Outdoor sports gear brand The North Face just launched a "Summer of Pride" campaign on social media featuring drag queen Pattie Gonia, despite ongoing consumer backlash against Bud Light for a transgender partnership and the new uproar over Target's latest Pride collection.
The video promotion opens with a mustachioed Gonia clad in rainbow North Face gear and multicolored makeup saying, "Hi, it's me, Pattie Gonia, a real-life homosexual."
"I'm here with The North Face," he continues. "We are here to invite you to come out … in nature with us!"
The Summer of Pride events will include "hiking, community, art, lesbians" and "lesbians making art," Gonia says in the video.
North Face sponsored the same event last summer in multiple cities, or, as Gonia puts it, "gay sashayed" its way across the nation. This year, Summer of Pride will be making stops in Portland, Ore., Denver, Colo., Columbus, Ohio, San Francisco, Calif., and two new cities this year — Salt Lake City and Atlanta.
"Nature lets you be who you are, so, for the second year in a row [North Face] is hosting Summer of Pride together with [Pattie Gonia] (they/she) to celebrate you and all the beautiful ways you get outside," the post caption reads.
"And because we believe that exploration can take many shapes and forms, we're making these events so much more than just a hiking tour. We'll have workshops, panels and activities for all individuals who love to be outside," it says.
Reaction to the video was largely negative.
"Add north face to the growing list of boycotts," one user wrote on Instagram. "Peace. Will never buy your stuff again. Y'all check out @511tactical."
"Damn, we will keep this going until they ALL learn their lesson," another person said on Twitter. "Thank goodness I know how to sew…."
The North Face Trail, an official North Face Instagram account, responded to the negative comments in a thread.
"We recognize the opportunity our brand has to shape the future of the outdoors and we want that future to be a more accepting and loving place," the company's statement says. "We're partnering with Pattie because we believe the outdoors are for everyone."
"The North Face online community is designed to be a safe, positive and inclusive environment," it continues. "It's why we have a zero-tolerance policy against racist, discriminatory, threatening, abusive, harmful, vulgar or attacking social media comments, which will be removed immediately."
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