Going, going, gone, and the first on-line auction of Pikes Peak Historical Society proved to be a profitable and fun endeavor. Due to the restrictions of the pandemic, PPHS was unable to open the museum this year or provide educational programs, which left a void in the income needed for basic maintenance of the museums. For years, PPHS has held an auction at Florissant Library and Lake George Charter School as a way to increase their revenue, but that couldn’t happen, either, so they decided to attempt an on-line auction instead.
“We were unsure how this would all work out, especially during these difficult times,” said John Rakowski, president of PPHS.
PPHS members Kathy Perry and Marianne Mogon coordinated the effort and received help and guidance from Allen Kerby of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation in setting up the auction. It was a team effort of several members who assisted in the various tasks involved with the auction, before, during and after. “We were overwhelmed and grateful for the community support both in donations and auction participants,” said Kathy Perry.
More than 78 items were donated to the auction from Teller and Park County merchants and individuals. The variety of items ranged from glamping to handmade items, gem stones, gift certificates and everything in between. The auction also attracted bidders from other states, including North Carolina, Ohio, Texas and New York.
Besides the revenue from the auction itself, several people gave monetary donations, including $2000 from Park State Bank and Trust. “We were very pleased with all the support we received and the auction far exceeded our expectations,” Rakowski said.
Donations are still coming in, and an accounting of expenses, but PPHS feels they are very close to a total of $8000 in profits. “It was a team effort of members of PPHS and the community,” said Perry. “Our gratitude is way beyond a mere thank you,” Perry concluded.
PPHS is among the largest non-profits in Teller County, with almost 500 members. Over 99% of the annual revenue is applied toward the museums and various programs. PPHS owns and operates two museums: Pikes Peak Historical Society Museum, at 18033 Teller County Road #1 across from the Florissant Post Office, and Schoolhouse Museum, located at Teller County Road #31 and Wildhorn.
PPHS volunteers also manage the historic Florissant cemetery on behalf of Teller County and they present free educational programs. The organization installed beautiful sandstone signs for the town of Florissant and built an informational kiosk on the east side of town. All of these programs, and more, are done without taxpayer money. PPHS is funded entirely by donations, memberships, grants and the generosity of the citizens of Teller and Park Counties. They are an IRS qualified 501(c)(3) [FID #84-1259188] non-profit organization, incorporated and operating since 1988.