Museums Offer a Day of Free Admission
Ask any of my friends and they’ll tell you that I’m a big nerd. I’m also a college student (i.e. broke and cheap), so any event that allows me to learn for free gets two big thumbs up. This is why I’m so excited for the Smithsonian magazine Museum Day. This coming Saturday, September 26, over 1,250 museums around the U.S. are offering free admission. That’s right, FREE. All you have to do is go to the Museum Day website and print off the admission card. Each admission card is valid for two visitors and the only stipulation is that only one card be used per household.
This event provides a great opportunity to take that trip to the museum you’ve been putting off or to check out a funky one you normally wouldn’t consider. With a price tag like this one, what do you have to loose?
I’ve compiled a list (after the jump) of some of my favorite participating museums from the Museum Day list…
At the Children’s Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa (Alabama), kids and kids-at-heart can shop in the Lil’ Sprouts Farmer’s Market or play dress-up in Grandmother’s Attic (below). And with the slogan “We Specialize in Awesome,” you know you can count on a good time.
In Chicago, the International Museum of Surgical Science offers inquisitive minds a look inside the different aspects of the surgical profession. The Milestones in Medical Imaging exhibit explores the development of advancements such as the MRI and PET scan as well as explains how they work while the Polio exhibit features a real working Iron Lung.
As a student at the University of South Carolina, I’ve enjoyed being in such close proximity to the Columbia (SC) Museum of Art. It’s the perfectly-sized museum for a weekend afternoon, not overwhelming like many art museums. The museum’s current exhibit features American artist Cleve Gray’s collection, Man and Nature.
Sports fans don’t fear, Museum Day is also featuring the College Football Hall of Fame
in South Bend, Indiana. College Football fanatics will enjoy the Strategy Clinic where they can “predict the plays from one of five famous games in football history.”
Museum goers with an affinity for the funky will enjoy the Museum of Miniature Houses and Other Collections in Carmel, Indiana that features a miniature world of houses, cars, and even UFOs. Or, you may prefer the Ace of Clubs House in Texarkana, Texas, a house designed in the shape of the card symbol.
Free admission to the High Museum of Art
- Nat Geo Expeditions
in Atlanta, Georgia is a great bargain since adult admission is usually $18. On my first trip to High, I was extremely impressed. There is art from many different periods and enough exhibits to entertain a variety of interests. High is also where I first saw the Terra Cotta army, an excellent exhibit (soon to be on display at the National Geographic Museum in Washington D.C.). As far as I can tell, the people at High really know what they’re doing.
Check out Museum Day’s participating venues site to search your own state’s museums. This weekend, get out there and learn a little, your wallet won’t mind.
Photo: Children’s Hands-On Museum of Tuscaloosa