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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

National Museum Day — Free Admission

This Saturday, September 28 over 1400 museums around the nation will celebrate National Museum Day along with the Smithsonian Museum. On that day participating museums will open their doors free of charge (parking and special event charges still apply). Encourage your students to visit a museum of their choice and then come prepared to share their experiences with the class the following week.

You can download your ticket and see the full list of museums participating on the Smithsonian's website:

Some venues will let you simply show your ticket on your smart phone. This special offer includes free visits to botanical gardens, art galleries and local cultural institutions as well as museums of natural history, photography, music, surfing, aerospace, children's museums and lots more. Each ticket is good for entry to one museum. If museums reach their capacity, they have the right to limit the number of guests until space becomes available.

With the exception of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, all Smithsonian Museums are free to the public daily. Read more:

Here in San Diego you can visit these museums and art galleries at no charge on Saturday:
  • Oceanside: California Surf Museum (regularly $5 adults; Free on Tuesdays)
  • Downtown San Diego: Marston House (regularly $10 adults)
  • Santee: Creation and Earth History Museum (regularly free)
  • Escondido: Escondido History Center (regularly free including walking tours)
    • San Diego Archaeological Center (suggested donation $2)
  • Carlsbad: Museum of Making Music (regularly $8 adults)
  • Balboa Park San Diego: Reuben H. Fleet Science Center (regularly $13 adults)
    • San Diego Automotive Museum (regularly $8.50 adults)
    • San Diego Air and Space Museum (regularly $18 adults)
    • San Diego Chinese Historical Museum (regularly $2)
    • San Diego History Center (regularly $8 adults; Free on Tuesdays)
. . . and more! Around the country the following organizations are just a few of the many participating:

  • Los Angeles: GRAMMY Museum (regularly $12.95)
  • Chicago: Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (regularly $12)
  • San Francisco: de Young Fine Arts Museum (regularly $11)
  • Dallas: Dallas Holocaust Museum (regularly $8)
  • New York City: The Skyscraper Museum (regularly $5)
  • Atlanta: The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia (regularly $5)
The Museum Day Live! ticket is available to download at Visitors who present this ticket will gain free entrance for two at participating venues for one day only. One ticket is permitted per household, per email address. For more information about Museum Day Live! 2013 and a list of participating museums and cultural institutions, please visit

During the month of October, 40 San Diego museums are offering free admission to children with a paid adult. Download your coupon here (print one coupon for each museum you plan to visit).

What are some of your favorite museums? Leave a comment below to let us know which you enjoy personally and which make interesting field trip venues.

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