Perdue Incorporated, through the Arthur W. Perdue Foundation, has presented a $75,000 check as the first installment of its pledge to match up to $300,000 in donations from other contributors to the Salisbury Zoo's new $3 million capital campaign, "Renew the Zoo
." The campaign was launched in 2009 and will raise funds for both critical infrastructure and exciting new exhibits.
"By approving this grant to the Salisbury Zoo, the foundation's Grants Committee members and its Board of Directors have acknowledged the zoo's importance to this community," Bill Hetherington, the foundation's Executive Director said. "We look forward to seeing the changes that will be taking place at the zoo over the next few years and we're honored to play a part in supporting those efforts."
The Salisbury Zoo, located just three miles from the Perdue Corporate Headquarters, has been a showplace on the Delmarva Peninsula for more than 50 years. Each year it attracts more than 300,000 visitors. But a vision to enhance the experience led the zoo to launch of the new campaign.
"The cornerstone for seeing that vision come to life will be the Animal Health Clinic," said Salisbury Zoo Director Joel Hamilton. "Once that is constructed, we will be able to build new exhibits and bring new species into the zoo collection."
The "Renew the Zoo" campaign will not only help fund the new state-of-the-art animal health clinic to treat sick or injured animals but also the William E. Morgan Environmental Center to enhance the zoo experience for the 20,000 students who visit each year. It will also help fund "Discover Australia," an entirely new exhibit made up of animals from Australia.
The foundation's grant will be used to fund the "Outback Aviary," which will be part of the Australia exhibit as well as the zoo's first walk through exhibit. The aviary, and its feeding stations, will allow zoo visitors to get close enough to have "hands on" experiences with some of Australia's most beautiful birds like kookaburras, lorikeets and parakeets.
"Creating connections to nature is an important first step in inspiring interest and awe of the world around us," Joel said. "The new aviary will be a fun new way to create that interest."
About Perdue and the Arthur. W. Perdue Foundation
PERDUE® is the No. 1 brand of fresh chicken in the Eastern United States. Ranked as the third largest poultry company, Perdue Incorporated is a leading international food and agriculture business providing quality products and services to customers in more than 100 countries.Privately held and family-run for three generations, the company employs more than 21,000 associates and partners with more than 2,200 independent farm families -- all of whom share in the commitment to quality that has guided the company since its founding in 1920.
The Arthur W. Perdue Foundation is a tax-exempt charitable foundation established in 1957 by the founder of Perdue Incorporated. Grants are distributed for the improvement of life in the community through support of the arts, community development, education, health, human services and youth activities.