The United Court of the Pikes Peak Empire
The oldest GLBT organization in Southern Colorado – The Highest Court in all the Land!
One dollar at a time.
That mantra drives the United Court of the Pikes Peak Empire’s fundraising efforts. Now in its 40th year, the group raises between $12,000 and $15,000 per year for local charities like Inside Out Youth Services and the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region. They collect donations dollar-by-dollar — from tips at charity drag shows to auctions and other volunteer works.
“To make philanthropy a fad is my goal,” says Anthony Merkle. His drag persona,Shelby G. Moorehead, holds the title Empress XL for UCPPE. His partner,Travis Henderson, serves as Emperor XL. It’s unusual for an Emperor and Empress to be a couple, because the positions are elected, but it’s not unheard of.
The Court is an all-inclusive organization, welcoming members who are “gay, straight, bi, lesbian, transgender; our membership comes very heavily from all of those groups,” says Henderson. They have members of all ages and backgrounds.
“We have members who have been alongside fighting through the AIDS crisis, fighting for marriage equality, fighting through the most recent tragedy in Orlando,” adds Merkle. “That’s what the Court system does. We take any kind of negativity in our community, and we turn it into a positive way for us to stand up for what we see as right.”
The money that the Court raises goes to a variety of local charities, as selected by the Emperor and Empress. Being 100 percent volunteer-run, UCPPE shares volunteers with many other local organizations. While they’ve always been good at raising money, Henderson and Merkle are focused on being more visible in the community, breaking down walls and teaming up with other organizations.
“There was a time that you could go out to the bars and everyone knew who the Court was,” says Merkle.
They hope to make that true again.
Join Reign XLII for these fun charity events:
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Our Charitable Work
Charitable Organizations We Support:
In 2015 We Raised
for 12 Charities!
Our Monarchs and line members work to raise money through donations at our performances. The money we raise is then given back to the community at the end of each year. We get all our money from the generosity of those who attend our shows and donate. Come join us at our next event to see more about what we do, and help us to help those in our community.
Where We Meet