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Meals on heels: San Francisco drag queens deliver amid virus

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — These divas deliver. Drag queens don their colorful wigs, elaborate makeup and knee-high stiletto boots, but instead of stepping on a stage, they're putting on a face covering, grabbing a takeout bag and bringing their musical numbers to fans' doorsteps in San Francisco.

The Oasis nightclub is turning the boring dinner blues into “Meals on Heels,” dispatching drag queens like Amoura Teese and Kochina Rude to bring food, cocktails and socially distant lip-synching performances to people during the coronavirus pandemic.

On a recent evening, Rude delivered dinner to Kelsie Costa and her family in the city’s Marina District and then lip-synched the drag show classic “Finally” by CeCe Peniston. “There’s not a lot to do these days with shelter in place and COVID and all that,” Costa said. “So gotta spice it up somehow. It’s really fun.”

Oasis owner D’Arcy Drollinger said it’s a way to reconnect with their fans and bring a little joy to those who haven’t had much to smile about recently. “You have the choice: You can either give up, go home and call it a night, or you can put some duct tape on, find a song you don’t know that well and go out there and sell the number," Drollinger said. “That’s how I’ve been looking at this whole thing, is we’ve got to sell the number. The show must go on.”

With the club's shows on hiatus because of the pandemic, it also gives drag performers a chance to make some much-needed money and keep up with their passion. “Drag is such a beating heart of the city,” Rude said. “So it’s not only good for us, but it’s good for the people around us in our community. I’m inspired by it, and I’m honored to be a part of it.”