Welcome Back!

We are excited to share we re-opened the children’s museum on Wednesday, September 23, 2020!
  • Become a member to support your local non-profit children’s museum, and as a “thank you,” you’ll have unlimited visits for a year and more!:
  • New Hours of Operation: Wednesday – Saturday, 9am-12pm and 2pm-5pm each day. (Closed from 12pm-2pm for sanitizing)
  • Masks are required for anyone 5 years old and up. If you cannot wear a mask at this time, please join us for fun online! Read more about our “Rules of Play” .
  • Sunday’s are reserved for private parties. For $200, your party will have the whole museum to yourselves for 2 hours! We are a wonderful setting for your holiday or birthday parties.

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July COVID Update from the Board of Directors

Dear friends,

Some of you have asked how we are doing and we wanted to provide a quick update. First, thank you for all the love and support you have offered us! Despite having been closed since March due to the current phase two order which specifically prohibits the opening of museums, we are okay. Thanks to our executive director and the wonderful people at First Bank, we were able to get funding through the CARES act very quickly. We also have a remarkably low overhead, thanks to those in our community who have been so generous with us over the years. We are very grateful for those two things right now, however our projected income for the year has been cut dramatically. Currently our executive director and her team are coming up with reopening plans which will allow us to safely provide the same fun and educational experiences that you love. (We’re even working on a few surprises!) Things may look different for a while, but we are confident that we aren’t going anywhere and will be a staple in the community for years to come. We have been hesitant to ask for money right now, knowing this time has been a hardship for many of you, however we will need your continued support as we adapt to this ever changing situation. As part of the CARES act, you may deduct $300 ($600 for couples) of charitable giving on your taxes when you take the standard deduction, which is an extra incentive to help those non-profits you care about in your community! We humbly ask that you remember us when choosing a non-profit to support. You may donate through our website or Facebook page, or consider partnering with us by becoming a member. We look forward to seeing your smiling faces when our doors open again!
Megan Craine, for the Board of Directors

COVID-19 update from Board of Directors President, Megan Craine

Dear friends, members, and supporters,

We hope you are all well during this strange and unprecedented time in the world. We miss seeing all of your smiling faces at the museum and within the community and we wanted to reach out and provide you with a little update on how Zing Zumm has been using this time.

We have always believed that play is vitally important to children and learning, and is even more so in times of change and uncertainty. Therefore, when our doors reopen to the community, Zing Zumm will have a brand new environmental exhibit to share with all of our guests! While most of the details remain a surprise, we can tell you that it will be engaging, fun, and something for the whole family to enjoy. Additionally, we have been working on ways families can continue to engage with the museum via social media and members should be on the lookout soon for details on forthcoming members-only engagement opportunities!

On a broader scale, we also wanted to provide an update on ways that you can continue to support not only Zing Zumm, but all of the nonprofits in the surrounding areas. As many are aware, Congress recently passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The CARES Act not only provides individual assistance to families, but also allows for charitable donations to be made at a greater benefit to donors. Those who take the standard deduction annually can now deduct up to $300 a year ($600 for couples) in charitable contributions; and those who itemize their deductions can deduct up to 100% of their adjusted gross income. Nonprofit organizations such as Zing Zumm rely heavily on donations, so adjustments such as these allow for donors to provide immediate relief while taking advantage of greater tax benefits.

We know this has been such a hard time for many in our community, and we want to take the time to thank you for everything you’ve done for us and continue to do! We are deeply appreciative of all of the love and support we receive and thank you from the bottom of our hearts. If you are able, please continue to support the wonderful local businesses in our community. We are all in this together and will need each other to thrive when life returns to normal!

We look forward to the day we can welcome everyone back through our doors. Until then, we encourage everyone to continue monitoring local and federal safety guidelines and procedures to keep you and your families safe!

Zing Zumm Children’s Museum welcomes Samantha Plocica as Executive Director

August 13, 2019, Jacksonville, North Carolina.

Zing Zumm Childrenʼs Museum of Jacksonville is pleased to announce and welcome Samantha Plocica as their Executive Director. Plocica will be responsible for the museumʼs daily operations, employee management, special events, grant writing, exhibit development, and community involvement, and will act as a liason to the museum’s Board of Directors.

