The owners of Hamburger Mary's International are camping it up this summer in a new seven-episode YouTube series called Camp Wannakiki.
Ashley and Brandon Wright have created, produced and also star in the drag competition as camp directors Apple Brown Betty and Cherry Pi Sugarbaker. The twins pit eight drag queens from Illinois and Wisconsin against each other and through challenges in 20 different locations. Each week competitors either earn badges to stay or to take a hike. The producers encouraged the cast to save the drama until off camera making this a more friendly take on the world of drag.
The Queen of Camp champion will take home a prize package of nearly $5,000, including a cruise courtesy of AOVacations.com; the winner will also be featured at the Austin International Drag Festival and recevie free hamburgers for a year.
On the first episode Chicago's Muffy Fishbasket won the canoe race, a water-sports badge and the final lip-sync segment, taking home a wig from 1800WigTakeOut.com . No one was sent home after the judges discovered an extra badge in the pocket of camp counselor Dear Ruthie.
Episode two had the group pursuing a straight shooters badge with an archery challenge that had Alexis Bevels from Chicago the winner, taking home accessories from TheDragQuinn on Etsy.com . Sylvia Nyxx packed her bags at the end and went back home to Milwaukee, Wisconsin after a touching video message from RuPaul's Drag Racer Jaymes Mansfield.
Potato-sack races and plank walking were all part of the fun on episode three. Milwaukee's Pagan Holladay was the winner after walking the tight rope for a squirrel friend badge challenge.
Feast of Fun podcaster Fausto Fernos made a surprise guest appearance as judge and Fishbasket took home a gift certificate from FlawlesslyTaboo.com as the overall winner, forcing Wisconsin's Dominique DeGrant to take a hike as an end result.
A Q&A with the attending cast members followed the screening at Andersonville Brewing on Aug. 19, and it included Midwest queens O'laysia and C'est Kevvie.
The group claimed there was no rivalry between the two neighboring states during the contest. The average time most of the cast had been performing drag was around five years, with Fishbasket possibly being the most seasoned. "I've been doing this for decades!" she joked.
For future episodes, visit the Camp Wannakiki YouTube page with new episodes every Tuesday. Alternately, people can watch it live at Hamburger Mary's, 5400 N. Clark St., on Sunday evenings before the release.
Related article and photos at www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/NIGHTLIFE-PHOTOS-Marys-Attic/63759.html .