Heritage Society for theNate

Did you know that through planned gifts, you can provide for loved ones, receive tax benefits, generate potential retirement income and help theNate all at the same time? Bequests to Governors State University Foundation are exempt from estate taxes as allowed by law. Join the growing number who are planning their gifts and estates to benefit themselves, their families and the future of the Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park at GSU. 

Planning your support is easier than you think. GSU’s many giving options allow you to plan today for theNate’s tomorrow. Whether you want to donate today, or provide something down the road, we can help you provide for your family and support GSU and theNate. Please contact the Foundation office at +1.708.235.7510.

downloadable PDF with more information


The Lewis Manilow Common Ground Initiative

The Lewis Manilow Common Ground Initiative serves as a dedicated program and fund of the park aimed at bringing local communities together through arts education. The initiative provides support materials for area school teachers and classrooms and other resources to create a tradition for regular visits to theNate.

Click here to fill out a donation form, and then be redirected through Touchnet for payment.  

What if monumental, abstract, outdoor sculpture turns out to be the very thing we’ve been looking for to change the world for the better?

Here at the Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park, we believe that the confounding nature of abstract art offers us equal opportunity for curiosity, and provides a level playing field because of its mysteries.

And we also believe that simply getting to know people who are different from ourselves is a powerful way to foster understanding, create connection, and build relationships – relationships that one by one can ultimately improve the divisive world we all experience today.

We can all think of a time when we got to know someone very different from ourselves, and the positive impact that experience had. Maybe it was through travel across the country, travel overseas, or simply getting out of our comfort zone and talking to a stranger.

Frankfort is 9.6 miles to the west of GSU, and Ford Heights is 9.8 miles to the east. For those who are familiar with these communities, they could not be more different. Frankfort is a primarily white community, that benefits from being invested-in, affluent, with resources and access, while Ford Heights is a black community and one of the most neglected, impoverished, and socially isolated in the whole Chicagoland region.

Would visitors from disparate communities such as these - “from Frankfort to Ford Heights” - be able to experience neutral ground here at theNate?

What if on this neutral ground, sharing the mysteries of the collection, new friendships are born and new projects are imagined? Projects that could eventually improve our communities.

In our original documents, news articles, and catalogs about the collection, the central theme through it all was Lew Manilow’s relationships – his relationships with the artists, the administrators, and the neighbors.

His relationships brought into being this project we now call theNate.

Common Ground is a term used to describe something that can be agreed upon even when people are in conflict.

Common Ground is this shared location, this sense of place, this region, this history we have shared.  

Hopefully you’ve experienced the park for yourself, and understand the power of the collection.

With your support, we now have an opportunity to continue this work by:

o   Maintaining and caring for the art in the collection and the land around it

o   Energizing the collection through new acquisitions and visiting exhibitions

o   Welcoming more area school children to Outdoors@theNate

And through the Lewis Manilow Common Ground Initiative, which will foster relationships and reciprocal learning, we can start a NEW tradition – a tradition that will follow Lew’s example and work toward social equity in our region and beyond.

With your support throughout the year, we plan to do all that we can, from where we are, with what we have to work with - and make a difference in our community and our world.

Won’t you join us?

Click here to fill out a donation form, and then be redirected through Touchnet for payment.  

I'm a Friend of Nate!

I'm a Friend of Nate!

Membership is free for you and essential to us.

The Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park is committed to serving our community with free access to this powerful collection of masterworks of art. Although it is located on the campus of Governors State University, it was founded and is maintained through grants and donations from businesses and individuals.

Grants, sponsors and donors require us to report numbers of visitors and community members served, and with our free and open access, that is difficult to do! Your membership gives us the ability to more accurately show our numbers in our fundraising efforts, and it gives you more access to information about our programming and events.


Members enjoy:

Free parking on campus, well maintained trails for outdoor fitness activities, a stimulating dog friendly destination, and our newsletters, emails and announcements about our growth - join us by saying "I'm a Friend of Nate!"

Donations are important too!

Cultural enrichment, youth S.T.E.A.M tours, conservation--all would not be possible without trailblazing visionaries, advocates and supporters who bring the three pillars of our mission to life -- Art, Conservation and Education

What amount can you give? You can become a member without making a gift - membership is free. We only ask those who can afford to give to make a gift in an amount that works for you, any amount.

Donate today

Download past LandMark Newsletters:

LandMarks DIGITAL Newsletter 2019 Issue 2

LandMarks DIGITAL Newsletter 2019 Issue 1

2018 Summer Issue of LandMarks

2017 LandMarks E-Newsletter

Summer 2016 LandMarks E-Newsletter



Support from individuals, corporations and local villages is increasing yearly. Your tax-deductible donation in any amount will assist the Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park in its mission:

Art - host the Solo Exhibition Series, and acquire new work.

Conservation - maintain, conserve, restore the masterworks in the collection; native habitat restoration through the Bill Dodd Memorial Fund which was instrumental in our Butterfly Ranch project now underway!

Education - present events, activities and exhibitions, welcome school children to our STEAM based programming.

It's easy to join us in our mission:

 donate online or

Call the GSU Foundation at +1.708.235.7510

Make checks to: NMSP - GSU Foundation

and mail to:

Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park

Governors State University
1 University Parkway
University Park, IL  60484

Governors State University Foundation is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization and your gift is tax deductible to the full extent of the law.

Thank you for your contribution. You are making a positive difference through the arts for GSU and the region we serve.

Sponsorship Opportunities for Sculpture, Wine and Dine  Farm-to-Table fundraising event to support the Park.

Secure online donation form 



Join us as a Volunteer

Volunteer for theNate

We are preparing for our fun-filled, educational, Outdoors@theNate school group program for September – October, 2022. We need volunteers to walk small groups of children with their teachers and chaperones to the sculptures. Volunteers will discuss the artworks and the artists along the way using easy to follow materials and prompts. No previous experience or knowledge required.

If you’re available on Tuesdays and/or Wednesdays, from 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., in September and October, we would love to have you! You can sign up for as many tours as you’d like.

Find out more by contacting Education and Outreach Coordinator, Sherri Denault by email sdenault@govst.edu or phone 708-534-4021


Volunteering at the Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park is both productive and personally rewarding. We need assistance with mounting programs, events and activities, especially during our visitation season of May through October. We utilize student volunteers to help with our annual fundraiser, community volunteers to assist with our Outdoors@theNATE school program, and Docent volunteers to assist with tours in the park - or let us know what you would like to do - join us!

Education and Outreach Coordinator:

Sherri Denault