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“We are grateful to the people of Williams Bay for welcoming us to their community for this meeting,” Douglas said. News release by UChicago and the Yerkes Future Foundation issued jointly at 12:00 noon CST on November 5, 2019: The University of Chicago and the Yerkes Future Foundation (YFF) are pleased to announce an agreement in principle for transfer of ownership of Yerkes Observatory and related property located in Williams Bay, Wisconsin to the Yerkes Future Foundation. The University of Chicago this week will transfer ownership of Yerkes Observatory and related property located in Williams Bay, Wisconsin to the Yerkes Future Foundation (YFF). Ed Struble, who has been the director of building and grounds at Yerkes Obervatory for nearly 30 years, controls the dome's movable roof panels with an electric control switch at the 1890's-era research facility in Williams Bay on June 10. “We are a small, community-focused foundation,” said YFF Chairwoman Dianna Colman, “but our ambitions for Yerkes are not only local and regional, but national and international. We are excited to begin the next phase of restoration, preservation, programming and research at this historic observatory. The University of Chicago said Nov. 5 it had reached “an agreement in principle” with the Yerkes Future Foundation to take over ownership and maintenance of the observatory. Yerkes Observatory (/ ˈ j ɜːr k iː z / YUR-keez) is an astronomical observatory located in Williams Bay, Wisconsin, U.S.A.It was operated by the University of Chicago Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics from its founding in 1897 to 2020. YFF will receive a share from the proceeds of the sale of the rezoned lakefront lots per the Yerkes Observatory donation agreement. The foundation is working with the University of Chicago on … We are excited to begin the next phase of restoration, preservation, programming and research at this historic observatory.Please check this site frequently for updates and information. The Yerkes Future Foundation took over ownership of the Yerkes observatory and some land on Friday, May 1. … It reflects the commitment of both groups to be responsive to the interests of the Village of Williams Bay community, and the importance of providing a sound foundation for YFF as it prepares to lead Yerkes into the future. The University continues to evaluate and pursue options for the long-term operation of the Yerkes campus. This message below from John Briggs of the Antique Telescope Society gives the latest information regarding the future of Yerkes Observatory. Ownership was transferred to the non-profit Yerkes Future Foundation (YFF) in May, 2020. The university opened the observatory in 1897 and closed it to the public on Oct. 1, 2018. Not long after the closure decision was announced, a group of local residents called the Yerkes Future Foundation stepped up to the plate. The Registered Agent on file for this company is Dianna Colman and is located at Po Box 346, Williams Bay, WI 53191. Two organizations have asked to remain anonymous at this time. Frequently Asked Questions In order to save the observatory, a group of approximately 45 concerned individuals formed the Yerkes Future Foundation. GLAS, Geneva Lake Astrophysics and STEAM (STEM + art), ensures that former Yerkes Observatory Education Outreach programs, activities, and research, continue. In a proposal to Williams Bay city planners, the Yerkes Future Foundation is seeking a permit to restore and reactivate the historic scientific facility, which closed in 2018. Two organizations have asked to remain anonymous at this time. It was previously owned by the University of Chicago’s Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics. It helps that the organization can now be forthright about engaging in talks with UChicago. The university also donated an undisclosed amount of seed money to help the Yerkes Future Foundation begin the preservation and care duties of the property. “It’s in great shape for being 123 years old,” said Ed Struble, who has been the director of building and grounds at Yerkes for nearly 30 years and is continuing that role with the foundation. Bruised by community rejection of a 2006 condo-and-hotel plan, the university is working with the Yerkes Future Foundation, a group of local residents seeking to preserve the building and picturesque grounds. “We remain hopeful that a new long-term steward can continue to support the observatory and its legacy, in keeping with the community’s high regard for that history and the potential for education,” said Derek Douglas, Vice President for Civic Engagement and External Affairs at UChicago. The University has been seeking proposals for the future of Yerkes since late April, according to the Division of the Physical Sciences website. The search for a new owner has been informed by discussions with many stakeholders, including a public meeting about the future of the property held on May 18, 2018. Yerkes Future Foundation Inc. is located in WILLIAMS BAY, WI and has an annual revenue of $0. The University will continue to operate the telescopes at Yerkes after the closure to ensure the Observatory can continue to be used for astronomical research and investigation, and the large collection of glass photographic plates will continue to be available to researchers by appointment. He said the University is looking for proposals that balance a number of priorities, including the need for a sustainable operational model, the interest in continued public programming, and suitable financial terms. Yerkes Observatory ( YUR-keez) is an astronomical observatory located in Williams Bay, Wisconsin, U.S.A. University of Chicago Seeks Expressions of Interest in Yerkes Observatory  A small cloud may have drifted over the future of the historic Yerkes Observatory