This Is What Happens To Coins That Are Tossed Into Fountains


BEFORE YOUR magical journey into throwing money into fountains begins…

It’s from the Sun Sentinel about WHY we throw coins into fountains in the first place. SERIOUSLY, it’s interesting:

Palm Beach County psychotherapist Fran Sherman says giving, even in tiny amounts, makes people feel good while feeding their own “wishes and plans and hopes and dreams.”

“If you throw a coin into a fountain you’re making a wish, and when you’re making a wish you’re putting positive thoughts into your head,” Sherman said. “When we put positive thoughts into our head, they trigger endorphins and all the different parts of the brain click-on those ‘feel-good’ kinds of chemicals.

Now that you know actually why you throw your money away into random bodies of water, let’s look into how much money these fountains actually make because it’s more than you’d think!

The lake at The Bellagio makes about $12,000 a year.

According to the Review Journal, this is how the money is cleaned. It’s pretty neat/gross:

Bellagio’s lake is cleaned every few months. The staff that maintains and operates the fountains built a giant vacuum that is used to remove everything from the floor of the lake, Monet says. They sift the money and then place it into a cement mixer along with some towels. The friction cleans the coins.

The fountains at the Mall of America make about $2,000 a month.

That money is donated to charity and any nonprofits can apply for it.

Brb, starting a charity so I can get that sweet fountain money, I guess?!

The Centennial Flame Fountain outside Parliament in Canada makes up to $6,000 a year. On average, they collect $15 of change a day.

The Trevi fountain in Rome is insanely profitable. It can make $3,200 a day (every day they clean the coins out.) In 2011, the fountain made over $1 million.

FUN FACT: In 2002, a man would steal up to $1,000 a day from the fountain.

You’re not even supposed to throw money into the 9/11 memorial fountain, but in 2014 people tossed $2,735 into it.

Timothy A. Clary / AFP / Getty Images

But yeah, don’t throw money in it. It can mess up the drainage system.

The fountains at all the Rainforest Cafes nationwide (24 of ‘em) make about $25,000 a year. That money is donated to various environmental charities.

*Based on information from 2002, so take it for a grain of salt or whatever the expression is.

One of the largest fountains in the world, Chicago’s Buckingham Fountain only makes about $200 a year. Womp womp.

Jeff Haynes / AFP / Getty Images

This is because it’s too big. You see, there’s a science to all this coin tossing. People like a target to throw their coins at. People also like to see the coins hit the bottom. People want to know where their money lands.

The problem with the Buckingham Fountain is that jets obscure the bottom so you can’t see where your money lands. There aren’t any targets too. You don’t want to toss money into that thing.

In 2014, the fountains in Disney World raised $18,000.

This is cool because technically-ish each coin represents a wish. The money is donated to children in foster care, which technically-ish helps make their dreams come true.

The fountain in Bryant Park in New York City makes about $3,400 a year. That money is donated back to the park to pay for the collection of the coins.

From the New York Times: “The coins pay for the collection of the coins. You get your happy feeling and we take nothing off the top.”

Another interesting fact: The coin tossing at the Bryant Park Fountain peaks around Christmas. Also, the money they collect STINKS. It smells real bad.

In 2011, $3,564.58 was collected at the King of Prussia Mall in Pennsylvania. The King of Prussia Mall is the second-largest mall in the United States btw.

According to volunteers, dimes are the worst to clean:

“It took a long time to figure out how to clean them,” [nonprofit director Darcie] Goldberg said. “We’ve tried a cement mixer, baking soda, Coca-Cola, a variety of ways. Dimes are the worst because they’re so small.”

Chlorine in the fountains is the culprit, Goldberg said. Sometimes the coins are so discolored, it is hard to recognize them.

And lastly…

On the smaller scale, the fountains at the Palm Beach International Airport make about $50 a month.

Central It Alliance / Getty Images