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New Hampshire

Chick-fil-A franchise to co-sponsor New Hampshire LGBT Pride event

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

NASHUA, N.H. — The sole Chick-fil-A restaurant in New Hampshire, located in the food court of the Pheasant Lane Mall south of Nashua, will be one of the co-sponsors for New Hampshire LGBT Pride Fest 2012.

The announcement by franchise general manager Anthony Picolia came as a surprise to Pride Fest organizers in light of the ongoing public relations debacle over the negative remarks by Chick-Fil-A’s President last month regarding same-sex marriage.

Picolia, in an email to LGBTQ Nation on Tuesday, confirmed that his franchise will sponsor the festival, writing:

“In both my personal and professional life, I have had and continue to have positive relationships with family, friends, customers and employees in the LGBT community. It would make me sad if someone felt that they were not openly welcomed into my life or restaurant based on their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender,”

In a statement issued by Pride organizers, Picolia added that his Chick-fil-A franchise “has gay employees and serves gay customers with honor, dignity and respect.”

“We also don’t discriminate in giving back to the Nashua community, donating to a wide variety of causes. I would challenge people to come have a conversation with me before they make assumptions or boycott my restaurant. Come to my restaurant and see for yourself that my team and I only have one mission: To serve exceptional experiences to all,” he wrote.

Tara Powell, one of the festival’s organizers, said she is looking forward to working with Picolia and his support of the Pride festival.

“This sponsorship is just another example of how great New Hampshire is to the LGBT community,” said Powell. “We are looking forward to having a great Pride Fest, and are very excited to have Chick-fil-A involved.”

New Hampshire Pride Fest 2012 is scheduled from Noon to 5:00 PM on August 11, 2012 at Veterans Memorial Park in Manchester.

New Hampshire is one of six states, along with the District of Columbia, where same-sex marriage is legal.

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84 more reader comments:

  1. Umm…what?!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:32am
  2. ok… confuzzled… are they really for or against us?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:32am
  3. I’m not buying it.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:33am
  4. Can you say “radical U-Turn”?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:33am
  5. What?????

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:33am
  6. Yay! :)

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:34am
  7. While I commend that individual franchise holder’s actions they’re about to be summarily slapped back into reality when corporate gets wind of this in about 3..2…1..

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:34am
  8. They’re just trying to cover their asses. Willing to bet it’s only cause their stock dropped

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:34am
  9. I respect that particular manager as a person, but let this be a lesson to ANY business how fast they can be taken down from a group of people they deem less than respectable or human! I’d STILL not ever eat there!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:35am
  10. I say go for it. There are times in which you express righteous indignation. And there are times when you recognize a mea culpa and should not be a butthead to say no.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:35am
  11. it is one franchise owner, not Dan Cathy. congrats to him

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:35am
  12. Okay, but franchises still pay money to the head office, right? Words are nice…

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:36am
  13. This is a PR ploy to try and stop the mass exodus of customers Chick-fil-A is suddenly facing and save their image. This company does not care about us — rather, it cares about its wallet and how its now taking a bit hit.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:36am
  14. finally coming around, are they????

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:36am
  15. Maybe they realized gay folk love deep fried chicken and waffle fries hah

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:36am
  16. A church where i live in central La. had something on there sign supporting them and “biblical marriage”. Well this sunday a group is going to that church to show just how human we are!!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:37am
  17. I was a bit confused at first but good for them. That branch gets my respect, for whatever that is worth.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:38am
  18. I would not boycott that particular store, as I feel it’s managers actions overshadows the bigotry and homophobia of the Cathy family, but I would continue my boycott of the rest of the Chik-Fil-A franchise.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:38am
  19. Hypocritical hate chicken

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:38am
  20. Is this real or is it “beware Greeks bearing gifts”?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:39am
  21. I really don’t think it’s a PR ploy. I think the individual franchise owner is just trying to show that they don’t all believe that way. He probably will pay for it later, which is unfortunate.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:39am
  22. Nice marketing strategy. Never mentioned marriage equality. The company never discriminated against employees or customers either, just equal rights. But their sales will sky rocket.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:41am
  23. The people, together, can take down any harmful company or vote out any corrupt politician or change any unsustainable policy or law. That we don’t often take and use that power puts the blame on us. Glad to see a little flexing of muscle in this case.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:41am
  24. It’s all publicity. Guarentee they haven’t changed their views, it’s all public relations. They don’t wanna look bad.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:42am
  25. Ugh just read on Bristol Palin’s blog. More like Bratol Pain in my Alaska.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:42am
  26. Good for that franchisee…hope he gets good community support…CFA is still funding hate but I’m happy that not all their owners are cowing to their politics.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:43am
  27. Never liked their chicken and never will. KFC for me please any day. But today is the day! https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=4009219161078&set=p.4009219161078&type=1&theater

