Dodge Nature Center and Preschool began over 50 years ago with Olivia Irvine Dodge’s vision to preserve the natural beauty of a rapidly urbanizing Twin Cities and to teach people of all ages the importance of caring for the environment. This campaign seeks to build access for thousands of more diverse visitors, to improve sustainability and preservation of our historic buildings and natural spaces, and to extend Mrs. Dodge’s legacy for generations to come.
Reduce and remove barriers so that everybody has access to the nourishing power of nature.
Update selected lots and trails with environmentally friendly designs that will create a better experience for guests with accessibility needs.
Expand outreach to underrepresented populations to make our natural spaces and nature-based learning accessible to all in our community.
Provide affordability and accessibility of Dodge Nature Center Preschool to all families who want to take advantage of nature-based education.
Update and preserve our historic buildings and natural spaces, expand staff to meet programming demands, and sustain the tradition of the grounds being free and open to all.
Expand staff to develop new programming opportunities for adults and underserved populations and to preserve our natural spaces.
Upgrade facilities to increase program and mission impact, including:
Shepard Farm buildings to create functional classroom and program space
Solar panels at the Main Property to reduce Dodge’s carbon footprint and as a teaching tool about the impacts of climate change
Commercial Farm Kitchens to provide new educational opportunities for adults and older children
Keep the trails free and open for everyone to enjoy year-round.
Extend the legacy of Olivia Irvine Dodge to ensure that Dodge remains a relevant, accessible sanctuary in the middle of a busy metropolitan area for the next 50 years.
Welcome an ever-increasing number of children, adults, and families for generations to come.
Provide more resources to support the volunteers whose dedication of time and talent to preservation, programming, and restoration projects contributes to the legacy of this amazing nature center.
Secure the future of Dodge Nature Center and Preschool by expanding legacy giving opportunities and increasing the endowment.
Gifts to the endowment ensure the near- and long-term stability of Dodge Nature Center and Preschool. Contributions can be made through a combination of outright and planned gifts.
Interested in making a planned gift to Dodge? Check out the Egret Society for more information!
Gifts to capital projects advance the transformation of the buildings and grounds on the Main Property and at Shepard Farm. Contributions can be made through outright gifts and pledges.
Learn more about the various Dodge locations throughout the East metro.
Gifts to the annual fund provide flexibility to meet new and emerging needs. Thanks to a generous donor, all new and increased gifts to the annual fund will be matched, up to $1 million.
If you would like to make a leadership level gift to the Annual Fund, consider joining the Wildflower Society!
The Nourishing Everyone’s Need for Nature Campaign is a transformative moment for Dodge Nature Center and Preschool. All gifts to the campaign will have a tremendous impact on the future of nature-based education and environmental stewardship. The campaign will also provide naming opportunities for new and existing buildings, programs, positions, and natural settings. Interested individuals, corporations, and foundations are encouraged to contact the Development Office for more information.
Reflecting on the history and the vision for the future, Dodge Nature Center and Preschool’s inspiration has been to celebrate and respect the foresight of Olivia Irvine Dodge. As we honor her legacy, we also humbly recognize the transformational support of the following Leadership Donors: