A gift of $600,000 from Paul Foster and Alejandra De La Vega Foster to the El Paso Zoological Society will provide annual zoo memberships for 8,000 families at Fort Bliss. The donation, part of a $2-million pledge over six years, was announced Jan. 16 at the El Paso Zoo.
Beginning this month and running over two years, the donation will provide 4,000 zoo memberships per year. The memberships will be distributed by Fort Bliss Morale, Welfare and Recreation Programs.
Zoo director Steve Marshal said the memberships will help soldiers reintegrate into family life and the El Paso community.
The family membership allows admission at no cost for two adults and five children for a full year and doubles the number of member households in El Paso. It also allows the El Paso Zoological Society to provide more funding to the zoo for education programs, landscaping and worldwide conservation.
In addition to the memberships, the Fosters are giving $500,000 for Foster Tree House Playground, opening in 2014, and a $900,000 sponsorship for Wildlife Theater programming for 2016 to 2018.
For more information about the zoo, visit elpasozoo.org.