in Williams Bay. UChicago holds public meeting on future of Yerkes Observatory property Speakers at that meeting expressed support for the observatory’s educational programs, along with concerns about the potential for high-density residential development on the site. GLAS preserves the goals and mission of YEO, providing unique learning opportunities for both s About Yerkes Future Foundation. Yerkes Observatory, the birthplace of modern astrophysics where Carl Sagan, Edwin Hubble and a pair of Nobel laureates studied galaxies, stars … Inquiries concerning these programs should be directed to GLAS Education (email: info@glaseducation.org, website: https://www.glaseducation.org). The University has been seeking proposals for the future of Yerkes since late April, according to the Division of the Physical Sciences website. A group of residents of the Lake Geneva area of Wisconsin, which is home to UChicago’s moribund Yerkes Observatory, has stepped forward with a proposal to save Yerkes that they say the University has expressed interest in.. Both the University and YFF would like to express their appreciation for the support shown by the Yerkes family, the Village of Williams Bay and many educators and scientists. Ownership was transferred to the non-profit Yerkes Future Foundation … October 1892 October 4, 1892, at Yerkes' office on 444 North Clark Street, Hale presents Yerkes with the opportunity to finance the building of the World’s Largest Telescope.Yerkes is informed of the recognition that James Lick received in founding the Lick Observatory and views the available disks as an opportunity to create a lasting legacy. As we have indicated in public forums, the University understands that comprehensive plans for Yerkes may require approval by the Village of Williams Bay’s Board of Trustees. The university donated the observatory, several telescopes and 49 acres near Geneva Lake to the Yerkes Future Foundation – created in 2018 by a group of local residents. Thus, the marketing and sale of the lakefront property will create vital seed funding for YFF’s startup operations and sustained fiscal health, in addition to the University’s initial monetary donation. Musings over Mars. The Yerkes Future Foundation would like to thank everyone for their support and encouragement over the past two years. YFF and the University have agreed to several long-term loans of the University’s astronomical equipment that YFF may use at Yerkes, including the observatory’s large collection of glass plates and several historically significant artifacts. The Yerkes Future Foundation. As the University of Chicago proceeds with talks concerning the future of Yerkes Observatory, one point that has arisen is the potential interest among descendants of Charles T. Yerkes, the philanthropist whose gift first established the observatory in the 1890s. “We are deeply grateful to the Village of Williams Bay and the connection this community has to Yerkes,” Dianna Colman said. Yerkes Proposal Process - PDF. WILLIAMS BAY — Yerkes Future Foundation wants to grow its membership. Surprising Stuff The Yerkes Observatory is in trouble again. Yerkes Future Foundation, Inc. is a Wisconsin Nonstock Corporation filed on June 4, 2018. I've been in contact with the head of the local community's Yerkes Future Foundation. A small group of Geneva Lake residents formed the Yerkes Future Foundation in 2018, shortly after the University’s announcement that it would seek a new long-term steward for the observatory. At a public meeting held by the Village of Williams Bay, representatives from the University of Chicago took questions from the Village Board of Directors and heard comments from the public about the Yerkes property. In line with community priorities, the University is not considering any high-density development. May 4, 2020 - 8:55am. The Yerkes Future Foundation News 'Today’s A Big Day': Wisconsin’s Yerkes Observatory Has New Ownership. Low-density residential use is being explored as part of a long-term plan for some of the land. As part of this effort, the University will continue ongoing talks about the observatory’s future with interested parties, including representatives of Charles T. Yerkes’ descendants, the Village of Williams Bay, and the Yerkes Future Foundation, a non-profit organization located in Williams Bay. YFF is dedicated to restoring the great, historic observatory as a monument to American achievements in astronomy and as an operating scientific and educational institution capable of carrying Yerkes’ contributions into the future. Yerkes Future Foundation Inc. is a Educational Institutions and Related Activities organization that provides assistance in the form of Charitable Organization. Yerkes Future Foundation, education and historic preservation, Williams Bay. Over the next several months, both organizations will be working closely on all aspects of the proposed transfer. The three new residential lots will provide an expanded tax base for the Village of Williams Bay. The mission of the Yerkes Future Foundation (“YFF”) is to preserve and protect Yerkes Observatory, celebrate its history and continue to foster its goals of research, education and astronomical observation by providing the opportunity to engage to all. Talks are continuing with the Yerkes Future Foundation, a non-profit organization located in Williams Bay. The Yerkes Observatory in Williams Bay, Wis. is now closed to the public. The new organization needs volunteers with time and expertise to move forward the group’s goal of sustaining Yerkes Observatory and turning it into a public museum and education center, said Dianna Colman, chairwoman of the foundation’s seven member core committee. 