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The Good, The Bad and the Fishy

Travel by The Style Guys, Jason Krell + Alykhan Velji (From GayCalgary® Magazine, May 2022, page 0)
DRAGCON LA 2019: The Good, The Bad and the Fishy
DRAGCON LA 2019: The Good, The Bad and the Fishy
DRAGCON LA 2019: The Good, The Bad and the Fishy

While some people’s bucket lists include things like running marathons, climbing Machu Picchu, or joining the mile-high club, for RuPaul’s Drag Race super-fans like us, it was all about racing to DragCon! This year, that line got scratched off the list with a trip to DragCon LA 2019.

Spearheaded by RuPaul herself and World of Wonder Productions, DragCon got its start in 2015 and ‘provides a platform for fans – of all ages and backgrounds – to meet and interact with world-renowned celebrities and icons in a creative, friendly and accessible environment.’ As RuPaul puts it, DragCon is where "we celebrate all the colors of the rainbow."

Inclusive, fun, and campy, DragCon lives up to its promises, taking over 340,000 square feet of conference space for queens, shopping, stage presentations, and Instagram-worthy moments under one roof. It’s extra, it’s bustling, and your money will magically fly out of your pockets, so here are our suggestions on how to get the most out of your DragCon bucket list experience.

Plan ahead, arrive early – if there is a queen you absolutely can’t miss, get there as early as you can (of course VIP pass holders get the privilege of early entry, so if it’s in your means go for it).  Lines get especially long for the newest fan-favourites (this year it was all about Yvie and Brooke Lynn), with rumours of fans waiting up to six hours for a quick hello, a squeeze, and a photo.

Bring cash, you’ll need it – these queens aren’t doing day drag for fun, they’re there to get paid, lady. If you want to get up close and personal, you’re expected to buy merchandise, with minimum purchase ranging all the way up to $30. When you’re tired of waiting in lines there are plenty of other ways to drop your dollar bills with the exhibitors, including buying underwear directly from Andrew Christian himself (and flirting with his ‘Trophy Boys’ of course), glitter makeup from Lit Cosmetics Founder Jodie Perks, along with tees, novelty fans, and all the other LGBTQ merch under the rainbow.

Charge it up! You never know when you’ll run into one of your favourite queens, in the aisle, walking into the convention centre, or later at the club, so make sure your devices are charged and ready to go. DragCon also lets you get all the required selfies from the Drag Race sets, so capture your drag tagline as you enter the work room or strike your best pose in Club 96.

Plan around the Pink Carpet entry. On Saturday all the top (and bottom) queens, including Trixie Mattel, Aquaria, Alaska, and Yvie Oddly werque the pink carpet for the fans. This is where you want to be! They know the press and thousands of fans will be there, so they serve it hard for you – elbow your way into the perfect spot for this.

Get interactive at a panel discussion – the front of the stage is great place to position yourself ahead of a big stage presentation. This year’s highlights included Carson Kressley getting a drag makeover by Trinity the Tuck Taylor and RuPaul’s inspiring welcome speech. Mother Ru also let the music play with a guest DJ set on the main stage for all of her children.

Get out there! The show continues outside of the convention centre, with the queens doing shows at local bars and theatres, or simply going out with their squirrelfriends. Better planning for us would have meant a ticket to see Sasha Velour’s Nightgowns show at The Theatre at the Ace Hotel with sister Latrice Royale. Hint – when you meet your favourite queen, ask them where they’ll be that night.

Have fun and be respectful – all over the convention centre are signs stating that "Drag is not Consent," a reminder that good etiquette means asking for a photo before snapping one. If anything, it gives you an opening question to approach with. DragCon also attracts young, aspiring reality TV queens, so get to know them before fans start lining up for their merch – they’ll eat up your compliments and pose for days with you.

DragCon 2019

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Contributor Alykhan Velji | Jason Krell |

Locale Los Angeles |

Topic DragCon | Drag Queen | Drag Race | Travel |


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