The Case For Support
"We know now, better than ever before, the true costs of preserving the estate in perpetuity, the limits of the current endowment and earned revenue sources, and the expenses required for basic operations. Thirty-five years from now, if we don't strengthen what we have, there is no guaranty that Brucemore will exist at all, much less be the enriching community asset that we have come to treasure. It is our turn to do our part for this community asset, and we are proud to ask for your help."
- Tom Peffer and Carroll Reasoner, Pride and Preservation Co-Chairs
Brucemore is a dynamic part of our community. Brucemore events and programs celebrate and foster a vibrant local arts scene while generating important revenue, and frequently helping our non-profit partners serve their missions. Visitors from throughout the United States report a greater appreciation for the culture, history, and arts in Cedar Rapids after their Brucemore experience.
Today, approximately 45,000 visitors attend Brucemore's community, cultural, and heritage events, including over 5,000 students/children annually.
However, the organization's budget and staffing have been flat for more than a decade. The costs of preserving and sharing Brucemore are rising because of aging buildings and grounds, failing building systems, and basic inflation.
As a non-profit organization, Brucemore's annual budget produces less than $135,000 a year on average for preservation of the estate's seven historic structures and 26-acre landscape. In response, Brucemore has collaborated with independent experts for a preservation audit, Critical Needs Assessment, security audit, cyclical maintenance plan, and other reviews to identify and prioritize strategic initiatives.
The conclusion of these studies estimate the preservation need to be at $500,000-$750,000 a year in perpetuity.
The tightening budget also restricts the opportunity to grow and expand mission impact by limiting staffing, program production, and event space maintenance.
The Pride & Preservation Campaign will address critical restoration of the buildings and infrastructure. Preserving the site will help ensure Brucemore’s permanence and the continuation of meaningful community events and programs.
The Pride & Preservation Campaign will help Brucemore meet these important goals:
- Increasing opportunities to use the site for events and programs
- Preserving historic structures important to our regional story
- Creating more reliable electrical infrastructure for outdoor performances
- Improving site visibility after dark for thousands of visitors
- Strengthening security around the estate to protect the priceless collections