Things to Do During Quarantine: Lipgloss and Lashes Virtual Drag Brunch at 37th and Zen
Updated: Dec 5, 2020
Words by Christopher Bernhardt. Images courtesy of 37th and Zen.
It’s odd to think that just a few months ago, in February to be exact, the world was a much different place. There was live theatre, movies in movie theatres, dine in restaurants and there were weekly drag shows in several locations across the Hampton Roads area. Now, as many theatre artists, restaurant workers and many others try to figure out what is next and adjust to what has often been referred to as the “new normal”, we are left to wonder when will things return to how they used to be. The stress that comes from so many having to adjust to working from home, home schooling, virtual learning or filling for unexpected unemployment makes it hard to stay positive during a rough time but there is a silver lining. That silver lining is Lipgloss and Lashes Virtual Drag Brunch at 37th and Zen.
Before social distancing and stay at home orders, the Lipgloss and Lashes Drag Brunch at 37th was flourishing. So much so, it had recently grown from having one seating on Sunday mornings to having two; packing the house with audiences who want to come have a good time celebrating with their friends and family, enjoying a good meal, superb cocktails and a fabulous show by some of the best Drag Queens from around Virginia; including some that travel from Richmond and Roanoke.
When the Governor instituted the shutdown of Virginia to stop the spread of Covid-19, this brought a halt to the brunch and left the performers without an opportunity or place to perform. As the world changed and social interactions started evolving into Zoom meetings, Facebook Live, Google MeetUps, and YouTube series to pass the time and keep connections; a fantastic opportunity bloomed. Since 37th and Zen was able to stay open and provide Curbside, Take Out or Delivery, the decision was made to provide a little entertainment and joy to so many that need a distraction. Bring back Brunch- but do it virtual.
Now, every Sunday, Noelia Bella, Jasmine Devoux Spaulding, and their cast of Queens perform virtually while 37th and Zen is open with a limited Brunch menu and To Go cocktails. From 11:30AM – 2:00PM, you can order Pick Up, Curbside or order Delivery through Postmates and get tasty offerings like the Hangover Burger or the Big, Luscious and Tasty and take home your very own Quarantine Punch or Mimosa kit to go.
Then at 1:00PM, you can join the show through YouTube Live which is then shared through Facebook to reach more viewers. Of course, with any new technology, there have been a few hurdles to overcome; from streaming difficulties to how to “Tip the Queens”. As the learning curve lessens, working through these hurdles has become easier making the event as fun and enjoyable as the live show.
Since the Drag performers are used to having an audience where $1s, $5s, $10s and $20s run rampant and there is no audience there to tip, during the streaming performance each queen has their PayPal, Cash App or Venmo shown throughout their numbers so the at home audience can tip their favorite performers or numbers.
With three virtual brunches successfully completed, and not knowing when the live brunch will be able to happen again; this has become the “New Normal” for Lipgloss and Lashes and is providing a glitter filled ball of joy to Sunday. One of the benefits of the new streaming platform allows the ability to reach audiences not just in Hampton Roads but all over the country- from Florida to New York to California- all from the comfort of your own home without having to get out of their pajamas.
For more information about 37th and Zen, follow their Facebook page @37thandZen or you can reach them directly at (757) 533-5151 and order To Go, Curbside or Deliver, 7 days a week from 4PM-12AM. For Delivery options, outside of Brunch, 37th and Zen is on Postmates, UberEATS and Door Dash and has daily specials and deals that sometimes include some already made To Go Cocktails. To watch, the Lipgloss and Lashes Virtual Drag Brunch visit and subscribe to their YouTube at Lipgloss&Lashes TV.