Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert benefitting from H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation Gift
The Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert (CDMoD) has big plans to reopen in 2023, “reimagined,” and a recent grant from the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation is the latest boost that will help the nonprofit reach its goal. The $25,000 Coachella Valley Spotlight grant was awarded to CDMoD, which is in the process of raising $3 million to fund Phase 1 of a total renovation of the Rancho Mirage facility.
“We are so grateful to the Berger Foundation for awarding us this grant, as we close the gap on our initial phase of our capital campaign,” said Cindy Burreson, Executive Director of CDMoD. “Our plans to reopen the museum completely reimagined is now very much in sight, and we could not be more thrilled!”
Originally opened at its first location in 1988, CDMoD was required to close the doors on its 25-year-old facility in 2020 due to the pandemic. However, rather than allow the nonprofit to fade away, the organization’s board of directors was determined to use the unexpected downtime to commit to an overhaul and a “reimagined” children’s museum before reopening.
“Watching institutions like the Children’s Discovery Museum close during the pandemic was heartbreaking, but it’s exciting to see that a board of visionaries has forged ahead and is nearing its goal to reopen the museum,” said Catharine Reed, Vice President of Charitable Programs for the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation.
Fabrication is now underway on 40 new interactive experiences, and the museum is working toward reopening in late summer. Members and visitors can expect completely different hands-on displays and activities – ranging from climbing areas to get kids moving and build motor skills to art and poetry activities to motivate creativity and literacy skills. Exhibits and programming aim to help people discover new ways to engage with each other through experimentation, self-expression, movement, exploration and imagination with an emphasis on being accessible to children of all ages and abilities.
“The Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert has been missed by families in our community over the last few years,” said Jerry Upham, General Manager of Gulf California Broadcast Company, which owns and operates KESQ News Channel 3 and KPSP CBS Local 2. “It’s exciting to see that the museum is getting closer to reopening so it can once again provide a great service to kids and families in the Coachella Valley.”
CDMoD is located at 71701 Gerald Ford Drive, Rancho Mirage, however, it is currently closed during the renovation. Throughout the month of January, CDMoD was featured on News Channel 3’s “Eye on the Desert,” in public service announcements and on kesq.com. To learn about donating to CDMoD or for more information about the organization, call 760-321-0602 or visit www.CDMoD.org.
Renderings of planned exhibits at CDMoD’s new “reimagined” facility and photos of children playing at CDMoD prior to the 2020 shutdown courtesy of CDMoD.