Skip Navigation

The National Excellence and Community Impact Campaign Raised Over $2,735,000

Thank you to our Campaign Co-Chairs, Margaret Silva and J. Scott Francis. Your enduring leadership and generosity ensured the Campaign was a success. Because of your commitment, the Museum continues to help create a culturally vibrant community.

The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures launched The National Excellence and Community Impact Campaign in 2020 to renovate and create new galleries for rotating exhibitions, expand and upgrade collections’ storage for a more robust preservation environment, enhance visitor accessibility to the collection, increase opportunities for object interpretation, and increase exhibitions and educational opportunities.

With the community’s generous contributions, the ambitious goal of $2.5 million has been met and exceeded, raising over $2,735,000. The Campaign’s supporters have created a lasting legacy, which will allow the Museum to continue to nurture creativity and inspire curiosity for generations to come. In alignment with the Museum’s mission, the campaign enabled a series of transformative expansions, detailed below.

Want to learn how you can further engage with the Museum? If so, please click on the button below to email us. We look forward to hearing from you.

“The Sunderland Foundation’s ongoing support of The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures demonstrates how deeply we value building places where young minds grow and thrive and where communities come together for celebration and inspiration. Our support of The National Excellence and Community Impact Campaign signifies our trust in the Museum and the positive impact they have on our community.” – Randy Vance, President of The Sunderland Foundation

Guests enjoying the Miniature Art Museum, Mark McDonald, photographer.

Discover the Campaign’s Impact

“My pride in the leadership and staff at The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures is the main reason I supported The National Excellence and Community Impact Campaign. Their dedication to the Museum’s mission while holding the Museum accountable to the highest standards is evident as they create experiences of joy and wonder for ever-expanding audiences.” – Margaret Silva

East Gallery

The Campaign helped develop a new 660-square-foot East Gallery as a temporary exhibition space for new approaches to miniature art to complement the existing rotating toy exhibition spaces. Transformations: New Perspectives on the Art of Miniatures, the debut exhibition, opened in October 2023 and showcases artists Carol K. Rasaphangthong, Lori Nix / Kathleen Gerber, and Amy Bennett. These four artists creatively construct miniature scenes that are then transformed into other media such as stop-motion video, large format photographs, and paintings. Future miniature art exhibitions will continue to be curated in a way that explores miniatures in new and innovative ways. Mark your calendar now for the next exhibition, Local Artists Go Miniature, opening in October 2024.

Opening reception, Transformations: New Perspectives on the Art of Miniatures, Mark McDonald, photographer. Left: A young child enjoying a close up look at the exhibition. Right: Guests experiencing the exhibition in the new East Gallery.

Miniature Art Museum

The Museum commissioned Los Angeles-based artist, Chris Toledo, to create the Miniature Art Museum. Consisting of five miniature galleries and a central atrium, this project is similar to the opening of a new wing in a full-scale museum. With this innovative installation, the Museum has reframed visitors’ encounters with its collection of fine-scale miniature paintings and sculptures inspired by well-known artworks throughout history.

Miniature Art Museum, 2023, Chris Toledo, Landon Collis, photographer. Left: A view of the main atrium. Right: Museum staff installing a painting by Josephine Meyer based on “The Dancer” by Andre Derain.

Thorne Room

Out of the public eye for over half a century, this English Cotswold Cottage (1933-1934), part of a series of rooms produced by Narcissa Niblack Thorne, resurfaced on the North Shore of Chicago in 2019. This unexpected and fortuitous acquisition expands the Museum’s ability to present the history and significance of fine-scale miniatures. Produced on a 1:12 scale, this 17th-century Cotswold Cottage is characterized by its simplicity and functionality, reflecting the lived experiences of rural laborers.

English Cotswold Cottage, 1933-1934, Narcissa Niblack Thorne, Landon Collis, photographer.

Miniature Maze

The Miniature Maze showcases cherished miniature rooms acquired by museum co-founder Barbara Marshall. Renovations to the Maze included upgrading cove lighting for easier mobility, new unobtrusive overhead ceiling lighting, and freshly painted walls to further renew the space. A significant enhancement transformed the southeast corner into a Miniature Art Museum, offering rotating exhibitions of fine-scale miniature paintings in a museum within a museum, providing visitors with captivating new experiences.

