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Lancaster, Pa. library cancels drag queen story event after threats, bomb squad response

Lancaster library cancels weekend drag queen storytime after threats, bomb squad response
Lancaster library cancels weekend drag queen storytime after threats, bomb squad response 01:27

LANCASTER, Pa. (CBS) -- The Lancaster Public Library called off a storytime event with a local drag performer on Saturday as a police bomb squad investigated a suspicious package found inside the building.

In social media posts, the library and Lancaster Pride announced their joint event called Drag Story Hour with Miss Amie was canceled "due to unforeseen circumstances."

Due to unforeseen circumstances, Drag Story Hour has been canceled, and the library will not open today. The safety and well-being of our community is of utmost importance to us.

Posted by Lancaster Public Library on Saturday, March 23, 2024

Lancaster police said the Pennsylvania State Police bomb squad was called out to the library after the package was found.

As of 12:20 p.m., the library was cleared, Lancaster police said. 

"However, there are additional reported threats that are still being investigated," the department said.  

Lancaster police issued an evacuation order for the community due to another bomb threat near the 100 blocks of North Queen Street and North Lime Street earlier Saturday. 

By 3:15 p.m., officials had lifted the evacuation order for the area ensuring there was no threat to the public. 

Nearby streets were shut down to pedestrians and cars during the initial investigation at the library. The library posted on its Facebook page that it will not open Saturday.

Social media posts from local LGBTQ+ organizations ahead of the event indicated it was expected to draw protesters.

Lancaster Pride, Reading Pride Celebration and Lititz Chooses Love, a local LGBTQ+ advocacy group, encouraged supporters on social media to "create a wall of Love to support Miss Amie, the Library and Lancaster Pride" on Saturday.

"Lancaster Pride is hosting a Drag Queen Story hour on March 23rd, and as usual there are some, including a Lancaster County commissioner against it, trying to get it canceled," Reading Pride Celebration said on Facebook. "They are expecting protesters, so we will shield the children entering the library from the hateful protesters with a wall of love."

Those plans were canceled after the threat came in, the organizations said.

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