“I know," De Boer said. "There’s a whole variety of values now that we didn’t, we didn’t deal with, you know, 50 years ago.”

Michigan Drag Brunch is a two-hour drag show that includes brunch. Part of the proceeds of each performance benefit HQ, a center for homeless youth.

“We don’t care who you are," says producer Trevor Lee Straub. "Come laugh with us. Come have a cocktail. Enjoy delicious food and a unique type of entertainment throughout the entire state.”

Straub started Michigan Drag Brunch a year ago with his business partner. Since then, the group has expanded to Detroit and set the record for the largest drag brunch in the world. Straub said they hope to spread a message of diversity and acceptance in the process, which is why to them, the mayor's comments are disappointing.

“It’s 2019. We all breathe the same air and live in this world together and the only way that we’re gonna get through this life is just with love and open arms and it shouldn’t matter who you are, what you do or where you come from," Straub said.

De Boer tells FOX 17 the city of Holland hires a private company to run the Civic Center because "we are not in the entertainment business." She said the center holds a variety of events. De Boer did not comment on her radio appearance.

“I think when you’re a leader of a community, it’s important to hear all voices, you know and to not just be one person speaking so proudly for everybody," Straub said. “I think it’s important for their culture and the success of Holland and it’s just important to accept all types entertainment, whether you agree with it or not, it’s okay.”

Straub said on the same day De Boer was on the radio, Michigan Drag Brunch sold out both shows in Holland. When they added 50 extra seats to each show, those also sold out.

Still, Straub said if De Boer has a change of heart, they will make room for the mayor.

“Come on Nancy. We’d love to show her, open her eyes a little bit," Straub said. “But it’s OK. We’ll be good. We sold out twice, so thank you.”

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24 comments

  • followjesus1963

    Yet the Bible teaches us that the Almighty Creator God has declared His absolute and sovereign standard of righteousness. It is He to Whom we must all give account in the Day of Judgment. Right is right, even if nobody is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everybody is doing it.

    Many years ago, who thought this would happen? First it this, then later much worse.

  • Phyllis Boone

    I am sorry to see this event being planned in Holland. It is regressive and sick. Prayers for the performers and show-goers that they may find the true source of joy in Christ Jesus.

  • nsilva1979

    That’s what moral relativism does. They get a bunch of people to pay to go virtue signal and then shame all who dont approve. It’s a common tactic of the left. I wonder, when will we see a celebration of marriage and family? I dont care what lifestyle people want but I dont hold that up as the ideal. Stop trying to Borg assimilate every town and community.

    • grerp

      100% Cultural Marxism. The goal is the complete degradation of the culture, collapse of the family and community. Then they can do with vulnerable individuals what they want. Note how many drag performers are salivating over children these days. Next up: normalizing pedophilia.

  • Megan

    So happy they’re coming to Holland to hopefully open some eyes here! I promise most of this community will welcome you with open arms. The youth understand how important it is to let people be who they are.

    • Justin Case

      Megan if “the youth understand how important it is to let people be who they are” then why is there a societal crisis with bullying? Your statement does not add up.

  • Robert I Miller

    To you who say you won’t go…that’s ok…they sold out anyway, so you can’t go. Just like programs on tv…you don’t have to watch if you don’t agree with what’s on. I’m a Christian, and I would rather go see any Southern Gospel singing group, but I would also hate for someone to try to keep away a Southern Gospel group from coming to Holland. This world is made up of a lot of people with different beliefs. So, if ya don’t want to go, don’t. If ya want to go, go.

  • Shmava

    No one has even mentioned who & what a portion of the proceeds gets donated too, HQ, a center for homeless youth… good grief… it’s not 1955 anymore, you think this type of show only belongs in the “Big Cities” ? Poor Holland… This may tarnish your shiny little reputation…. i love Holland, I live here and I am happy to welcome a diverse kind of entertainment and a % goes to benefit a good cause. If it’s your Christian values you’re concerned about, read your Bible… Jesus walked with all different sorts… He welcomed them, healed them, blessed them, taught them (think of the background of the 12 disciples HE chose). So you do not have to agree or disagree, you don’t have to go (it’s sold out anyway)… Put your blinders back on , and go in your house and close the shades, There are much worse things happening in Holland than a drag show… Robberies, Gang violence, murders….

  • Me

    The reputation of Holland has only been tarnished by the mayors response to this. Her time would be better spent focusing on resolutions for the continued gang related violence there. God is UN-conditional, not conditional. Id rather go to a drag show where ALL are welcome than sit in a pew worshipping condemnation and hate of those who are different.

  • takk

    such closed minds this is a great group they are doing what they love and doing good how meny of you are out there doing things for others like they are doing .and to bring your god into this just wrong,the best friend i ever had was gay and was a drag queen ,he had a big heart,by the way like your god said he who has not sin cast the first stone

  • Sheila

    It’s appalling how judgmental this mayor is regarding the drag brunch event! She’s a narrow minded, pathetic fool. I bet she would disown her own child if they wanted to be a drag queen or king!!

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