Our Work

ICF Next × Miller Lite

Beers &
Queer History

A campaign that shines a light on the places that helped empower the LGBTQ+ community.
Beers & Queer History
ICF Next x Miller Lite

The situation

Since the very beginning, America’s queer bars have played a critical role in the modern gay rights movement. But since 2007, 37% of them had closed—taking with them an important piece of LGBTQ+ history and depriving communities of vital, safe gathering spaces.

As a longtime fixture in these spaces, as well as an ally of the LGBTQ+ community long before it was trendy, Miller Lite understood the stakes. In 2021, they took their commitment to the community to the next level with Open & Proud—an initiative to create safe and inclusive spaces at bars nationwide. In 2022, it was time to take that commitment even further.

A vintage Miller Lite poster for PrideA vintage Miller Lite poster for PrideA vintage group photo of people supporting Pride

The solution

To help amplify, celebrate, and protect these bars, our team partnered with Miller Lite to engage Dr. Eric Cervini, a Pulitzer Prize-nominated historian, to create a one-of-a-kind book: “Beers & Queer History."

Combining our original illustrations and Dr. Cervini’s insights, the book tells the story of ten of the most important and influential LGBTQ+ bars—shining a light on the places that helped empower the LGBTQ+ community to not only live authentically, but freely as well.

A stack of Beers & Queer History booksDr. Eric Cervini posing with a Beers & Queer History book
A Beers & Queer History book open to the introduction pageAn illustration of the White Horse barAn illustration of the Black Cat Cafe in San Francisco
A photo of Dr. Eric Cervini and famous drag queen taking a selfie at the book launch eventAn illustration of the Stonewall Inn in NYCAn illustration of the Chicken Hut bar
A photo of Dr. Eric Cervini and famous drag queen taken at the book launch event

The impact

We took things to the Next level when unveiling the book at a pre-Pride party at New York’s Stonewall Inn, widely considered the birthplace of the gay rights movement.

“Beers & Queer History” immediately struck a chord—amplifying awareness of America’s most influential queer bars and sparking a passionate conversation on mainstream and LGBTQ+ media outlets, including The Advocate, Matador Network, and NewNowNext.

And our activation and PR efforts were a success. The book sold out almost instantly on MillerLite.com, with all proceeds going to Equality Federation—all while garnering some serious coverage for Miller Lite.

125

Media placements

50M+

Earned impressions

100%

Positive coverage

$200K

to the Equality Federation

40+

Year legacy of allyship extended