WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — On the last night of Pride Month, the restaurant Hullabaloo in downtown West Palm Beach hosted its "Heels at Hullabaloo" event.
"We've got a lot of people coming out, and I think it’s going to be an amazing night," Chris Rhoades, the event producer for the drag shows with Subculture Group, said.
The event welcomed 14 drag queens to perform on the sidewalk and for diners, like drag queen Ariel Rimm.
"We don't back down," Rimm said. "We continue to showcase our talent and be who we are in public and whatever stage possible."
The event is a reminder of the Stonewall riots in 1969, which paved the way for gay rights.
"Unfortunately, what we’ve seen this past year and especially the past couple of months is kind of moving backwards," Rhoades said.
This comes after months of new laws that some call anti-LGBTQ+.
"I've really felt a disconnect this year between myself and the LGBTQ+ community. Usually I spend the entire month of June celebrating pride and this is my only weekend here on the 500-block," Rimm said. "I think it's really important out of any other year to showcase myself, be out here, really be supportive of the LGBTQ+ community with everything that's going on politically."
The Supreme Court ruled Friday in favor of a web designer that refused to work with same-sex weddings citing religious objections.
"If I choose not to do business with someone because of their race, color or creed, then if I go against that, then I would be dishonest to myself, then I wouldn’t be my true authentic self," Akai Jackson, the studio manager of Khanna House Studios, said.
Jackson said while the ruling may have been a victory for the web designer, it may lose her customers in the long run.
"As a business owner, or as a person, I wouldn't want to do business with someone who doesn't want to do business with me," Jackson said. "I was brought up and raised to treat all people equally, and that's exactly what I'm going to do, and that's what we'll continue to do here at Kahana House Studios.
He said the studio is open to all but worries the ruling may cause other businesses to deny people not just on sexual orientation, but also race and religion
"As a community, we are stronger together, so when we’re out here and we're not only cheering each other on but also bringing some light and some love into the community, that also speaks volumes about the city and the people that live in it," Rimm said.
Organizers said Rodney Mayo, the owner of Subculture Group, which runs Hullabaloo, will use all proceeds from Friday's dinner and show and donate it back to the performers.