Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Help the Polar Bears

Yikes!  This bear looks ready for Thanksgiving.

UPDATE (12/22/2010): The Zoo raised the money according to Courier Journal article ("Zoo raises money to secure Kresge grant for Glacier Run" by Sheldon S. Shafer) and obtained the matching grant after the Ogle Foundation ($100,000), Humana, Inc. ($100,000), The Friends of the Zoo ($150,000), and an anonymous donor ($100,000) made donations.  These donations along with over 500 donors in the last two months were able to raise the final amount of the $.7.7 million.  The article stated: "Of the $25.6 million in the total campaign, gifts of $1 million or more have come from: Louisville Metro Government, the James Graham Brown Foundation, Brown-Forman Corp., the Friends of the Louisville Zoo, the Harry S. Frazier family, Annette and John Schnatter, and Betty and David Jones."

The Louisville Zoo of Kentucky is building a section called Glacier Run that provides habitat for the seals and sea lions plus the polar and grizzly bears.   If all the money is raised it will also house snowy owls, Steller's sea eagles, and arctic foxes. [Note: No photographers were hurt or eaten in the taking of these polar bear pictures!]

The zoo has till January 1, 2011 to raise the final $820,000 of $7,700,000 in order to receive a $900,000 challenge grant from the non-profit Kresge Foundation of Troy, Michigan.  The entire project overall has raised approximately $23.9 million.  Parts of the Glacier Run exhibit are already open (the living area for the seals and sea lions).

Help these living polar bears so future generations won't have to only see them in museum exhibits like one in the following picture.

Display at Carnegie Museum of Natural History - Pittsburgh, PA

Allowable matching funds are tax-deductible and can be in the form of cash or pledges from corporations, foundations and individuals.  Donations can be mailed to:

Jill Kaplan, Director of Development
c/o Louisville Zoo
1100 Trevilian Way
Louisville Ky. 40213

For information call 502-459-2181 or read the full story at the Courier Journal web site.

These polar bears are not fossils... yet.  Let us hope their habitat does not melt away and them along with it.

Polar bear pictures were taken at the Louisville Science Center Discovery Gallery of stuffed bears donated back in the early 1970s.