July 20, 2021

President's Letter - Annual Report 2020

Dear Friends,

A simple Google search of the word “legacy” reveals a synonym, “heritage,” defined as “valued objects and qualities...that have been passed down from previous generations.”

A strong legacy begets permanence to those things most valued; not simply tangibles, but intangibles intertwined by shared experiences and inspirations that touch lives in meaningful ways. Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation’s purpose is to preserve a heritage for the community, the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, bridging benefactors from its past to the security of its future.

With awe-inspiring architecture, world-renowned sculptures, pristine horticulture, a playful children’s garden, a lively music venue, unique educational opportunities, and the serenity of a Japanese garden, Meijer Gardens is a place

like no other. It is exceptional not only because of what is built on its land, but more importantly, because a visit to its grounds inspires and strengthens the ties that bind families, friends and communities together.

During the hardships of 2020, many institutions were put to the test, and Meijer Gardens was no exception. Although earned revenue for Meijer Gardens was nearly halted, its income from the Foundation – generated by endowed gifts – was unchanged and proved more critical than ever. In part, it was the strength of this legacy that sustained Meijer Gardens during its most challenging time.

Through it all, Meijer Gardens not only persevered but was able to continue its “Welcoming the World” expansion, keeping the promises it made to the community to welcome more visitors in the future. Alongside it, the Foundation also grew, with continued financial support for that endeavor.

As the pandemic wanes and groups gather again, we reflect also on the strength of humanity. After a long period of social separation, visitors of all ages will once again weave together shared experiences at Meijer Gardens with greater understanding of the importance of heritage, meaningful ties that bind us together, and the strength of a legacy.

We are grateful to those who find unique inspiration at Meijer Gardens and actively secure its future through gifts
to the Foundation. On behalf of the Board of the Foundation, thank you for your continued support.

With great appreciation,
Saralyn Coupe