TROY — Fundraising efforts continue to build and outfit the WACO Air Museum’s 13,000-square-foot learning center, which received a $10,000 gift from the American WACO Club on Friday.
The WACO Air Museum’s Learning Center officially broke ground for its new $1.5 million learning facility last September.
Based in Indianapolis, American WACO Club President John Gerth presented the gift to the WACO Historical Society’s President John Schilling on Friday.
“We think it’s important to give back to aviation and hopefully this will continue the WACO legend. I’m sure you’ve mentioned the WACO history to all the students that come through. It’s important that we do that, that’s something important to us as a club,” Gerth said.
Gerth said the American WACO Club voted to donate the money last month.
“I know it’s going to be put to good use,” Gerth said.
“I appreciate the efforts of the American WACo Club and all their participation at our fly-ins and events,” Schilling said. “We look forward to continued cooperation between the operations that further the efforts of what we do here.”
WACO Air Museum Learning Center’s Executive Director Nancy Royer said the facility’s metal building will be delivered in April and expects to open its doors to the community in the fall this year.
Royer said the learning center is in the process of writing grants as well as continuing its fundraising efforts for the building.
The facility was awarded a $1 million gift from the Thom and Pat Robinson Fund this year. The learning center is continuing to raise funds for approximately $450,000 for the rest of the building project.
Royer said the learning center’s end of the year giving was “very helpful,” including the Troy Foundation match towards the building project.
More than 1,800 students visited the learning center and 8,000 instructional hours were logged in 2016, she said.
The new building will house multiple classrooms and lab space for the organization’s education programs, including WACO’s award winning FTC robotics team, First LEGO League teams, aviation cadets, NASA teaching training and ground school programs.
The learning center will be located behind the hangar and museum buildings. Donations can be made at the Troy Foundation or online at the center’s website.
For more information, visit www.wacoairmuseum.org.