Nevada Discovery Museum Funding on Track

by Mike Van Houten / Mar 18, 2010

Yes! This is fantastically fantastic news. While most redevelopment projects downtown have ended up being delusions of grandeur, here's a little project that has endured and apparently passed the test of this bone-jarring recession.

After more than five years of dedicated hard work from numerous volunteers and staff, the goal of building a world-class children's museum in downtown Reno is within sight. Thanks to the increased support of long-time donors, in addition to exciting new commitments, they are planning to start construction in July 2010 with a projected opening of mid 2011. Nice!

Norma and Ranson Webster recently committed $1 million toward completion of the project. Inspired by the Terry Lee Wells Foundation's $4 million challenge grant, the Websters have allowed Nevada Discovery Museum to reach $16.6 million, only $3.7 million shy of their $20.3 million campaign goal. Other major donors include:

NV Energy — $375,000, total gift of $700,000, in addition to amazing in-kind contributions since 2006

The E.L. Cord Foundation — $250,000, total gift of $725,000 since 2005

The Leonette Foundation — $100,000

Anonymous Family — $100,000

As the fundraising continues, there are a few other exciting occurrences to update you on:

Those of you who've driven by the museum building (the former Reno City Hall) recently have probably noticed that Q&D Construction is hard at work. The transformers are being upgraded, as are some of the plumbing structures.

Nevada Discovery Museum was able to fully pay off their building loan of $950,000 at the end of January.

They've started a national search for their Executive Director. Estimated start date is early this summer.

In the meantime check out these Youtube videos below of why children's museums are so important.

Post your comments
  • March 20, 2010 - 12:07:59 PM

    Those videos were sooooo cute. I can't wait to take my kids here, and am glad it is opening before they grow up into adults!

  • March 20, 2010 - 12:51:16 PM

    Nice, this is one of the projects I was really hoping would make it.

  • March 21, 2010 - 10:40:28 AM

    I must say I can't believe it. This is great news coming during a time when I thought these kinds of projects were dead. Very nice!

  • March 22, 2010 - 8:13:41 AM

    Thanks for the update Mike! This is great news on a little project that will have a big impact on the built environment and for children in our area. We can't wait!