Supporter FAQs

Please click on the questions below to find answers to some frequently asked questions (FAQs).  If you have questions not answered by the FAQs below, please direct your questions to


Who are the Friends of the Robinson Nature Center?

Friends of the Robinson Nature Center is an informal membership association established and maintained by The James and Anne Robinson Foundation, a non-profit organization whose primary mission is to support the Robinson Nature Center. The Friends of the Robinson Nature Center is a component of the Foundation and supports the environmental and educational mission of the Robinson Nature Center.

What Do Friends Do?

Friends’ membership dues, donations, and program fees, such as the “Leave your Mark” tile project, support sponsorships for Title I schools, professional development for Nature Center staff, on site scientific research at the Nature Center and the development of the Nature Center’s Nature Place. From September through April, Friends and their guests are invited to attend Second Sunday, a monthly event in which Friends learn about upcoming Center activities and hear guest speakers present topics of interest to the environmental community.

What are the Benefits of Being a Friend?

When you join Friends, the most valuable benefit comes from knowing that your donation accomplishes remarkable things ―locally― right here in your own backyard. Not only do you receive an annual pass to visit the Robinson Nature Center, your dollars also advance Friends’ sponsorship of environmental education, such as:

$50     –  Ongoing Oriole and Bluebird migration studies at the Robinson Nature Center

$75     ― Set of tree blocks (new outdoor Nature Place)

$100   ― Master Naturalist training for one Robinson Nature Center staff member

$200  ― Screening licenses for environmental films, such as “The Lost Bird Project” or “Wildfire”

$250   ― Large Discovery table (new outdoor Nature Place)

$500   ― Sponsorship for ONE Howard County Title I School (offsets field trip cost for entire grade)

$500   ― Large Nature Art Table (new outdoor Nature Place)

$1000 ― Sponsorships for TWO Howard County Title I Schools

$1000 ― Carvings for Entrance Arbor (new outdoor Nature Place)

$1500 ― Carvings for Entrance Arbor and Playful Animal Carvings (new outdoor Nature Place)

What are Friends’ Membership Levels?

Friends’ annual memberships come in a variety of levels, as shown below. PLEASE NOTE NEW THIS YEAR:  Annual memberships are good for one year from the effective date of your membership. This means if your membership is effective April 1st, it will be good until March 31st of the following year.

Non-resident fees are indicated by (NR):

Senior/Student – $70/$90(NR)   Individual – $75/$100(NR)    Family – $100/$150(NR)

Patron – $175    Supporter – $250   Sustainer – $500.

The Lifetime Membership fee is $1,000 and is an individual membership.


Are Friends’ Memberships Tax Deductible?

Yes. Donations to Friends are tax deductible under the Foundation’s tax-qualified 501(c)(3) trust. You will receive a letter from the Robinson Foundation acknowledging your membership and tax deduction.

Can I Donate to Friends?

Yes.  You may make stand-alone donations to Friends whether or not you are a member of Friends.

Non-targeted donations go into a general fund. In addition, Friends has established dedicated funds to make sure that the dollars you donate are used as you direct ― if you decide to “target” your donation to a specific project. You may choose to target your donation by clicking the “target” box and then selecting either support for Title I sponsorships or support for the Nature Place ― or another project that may be listed there.

The Friends’ website donation page permits donations by either credit card or PayPal.

The James and Anne Robinson Foundation retains fiduciary responsibility for dollars donated to the Foundation’s 501(c)(3) trust, including Friends’ donations.

Can I Bring Guests?

Friends’ Supporter, Sustainer, and Lifetime membership levels include a specified number of free guest passes. Additional guest passes may be purchased at the Center’s front desk.

James and Anne Robinson Foundation

Robinson Nature Center

How is being a Friend different from being a Robinson Nature Center volunteer?

Friends raises funds to support the Robinson Nature Center’s environmental and educational mission and promotes the Center to the broader community.

Robinson Nature Center volunteers work under the direction of the Center’s volunteer coordinator. Many members of Friends are also Robinson Nature Center volunteers.

Is my annual pass good at other facilities?

Nature centers throughout the United States whose director belongs to the Association of Nature Administrators may recognize passes.Check at the front desk of the Robinson Nature Center for more information.