Ways to Give

Ways to Give

There are many ways to make a gift that keeps Lincoln Park Zoo free and open 365 days per year while helping to support exemplary animal care, worldwide conservation efforts, and exceptional learning programs.

Monthly Giving

Scheduling a monthly gift is an easy and convenient way to spread your Lincoln Park Zoo gift over the entire year—and monthly gifts add up quickly! For just $1 per day, you can become a member of the zoo’s Donor Clubs, earning you valuable benefits throughout the year.

Enroll Today

Matching Gifts

Make your dollar go further with a matching gift! If your company has a matching gift program, please contact your human resources department for a matching gift form. Include your form with your contribution or email it to matchgift@lpzoo.org. We’ll do the rest—and you will be recognized at the combined level of your personal and matching gift.

Stock or Wire Transfer

Donating appreciated securities is an easy, tax-deductible way to support Lincoln Park Zoo. When you donate stocks, bonds or mutual funds that you have owned for more than one year, you may claim a tax deduction for the fair market value of the shares, without paying capital gains tax. Please contact the zoo’s Development Department at 312-742-9570 or support@lpzoo.org for current stock or wire transfer instructions.

Donor-advised Fund and Family Foundation Contributions

Making a grant through your donor-advised fund or family foundation is a flexible way to support your favorite charities. Grants may be directed to the Lincoln Park Zoological Society in any amount. Please note: when making a grant via one of these vehicles, the entire gift qualifies as a charitable deduction, and Lincoln Park Zoo is prohibited from providing tangible goods or services, such as unlimited free parking. Members may, however, qualify for discounts in zoo shops and restaurants, and on learning programs and special events. For more information, please contact us at 312-742-2321 or view the Waived Benefits Memberships section below.

IRA Charitable Rollover Gift

If you are aged 70 ½ or older, you may make gifts tax-free from your IRA directly to Lincoln Park Zoo. You may contribute all or a portion of your IRA distribution to charity, up to a total of $100,000 each year (this amount will be indexed for inflation beginning in 2024). You will owe no federal income tax on the distribution; there may also be state income tax savings. If you are 73 or older, charitable gifts from your IRA can also count toward your required minimum distribution for the year.

In order to receive this special tax treatment, IRA gifts must be transferred directly to Lincoln Park Zoo from your IRA administrator. IRA administrators do not always include the donor’s name on the check, so please let us know if advance so that we can identify and properly acknowledge your gift. For more information, please see the Waived Benefits Memberships section below.

Disclaimer: This general information is furnished with the understanding that neither its authors nor Lincoln Park Zoo is authorized to provide legal or tax advice. We strongly encourage the reader to consult professional counsel before taking action on any gift, estate or financial planning options.


Lincoln Park Zoo accepts multiple forms of cryptocurrency via BitPay. Make a gift straight from your crypto wallet using this online form. When you make a gift of cryptocurrency, you may qualify for an income tax deduction of your gift’s fair market value. If you have held your cryptocurrency for more than one year, you may also avoid the capital gains tax you would pay if you sold it. Please contact the zoo’s Office of Planned Giving at 312-742-9570 or srutledge@lpzoo.org for assistance.

Donate With Crypto

Waived Benefits Memberships

Making a gift via your donor-advised fund, family foundation, or IRA? IRS-provided guidance prohibits you from receiving any non-incidental benefits. In the case of Lincoln Park Zoo, non-incidental benefits include unlimited free parking and event tickets.

Why? Since the entire gift qualifies as a charitable deduction, you cannot receive goods or services that would not otherwise be fully tax-deductible.

When you make a gift to the zoo using one of these methods, you may waive a membership entirely or you may elect to receive a “waived benefits” membership. This membership will continue to provide discounts in zoo shops and restaurants, invitations to special events, and access to early camp registration, but will not include free parking at Lincoln Park Zoo.

But I Want Free Parking!

We are happy to provide our members with exclusive benefits throughout the year. If you would like to receive full donor benefits, including unlimited free parking, you may purchase an additional Safari-level membership for $189/year using a personal credit card or bank account. We can combine your memberships into one card for ease of use.

More Information

If you have questions about this policy, we are always available to discuss them with you or your financial advisors. Please contact us at 312-742-2321.

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