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City of Gering grant brings Riverside Discovery Center closer to new bear enclosure | KRVN Radio

City of Gering grant brings Riverside Discovery Center closer to new bear enclosure

City of Gering grant brings Riverside Discovery Center closer to new bear enclosure
Gering Mayor Tony Kaufman (right) shakes hands with RDC Board Member Gail Rojas (left) and RDC Director Anthony Mason after city secures $360,000 in funding for new bear habitat at zoo (Marker/KNEB/RRN)

It was more than 18 months ago that the Riverside Discovery Center debuted their rescued grizzly bear cubs to the public, and soon, those brother bears will soon have a larger home at the zoo.

The City of Gering has been awarded a $300,000 0% interest loan from the USDA Rural Economic Development Loan/ Grant Program. That money, plus a $60,000 match from the City of Gering- will be used for construction of a new bear habitat.

“This brings us very close to our final goal to start construction very soon on our bear exhibit,” says Director Anthony Mason. He adds that the zoo does not have a firm date yet on when construction for the new bear habitat will begin,  but says he hopes it’s very soon.

As the zoo pays back the loan, the City of Gering will utilize the funds to establish a revolving loan fund to provide loans to businesses in the area.

This is the second grant of this kind that the City of Gering has received from the USDA. The previous project provided a similar loan for the Legacy of the Plains Museum expansion.

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