THE ELEPHANT QUEEN: Eureka O’Hara, Miss Blue Ridge Pride 2011 and 2014, is the only two-time winner of the local pageant. Known for her unyielding body positivity, Eureka appeared on "RuPaul’s Drag Race."

Miss Blue Ridge Pride Pageant challenges gender norms

“It’s a platform that can be used to vocalize LGBTQ+ issues that our community is currently facing,” says Ginger Von Snap, Miss Blue Ridge Pride 2016. Since taking the title, Ginger (aka Kaleb Sisco) has used her position to raise awareness of underrepresented subdivisions on the LGBTQ+ spectrum, like transgender youth and those who are gender-fluid.

MOOD INDIGO: Abbey Allen, left and Alan Malpass of Asheville Aerial Arts prepare for the Asheville Area Arts Council’s Indigo Ball — the organization’s multi-party fundraiser that features a wealth of local talent. The color ball launched in 2002 and was produced in less lavish iterations over the years. The Sept. 9 event returns to original form.

AAAC’s Indigo Ball celebrates local creativity

If you’re in downtown Asheville on Saturday, Sept. 9, and see people dashing down the sidewalks in blue outfits and other formal attire, don’t be alarmed. These costumed folks are out reveling in the name of the Asheville Area Arts Council’s Indigo Color Ball, a sight unseen for two years — and in many ways, even longer.