Giving Thanks for the Great Outdoors

As 2016 comes to a close, we would like to take time to show our gratitude to each and every individual, family, corporation and partner who has contributed to the success of the future Jester Park Nature Center. This project would not be possible without the unwavering support from each citizen who has contributed their time and resources.  From our family here at Polk County Conservation to yours - a big thank you to the following major donors who helped make this project a reality:

Corporations and Foundations 
Blank Children's Hospital - Discovery Kids Zone
Casey's General Stores - Outdoor Adventure Gateway
Chungath Family Foundation - Entryway Information Center
Dahl's Foundation - Interpretive Exhibits
EMC Insurance - Inspirational Viewing Area
Fred & Charlotte Hubbell Foundation
Gabus Family Foundation - Outdoor Streamscape
Great Outdoors Foundation 
Greater Des Moines Community Foundation - Observation Terrace
Growing Green Communities
Hubbell Realty & Jim and Ellen Hubbell Foundation - Prairie Reconstruction Outpost
Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation - Fire Pit Gathering Area
John Ruan Foundation Trust - Flagpole
Josephs Jewelry - Entrance Art Piece
Kemin Industries - STEM Classroom
MidAmerican Energy - Education Classroom
Phoenix Recycling
Prairie Meadows - Entrance Welcome Sign
Principal Financial Group - Building Sponsor
RDG Planning & Design
Scheels - Live Animal Display
Snyder & Associates 
The Graham Group
Wellmark Foudnation - Recreation/Wellness Center
Wells Fargo - Exploration Hall
West Bancorporation Foundation

Individuals & Families
Eric and Jennifer Barp
The Boddy-Davis Family
Richard and Joyce Chapman
Joseph and Sheryl Corfits, Jr.
Dr. Richard L. Deming
Dr. and Mrs. Ronald Eckoff
Allison and Jim Fleming
Cara and Kurt Heiden
Robert E. Jester
Tom and Wendy Levis
Jay and Tara Ramsey, M.D.
Mark and Janet Rosenbury
Fred and Emily Weitz
The LaMair Family
Jim and Patty Cownie

Federal, State, County and City
Land and Water Conservation Fund
Vision Iowa
Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP)
Polk County 
Cities of Ankeny, Des Moines, Granger, Grimes, Johnston, Polk City and West Des Moines

And thank you to the many contributors who have generously provided a donation of any size which brings us ever closer to bringing central Iowa's most exciting project to life. We are on the cusp of reaching our final funding goal. Help open this vital gateway to the outdoors and provide countless opportunities for citizens and visitors of central Iowa for generations to come with your gift today. Visit and help us break ground in 2017!

Our blog will take take a short hiatus in the coming months. We are working with a contractor to determine an official groundbreaking date. Once construction has begun, we will be back to keep our readers updated with the most recent timeline, details and photos throughout the entire construction process. In the interim, staff will continue to work internally on future exhibits, programming and the day-to-day operations of the Jester Park Nature Center in an effort to bring you a top of the line facility and destination location right here in Polk County. Check back in April as we bring the Jester Park Nature Center to life!


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