The following is a press release from the National Children’s Museum:
Big news for little learners around Washington! Following an 18-month closure due to the COVID-19 health pandemic and continued space development, National Children’s Museum will celebrate its grand opening and reveal its new Entry Hall on September 2, 2021. Tickets will become available to the public on Monday, August 16, with member-only pre-reservation beginning on Saturday, August 14.
The Museum will open with limited capacity and operating policies that help to ensure a safe and fun experience for all visitors, including:
- Adjusted operating hours. The Museum will open with two timed sessions from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm, and 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm on Thursdays through Sundays. This helps promote physical distancing through limited capacity and provides an opportunity for Museum staff to reset and clean the space between sessions.
- Advanced-only reservations. Reservations are required for all visitors, including members, and will be available through online, advanced-purchase only.
- Mask and vaccination guidelines. Masks will be required for all guests ages two and up, regardless of vaccination status. All National Children’s Museum staff members will be vaccinated.
Tickets are $15.95 for all guests ages one and up. Memberships, which provide a year of entry for two adults and all children in the household, are available beginning from $190. To ensure that admission is not a barrier to entry for families in the region, the Museum is continuing to run its Community Access Program. Through this program, the Museum provides trusted community organizations?like after-school programs, food banks, and women’s shelters?with Museum memberships to share amongst the families that they serve. Similar to a “check-out” system in a library, families will work with their organization to virtually sign-out a Museum membership for a selected date and time. For a list of all community organizations that partner with the Museum through this access program, please visit www.nationalchildrensmuseum.org/access.
On February 24, 2020, the Museum soft-opened the concourse level of its new home in downtown Washington, D.C. However, just over two weeks later on March 13, 2020, the Museum closed for in-person visits in response to the COVID-19 crisis. During that time, the Museum developed robust virtual programming, including a children’s podcast; two virtual field trips; more than 75 at-home science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) program videos; and digital exhibits and curricula. These offerings have reached more than 1 million people across the world.
While closed, the Museum continued to modify and perfect its space, adjusting exhibits and undergoing outstanding construction. Upon the Museum’s grand opening, visitors can expect to engage with amenities and experiences on the Museum’s newly opened entry floor:
- A small, curated gift shop will sell merchandise inspired by the Museum’s exhibits and our city.
- A brand-new Dance Party Pod experience, presented by Spotify, will allow young visitors to explore new genres of sound that inspire full-body movement.
- Sky Survey, a crowd-sourced art installation in the Museum’s Entry Hall developed by the Museum’s inaugural artist-in-residence Tommy Bobo, will engage young visitors in observation and community art-making.
- A soon-to-be completed Bluestone Lane café will be accessible from both inside the Museum and directly from the Woodrow Wilson Plaza. The café will offer seasonal bites and drinks to visitors, including espresso, beer, and wine.
All of the Museum’s exhibits will be open and ready for play in September, with modifications—like easily sanitized material substitutions and easy-to-follow exhibit directions— added to some experiences for visitors’ safety and health.
For more information on the Museum’s exhibits and available experiences, please visit the Museum’s website at www.nationalchildrensmuseum.org/explore. For more details on how to plan a visit to the Museum, please navigate to www.nationalchildrensmuseum.org/a-healthy-visit.
About National Children’s Museum
National Children’s Museum is a unique hybrid institution that combines learning elements found in a science center with children’s museum experiences. Through hands-on science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) based exhibits, programs, and virtual offerings, the Museum sparks curiosity and ignites creativity for children under the age of twelve and their families. Since February 2020, the Museum has reached more than 1 million people through in-person and digital initiatives. Learn more on how to visit the Museum and engage with virtual STEAM resources at nationalchildrensmuseum.org.
*Photo credit: National Children’s Museum
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