By Sage Thee
It’s Pride Month, which means there’s no better time to shout out some of my favorite LGBTQ-friendly businesses. I’m all about shopping local, having fun, and staying safe — and these businesses allow me to do just that.
Under the Umbrella: A Queer Little Bookstore
511 W 200 S Suite 120, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Opened early last year, Under the Umbrella has quickly become my favorite place in Utah. The shop sells hundreds of books by, for, and about LGBTQ people, as well as art, jewelry, zines, and other accessories, all made by local artists. Under the Umbrella is more than just a bookstore; it is a safe haven for marginalized people. They also offer a free library, free gender-affirming closet, space and resources to write a letter of support to an incarcerated LGBTQ person, clubs, and kits of essentials like granola bars, hand sanitizer, and a toothbrush and toothpaste for the unhoused to grab whenever they need.
331 600 E, Salt Lake City, UT 84102
Encircle Cafe is an LGBTQ+ youth and family resource that offers daily programs, friendship circles, and therapy for children and families, designed to provide a safe space for LGBTQ+ youth and their families — but that’s not all! They recently opened the Encircle Cafe, a cozy coffee shop right in the Encircle House in Salt Lake City.
The Big O Doughnuts
248 W 900 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Located right next to Vertical Diner, The Big O Doughnuts is the cutest little vegan bakery I can imagine. Their doughnuts are fun, creative, and delicious (and entirely vegan!), plus they have gender-neutral restrooms and identify as queer and woman-owned. The next time you grab a bite to eat at Vertical, head on over to Big O for desert. You won’t regret it.
If you’re looking for something to do in Salt Lake City, I recommend my ideal Saturday outing: A delicious vegan donut from Big O Doughnuts, washed down with some coffee at the Encircle Cafe, and then a good 2-3 hours spent perusing the shelves at Under the Umbrella.