Plocica will officially join Zing Zumm Childrenʼs Museum on August 14, 2019. Zing Zumm is a non-profit, hands-on interactive play childrenʼs museum located in downtown Jacksonville, North Carolina. During her successful tenure as a Zing Zumm board member from 2015-2019, Plocica was imperative in writing and receiving grants from Onslow County Tourism, Caring Communities and Duke Energy. She helped plan and facilitate special events and marketing agendas for Zing Zumm’s Family Funn Runns and Turkey Trot, as well as community events like the Jacksonville Jamboree. She has represented the museum at various seminars and conferences including the Association of Children’s Museum’s annual conference, InterActivity. Her dedication to Zing Zumm has resulted in the museum acquiring funding for exhibit development, equipment, education, and marketing.

Plocica is enthusiastic about joining the Zing Zumm team, “This position will allow me to use my education and training in exciting and new ways. I know the passion it took to open this museum, and I look forward to carrying this passion into the future.”

A graduate of Richlands High School, Plocica is the daughter of a United States Marine and attended Camp Lejeune schools K-10th grade. She received her Bachelors of Science in Public History/Museum Studies from Appalachian State University and an MBA from American Military University with a focus in non-profit business. During her academic career she was a member of Sigma Beta Delta, Pi Gamma Mu, and Phi Alpha Theta.

She brings her experience from working for the Gear Up Finance Officer at Appalachian State to help maintain grants and matching funds for up to $5 million dollars. Plocica worked with staff to retrieve and review data to verify student success rates post program which was used to write successive grants to continue the programming and eventually grow the budget. This allowed ASU to receive the largest grant they had ever received in 2013. She went on to intern in Visitor Services at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. during the summer of 2013. Samantha returned to Onslow County to assist her mother’s local business, Extreme Outfitters. As a supervisor, she managed their internet retail sales center.

Plocica has an infectious passion for the mission of Zing Zumm, a strong grasp on the museum’s target audience and the community, and has proven to execute efficient marketing programs to increase community involvement and funding for exhibit development. The impact she will have as Zing Zumm’s Executive Director will ensure the organization thrives as a valuable asset to the community. This includes continuously improving programs and services set forth by the Board of Directors, leading with innovation and excellence, and maintaining its financial sustainability and organizational capacity.

Megan Craine, Zing Zumm’s new President and youngest board member, serving since 2008, shared “Samantha is committed to lifelong learning and discovery, which really embodies the spirit of a children’s museum. Having served on our board previously, her knowledge of museums and non-profits has been invaluable to us and we were fortunate to have a chance to get to know her and see her skills before hiring her.”

Zing Zumm Children’s Museum of Jacksonville is a 501(c)-3 non-profit organization which was brought to fruition by two retired educators, Lani Beuerman and Liz Owens. They recognized the need of local, available activities for families with young children that were interactive, fun and educational. Jacksonville, N.C. is recognized by the U.S. Census Bureau as one of the youngest cities in the United States and has the highest birth rate in North Carolina. Fourteen years later, along with the help of many past and present board members, volunteers, generous sponsors and donors, as well as key community leaders, Zing Zumm acquired property in downtown Jacksonville and opened their doors to the public in November of 2018. Operating on a limited schedule for the first six months, only open 20 hours per week, the museum has surpassed expectations with over 12,000 admissions as of July 2019. Zing Zumm is currently expanding their hours, exhibits, programs and special events.

 

ZingZumm Building Purchased

The deed is done...literally!

What a thrill for the co-chairs of our museum board, Lani Beuerman and Liz Owens to sign the papers for our first building this past Friday morning. After nearly ten years of working towards opening a museum and many more year of dreaming about it, Lani, Liz and the whole museum board were overjoyed that this day has come.

We had no idea the news media would be there, but we were pleasantly surprised that there were several there to do interviews and tour the building with us after signing.

Lani and Liz received the keys to the building from a longtime employee of Boomtown Furniture. Boomtown will remain downtown, right across the street and we have really enjoying meeting all the wonderful people that work there!

Now we have work to do! If you would like to be involved in the opening of the museum, please contact us, at zingzumm@gmail.com and don't forget to follow us on Facebook!