Thanks to the generous support it receives, the Great Plains Zoo continues to offer exciting new exhibits, quality educational programs, and an unparalleled setting for recreation and discovery. There are several ways to support the Great Plains Zoo including online contributions, in-kind donations, and corporate sponsorships.



Exhibit Build Outs

In 2007, the Great Plains Zoo finalized a Strategic Master Plan of needed improvements. The Master Plan sets out enhancements for the next decade of the Zoo's life, and was developed using strategic planning both for facilities and business forecasting. Currently, Bear Canyon, one of the Zoo's oldest and most popular exhibits, is undergoing a complete renovation. Click here to learn more about the project and how you can help.


Operating Budget

Each year, the Great Plains Zoo spends approximately $150,000 on food for the 1,000 animals in our care. Lights and heat for the animals costs an additional $200,000. A gift to the Zoo’s general fund helps us continue to provide our animals with the best care possible, and supports our mission of education, conservation, recreation and discovery -- a mission supported by a $3.2 million budget. For more information, please call 605.367.8313, ext. 142, or email our Development Department.  


Corporate and Business Memberships

As a corporate and business member, your support helps support the Zoo while also showing a commitment to education, conservation, recreation and discovery, and quality of life in the community we call home. Your membership helps us engage 272,000 annual visitors, educate nearly 46,000 area children, care for more than 1,000 animals, and conserve 24 endangered species. For more information, please call 605.367.8313, ext. 142, or email our Development Department.


Planned Giving

Planned gifts to the Great Plains Zoo help ensure future generations have an opportunity to make connections to the natural world, and see animals they might otherwise only see in a text book.  

Planned giving opportunities at the Zoo include a donation of stocks/securities to the Zoo, or making a bequest to the Zoological Society of Sioux Falls in wills, trusts, retirement plans and insurance policies.  

The Great Plains Zoo would be happy to work with you and your advisor to help determine the most appropriate way for you to give while achieving your goals.

The Zoological Society of Sioux Falls does not offer tax or financial planning advice. Please contact your financial planning professional or estate planning attorney for advice on planned giving.


Disadvantaged Kids Fund

The Great Plains Zoo’s Disadvantaged Kids Fund gives hundreds of socially or economically challenged people an opportunity to make a unique connection to the world around them. We believe everyone, but especially children, should have the opportunity to visit their Zoo. A visit to the Zoo is more than just a chance to see rare animals in exhibits. It is an opportunity to learn, become inspired and gain a lifelong interest in conservation and the natural world. We believe everyone should have this opportunity!  For more information, please call 605.367.8313, ext. 142, or email our Development Department.  


Conservation Fund

The Great Plains Zoo is a key player in 24 endangered species breeding programs including Amur Tigers, Eastern Black Rhinoceros and Siamang Gibbons. Important work is being done right here in Sioux Falls, SD in order to create healthy populations of these precious animals worldwide. The Zoo also supports the work of global conservation efforts worldwide including the International Rhino Foundation, the Snow Leopard Trust, and others.     

In addition to caring for more than 1,000 animals and participating in 24 endangered species breeding programs, the Great Plains Zoo serves as a regional rehabilitation facility for raptors and other native wildlife. In this role, the Zoo actively rehabilitates wild birds that are injured and sick for re-release into the wild. These wild birds have included Bald Eagles, Golden Eagles, Red-Tailed Hawks, Harlan’s Hawks, Great Horned Owls, Snowy Owls, and many other species.  

Each year, the Great Plains Zoo breeds and releases Trumpeter Swan chicks into the wild to save that population. Trumpeter swans were once common in much of the northern United States but by the early 1930s just 69 trumpeter swans remained in the lower 48 states. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the most recent range-wide survey of Trumpeter Swans occurred in 2000, and counted nearly 24,000 birds.

A gift to our Conservation Fund helps make these important conservation efforts possible. Your gift can be designated for one or all of these projects.  For more information, please call 605.367.8313, ext. 142, or email our Development Department.