Spend With Pride: Celebrate the LGBTQ-owned businesses at the heart of our community

Jun 11, 2021 | Seattle Pride

Guest Blog, Written by Laura Clise, Founder & CEO, Intentionalist

My coming out journey was a search for self-acceptance and belonging. While the modern LGBTQ rights movement had been underway for decades, the summer after my junior year of high school was long before marriage equality or Will & Grace – before pride flags were ubiquitous beyond Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood.

It was 1996, and I was afraid. I knew that I was gay, and as someone who already struggled to fit in, I felt alone. And so I went to Seattle’s gay neighborhood, hoping it would be a place where I might feel more accepted.

Spoiler: Walking the streets, and even stopping into local businesses on Broadway Avenue did not magically transform this insecure teen into a confident queer, but it was a powerful early introduction to the important role that LGBTQ-owned small businesses play in offering our community places where we can feel safe and welcome.

Laura SLIM

Pictured: Laura Clise, Founder & CEO of The Intentionalist

Over the past twenty-five years, my appreciation for LGBTQ-owned coffee shops, bars, gift stores, restaurants, dance clubs, florists, automotive repair shops, and gyms has only deepened. I have sought out LGBTQ-owned businesses in cities I have lived in and visited throughout the U.S. and around the world.

Queer spaces matter, and that’s why I’m both proud and excited that Intentionalist is partnering with Seattle Sounders FC, Seattle Storm, Seattle Seahawks, OL Reign, Seattle Kraken, and Seattle Mariners to celebrate and support local LGBTQ-owned businesses.

No matter which team you root for (or play for), here are three reasons to #SpendWithPride:

  1. You’re supporting a fabulous LGBTQ-owned business and letting the business owner(s) know that we appreciate the many ways that they support our community.
  2. Every receipt you upload at is a chance to win a Pride prize pack from your favorite team.
  3. When we reach our goal of $25,000 our pro sports team partners will make a donation to Gender Diversity, a local nonprofit working toward a world where people of all gender identities and expressions feel welcome.

The past year has been challenging for all of us, including the LGBTQ-owned small businesses we love. Whether you’re able to #SpendWithPride or whether all you’re able to give right now are words of encouragement, Pride Month is a great reminder to choose to be the reason that an LGBTQ business owner’s day is a little bit better. Let the LGBTQ-owned businesses in your community know that they matter as part of your Pride Month celebration and throughout the year.