Giving Opportunities

The ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center welcomes support at all levels from those who believe in our mission and want to invest in a bright future for the next generation of innovators and explorers.

Here are some of the ways your gift can make a significant impact at ‘Imiloa:

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‘Imiloa Field Trip Support Fund

Each year, ‘Imiloa hosts curriculum-related field trips for more than 10,000 elementary/secondary school students and teachers.  The majority of school groups come from across Hawai‘i Island, but students from the neighbor islands, the U.S. mainland, and international countries also visit the center.  Field trips are designed to take advantage of ‘Imiloa’s immersive museum environment: a digital full dome planetarium, a 12,000 sq. ft. exhibit hall showcasing astronomy and Hawaiian culture, and 75,000 sq. ft. of landscape gardens featuring native plants.  The Field Trip Support Fund subsidizes the cost of roundtrip charter bus transportation for eligible Hawai‘i Island schools, ensuring access for local students, no matter how rural their school or how distant from Hilo.

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‘Imiloa Education Fund

The ‘Imiloa Education Fund supports the expansion of ‘Imiloa’s signature brand of culture-based science programming for students of all ages.  Programs such as weeklong intersession science camps or Keiki Makery are delivered on-site at ‘Imiloa; other programs such as MANU ‘Imiloa mobile outreach send staff on the road to deliver wayfinding-themed curricula at schools and community centers around the state and beyond.

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‘Imiloa Enrichment Fund

The ‘Imiloa Enrichment Fund is an unrestricted fund that supports operations and programming wherever the need is greatest, enabling ‘Imiloa to respond quickly to new opportunities as they arise.


‘Imiloa Landscape Fund

Housed in a striking titanium-coned building, ‘Imiloa sits in the midst of 9 acres atop the remains of an 1881 Mauna Loa lava flow, and is surrounded by 75,000 sq. ft. of landscape gardens featuring native and Polynesian-introduced plants.  The Landscaping Fund supports the maintenance and beautification of ‘Imiloa’s award-winning gardens, along with the enhancement of signage and other educational tools to showcase this unique asset.

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‘Imiloa Planetarium Programming Fund

‘Imiloa’s digital full dome planetarium is considered by many to be the “crown jewel” at the heart of the facility.  This 120-seat theatre hosts four daily planetarium shows, as well as special evening programs, offering both live programming and immersive explorations of current topics in astronomy and other sciences.  The Planetarium Programming Fund enables ‘Imiloa to upgrade planetarium equipment and purchase licenses to show a continually changing array of state-of-the-art recorded presentations.



Named Giving Opportunities

‘Imiloa offers ways to leave a legacy by placing your name (or that of someone you wish to honor or memorialize) on any of the following: 

  • Planetarium seats:  Seats in ‘Imiloa’s state-of-the-art planetarium may be named for a donation of $3,000 ($5,000 for two seats; $10,000 for four seats).  Just 10 seats remain unnamed so act quickly!

  • Gardens:  Place a name on one of ‘Imiloa’s award-winning landscape gardens.  Just 2 out of the 6 gardens are still available for naming:  the Canoe Garden for a minimum of $40,000; and the Maunakea Garden for a minimum of $100,000.

  • Exhibits and Planetarium:  Opportunities are also available to name one of ‘Imiloa’s individual exhibit galleries or the Planetarium. 


Planned Giving 

You may designate ‘Imiloa to receive a bequest of any size from your will, trust, or retirement plan.  If you have an IRA with a Required Minimum Distribution (age 70½ or older), you can avoid taxes by directing a charitable rollover (up to $100,000) to benefit ‘Imiloa.  Or you may make a gift to fund a charitable vehicle that pays you income during your lifetime and provides you with an income tax deduction. We will be happy to recommend a gift model that best meets your needs.

Call us at (808) 932-8901 for more info or leave us a message below with any thoughts or questions.

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Donations to the ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center are accepted by the University of Hawai‘i Foundation, the private, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization charged with raising private funds on behalf of the UH system.  Gifts may be made in the form of cash, real estate, securities, or other assets, and are fully tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.