Pride Month is in full swing, and many local businesses are graciously celebrating the LGBTQ+ citizens of Fredericksburg. Duly Noted, a greeting card shop on Caroline Street, is no exception. Its owner, Chris Allen, is a member of the LGBTQ+ community, and has praised Fredericksburg as a city of inclusion. Duly Noted opened initially in Washington DC, before moving to Fredericksburg after a year.
“We were really looking for a community that we could get involved in,” Allen said. “A place that felt like home…we just felt welcomed here in Fredericksburg.”
A stationery and party supply store, Duly Noted sells items such as greeting cards, balloons, pens, and much more. Allen has a strong passion for letterpress printing, an old form of printing greeting cards and stationery. After the COVID-19 pandemic, Allen was able to fulfill his dream of opening a stationery business with Duly Noted. Duly Noted’s top selling items are their greeting cards, which come from around the country. They also do customary wedding invitations and stationery.
According to Allen, the Fredericksburg community has been unbelievably friendly and welcoming to himself and his business. Allen and his husband, Tobin Traxler, were married in Fredericksburg. When visiting the city for their menu tasting, they saw the pride flags waving throughout downtown for Pride Month.
“That’s what got us thinking, ‘wow, this is actually an inclusive city,’” Allen said.
Allen has noticed a significant growth in LGBTQ+ acceptance since the Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage in 2015. Allen loves that society has evolved as such, and cherishes the comfort he feels in walking down the streets of Fredericksburg with his husband. He said that while there are plenty of people who are not as welcoming of LGBTQ+ people, he looks forward to seeing the dialogue and acceptance continue to grow across the community.
“It starts with just practicing kindness,” Allen said. “We’re all human beings…I don’t judge you, don’t judge me.”
Allen has felt truly at home in Fredericksburg, and appreciates how Duly Noted has been included in the community.
Duly Noted is located at 714 Caroline Street. Follow them on Facebook.