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Pride is upon us once again, and Denver is in for one of the sweetest treats around:the one and only Peppermint, one of the stars of the hit television show RuPaul’s Drag Race. The season 9 contestant will be making her Denver debut this year performing at PrideFest on Center Stage, Sunday, June 18, at 3:30 p.m.

This Queen, who is still in the running to take home the competition’s crown, has graciously decided to sashay all the way from New York City to Denver, a far cry from the bustling city that never sleeps, otherwise known to her as home. Ladies and gentlemen, get prepared to sink your teeth into the incomparable Peppermint.

Agnes Moore, better known by her stage name Peppermint, was born and raised in Hershey Pennsylvania. In 1998 she packed her belongings and fled the countryside, making her way to the glitz and glam of New York City, arguably the drag capital of the world. She found her first “big break” after meeting infamous New York party promoter and owner of Tunnel night club Peter Gatian. Gatian hired her to strut her stuff and perform at Tunnel’s legendary Kurfew parties, and soon after that Peppermint became one of New York City’s “it girls,” as well as one of the most sought-after Queens in New York City nightlife.

Peppermint has spent years working at her craft, all the while guest-starring in multiple projects, from roles on CSI: NY, gay.com’s web series Queens of Drag: NYC, and America’s Next Top Model (appearing as a drag version of Tyra Banks) just to name a few.

Drawing from her surroundings, Peppermint attributes her inspiration to begin a career in drag, as well as her basic inspiration for life, to two very special women.

“My Mom has always been my inspiration, and I’m inspired by her today. My mom and Janet Jackson,” Peppermint said. While she’s always been a queen in our peripherals, Peppermint has finally made it to Drag Queen Mecca, taking center stage in this year’s competition of RuPaul’s Drag Race.

“Honey, RuPaul is a legend and pioneer in our field, and she’s been inspiring me way before Drag Race started,” boasts Peppermint, expressing nothing but love for the drag icon when asked what RuPaul meant to her as a drag performer.

Peppermint is not only living her dreams and competing in the competition of a lifetime, she is also making drag race history. Peppermint is only the second queen to openly compete as a transgender woman (after Monica Beverly Hillz from season 5). Entering the race as an openly transgender woman from the beginning of the competition, Peppermint has fiercely competed while wearing her heart on her sleeve and keeping a pep in her step. Sure there have been other contestants who have courageously come out as transgender once finishing with the competition, but Peppermint could very well be the first to pave the way as a transgender winner of drag race.

For some, the idea of a transgender woman performing in drag can be a challenging concept to grasp, being that when people generally think of drag, they traditionally think of a gay man as the prime candidate for the art. But Peppermint is keeping cool while challenging drag stereotypes. She doesn’t blink when it comes to some who might not exactly understand her: “Hopefully, if I live my truth they will figure it out. I ain’t got time for explanations,” she added.

Peppermint takes no prisoners as she works her way to the top, crushing the competition.  Her message is as clear as ever: to be true to who you are and to express yourself in the most authentic of ways, making her a perfect performer for this year’s pride celebration.

“Pride means celebrating true equality with everyone, including those who aren’t in the LGBTQIA+ community,” said Peppermint when asked what pride celebrations mean to her personally.

With celebrations happening across the country and all over the world, it’s important to remember the true meaning of why the community has these celebrations, and Peppermint is here to remind us why we celebrate. Some would argue that in this current political climate, participating in pride celebrations is a direct resistance to the current administration, making pride a political statement. Peppermint agreed wholeheartedly.

“To live your truth in this environment is a political statement.”

Denver invites you to be a part of that statement, and Peppermint continues to slay the competition each week on RuPaul’s Drag Race. Be sure to catch the show on both LOGO and VH1. If you can’t get enough of what Peppermint serves each week on television, make your way to see her live at PrideFest on Center Stage, Sunday June 18, at 3:30 p.m.

Where there’s Peppermint, there is sure to be a sweet surprise.