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Woodland Park Zoo has provided a haven for more than five generations of families to discover the wonders of nature. With each visit, a new story of the beauty and impact that our animals, exhibits and conservation unfolds to a child, parent, teacher or student.

Strong Communities: The Impact of Legacy Gifts

Joy Spurr

At Woodland Park Zoo, the impact of legacy gifts can be seen all over the zoo. While most bequest or legacy gifts are placed in our endowment so that they support our animals, exhibits, educational programs, and conservation outreach programs for years and years to come, some donors indicate that they would like to see their gift used in building an exhibit. When you visit the Tropical Rain Forest, you are seeing an exhibit made possible through the estate of former Board member, Rick Buckley.

This past year we received a very generous bequest gift from the estate of Joy Spurr. Joy was a professional photographer and long-time member at Woodland Park Zoo. She traveled all over the world to exotic and sometimes dangerous places in pursuit of her photography. With these experiences she became an author and lecturer and considered herself a life-long learner. She is remembered as being friendly, outgoing, loving, loyal, and a philanthropist.

Joy’s gift will benefit our endowment as well as our next exhibit. Through her generosity, and that of our many legacy donors, generations of Puget Sound children and adults will enjoy the wonder of our zoo while continuing to learn from our naturalistic exhibits and outstanding wildlife. That would give Joy great pleasure.

When you plan your estate, like most of us, you’ll want to provide for family. But also remember how important strong communities are to family development, and the part that institutions like Woodland Park Zoo play in our community. If everyone left a portion of their estate to those organizations that make our communities strong, just think what the impact would be! If you would like more information on options and language for leaving a legacy gift in your estate, please contact Anne S. Knapp at 206.548.2443 or

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Woodland Park Zoo is a registered non-profit organization.                601 N. 59th Street, Seattle, WA 98103