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How to join The Dark Empire

Interested in possibly joining TDE?

Simply log onto our forums and introduce yourself in the "Roll Call" section! Your membership on the forums may need to be approved first before you can sign in. You must be at least 18 years of age to register on our forums. Minors aged 13-17 may join our forums, however, will require parental approval and assistance from a Council Member before forum registration can be completed.

For assistance, contact us via email TDEcostumeclub@aol.com

To obtain Full Membership within the organization, you must at be least eighteen years of age and have an approved costume that meets our costuming standards. See our Charter for information on becoming an Official Member of TDE.

If you are ready to submit a costume for full membership, you can enter The Dark Trials


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Post by Lord Bruticus on Mon Aug 15, 2011 9:33 am

The recent orphanage visit conducted by the Coruscant Temple was a huge success, and I thought it prudent to state here the order in which I proceeded while planning, so that perhaps other Temples may organize similar events with a bit more ease; this can be used as a reference to assist you while planning a large-scale charity troop.

Remember, it is the responsiblity of the Jen'ari [Temple Master] for your Temple (or representative designated by your Jen'ari) to organize such an activity for your Temple to participate in. I'd like to see all Temples within TDE try to organize such events at least once a year. There is, of course, no minimum trooping requirement within The Dark Empire.

1. I started by first ensuring that a fair amount of TDE members would be willing to commit to the orphanage visit. Once I knew that I had at least several (four or five) full members willing to participate, I then proceeded to my next step in planning the troop.

2. The second phase was critical. I wanted to see, just by taliking with some of my costuming pals, if members of other groups would also be interested in participating. This is our policy - we will never hoard such an event all to ourselves willingly. Of course, the response every time was, "Yes. We'd love to help out." Be earnest in your intentions here. When they see that you are serious about your planning, their interest will grow.

3. The third phase of planning was to approach the charity itself. In the case of Hillsides, I sent them a friendly email of greetings on behalf of TDE, explaining a bit about us, and proposing what we would like to do. My intention was strictly to pose with kids in front of cameras in costume with other costumers, and I made sure my email explicitly stressed that. I also referenced our website www.thedarkempire.org Our website has all of the information about The Dark Empire that anyone could ask for.

Temple Masters take note: I highly recommend that if you plan on sending any emails out to any charities or other entities on behalf of The Dark Empire, that you utilize your Tyran'ari for this task. Emails from an official email account for the group with a proper signature are more professional than a personal email, and are more likely to be warmly received. This is not a requirement, but a highly suggested course of action.

After a small exchange of emails with Hillsides, I then set a date for me to visit the center in person, out of costume but in semi-casual apparrel. In a meeting with the center director / charity representative(s), I spelled out in-person what we do as a group, and what we'd like to do for Hillsides. I also stressed that we do not accept any fees or monetary donations, but we do encourage donations be made straight to the charity itself. I also had a press kit / TDE flyer and business cards on-hand, and our photo book. Of course, you might not have access to a photobook of TDE members, but I encourage you to bring some photos of members in costume, so that the charity can get an idea of what we look like. After a friendly exchange of information, I then established that Hillsides would like to proceed with the event, and a tentative date was scheduled. --- Leave yourself lots of time for this! The Hillsides event itself took four months of planning.

4. The fourth step was to write and send out formal invitations to our fellow costuming groups. Again, I strongly suggest using your TDE Public Relations Officer for this, but it is not required. I drafted a formal and open invitation to all costumed Star Wars fans, and sent it to all of the major fan groups, local clubs, and created a Facebook event page with the text of the open letter, and also posted the event in my Temple's part of the TDE forums. Of course, you don't have to go to such lengths; you can invite whomever you wish. I, however, wanted to invite anyone with a decent Star Wars costume that wanted to participate. The Mandalorian Mercs were very receptive to our invitation, and a half dozen of them trooped alongside us.

5. The fifth and final stage of planning involved maintaining contact with Hillsides and people I knew to be attending in costume. Periodic updates are crucial with events of this magnitude {insert Admiral Ackbar joke here}. In fact, Hillsides had to re-schedule the event one week earlier than originally planned. By keeping attendees regularly updated (largely on our forums and on the Facebook event page, and also via email), it didn't take too much effort to ensure everyone knew about the scheduling change. The event itself went flawlessly.

To recap, I found that these five planning stages were crucial and quite effective in organizing a large charity event for the Coruscant Temple. Being the TDE "PR Guy" already helped, I suppose. Still, I invite other Temple Masters (or their appointed event planners) to use this staging process as a tool or template when planning a large-scale trooping event for your Temple.

For the Empire!
Lord Bruticus
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Post by Guest on Mon Aug 15, 2011 9:00 pm

Thanks for this input Brutal Guy. It should go a long way in helping Temple Masters, especially new ones, to contact, plan, and coordinate their Troops. Priceless tutelage here. Twisted Evil


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Post by Sith Princess Revan on Wed Aug 17, 2011 4:59 am

good to know, trying to work on getting some more members here in Colorado as I look into some of the local charities here
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Post by Darth_Mayhem on Wed Jan 25, 2012 12:57 am

very good milord, im glad this is up, i shall study it closely
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Post by Beviin on Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:51 am

Thanks so much for posting this great advice! I hope to use this outline in the coming months to get some events going in my area. Smile

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