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A Time to Review, Assess and Plan: Our Wish List Becomes Reality Only With Your Help

Pioneer Hall

In 2013, work will begin on Pioneer Hall's dome and roof. The building dates to the 1886 Iowa State Fair.

Planning. It's something we all have to do at some point but find we postpone as much as possible. When you think about it, our lives are filled with figuring out what to do. We make plans for supper, for the weekend, for our homes, for retirement and so much more. As you might imagine, there is quite a bit of planning that goes on at the Fair too.

Each October, after we've had a chance to gather our thoughts and clean off our desks following the Fair, the board and staff meet to review the most recent Fair. We also discuss programming ideas through a strategic planning session. The center of the discussion focuses on our capital expenditures for the next year, five years and the long term.

The Fairgrounds' infrastructure has been greatly improved over the past 19 years, but there is still much to do, and this doesn't include daily maintenance of our facility. At the meeting, we discuss what we wish for and what we think is most pressing.

It's interesting to see how opinions vary across departments. The maintenance staff looks at deterioration and hours needed to maintain a facility, the interim events staff looks at rental potential, and competitive events officials consider how many head of livestock can be housed.

Generation of income, visitor safety, Fair-goer experience and historical value are all part of the evaluation process. Many questions are raised with no definitive answers. When finished, the board has a list of recommendations to use as it allocates funds for capital projects needed in both the short and long term. It's planning sessions like these that underscore the importance of developing an endowment fund. No matter how much we might ignore it, the future does become the present, and if there is no long-term preparation, our goals are not accomplished.

The mission of the Blue Ribbon Foundation is to renovate and restore the Iowa State Fairgrounds. We've accomplished a lot but know there is much left to be done. This will take careful planning and a long-term vision to make sure the work continues and the improvements are maintained.

With your assistance, and maybe some planning of your own, we can work together to steward the renovation of the Iowa State Fairgrounds, preserving a wonderful summer tradition for generations to come.

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If you would like to leave a legacy for future generations of Fair-goers, call us at (515) 262-3111 x373.

eBrochure Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the brochure.

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I, [name], of [city, state ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to the Blue Ribbon Foundation or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the Blue Ribbon Foundation as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the Blue Ribbon Foundation as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and the Blue Ribbon Foundation where you agree to make a gift to the Blue Ribbon Foundation and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the materials for planning your estate.