773.702.7950. © 2020 by Wisconsin Public Radio, a service of the Wisconsin Educational Communications Board and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Proposals will be confidential at this stage, and the University will continue to share more information with the Village and others as the process unfolds, in coordination with parties who submit proposals. Douglas said the views expressed at the meeting will be an important consideration as the University continues to evaluates proposals. 5640 S. Ellis Avenue About a year ago (March 2018), they announced an October 1st closure of Yerkes to the public and continued to look for a way to dispose of the property. The University welcomes your questions or comments regarding the Yerkes property. The Yerkes Future Foundation would like to thank everyone for their support and encouragement over the past two years. Please use the field below to share your feedback with the University. For technical questions or comments about WPR’s website, streaming or other digital media products, please use our Website Feedback form. This round of Solar for Good grants features a diverse group of organizations from across Wisconsin. Under an agreement between a local foundation and the University of Chicago, the university will transfer ownership of Yerkes Observatory in Williams Bay to the Yerkes Future Foundation on Friday. For Dianna Colman, chairman of the Yerkes Future Foundation, the observatory has long been part of her life as a Williams Bay resident. “We heard loud and clear that people do not want the University to approach this as an ordinary real estate transaction, and we agree,” Douglas said. “GLAS is independent of the Yerkes Future Foundation, and that has caused some confusion. The locally founded Yerkes Future Foundation received the observatory building and its grounds in early May as a gift from the University of Chicago. Two organizations have asked to remain anonymous at this time. The company's filing status is listed as Incorporated/Qualified and its File Number is Y005047. The University of Chicago and the Yerkes Future Foundation have released the following joint statement: The University of Chicago and the Yerkes Future Foundation (YFF) are pleased to announce an agreement in principle for transfer of ownership of Yerkes Observatory and related property located in Williams Bay, Wisconsin to the Yerkes Future Foundation. Yerkes’s new owners have new plan July 4, 2020, 12:59 PM Dianna Colman of the Yerkes Future Foundation says the group is launching a big fundraising campaign to reopen the observatory, which closed to the public in 2018. “Our hope is to maintain and develop this beautiful and important observatory as a jewel in the crown of this community for generations to come.”. The University will continue to occasionally operate the telescopes at Yerkes to ensure the Observatory can continue to be used for  research and education, and the large collection of glass photographic plates will continue to be available to researchers by appointment via the department Astronomy and Astrophysics. The University of Chicago announced in March that it would close the observatory to the public---but---maintain a minimal operation for educational and research programs. The locally founded Yerkes Future Foundation received the observatory building and its grounds in early May as a gift from the University of Chicago. Students and faculty in the University of Chicago’s Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics have continued to do educational and research work at Yerkes Observatory in the past year. As part of the process to engage the community about the future of the Yerkes property, the University of Chicago will hold a public meeting at Williams Bay High School on Friday, May 18, 2018. The Yerkes Future Foundation is the new owner of the observatory, and it is made up of local people who take great pride in the observatory, spokesman Dianna Colman said. The University also will make a significant monetary donation of seed funding for YFF at the time of transfer. The University’s call for Expressions of Interest requests that interested parties submit proposals before June 15. Some of the educational programs previously offered at the observatory have moved to UChicago's campus in Chicago and a new local organization, Geneva Lake Astrophysics and STEAM,  has plans to operate some programs at a new location in Williams Bay, not affiliated with UChicago. WILLIAMS BAY — A private foundation dedicated to resurrecting Yerkes Observatory says the group could reopen Yerkes to the general public as soon as this summer. Additional information will be made available as appropriate. News release by UChicago and the Yerkes Future Foundation issued jointly at 12:00 noon CST on November 5, 2019: The University of Chicago and the Yerkes Future Foundation (YFF) are pleased to announce an agreement in principle for transfer of ownership of Yerkes Observatory and related property located in Williams Bay, Wisconsin to the Yerkes Future Foundation. Educational Outreach Programs The mission of the Yerkes Future Foundation (YFF) is to preserve and protect the Yerkes Observatory and enhance and expand the experience visitors have on the site. Keep updated on the latest news and information. YFF’s objectives include restoration and refurbishing of the telescopes and building, reopening the space for visitors and establishing educational, research, seminars and various additional opportunities for students, astronomers, astrophysicists and others. Throughout this process the University has sought to balance a number of priorities, including the need for a sustainable operational model, the community’s interest in continued public programming, and sustainable financial terms. Yerkes Future Foundation, education and historic preservation, Williams Bay. Over the next several months, both organizations will be working closely on all aspects … As part of the transfer, scheduled for May 1, the University is donating to