Only In Austin: Here to Stay

Only In Austin highlights five queer-owned businesses to explore the intersection of identity, community, and entrepreneurship. Here To Stay celebrates these business owners who create safe spaces and are mainstays of Austin’s inclusive culture.

5 episodes

➪ Play first episode


Reverie Books play icon

Episode 1 Reverie Books

“I think in order to continue living in Texas, I had to do this," explains Thaïs Perkins. "I could not stay here and not just devote every ounce of energy I can to the community.” Perkins gives Austin’s young LGBTQ+ readers a safe space to let their guard down at Reverie Books.
Sugarox play icon

Episode 2 Sugarox

“Candy is really gay. The names are sassy totally on purpose! It’s my nod to our LGBTQ+ community," says Jack Bessudo. He and Dec Simmons have expanded Sugarox from one store in Mexico to more than 3,000 retailers worldwide.
Garden Seventeen play icon

Episode 3 Garden Seventeen

“We were brought up against all these backstepping laws that made it harder to just exist as people," explains Rodney Stoutenger. "Our response was: Hang more rainbow flags, hang more rainbow banners. Let’s let everybody know who doesn’t have that support at home, ‘We got you.’” Stoutenger gives everyone in Austin a place to belong with Garden Seventeen.
Las Ofrendas play icon

Episode 4 Las Ofrendas

“I walk in the world with multiple layers to myself — I’m queer, I’m Latina, I’m a mother, I’m an Indigenous person," says TK Tunchez. "All of the work I do with Las Ofrendas and Frida Friday has always been about, ‘How do we allow people to tap into their internal abundance?’” Tunchez’s Las Ofrendas pieces invite Austin’s queer and BIPOC communities to take up space.
Madhu Chocolate play icon

Episode 5 Madhu Chocolate

“Chocolate is a medium which can encompass flavors from everywhere. To be connected to India in sourcing our cacao beans or where we get our spices from, it just makes me feel that I’m able to give back to my country," explains Harshit Gupta. Together with Elliott Curelop, they honor Harshit’s Indian heritage with Madhu Chocolate.
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