The “Share a Little Shade” raffle campaign was organized and managed by Community Papers of Western New York (CPOWNY). The Zoo was approached by CPOWNY early in 2015 to launch a campaign to raise $25,000 needed for a shade structure for the giraffe yard.
Throughout 2015, CPOWNY readers and members of the Western New York community purchased raffle tickets for the chance to win a one-year lease from Towne MINI, or $5,000 cash. A giraffe-wrapped MINI Cooper made multiple appearances at the Zoo, as well as taking center stage at regional events throughout the year to draw participants for the raffle. The raffle entries were in the thousands and exceeded the $25,000 goal. The structure will be installed in the Zoo’s giraffe yard in 2016.
The winning name will be drawn at Towne MINI (8240 Main St.) in Williamsville on Thursday, December 31 at 10:30 a.m. Representatives from the Zoo will be present for the event and presented with a check for the funds raised. The winner will also be announced via the Zoo’s social media platforms.
“The fundraising efforts for this project would not have been successful without the help of CPOWNY and their readers,” said Buffalo Zoo President & CEO Donna M. Fernandes, PhD. “We are so very grateful to them as well as Towne MINI, Lamar Advertising, and Paula’s Donuts. Their tireless efforts helped to raise the funds we needed for this important project.”
The structure is an improvement recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation; education; science; and recreation, by means of an accreditation process every five years.