It’s all about inclusiveness at the “Fabulous Glamorous Story Time” at the Half Moon Bay Library.
Two drag kings from the Bay Area, Vera Hannush, known to the kids as “King Vera,” along with “Alex U. Inn” (Carmen Alex Morrison), have been reading to kids at the library for nearly a year. What they do is a community reading similar to those found in most public libraries, but with a twist.
The two activists read a handful of books each, largely centered on identity, tolerance and self-care.
With a crowd of roughly 15, the atmosphere was laid back. Hannush and Inn greeted everyone at the start of the show with friendly handshakes.
Inn is a well-known member in the drag king community, known for its activism and promotion of tolerance. Inn is a three-time consecutive winner of the “Best of the Bay Drag King” award, and was community grand marshal during the 2017 San Francisco Pride Parade. Inn founded the San Francisco-based drag show “KINGDOM!” that primarily focuses on expanding the number of local drag kings.
Hannush is the board president of the Pacific Center, an LGTBQ mental health center in Berkeley. She also runs her own drag king program, the Rebel Kings of Oakland. Hannush said Cami Del Rio, a library assistant, was instrumental in setting up the program with the Half Moon Bay Library. The pair says there are a variety of reasons why the drag kings’ reading draws people in.
“I love being a drag king, and I love lifting up the youth,” Hannush said. “Interacting with the youth and seeing them see something different, and seeing them reflect so much love and acceptance of my gender presentation, of being a king, being able to stretch gender boundaries.”