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:44am
  28. This is just a franchise owner. This is not the corporation. The money given to this franchisee still goes back to corporate and the is given to LGBTQ hate groups. It would mean more if the franchisee rebuked Chick-fil-a, desolved its relationship, and switched to another company.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:45am
  29. This is ONE franchise owner here guys. His boss may be Cathy, but this guy owns this particular store. He is standing up AGAINST Cathy’s statement. And I applaud him for it.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:46am
  30. Wanna bet they won’t be a franchise much longer?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:49am
  31. I agree with Nicole….and marie, it has to start someone, Bravooooooooo to him, for having the balls to stand up for his beliefs

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:50am
  32. Sorry, one franchise will not make up for the millions corporate has been pouring into hate/pray away the gay/ anti gay marriage organizations! His franchise fees and supply orders keep that machine running.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:51am
  33. Good for this manager, but note that he used the company tag line about treating everyone with “honor, dignity, and respect.” Did you notice that didn’t include equality?

    This is a test in a safe state, nothing more. Yesterday’s news included an article about how CFA’s brand approval had dropped 50% since this flap began.

    This is window dressing. Cathy won’t change his habit of contributing to Christian hate groups.

    If for no other reason, stay away from this store because junk food will KILL you. Have a fresh salad, a slice of whole wheat bread, and a piece of fresh local fruit.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:51am
  34. Doesn’t really matter. The Money eventually makes it’s way back to Chic-Fil-A headquarters and is used to fund Anti-Gay groups. If tthe store really wanted to help, they would shut down for a day in protest.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:54am
  35. Good for them! It will be interesting to see what corporate’s response will be. Respect for humans – check. Respect for chickens – not a speck! (I don’t see the word certified humanely raised anywhere). Not getting my money.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:54am
  36. Why is the LGBT community bought so easily? Next they will be offering to run public service ads late at night. Any takers? Come on……………….

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:57am
  37. This one is a franchise, not owned by the chicken hater.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:00am
  38. Even if it is one franchise standing up for the community it is worth something. When they see that one store gets support while the others suffer it could make as much impact as the boycott… who knows.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:04am
  39. I applaud him. I thank him.
    Still, money spent there feeds Chik-Fil-A corporate, which in turn funds anti-gay organizations.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:05am
  40. Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:06am
  41. That’s a good idea, but I’m still not eating it. It’s JUNK food!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:07am
  42. to late

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:17am
  43. Too little, too late.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:18am
  44. Change comes from within. Maybe other franchise owners will also stand up and be counted as supporters.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:19am
  45. This makes me proud to live in Nashua. (:

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:22am
  46. Just be careful, that’s all I can say,,, think Trojan horse

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:25am
  47. don’t let them.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:34am
  48. Half of y’all either didn’t bother reading the article or have no concept of how franchises work. Yeah, we still boycott this place, but, for however short a time, this guy on the INSIDE is working for those of us on the outside. Imagine for a moment finding out that the guy that ultimately controls your livelihood is ruining your good name (legally!) with hate and everyone’s mad at you. Yeah, he may lose his franchise, or at least be sanctioned, but he is trying to show the country that not everyone in the company supports bigotry. I commend him, speaking out from the inside is never easy from either side.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:44am
  49. Sorry, cuts no ice with me. Even assuming the best of intentions with this franchisee, a portion of his profits go to corporate headquarters. We already know Cathey donates to organizations whose sole aim is deny LGBT equality. So long as he and his ilk are at the helm, not one red cent of mine will they see. The idea of MY money being used to further hate makes me sick. He has the right to freedom of speech. We have the right to react…peacefully and rationally…to it.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:47am
  50. Too little….too late. No piece of over-processed, crappy chicken is worth our civil rights!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:51am
  51. For serious?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 5:56am
  52. I wouldn’t want to go to that Pride tbh.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:00am
  53. Hahahahahaha..! So much for practising what they preach..!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:01am
  54. “In both my personal and professional life, I have had and continue to have positive relationships with family, friends, customers and employees in the LGBT community. It would make me sad if someone felt that they were not openly welcomed into my life or restaurant based on their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender,”

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:04am
  55. I bet this is chafing some asses at corporate…

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:04am
  56. I kinda like this, I kinda don’t. The issue at hand does not have to do with customers being treated equally. It has to do with where the people want their money going. I commend him though, for allowing LGBT to work for him (I’m assuming that’s what he meant) and for making his stance clear, even though there could be repercussions.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:07am
  57. Their corporation is STILL ANTI-GAY! Individual stores are franchised, SO an individual location can br for us while chick-fil-a corporate is against us.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:11am
  58. this is the why I find the current kiss your partner day at chick-fi-la a problem, We will be picking individually owned stores, that are bought and run by individuals who may support us already. This is a franchise. Cathy doesnt run these stores. Yes he does profit from them, but this could make someone like this particular franchise owner turn away from supporting us instead of helping us. We are protesting toward the wrong people. The public and franchise owners didnt create the discimination, Cathy did. so the best way to protest Chick-fi-la is to not eat at their restaurants

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:23am
  59. That is the one thing that so many don’t understand. These restaurants are all franchise’s. Just because corporate (founding) people have one idea does not mean that the same thing is felt with all the restaurants.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:28am
  60. Chick-fil-a sponsoring a pride event. Is like Marlboro or Lucky strick opening a cancer ward. lol. (Don’t take this post too seriously, it’s meant to be funny.)

