Walmart Foundation Donates $1.5 Million to Bentonville's Amazeum

The Walmart Foundation donated $1.5 million to the Amazeum, the interactive museum scheduled to open in 2015 in Bentonville.

The money donated will allow the museum to have a temporary gallery, Amazeum officials said. The gallery will be used to show traveling exhibits for durations usually of three months.

Changing exhibits will help keep the museum fresh.

“There’s always something to look forward to,” said Holly Hook, Amazeum’s capital campaign director. “It lets us do exhibits based on what people are interested in or what the hot topic is. It’s actually pretty awesome.”

The donation gives the Walmart Foundation the right to name the gallery, but Hook said no decision has been made in that regard. The gallery will be part of the 45,000-SF museum, which will be on Northeast J Street near the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

“We are overwhelmed by this donation and are thrilled to have the Walmart Foundation as a signature partner going forward,” Amazeum Executive Director Sam Dean said in a press release. “We are very appreciative of this generous commitment, which gives us a big boost in our quest to reach our capital campaign of $28.5 million.”

Hook said the museum has raised approximately $20 million. The museum was scheduled to hold a “Dancing With the Stars” fundraiser Saturday that Hook said had sold 650 tickets and will include a live and silent auction.

“We hope to raise $100,000,” Hook said. “We’re pretty sure we will exceed that goal.”