Support the Museum

The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota exists thanks to the support of generous donors, dozens of businesses, hundreds of families, many wonderful volunteers, and the entire Greater Mankato community.  A big thank you goes to everyone who has supported us along the way!

Each year, we have an annual campaign to support all of the efforts the Children’s Museum provides to the Southern Minnesota area and beyond. Your gift to the Museum is vital for us to continue to offer a place where all can play, and continue to provide new, creative, and interactive exhibits, and develop quality, educational programs.

Please consider making a donation today by clicking here.

  • See What You’re Supporting

    The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, opened its doors at the current location in May 2015. The Museum features exhibits, activities, and spaces to engage all ages. From the Betsy Tacy-inspired Play Porch to the mind-inspiring attractions of the two-level makers space, and with a towering Mankato Clinic Tree of Forts Climber so tall that it burst through the roof, there’s plenty to do and see — all within a safe, inviting, and comfortable space. Follow this link to browse a gallery of the Museum’s interior and exterior spaces. Courtesy of ISG, photos by Dean Riggott Photography.

    Take a peek at the Children’s Museum’s indoor and outdoor galleries by watching the video by True Facade Pictures:

  • 2018 Annual Contributors

    2018 Annual Contributors

    Visionary ($20,000 and above)
    BLK Electric, Inc.
    Blue Earth County Sheriff’s Office
    Community Bank
    Coughlan Companies
    Drummer Construction
    Holtmeier Construction, Inc.
    Lyle and Kay Jacobson
    Jarraff Industries, Inc.
    Mayo Clinic Health System
    Mardag Foundation
    Minnesota Legacy Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund
    NPL Construction Company
    Otto Bremer Trust
    Radio Mankato
    Wealth Enhancement Group
    Wendell Lorentz & Sons Construction, Inc.

    Developer ($10,000 – $19,999)
    Bolton & Menk, Inc.
    Discipline Advisors, Inc.
    Dotson Iron Castings
    Jones Metal Products, Inc.
    L & N Andreas Foundation
    Malterer Mechanical
    Bill and Melissa Marks
    MEI – Total Elevator Solutions
    MinnStar Bank
    Stadium Heights Apartments
    University of Minnesota/MAELC
    Wells Fargo Bank, NA

    Explorer ($5,000-$9,999)
    Alliance Contracting, Inc.
    Big Ideas, Inc.
    Blue Earth & Nicollet Counties Early Childhood Dental Network,
    an initiative of Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation
    Carl & Verna Schmidt Foundation
    EI Microcircuits
    Jones Page Jacobson Family Foundation
    Lime Valley Advertising
    Mankato Area Foundation
    Minnesota Pork Board
    Brad Mueller
    Nielsen Blacktopping, Inc.
    Partners for Transformation
    RDO Equipment Company
    Schwickert’s Tecta America
    South Central College
    Scott and Laura Stevens
    Wingert Realty & Land Services, Inc.
    Xcel Energy Foundation

    Builder ($2,500-$4,999)
    Blue Earth County Corn & Soybean Growers Association, Inc.
    Carlson Tillisch Eye Clinic
    Coldwell Banker Commercial Fisher Group and Bluestem Commons
    Jordan Sands, LLC
    Kato Engineering – Nidec
    Mark & Mary Davis Foundation
    MTU America, Inc.
    Pub 500
    The Free Press Media
    Ziegler CAT

    Supporter ($1,000-$2,499)
    Anonymous Donations
    Arnold’s of Mankato, Inc.
    Bamco, Inc.
    Blinds & More Interior Design Group
    Braun’s Manufacturing & Welding
    Lucy Brown
    Narren Brown
    Matthew and Lisa Brozik
    Carlson Craft
    Cereal Chapter 2 Order Of The Eastern Star
    Christy Bode Photography
    City of North Mankato
    Thomas W. Coughlan
    Charles and Virginia Danish
    Jane Marquardt Downs
    Kristi and Lucas Downs
    Forrey Septic Systems and Excavating
    Linda and Robert Frost
    Gislason & Hunter LLP
    Greater Minnesota Gas, Inc.
    Wade and Mary Jo Hensel
    Joe Koberoski Trees
    Jonny B’s Bar and Beef
    Kato Moving & Storage
    Label Works
    Lindsay Windows, LLC
    Mankato Clinic
    Mankato Downtown Kiwanis Club
    Mankato Solstice, Inc.
    Mankato Valley Seed
    Minnesota Corn Growers Association
    Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council
    Minnesota State Transportation Center of Excellence
    Deb and Kevin Newman
    Newman’s Own Foundation
    Oleson + Hobbie Architects
    Page Jones Richards Family Fund
    Parsons Electric, LLC
    Christine and Fred Powers
    R. Henry Construction, Inc.
    Rent MSU
    David and Michelle Schooff
    Southern Minnesota Autism Coalition
    Southern Minnesota Construction
    Alyssa Stitt and Garron Williams
    True Real Estate
    U.S. Bank Foundation
    Viking Real Estate

