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Beekman Boys receive backlash over charity campaign

June 16, 2019 04:22 PM

SHARON SPRINGS-The owners of Beekman 1802, a locally based global beauty and lifestyle brand say they've experienced backlash after announcing a donation in honor of Pride Month. 

"I think what was most shocking to us is the people who had negative things to say about this particular charity campaign know us." said Dr. Brent Ridge, owner of Beekman 1802. 

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This week two local business owners, Josh Kilmer Purcell and Brent Ridge took to social media to say they had received surprising feedback online after announcing they would be donating proceeds from some of their Beekman 1802 products to PFLAG, a national organization to help support the families of the LGBTQ community.

The men are partners in both their Sharon Springs based global beauty business, Beekman 1802, while also being partners in life.

"We're a LGBTQ business and even more important one in a rural area" said Josh Kilmer-Purcell.

Their Schoharie county business currently employs more than 100 people and features over 300 artisans from across the state. Their products are sold online, with retail partners, and in their mercantile in Sharon Springs. 

"We're a very altruistic company. We donate to small farms, we give to firefighters, we give to veterans organizations, this just so happens to be pride month" said Dr. Ridge.

The two are not new to the spotlight, after winning the show The Amazing Race and being the first openly gay couple to star in their own reality t.v. show, The Fabulous Beekman Boys. They say they have experienced this type of negativity before, but they never expected to receive it from some of their own customers.  

"They know what we believe in, they know what values we have, and yet it still wasn't enough to over come deep seeded feelings" said Dr. Ridge.

Despite the experience, the partners say they're not going to let them stop this from continuing to help spread awareness. 

"I think what we've learned is best response is to use this to educate people" said Kilmer-Purcell.

Credits

Brooke Selby

Copyright 2019 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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