CATWALK PARTY, the first drag show in  Fergus Falls, MN | Rural Assembly
“Catwalk Party: Celebrating Counter-Culture in Rural Minnesota” via Rural Assembly on YouTube. Original Catwalk Party video by Brittanni Smith.

Editor’s Note: This story was produced by the Rural Assembly, a program of the nonprofit Center for Rural Strategies, which also publishes the Daily Yonder.


“Catwalk Party: Celebrating Counter Culture in Rural Minnesota” is the story of the Catwalk Party, the first drag show in Fergus Falls, Minnesota.

The Catwalk Party was born from The Year of Play, a Springboard for the Arts micro-funding initiative to inspire play within the community, said Dominic Facio, producer, director and manager of the event.

“The catwalk party encapsulates humor, queer culture, being an ally, celebration, environment, and color,” Facio said.

Facio and others from Fergus Falls share how Catwalk has grown and what it brings to their community.

“Some people who have come to the shows … have mentioned you should go to LA or be in a metro area,” Facio said. “The truth is that rural America needs what I’m doing. This is home, and I can’t change where home is. I tried when I left high school, but every time I came back to Fergus Falls, I realized this is home, and there’s no changing that.”

Video by Joel Cohen. Story by Tracy Staley. Original Catwalk Party video by Brittanni Smith.

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