Niabi Zoo is one step closer to completing an important part of their master plan.

The Coal Valley zoo was recently awarded the prestigious Illinois State Tourism grant in the amount of $233,000, which will cover almost half the cost of their new Painted Dog exhibit.

“So many wonderful and exciting additions have been made, and are underway at the zoo,” Niabi director Lee Jackson said in a Tuesday release. “Rhinos, Prairie Dogs, and now we can officially begin work on Painted Dogs! The list of exciting new animals to experience at Niabi is growing like no other time in Niabi Zoo history.”

The projected cost for this newest addition is $500,000, said Jackson. “This grant, along with an earlier generous grant from the John B. Carver Charitable Trust and donations from our friends in the Quad Cities community, puts us tantalizingly close to our goal.”

Donations can be mailed to:

Niabi Zoological Park, Painted Dog Campaign.

13010 Niabi Zoo Road

Coal Valley, IL 61240

Donations can also made on their website by clicking here.