    Friend ($500 – $999)
    AGCO Corporation
    Tim Bode
    Lonnie and Catherine Bristol
    CHS, Inc.
    Commerce Drive Dental Group
    Consolidated Communications
    Creative Ad Solutions Inc.
    Debbie and Curt Fisher
    Goodrich Construction Inc.
    Google LLC
    Greater Mankato Rotary
    Inspired Portrait Photography
    Holmgren Construction
    Darrell and Patricia Hylen
    Keepers RV Center, LTD.
    Knutson Construction
    Knutson+Casey Law Firm
    Carolyn and David Krause
    Caesar Larson
    Lloyd Lumber Co.
    Mankato Lodge 12
    Bill and Melissa Marks
    Minnesota Masonic Charities
    Minnesota State University, Mankato
    James Moller
    Monarch Healthcare Management
    Neubau Holdings, LLC
    Neumann Protection and Consulting, LLC
    Northern Comfort Inc.
    Oak Terrace Assisted Living
    Old Fashioned Carpentry, LLC
    Pediatric & Adolescent Dentistry, LTD.
    REMAX Dynamic Agents
    Schmidt Siding & Window
    Sign Pro
    South Central Service Cooperative
    The Orthopaedic & Fracture Clinic, P.A.
    Dennis and Karen Wahlstrom
    Waletich Corporation
    Waste Management
    Diane Winegar
    Ginger and Jonathan Zierdt

    Thank you to our numerous volunteers who contributed over 6,700 hours in 2018!

  • Gateway to Play

    The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota is committed to ensuring all children and families have opportunities to experience the joy of learning through the power of play at the Museum, regardless of income, language, cultural factors, ability, or special needs. The Museum understands that some children and families experience barriers to participation. We offer many ways for these valued community members to enjoy our exhibits and programs free of charge or at greatly reduced rates.

    Follow this link to learn more, apply for a Gateway to Play membership, or find dates and times for our Gateway to Play events.

  • Volunteers

    Play. Inspire. Volunteer.

    Volunteers are an important part of our team at the Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota. We welcome individuals and groups, age 16 and older, who appreciate the power of play and enjoy interacting with children and families.  There are ongoing and special volunteer opportunities, with scheduling options to fit your personal lifestyle.

    Prefer to serve behind the scenes?  Join our sewing team, help us maintain our beautiful gardens, work side by side with our fabrication staff as we build and repair exhibits. The possibilities are endless.

    The Children’s Museum is a fun place for groups to volunteer together, and we offer internship and service learning opportunities.

    Stop in for a tour and to visit with our staff!

    For more information about volunteering contact Heather Ungerer, Volunteer Manager. Phone: 507.344.9108.

    The volunteer application can be downloaded here.


    Teen Volunteer Playworker Program

    The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota is currently accepting applications for our Teen Volunteer Playworker program. Applicants must be in grade 7 – 12 during the application year. Application deadlines are January 4 for the spring session (January – May), May 1 for the summer program (June – August), and August 15 for the fall session.

    Students in grades 7 through 12 looking to be active in their community, learn important job skills, and have an interest in early childhood education, STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math), agriculture, and Dakota history are invited to consider applying for our Teen Volunteer Playworker Program. This role is a perfect fit for an outgoing and energetic volunteer who enjoys meeting new people and trying new things.

    Follow this link to read more and apply for this program.

  • Capital Campaign

    Thanks to the support of businesses and families in our area, the Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota raised over $4.8 million dollars in its capital campaign.  These contributions have helped to make the Children’s Museum one of the most visited museums in greater Minnesota.  The Children’s Museum would not be here without the support of the community.

  • Capital Campaign Supporters

    Visionaries: $1,000,000+
    Lyle & Kay Jacobson

    Founders: $500,000 – $999,999
    Dotson Family Fund of the Mankato Area Foundation
    Jordan Sands & Capstone: Members of the Coughlan Family of Companies
    Mankato Clinic / Mankato Foundation
    MN Legacy Fund / Minnesota Humanities Center

    Innovators: $250,000 – $499,999
    Kato Engineering / Emerson
    Page, Jones, Richards Family Foundation

    Pioneers: $100,000 – $249,999
    AgStar Financial Services
    City of Mankato
    David Christensen & Jill Evans
    L&N Andreas Foundation
    Mayo Clinic Health System
    Minnesota Corn Growers Association
    Otto Bremer Foundation
    Ridley Inc. / Hubbard Feeds
    Rotary Club of Greater Mankato
    Schwickert Family

    Creators: $50,000 – $99,999
    BLK Electric, Inc.
    Consolidated Communications
    Jones Metal Products
    Mardag Foundation
    Bill & Melissa Marks
    Minnesota Soybean
    Tami & Bryan Paulsen
    Laura & Scott Stevens

    Builders: $25,000 – $49,999
    Cherry Creek Cabinetworks
    Chuck & Virginia Danish
    Deichman Construction
    Linder Enterprises
    MN Legacy Fund / Minnesota Historical Society
    The Orthopaedic & Fracture Clinic, P.A.
    MN Legacy Fund / Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Center
    United Prairie Bank

