Arlington, VA

A flood of last minute donations has helped to save Arlington’s David M. Brown Planetarium. A large donation from an anonymous donor pushed the campaign past its goal as the fundraiser came to a close on Thursday.

The anonymous donation of $50,000 bumped the total to $435,000. That surpassed the goal of $402,800 set in April 2010 by Dr. Patrick Murphy, Superintendent of Arlington Public Schools.

More than 3,500 businesses, individuals and foundations contributed to the cause, 200 of them taking part during the 10-day online fundraising challenge. The money will go toward purchasing a state-of-the-art planetarium projector, replacing the seats, updating the lighting system and repairing the inside of the dome. Had the goal not been met, the 40 year old facility would have been closed and used for classroom space.

Friends of the Arlington Planetarium, the non-profit group formed to raise money for the project, says it will continue to make sure the planetarium stays up to date and will provide support as necessary.

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