Mesker Park Zoo & Botanic Garden in Evansville is expanding its community membership program. The program, which offers an annual membership of $ 5 to families participating in the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, will now be available to residents of southwest Indiana, western Kentucky and southern Illinois. .
The zoo launched the program in May for residents of Gibson, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh and Warrick counties. The program was funded by Indianapolis Lilly Endowment Inc. and the zoo says the expansion was made possible in part by funds raised at a wine auction earlier this month, which raised the harvest. over $ 20,000.
“With funds raised at our auction, plus a generous donation made by the Evansville Regional Economic Partnership earlier this summer, we are able to provide an additional 1,080 households with access to the zoo with a family membership.” Jennifer Evans, director of development for the zoo, said in a press release. “We are very grateful for the support of our community to be able to offer and expand this program. “
Since the launch of the program, more than 500 households have registered with the CMP, ie more than 950 adults and nearly 1,400 children.
Erick Beck, executive director of the zoo, said the Evansville Zoological Society is working to ensure the program “doesn’t go away any time soon.” He says the zoo is looking to support the program with current and future donors.