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Leave a Legacy

Colored Shadows pointing
Leave a Legacy

Help create a future filled with wonder at the Exploratorium.

Join the Oppenheimer Circle

Help build an extraordinary future for this vital institution when you join the Oppenheimer Circle of legacy patrons at the Exploratorium. Your singular generosity ensures that wonder is a sustaining force for the next generation of learners at the Exploratorium and beyond.

Named in honor of Frank Oppenheimer, the scientist and visionary who founded the museum in 1969, our Oppenheimer Circle community values curiosity, creativity, and critical thinking.

Become an Oppie Today!

Joining is easy and incredibly important. Simply submit your pledge form, and you’ll be immediately added to our Oppie newsletter and special Oppenheimer Circle event invitation list. You can also email David Sweet, Planned Giving Officer, at to ask any planned giving questions, request a meeting about planned giving, or tell us that you already have included the Exploratorium in your planned giving strategy.

Benefits include:

  • Quarterly newsletter
  • Exclusive event invitations
  • Special recognition for your singular generosity

Submit Your Pledge

Planned Giving Ideas

This is the time and the place to create meaningful change at the Exploratorium. Planned gifts of all sizes have a far-reaching impact; below are just a few ideas for how your generosity can benefit generations. To discuss planned giving options, please contact David Sweet, Planned Giving Officer, at or call 415.528.4866.


This is one of the simplest ways for you to provide for the Exploratorium in your estate plans. Your gift can be made for a percentage of your estate, a specific dollar amount, or specific property. A percentage bequest is frequently chosen by donors because it allows their future gift to remain proportional to their estate.

Donate retirement funds. 

You may find it beneficial to name the Exploratorium as the beneficiary recipient of your 401(K), 403(b), Keogh, IRA, or other qualified pension plan.

Direct gifts from your IRA. 

Individuals age 70½ and older can make donations to the Exploratorium of up to $100,000 per year (and up to $200,000 per year for married couples) directly from their individual retirement accounts through the Charitable IRA Rollover. This allows you to make a meaningful gift without having to count the transfers as income for federal tax purposes, and is a great way to utilize your required minimum distributions.

Contribute life insurance policy proceeds. 

A simple way to make a gift to the museum is to name the Exploratorium as the future beneficiary of the policy.

Create a charitable remainder trust. 

Name the Exploratorium as the recipient of an irrevocable trust that can provide income for you or a named beneficiary for a period of years (often for the lifetime of the individual). At the end of the term of the trust, the remaining trust assets are distributed to the Exploratorium. Cash, stock, or real estate can be used to fund the trust. Trusts are highly flexible gift-planning tools that have enabled donors to accomplish a variety of important personal financial goals and ultimately provide an important gift to charity.

Donate property. 

Bequeath your home or other property to the Exploratorium. You may also donate it while retaining the right to live there for the remainder of your life and receive an immediate income tax deduction.

Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) is a tax-exempt irrevocable trust designed to reduce the taxable income of individuals. There are two basic types of CRTs:

  1. Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust (CRAT)—provides a fixed income stream based on the value of the trust when it was established. NO additional contributions can be made to this fund.
  2. Charitable Remainder Unitrust (CRUT)—provides a variable income stream based on the annual valuation of the assets in the trust. Additional contributions can be made to this trust.

2023 Impact Report

New exhibits, smiling faces & so much more


View Report

Thank you to our generous supporters.

We couldn’t do it without you!

Questions? We’d love to hear from you.
General Inquiries


Donor FAQ

Corporate Engagement

Estelle Davis

Corporate Member FAQ

Mailing Address

Exploratorium, Pier 17, Suite 100
San Francisco, CA 94111-1455