Play it Forward Campaign
Kohl Children’s Museum of Greater Chicago understands the power of play. For more than 30 years, we’ve used play to plant the seeds for children’s futures. Now, we’re looking to grow our own future! You can play a powerful part in this experience!
Kohl Children’s Museum of Greater Chicago is proud to publicly announce the Museum’s Play it Forward Campaign with a total goal of $15 million.
For more than 30 years, we’ve planted the seeds for kids’ futures through play. Now, we’re looking at our own future. We want to continue to give our youngest writers, designers, lawyers, and architects access to the best learning experiences possible.
Our challenge lies in creating greater access to play—within our walls and beyond. As one of the nation’s leading children’s museums, we have a responsibility to:
We can’t do this alone. Come play with us.
Update & expand
Gateway to Learning will usher guests into their learning experience with improved admissions and member services and interactive elements to kick off the educational journey.
The Imaginarium creates a wide-open space for the biggest imaginations. With interactive elements promoting gross motor play, the location offers a strong connection to nature with indoor/outdoor space that complements our Habitat Park exhibit year-round.
A new Tech Play Lab will be dedicated area that lets children explore the latest technology, opening the doors to basics of coding, robotics exploration, and green screen animation and video software, while remaining flexible for whatever cutting edge technology lies ahead.
A Performing Arts Space—the anchor of our children’s theatre program—will have flexibility to serve a variety of artistic activities such as field trip programming, birthday parties, and teacher workshops.
Expanded parking will greatly increase the number of guests who can comfortably and conveniently park on-site.
Our pop-up museum will help fuel the power of play in all children—regardless of where they live. How? We’ll travel out to communities, bringing the museum’s playful spirit right to kids’ own backyards. This dynamic, ever-changing, temporary learning environment embedded in the community enables us to extend our footprint and outreach and create equal access for all children.
Sustain & Secure
The development of a Board-Designated Fund will allow the Museum to reach its goal of being “forever new” by ensuring funds are available for maintaining and replacing building assets as they age or unexpectedly break down. The campaign also has been designed to allow early retirement of bonds for the current facility so the Museum can embark on its new building phase completely debt-free.
The addition of a Support Wing will provide the ability for exhibit technicians to both create new exhibit elements and repair and refurbish them on site.
Gifts to Date
We are thrilled to announce the following gifts already pledged for the “Play It Forward” campaign:
• Dawn Meiners Foundation
• Dolores Kohl Kaplan and Stephen Kohl
• Frederick and Catherine Waddell
• The Robert R. McCormick Foundation
• Northern Trust
• The Kohl Children’s Museum Board of Trustees