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Charitable Donation Acceptance Policy

The Air Zoo welcomes and encourages charitable donations of artifacts, memorabilia, and objects of significance to aviation and space history. It will also accept articles that are unrelated to aviation and space history such as tools, vehicles, parts, and equipment that can be utilized in the restoration of aircraft and artifacts or the maintenance of the facility and grounds. In addition, the Air Zoo will also accept items that are unrelated to aviation and space as long as the donor understands these items might be sold to generate financial support.

Charitable donations fall into one of the following three categories:

CATEGORY 1
Artifacts or research materials that are directly related to the history and evolution of aviation and space exploration.

CATEGORY 2
Objects that aid the Air Zoo to fulfill its mission but are not necessarily artifacts. Objects of this type include, but are not limited to, aircraft maintenance tools and parts, vehicles and ground maintenance equipment.

CATEGORY 3
Objects of value that will be sold to generate financial support. These objects may not qualify for a full income tax deduction.

Loans of Objects

As a general policy, the Air Zoo does not accept objects on loan. However, the President & CEO has the authority to make exceptions to this policy. These exceptions could include, but are not limited to, traveling exhibits, rare aircraft or vehicles, artifacts and memorabilia that enhance the educational experience of the Air Zoo's visitors.

Guidelines

Where possible, please make arrangements with the Air Zoo Collections Manager BEFORE bringing in your donation to the Air Zoo. Please keep in mind as you choose to donate to the Air Zoo, that we will only accept items in Categories 1, 2 and 3, that:

  1. The Air Zoo has resources to care for and preserve.
  2. Are in reasonable condition.
  3. Have a clear title from the donor.
  4. Would not create any ethical or moral conflict in accepting the item.

The Air Zoo is not inclined to accept any of the following:

  • VHS videos
  • WWII uniforms without any original insignias, ribbons or patches
  • Aircraft instruments containing radium
  • Explosives, guns or rifles

All charitable donations will be subject to review by the Air Zoo's Donation Acceptance Committee. Please note, not every charitable donation will be accepted. Where charitable donations are not accepted, Air Zoo staff will notify the prospective donors which will be expected to reclaim the objects.

Charitable donations that are accepted become the legal property of the Air Zoo and qualify for an income tax deduction. DONORS are responsible for determining the true value of their charitable donation and are encouraged to contact their tax attorney before making a charitable donation.

If you have items you would like to donate to the Air Zoo fitting the above criteria, please contact the Collections Manager by phone, email or mail. Make sure to include your name, contact information and a detailed description (along with a photograph if possible) of the items you would like to donate.

**If inquiring by phone, please call 269.350.2816.

**If inquiring by email, please send to Laurie Burkhardt.

**If you are inquiring through mail, please send to:
Air Zoo
Attn: Collections Manager
6151 Portage Rd
Portage, Michigan 49002

Smithsonian Institution Affiliations Program