Philly sets Guinness World Record for most-attended drag story time event

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Pride Month was already off to a record-breaking start in Philadelphia as the world's largest Pride flag, measuring 400 feet long, made a citywide tour on Friday and closed out the month of May.

On Saturday, Philadelphia set another record with over 260 people gathered for a drag queen story time event.

The Guinness Book of World Records was on hand to certify the crowd size at the National Constitution Center.

It was within sight of Independence Hall, where the Founding Fathers wrote that all are created equal and guaranteed unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Brittany Lynn, who runs Drag Queen Story Time, kicked off the reading after introductions from Mark Segal, publisher of the Philadelphia Gay News and Celena Morrison-McLean, executive director of the city's Office of LGBT Affairs.

"This is just the beginning of the festivities, there's a lot going on all month long. The time has come, are you ready to celebrate the world record?" Morrison-McLean said.

Drag performer Brittany Lynn (right) stands with Guinness World Records adjudicator Michael Empric as he certified the record for the largest drag queen story time event. The record was set on June 1, 2024, in Philadelphia as 263 people attended the event at the National Constitution Center. / Credit: CBS News Philadelphia
Drag performer Brittany Lynn (right) stands with Guinness World Records adjudicator Michael Empric as he certified the record for the largest drag queen story time event. The record was set on June 1, 2024, in Philadelphia as 263 people attended the event at the National Constitution Center. / Credit: CBS News Philadelphia

"I couldn't think of a better way to kick off Pride than to be here with you," Lynn said, before opening up "Hello, Philadelphia" by Martha Day Zschock – drawing excited cheers in a closing passage that mentioned the Phillies and Eagles.

Other readers included Miss Aurora, who read "'Twas the Night Before Pride" by Joanna McClintick.

After a moment for people to hold their breath, Guinness World Records adjudicator Michael Empric confirmed the event was a record with 263 attendees.

"It shows you that we are one of the nation's most LGBT-friendly cities," said Segal of the Philadelphia Gay News, which hosted the event along with Visit Philadelphia. "Everybody combined, agencies, organizations and the general public, to set this record. We want to tell the rest of the world this is an inviting city, that no matter who you are, please come and visit Philadelphia."

Visit Philly later posted a "Con(Drag)ulations" message on its social media platforms.

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