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Arts Park Gets $25,000 Contribution

January 26, 1988

One of the San Fernando Valley's wealthiest businessmen donated $25,000 Monday to the Cultural Foundation and suggested that other business leaders may soon join the foundation's crusade to build an arts complex in the Sepulveda Basin.

Louis Foster's gift was in the form of stock from his 20th Century Industries, a $622-million company best known for offering inexpensive auto insurance.

The $25,000 will go toward building the $45-million Arts Park L.A. The donation proves that local business leaders have confidence in the foundation and consider Arts Park a worthy cause, foundation leaders said.

"We need to be recognized by the leaders of our community," said Doris (Dodo) Meyer, the foundation's chairman. The donation, she said, helps generate interest among members of the business community.

Foster said he has talked to several major businessmen in the Valley who showed an interest in contributing to the foundation.

"I think you're going to be surprised," Foster told the foundation's board of directors at a meeting Monday afternoon in Warner Center.

Plans for Arts Park include a museum, a concert hall and an open-air theater.

Foster's gift was welcome news for the foundation. It has had difficulty raising $1 million in start-up money for the project. The start-up campaign has attracted just $500,000 in more than a year.

Foundation officials said they hope to finish the $1-million campaign by the end of 1988. After that, the foundation will launch a five-year, $15-million fund-raiser to start building Arts Park, officials said.

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