Young Massachusetts Drag Queen & Activist Named Grand Marshal for Ptown Carnival
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The Provincetown Business Guild (PBG) is proud to announce the Grand Marshal for the 2023 Carnival Parade on August 17, 2023. Jason Carter, aka drag artist Monica Moore from Taunton, MA, will lead the community of floats and parade walkers down Commercial Street. This historic and celebrated event symbolizes Provincetown's inclusiveness, creativity, and diversity. The theme for this year's Carnival celebration is Land of Toys, with the week-long celebration running August 12 -19, 2023.
Jason Carter was thrust onto the national stage when the drag queen story hour he was hosting (as Monica Moore) earlier this year at the Taunton Public Library in Taunton, MA was interrupted by a group of neo-Nazi men wearing masks and hurling slurs at Jason in front of the children and their parents. On social media, members of the neo-Nazi group NSC-131 took credit for the confrontation.
"It was such an innocent thing that happened to go very bad, very quickly," Carter told Boston.com.
Jason bravely continued to read over the heckling and taunts while remaining aware of the potential dangers to himself and the attendees. Some protestors were escorted out by police, and the story hour ended without major incident or physical harm. However, the distressing effects on all involved were felt over the following weeks. Since that drag queen story hour in January of 2023, Jason has continued to host more story hours, started a cabaret show at the New Bedford Harbor Hotel in partnership with the South Coast LGBTQ+ Network, has told his story to numerous media outlets across the country, and continues to be an outspoken advocate for the LGBTQ+ community and the creative expression of drag.
"Jason is a courageous example of the many community advocates and activists who are on the front lines of the fight against anti-LGBTQ+ legislation and protests occurring across the country," said Stephan Hengst, executive director of the PBG. "Most don't think something like this can happen in MA. So, when the staff and board of the PBG heard about Jason's story, we instantly knew we wanted to find a way to honor him and surround him with love and support–as only the Provincetown Carnival Parade can do."
"I am incredibly honored and privileged to have this title of Grand Marshal for such an iconic event in Provincetown," said Jason Carter. "I worked hard to be where I am today, and I will always support and love my community because we aren't going anywhere.
For more information about Provincetown's annual Carnival celebration or to register to participate in the annual Carnival parade, visit ptown.org/carnival