Pattie Gonia: Drag Queen Extraordinaire Crowned 'Traveler Of The Year' By National Geographic

By Maria Angelino | Friday, 16 February 2024 04:10 PM
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Drag queen Wyn Wylie, known by the stage name "Pattie Gonia," has been recognized as a "Traveler of the Year" by renowned media organization National Geographic.

In an article published in January, National Geographic highlighted several individuals who were named as "Travelers of the Year," with "Pattie Gonia" taking the top spot.

National Geographic described Pattie Gonia as an "artist [and] environmentalist" who is dedicated to introducing LGBTQ+ youth to the wonders of the outdoors. The drag queen's feel-good music videos not only promote environmental justice but also celebrate pride in one's identity. Collaborations with renowned artists such as cellist Yo-Yo Ma and Indigenous trans musician Quinn Christopherson have further elevated Pattie Gonia's impact.

In an interview with National Geographic, Wylie expressed the importance of supporting queer youth. Wylie shared, "Every year, my community fundraises to send 10 queer youth on a fully scholarshipped backpacking trip... One of the attendees told me and the group around the fire, 'Being on this trip has helped me reclaim a childhood I didn't get to have.' That's everything to me."

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Wylie has also made headlines for causing controversy surrounding an ad campaign by the North Face brand called the "Summer of Pride." Despite backlash and calls for boycotts, North Face defended its decision, emphasizing their commitment to creating a welcoming and safe outdoor environment for all individuals. A North Face spokesperson stated, "We are honored and grateful to support partners like Pattie Gonia who help make this vision a reality."

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During Pride Month in June, Pattie Gonia was invited to give tours at various national parks. In a video shared on social media, the drag queen expressed pride in the community organizers within the parks system who continuously strive to create safe spaces for queer individuals throughout the year. Pattie Gonia joyfully exclaimed, "We danced, we marched, we celebrated, and we got wet."

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The recognition of Pattie Gonia as a "Traveler of the Year" by National Geographic highlights the drag queen's significant contributions to both the LGBTQ+ community and the promotion of environmental awareness. Through music, activism, and outdoor adventures, Pattie Gonia continues to inspire and empower individuals from all walks of life.

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