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Moline youth drag show canceled after threats

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Clock Inc. has canceled a youth drag show planned for Saturday out of safety concerns.

A nonprofit based in Rock Island, Clock was founded to provide a community center and services for the LGBT+ community.

The Youth Drag Workshop was a planned part of the larger Pride Party scheduled at Bass Street Landing in Moline, one of a number of ongoing Quad-Cities events that are part of the area’s celebration of Pride Month.

Chase Norris, Clock’s executive director, said Thursday afternoon that Clock made the decision because there had been negativity and threats against the venue, and Clock wanted to keep its youth safe. He declined to provide more detail but said the Pride Party was still happening as planned.

Clock also announced the cancellation on its Facebook page.

“The safety of all involved is of the utmost importance and with the current politicized climate and some threatening emails received at the venue and also to all organizations involved we feel it in everyone’s best interest to cancel,” the post states.

The Pride Party is an annual event sponsored by The Project of the Quad-Cities.

Tyler Mitchell, a spokesman for The Project, said it was his understanding that there were threats of protest, not of violence, but he added he was unaware of any direct threats against The Project.

The Project was saddened and disappointed that Clock, very focused on keeping the people it serves safe, had to cancel the event, Mitchell said.

Even if it were just protests, the emotional safety of the young people who would have participated in the show is also important, Mitchell said.

Security was already planned as part of the event. 

The slot for the youth show will be filled with drag shows featuring adults, Mitchell said.

One Human Family QCA Inc. issued a news release Thursday morning supporting Clock’s decision to cancel the show, putting the safety of its youth first. It also condemned the threats the organization received.

The Project, in a Facebook post, and One Human Family also stated that the Unity Pride Parade, which precedes the Pride Party on Saturday, was also still scheduled.

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