Financial support from the Foundation’s endowment plays an important role in maintaining world-class botanical gardens, sculpture collections, art and educational programs which have become the hallmark of the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park.

Ways to Give

There are a number of ways to give to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation; below is a summary to consider. Counsel with personal advisors is recommended to understand the impact of each within the context of a donor’s individual tax situation and estate plan.

Gift of Cash

A lifetime gift of cash is the most immediate and simple way to give to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation. This donation may be claimed as a charitable deduction by those taxpayers who itemize their deductions.

Gift of Appreciated Securities

A lifetime gift of an appreciated asset, which has been owned for more than one year, gives the donor a charitable deduction for the full market value of the asset by those taxpayers who itemize their deductions. This strategy also avoids capital gain taxes on the growth of the security.

Gift at Death

A gift at the donor's death by way of an estate pledge, by will or by Trust, to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation may reduce a donor’s estate subject to tax.

Gift of Retirement Assets

A gift from the donor’s retirement account during the donor’s lifetime avoids income tax on the amount of the gift and may also satisfy a donor’s annual required minimum distribution. This type of gift is classified as a Qualified Charitable Distribution (“QCD”) and has an annual limitation of $100,000. (Note: Because of special tax rules for QCDs or required minimum distributions, a donor should normally make the gift directly to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park (“Gardens”). The Gardens my transfer some or all of those funds to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation (“Foundation”) which focuses on the management of endowment funds.

A gift payable after a donor’s death from either a traditional IRA or a 401(k) plan avoids income tax (and estate tax) on the retirement plan assets. This type of gift is accomplished by the donor naming the Foundation as a beneficiary of the retirement plan. This is done at the plan level and the beneficiary designation should indicate the amount that is payable by the plan to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation. The $100,000 QCD annual limitation that applies during lifetime does not apply to a gift at a donor’s death.

Charitable Remainder Trust

A charitable remainder trust provides the donor with annual income over the term of the Trust, while receiving a charitable deduction in the year it is established. Any capital gains tax due on contributed appreciated securities are stretched out over the term of the trust, as well. The underlying remaining assets go to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation at Trust’s termination. A charitable remainder trust can also be funded at a donor’s death to provide income to one or more persons during their lifetime(s).

Donor Advised Funds

Donors may contribute multiple years' worth of giving to the DAF in one tax year, then distribute gifts out of the DAF to the Foundation over any number of future years. By making the single, larger gift to the DAF, the donor aims to take advantage of itemizing deductions in the year in which it is established. The DAF is often funded with appreciated securities, which avoids the capital gain taxes on those assets, as well. (Note: Because of special tax rules for DAFs, the DAF would make the annual gifts directly to the Gardens itself, which would then add that amount to its endowment fund—the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation.)

Charitable Gift Annuity

A charitable gift annuity is part gift and part purchase of an annuity and results in an income tax charitable deduction in the amount of the gift portion. Contributions are generally made with cash or appreciated securities. With this option, a donor can transfer cash or an asset to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Foundation and, in return, the Foundation will make regular fixed payments to the donor for life.

Specify How Your Gift is Used

There are a number of established funds, both restricted and unrestricted, from which to choose when making your donation.

Recognition of Gifts


Qualifies you for recognition as an annual contributor.


Qualifies you for permanent recognition at Meijer Gardens.


Entitles you to join the Perennial Society and allows you to establish a named fund.


Entitles you to join the Bonsai Society.

Foundation Donors

Bonsai Society

$1,000,000 or more

  • Fred* & Dorothy* Fichter
  • Dirk & Victoria* Hoffius
  • Harvey Lemmen*
  • Frederik* & Lena* Meijer
  • Meijer, Inc.
  • The Meijer Foundation
  • Peter* & Joan Secchia
  • Chris* & Charlotte* Southwick


  • James* & Joan Hoffman
  • Bernie & Rose Rosenthal
  • Arthur* & Elizabeth* E. Snell


  • Dr. David G. Dvorak & Ms. Karol J. Peterson
  • Eileen DeVries Family Foundation
  • Clare F. Jarecki*
  • Ed* & June Prein Family
  • Wege Foundation


  • L. Dale* & Jean* Atkinson
  • Kenneth Bandstra
  • Karl F. & Patricia J. Betz
  • William & Laurie Boer
  • John D. & Marian F. Bouwer
  • Earl & Donnalee Holton
  • Sarah & Michael Julien
  • C. Thomas & Evelyn Kapteyn
  • Thomas Peter Kapteyn
  • Miner* & Mary Ann* Keeler/Keeler Foundation
  • Keller Foundation
  • Ray & Nancy* Loeschner
  • David R. & Mary Ann Mapes
  • Marsilje Foundation
  • Doug Meijer & Kendall Meijer Foundation
  • Hank & Liesel Meijer
  • Thomas P. Merchant & Glen W. Johnson
  • Daniel W. Miller & Susan L. Wright-Miller
  • A.G.* & Mary* Morrison
  • In Memory of Don & Dorothy Hoyt Pingree
  • John & Gail Nowak
  • Richard & Valerie Peacock
  • Milt & Barbara Rohwer
  • Lynn & John P. Vinkemulder
  • Robert Zylstra

* Indicates Deceased Donors