LAKE IN THE HILLS, Ill. — As Corrina Sac set up tables and chairs in UpRising Bakery and Cafe on Sunday morning, she said she was excited to finally be holding the family-friendly drag show that was canceled twice after harassment, vandalism and a zoning issue.
“We’re really grateful for everyone to allow us and support us with these events,” said Sac, the owner of the shop in Chicago suburb of Lake in the Hills.
Sac said she wanted to keep Sunday’s show low-key for her customers and the performers following the negative attention the bakery received for hosting the drag show. “Today, we’re asking for privacy, as well as support, so we can have an incident-free event.”
The show went off quietly without the rumored appearance of the Proud Boys. A steady rainfall kept a few protesters in their vehicles. “We’re praying,” said one woman inside a black SUV as she held up a Bible in her hand.
Illinois State Police and Lake in the Hills police patrolled the parking lot before and during the show, but there didn’t appear to be any issues. Unlike the originally scheduled show, no streets were blocked off and the parking lot remained open.
UpRising canceled the July 23 evening brunch after a vandal broke windows and wrote derogatory words on the cafe’s walls. Last week, Sac announced another cancellation because Lake in the Hills told her she didn’t have the right zoning for entertainment. The bakery started holding events late last year with no issues, she said in a video posted on social media.
The American Civil Liberties Union worked with Sac and the village to clear the way for the performance.
“I’m very happy the haters didn’t win, and hate didn’t prevail,” said Eva Baker, of Standing Up Against Racism McHenry. Baker volunteered to help Sac with the performance. She said she wasn’t surprised by the controversy because there are lots of “fearmongers who need to learn love, acceptance and tolerance.”
Cary resident Joanna Tetreault brought her children, ages 13 and 7, to watch headliner Jakki Love and other performers. She bought her tickets in June. “I just think it’s a fantastic idea, fun and entertaining for everyone,” she said, as she waited in her car for the doors to open.
Tetreault said she was shocked to see how things surrounding the original event unfolded. “Honestly, I don’t understand why people have to be so hateful. If you don’t like something or don’t agree with something, don’t partake. Just let people live.”
Sac hopes to host other drag shows in the future.
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