KIC and showgirls raise money for cancer

Kyle Roerink

Wearing a gold dress and size-12, thigh-high boots, Danyel Vasquez struts her stuff last night at the Student Center Ballroom to help Kent Interhall Council and Relay for Life raise money for cancer. Rachel Kilroy | Daily Kent Stater

Credit: DKS Editors

Wigs, press-on nails and gold high-heel boots may not be the normal accessories to help raise money for cancer. But Danyel Vasquez, 37, a professional showgirl extraordinaire, and her entourage of drag queens used those bells and whistles to help raise more than $300 and entertain an excited crowd of students.

Last night at the Student Center Ballroom, more than 200 people attended Kent Interhall Council and Relay for Life’s program “Cancer is a Drag,” an event to raise money for all types of cancer.

“We enjoy doing these university shows a lot to be close to a crowd of people that don’t necessarily get to see this a lot of the time,” she said, “and it may change people’s minds about things.”

She said performing drag is strictly a form of entertainment. When she walked down the catwalk last night, the “hostess with the mostess” strutted her stuff with sass, style and flare.

Vasquez makes all of her outfits, does her own hair and makeup and knows how to work a crowd. She said when straight people come to her shows, it helps change their perceptions about what life as a drag queen is like.

“People think it is weird – like we’re freaks or something,” she said. “I am no different than you. I am transgender … I live as a woman, my name is legally changed, but I am a drag queen, too.

“I don’t drink or do drugs. I own a house and pay my taxes.”

Junior nursing major Julie Laskey called the women “sexy.”

“It is so much fun,” she said. ” … Today is my two-year anniversary with my boyfriend, and I took him to a drag show, and he loves it.”

Watching a show that supports dance and a good cause is why senior nursing major Mitchell Spaid said he attended last night’s performance.

“For all the straight people that are here who are not used to (drag queens) and don’t get to see it all the time, it is something different for them,” Spaid said. “It is different, but it is not weird.”

Contact minority affairs reporter Kyle Roerink at [email protected].