The holiday parade in Semmes, Ala., is usually a predictable affair, with marchers, floats and carolers, but not this year.
Some members of the town erupted in furor Saturday when one of the acts turned out to be a group of black drag queens, the Raw Story reports. The troupe, known as the Prancing Elite, sashayed, bounced and boogied down the parade route, some of them dressed in Santa hats. But members of the crowd were dumbfounded and even outraged.
“I was outraged and appalled,” Claudia Davis told Fox 10 News. “I never expect anything like this at the Semmes Christmas parade. If they were gonna put this kind of activity in the parade, they should have notified the people of Semmes so that we had a choice whether we wanted out children to attend and see something like that.”
For his part, dance troupe captain Kentrell Collins said he was surprised by the uproar. He thought that the representative who hired them for the Friends of Semmes had done so in good faith, the report shows. Still he expressed sympathy for people who were upset.
“We do want to apologize if we offended anybody who did not know who we were before today, but still at the end of the day, we only just came to dance, and we did get invited,” Collins said, according to the Raw Story.
The uproar has certainly lifted the troupe’s profile. They have booked events for New Year’s Eve and Mardi Gras, the report shows.
But the Friends of Semmes has been removed as organizers of the Christmas parade, the Raw Story reports, and the city council will organize the event next year.
Read more at Raw Story.