Denver PrideFest & The Center on Colfax
The first LGBTQ pride celebration in Denver was held in 1975 and was organized by members of the Imperial Court of the Rocky Mountain Empire. Empress VI Christi Layne was a key organizer in those early days. Excitement from that first parade led to the founding of The Center on Colfax the following year. The Center began producing the parade and added a festival in 1990. Since then, Denver PrideFest has grown into the largest celebration of LGBT pride in the Rocky Mountain region.
Denver PrideFest honors the active and resourceful lives and achievements of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people everywhere; particularly those in Colorado and our bordering states. Denver PrideFest raises funds for The Center, which opened in 1976 and over the years has grown to become the largest community center in the Rocky Mountain region. We give voice to Colorado’s LGBTQ community and play a pivotal role in statewide initiatives to reduce harassment and discrimination.
Today, we are focused on fulfilling our mission – To engage, empower, enrich, and advance the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer community of Colorado – by ensuring that every member of the LGBTQ community has access to the programs and resources they need to live happy, healthy, and productive lives.
The Center currently operates on an annual budget of $2.2 million, employs 19 staff members, and utilizes more than 520 community volunteers to serve more than 47,000 people each year.