Left: Miniature Maze gallery space. Right: Architect’s Classroom, circa 1900, 1993, William Robertson.

Education Programs

The Museum expanded educational programming so learners of all ages can be immersed in the personal and historical narratives of toys and miniatures. Through enhanced partnerships with the University of Missouri–Kansas City, the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City, the Guadalupe Centers, and others, engagement opportunities are flourishing, catalyzing personal and community growth in skills, knowledge, and well-being.

Left: Girl Scouts enjoying the Five Senses Badge workshop. Middle: Children creating optical toys. Right: Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City participants experiencing Keisha’s Tea Party.


The Museum provides dynamic temporary exhibitions in the galleries showcasing historically significant toys and dynamic miniature artworks. These changing exhibitions highlight the cultural significance of toys and the work of a diverse array of historical and contemporary artists considering small things in their creative process. The rotating exhibitions allow the Museum to expand collaborations with collectors and artists to examine delightful objects, discuss sometimes challenging subject matter, and consider new perspectives through varied lenses.

Left: Mid-Century Magic: A Tale of Toys and Aluminum Christmas Trees exhibition. Middle: Transformations: New Perspectives on the Art of Miniatures opening reception. Right: Thanks for the Memories: Toys and the Stories They Hold exhibition.

Your Commitment and Support

The Museum is thrilled to provide visitors with enhanced spaces, exhibitions, and programs. Your time, talent, treasure, ties, and testimony allows the Museum to continue to help create a vibrant, culturally enriched community and leave a lasting legacy for generations to come.

Want to learn how you can further engage with the Museum? If so, please click on the button below to email us. We look forward to hearing from you.

“We have supported The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures for many years.  We are proud to have invested in The National Excellence and Community Impact Campaign in 2023 through the Haverty Family Foundation.” – Mike and Marlys Haverty 

Thank you, Campaign Donors!

Many thanks to the following individuals and charitable foundations for their support of The National Excellence and Community Impact Campaign.

Legacy Circle | $100,000+
Ann Barhoum
Edward F. Swinney Trust
Francis Family Foundation Discretionary of David and Janis Francis
J. Scott Francis, Francis Family Foundation
Hall Family Foundation
Janet K. Long
Muriel McBrien Kauffman Foundation
Barbara Hall Marshall Estate
Barb J. Marshall
Shirley and Barnett Helzberg Jr. Donor Advisory Fund of the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Kansas City
Margaret Silva
The Sunderland Foundation

Community Partner | $10,000 – $99,999
Estelle S. and Robert A. Long Ellis Foundation
Donald J. Hall
Donald J. Hall, Jr.
The H&R Block Family Foundation
Ramon and Sally Murguia
The Sosland Foundation
Stanley H. Durwood Foundation

Museum Friend | $1,000 – $9,999
Barbara and Bill Nelson Foundation
Conan J. Castle
Karen L. Christiansen and Thomas B. Phillips
Michael and Marlys Haverty
Margaret Perkins-Mcguinness and Nathan Benjamin
Susan Stanton
Corey and Joe Ziegler

Collection Steward | $100 – $999
Norman Allen
Dwight and Naomi Arn
Carolyn Arnold
Robert Barnes
Wolfe Brack
Susan Brown
Antonio Byrd
Kay and John Callison
Harry and Lisa Crawford
Bill and Mary Ann Dilla
Gary and Pam Gradinger
Gary and Sherry Forsee
Anne Manning
Robert Funk and Jo McCracken
Julia Gargallo and Gregory Woodhams
Jill Grotzinger and Rusty Owings
Michele Hamlett-Weith and Brian Weith
Petra Kralickova
Kurt and Lisa Kunke
James Large
Mel and Rita Lavery
Teresa Martinez
Amy McKune and Kenneth Moncrieff
Naomi Mirsky
Tibor and Michelle Mohacsi
Thomas and Sydna Mullane
Larry and Elnora Nokes
Virginia Otto
George and Wendy Powell
Saralyn Reece Hardy
Madeline Rislow and Kip Smilie
Esther Robertson
Sandra Rose
Blair Tarr
Ann Vernon
Virginia and Jim Young

Questions? Contact Jill Grotzinger, Director of Development, at 816.235.8006 or

Back to Top