    Dreammakers: $10,000 – $24,999
    A+ Systems Group / Jeff & Jennifer Domas Family
    Abdo, Eick & Meyers, LLP
    Blazing Star Gardens
    CAB Construction and Manufacturing, Inc.
    City of North Mankato
    Crystal Valley Coop
    D&K Powdercoating
    DuPont Pioneer
    Frandsen Bank & Trust
    Linda & Robert Frost
    Gislason & Hunter LLP
    David & Darlene Janovy
    Jones, Page, Jacobson Family Foundation
    Jack & Harriet Kent
    Lloyd Lumber
    Madison East Center
    MEI Total Elevator Solutions
    Kathy Michaelson
    Minnesota Precision Manufacturing Association
    MinnStar Bank
    Monsanto Fund
    Old Fashioned Carpentry
    Dr. E. Dale & Jean Peterson
    Pub 500 / Happy Chef Systems, Inc.
    David & Kristee Richards
    Marcia Richards
    River Hills Mall
    Schmidt Family Foundation
    South Central College / Southern Minnesota Center for Agriculture
    Southern Minnesota Construction
    Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation
    Southwest Agri-Plastics, Inc.
    Unimin, Corp.
    US Bank
    Wells Concrete
    William D. Radichel Foundation
    Chuck & Rosie Wingert

    Playmakers: $5,000 – $9,999
    BENCO Electric Coop.
    Blethen, Gage & Krause, PLLP
    Connectors, Inc.
    Dotson Company, Inc.
    Eide Bailly, LLP
    Elkay Wood Products
    Evenson Concrete Systems
    Kaaren & Joe Grabianowski
    Wade & Mary Jo Hensel
    Darcy & David Hermel
    Lisa & Corey Keyes
    Robert & Edith Lovig
    Midstates Mechanical
    Midwest Electric Products, Inc.
    Peter D. Olson
    Thomas & Corrine Riley
    Dan Sarff
    Kyle & Abbie Smith
    Sarah & Ethan Steinbach
    Traverse de Sioux Library
    University of Minnesota / MAELC
    Valley News Company
    Karen & Denny Wahlstrom
    Pam Willard

    Developers: $2,500 – $4,999
    All American Foods
    Blinds & More
    Laura & David Bowman
    Mike & Cathy Brennan
    Cargill, Inc.
    Case IH
    Jamie D’Angelo
    Randy & Jean Farrow
    Brenda & Joe Flannery
    The Home Depot Foundation
    Horizon Milling / Cargill, Inc.
    James R. Weir Insurance Agency
    Lee & April Johnson
    Lego Children’s Fund
    The Mayo Foundation
    Olseth Family Foundation
    Robert Charles Danish Memorial Fund
    Charles & Beth Serrill
    Ellen Schofield
    Phil & Margie Slingsby
    Katie & Joseph Smentek
    Mark & Rhonda Taylor
    Voyager Bank

    Explorers: $1,000 – $2,499
    7 Systems, LLC
    American Legion Auxiliary Unit II
    Anna Anderson
    Barnes & Noble
    Neal & Susan Benson
    Blue Earth County Corn & Soybean Growers Association, Inc.
    C & S Supply
    The Clark Family Fund
    Community Charities of Minnesota
    Matthew Chmielewski & Tami Miller Chmielewski
    The Design Element
    Joe & Trisha Duncan
    Elite Portrait Design
    Erbert & Gerbert’s Sandwich Shop
    Forrest G. James #589 Marine Corps League
    Friesen’s Family Bakery and Bistro
    Frost-Friesen Family: Natasha, Tony, Spencer & Julian
    Nitara Frost & Tabatha Trahan and children
    Caroline & Ed Harrington
    Marilyn Hart
    Larry & Cathy Hesse
    In Memory of Faye Norton
    In Memory of Ilene Williams
    Jersey Mike’s
    Kanyusik Family Fund, John & Carolyn
    Chuck & Alene Kind
    Kiwanis Club of Mankato Downtown
    Kwik Trip
    Lake Washington Improvement Association
    Barb Leisz
    Leonard, Street & Deinard
    Mankato Landshapes
    Colleen & Bruce Miller
    Liz Miller
    Minnesota Valley Federal Credit Union
    Naomi & Chris Mortensen
    Dwaine & Carole Petersen
    Katherine Ploog
    Brad & Teresa Pratt
    Pro Fabrication
    Donald & Stephanie Putzier
    Audrey & Vern Radel
    Rasmussen College
    Rickway Carpet
    Elizabeth Sandell
    Jennie & Matt Schindle
    David & Michelle Schooff
    Jane & Dave Schostag
    James & Betty Sohler
    Simon Brick & Stone Co.
    John Wattleworth
    Karen Wright & Jeff Pribyl

  • Museum Gift Shop

    As you check in (or before you leave!), stop by the Museum’s Gift Shop and browse a variety of hand-picked items, many of which are made locally. Handmade items are designed and created by Okodakiciye, a volunteer sewing group.

    Museum Members receive 10% off their purchase at the Gift Shop. Membership card must be presented.