YFF the historic observatory campus, which includes the observatory building including the large telescopes, and other property on the site. About Yerkes Future Foundation & Yerkes Observatory. Yerkes Future Foundation, Inc. is a Wisconsin Nonstock Corporation filed on June 4, 2018. In 2018 the Yerkes Future Foundation was formed by a group of concerned citizens to save this iconic structure from certain demise by developers. In recent months the University has met and spoken with descendants of Charles T. Yerkes and provided them with the original gift document [available here – see text version here], which involves only the main observatory building and refracting telescope. Yerkes Observatory new owners have restoration plan. Apart from the main observatory building and the refracting telescope itself, the land and other structures of the Yerkes campus are the property of the University by virtue of other gifts or direct investments of University resources, and are not subject to the terms of the gift from Charles T. Yerkes. The Yerkes Future Foundation Steps In. Dividing the lakefront property into three single-family residences is intended to address those concerns while providing important benefits: Both the University and YFF extended thanks to the Village of Williams Bay for the community’s dedication to Yerkes and its special place in the history and future of the area. A group of residents of the Lake Geneva area of Wisconsin, which is home to UChicago’s moribund Yerkes Observatory, has stepped forward with a proposal to save Yerkes that they say the University has expressed interest in.. Not long after the closure decision was announced, a group of local residents called the Yerkes Future Foundation stepped up to the plate. They are now in contact with each other. Dianna Colman of the Yerkes Future Foundation said the foundation and university in October reached an “agreement in principle” for the transfer of ownership after about 18 months of negotiations. The Yerkes Future Foundation was created by area civic and business leaders with the intention of gaining control of the observatory reopening it to the public. The University of Chicago and the Yerkes Future Foundation (YFF) are pleased to announce an agreement … It was previously owned by the University of Chicago’s Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics. Leaders from the University and YFF discussed terms of the agreement in March at a meeting of the Village of Williams Bay Plan Commission. Some of the educational programs previously offered at the observatory will move to UChicago’s campus in Chicago, and the University understands that a new local organization has plans to operate some programs at a new location in Williams Bay, not affiliated with UChicago. All tours and public events at the observatory have ceased. Yerkes Observatory closed in October 2018 and in November 2019 an announcement was made by Yerkes Future Foundation about an agreement in principle with the University of Chicago for transfer of ownership of the observatory and related property.On Feb. 25, representatives from the foundation and university are expected at a Village of Williams Bay Plan Commission meeting. In order to save the observatory, a group of approximately 45 concerned individuals formed the Yerkes Future Foundation. For questions and comments, please contact yerkes@uchicago.edu. After that time, they will be operated by Geneva Lake Astrophysics and STEAM, Inc. and will no longer be supported by the University of Chicago. The company's filing status is listed as Incorporated/Qualified and its File Number is Y005047. 'Today’s A Big Day': Wisconsin’s Yerkes Observatory Has New Ownership, Wisconsin Educational Communications Board. A small group of Geneva Lake residents formed the Yerkes Future Foundation in 2018, shortly after the university’s announcement that it would seek a new long-term steward for the observatory. In a proposal to Williams Bay city planners, the Yerkes Future Foundation is seeking a permit to restore and reactivate the historic scientific facility, which closed in 2018. Along with other visitors from around the world, YFF will welcome UChicago scientists, librarians, and students to continue projects and collaboration at Yerkes in the months and years ahead. Preparations for the transition have been underway since the announcement in March that the University was searching for a new long-term steward for the observatory. Yerkes Future Foundation Inc. is located in WILLIAMS BAY, WI and has an annual revenue of $0. Following the observatory’s closure to the public on Oct. 1, the University has continued certain astronomical activities at the observatory, including the use of telescopes and curation of the observatory’s large collection of glass photographic plates. The transfer to YFF will mark the conclusion of the University’s historic affiliation with Yerkes, allowing the University to make further investments in the future of the field, including projects such as the Giant Magellan Telescope. As introduced at the Plan Commission meeting in March, the University is seeking approval on the rezoning of the lakefront property to three residential lots. Educational outreach programs previously offered through the University of Chicago’s Yerkes Observatory will move from the observatory after September 30, 2018 to a new location in Williams Bay, WI. David Fithian, who has led the transfer process for the University of Chicago, said having a successor organization that is dedicated to Yerkes and the community provides an appropriate new chapter for the observatory. The Yerkes Future Foundation took over ownership of the observatory and roughly 50 acres of surrounding land on Friday, May 1. Yerkes Future Foundation Inc. is currently unrated by Charity Navigator.

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