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:29am
  61. Some of you guys are absolutely ridiculous!!! The way you are acting over this is just the way you are complaining homophobes act towards us!!! GROW UP!!! Act like you have some sense and decency and stop being hypocrites!!! Ugh we should be about peace

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:35am
  62. Actually my nephew works at this franchise. He says there are gay employees and the owner is very supportive. He is showing his support that not all franchises believe what corporate does. The stores are individually operated so it would be a shame to boycott all of them.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:35am
  63. Not hatred!!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:35am
  64. are you kidding me?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:46am
  65. What kind of gays would allow that mess to occur?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:53am
  66. Until the Franchise gets wind of it…

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:59am
  67. Well, I suppose I can throw in something.
    1: I am sick of hearing about Chick-fil-A, I really am. It’s a damn fast food joint. Can it really be that important!?

    2: It was nothing but stupidity for a Chain of Fast food establishments to take such a position…period. My Chicken between those two pieces of bread has not a damn thing to do with Homosexuality or the Family Unit. LMFAO!

    3: If the guy wants to fund/support such people that is a ok however knowing this it’s pretty damn simple don’t support him if you have a problem with it in the slightest.

    4: If the people in such said establishments have an issue with it let them find other jobs. Yeah, I am being bull headed about the matter but…what else can you do–could you do?

    5: All this publicity is nothing but free advertising likely to boost sales it doesn’t matter what the ruckus is over be good or bad (Bad tends to be better I think) if you draw attention to yourself people of like minds will follow that would not ordinarily have done so without being provoked. It seems more than obvious to jump on the gay train. Anything gay related in the press or on mass scales gets TOOONNNS of unnecessary attention. Hot wiring yourself into that feed is going to turn up some kind of great result–again as I said be it good or bad either one will be ‘great’ This is about money for sure

    6:I do not eat at Chick-fil-A regularly I have eaten there once…one time…BUT I sure as hell don’t have a reason to go back. Lmfao

    Also, look at this bullshit with KFC, see what I mean!?

    Band Wagon
    Status Bump
    Advertise
    Sales

    for the love of…–Who would buy into that!?!?!?!?!?! They had no intention of support before all of this!? Done, fuckin’ done, Americans are too fucking bored with their time.

    Yes, I know this is a very bull headed post please forgive me but I really don’t care to correct myself in it about these matters.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 7:01am
  68. Why can’t we just love who we want and marry who we want and not have to have any dam corporation tell us what we can or cannot do. Besides we are going to do whatever we dam will want to.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 7:17am
  69. Palin’s picture should be there slogan for the pride event, since you know, she was so eager to support.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 7:49am
  70. Nobody who is boycotting Chick-fil-A is saying that the lower end types have anything against gays, that isn’t the point. I don’t want even a penny of my money getting in the hands of the Cathy’s so they can spend it to further the “hate agenda”. This is an unexpected but welcome move by a small (Relatively speaking) franchise owner. However, it will not change my mind in boycotting Chick-Fil-A as a whole.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 7:55am
  71. Good for that franchisee, but their corporate is going to strip them of their business now.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 8:08am
  72. Im Supporting The Cause Of LGBT, Today Is National Day Of LGBT In Front Of Every Chick-Fil-A Restuarant & Kiss For The Cause Of LGBT.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 9:02am
  73. Gay for pay?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 9:16am
  74. REDEMPTION!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 9:44am
  75. Possibly the most desperate backpedal. Nice try, Chick-Fil-A.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 10:16am
  76. Gay ppl are sooo quick 2 fall 4 the Oikie Doke!!!!=chk where the political contrabutions are going… straight to Mitt Romney & the Koch Bros. who don’t give a Rat’s Ass about Homos – they have been takin your rights away honey directly under your noses. Wake up! your clueless

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 12:05pm
  77. Way to go Chick Fil A . Proud of you.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 12:15pm
  78. Good for them!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 1:06pm
  79. Sense when does OUR LGBTQ support this????????LGBTQ is representing me??? http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2012/07/this-is-why-chick-fil-a-sucks/ Time to rethink who is representing us?? The owner of a franchise can sue a corporation. Why do ” we ” need to support this store?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 2:33pm
  80. At Least some managers care for our well being.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 2:33pm
  81. Sorry, my network stalled before I could finish. I bet he starts looking into a KFC franchise!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 4:26pm
  82. this is confusing

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 6:32pm
  83. Sounds like they’re trying to backtrack themselves out of a public relations snafu of biblical proportions.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 7:11pm
  84. The thing is, though, Ick-Fil-A is a chain. Mr. Cathy still gets a percentage of whatever THIS chain makes, so it’s really not a good thing.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 7:49pm