Have you heard about Free Museum Day? It happens each year in September. The 2010 Free Museum Day is September 25.
School is now in full swing and what could be more educational than a day at a museum? Enjoy some family fun and learning all at once. Museums offer a chance to see, hear, touch, feel and in some cases even smell- The Danville Science Center has a great interactive exhibit that tests smell. Many of the museums in Virginia have exhibits correlated to Virginia SOLs which makes choosing and planning easier for teachers and parents but what kids love is the hands on learning.
Free Museum Day still requires tickets. How can you get free museum day tickets?
*The Museum Day Ticket can be found in the September Smithsonian magazine or online at www.smithsonian.com/museumday.
*The official pass offers visitors free admission for two people to one participating museum or cultural venue.
*There is one ticket permitted per household, per email address.
*You have to designate the museum you plan to attend and your pass will be e-mailed to you.
*Museums across the United States and in Puerto Rico participate. This year 940 museums have signed on.
*The event is sponsored by Smithsonian and this is the 6th annual Museum Day.
Here’s a sample of Virginia Museum participating in Free Museum Day 2010.
The Virginia Museum of Transportation, Roanoke, VA
303 Norfolk, Ave SW, 540-342-5670, www.vmt.org
The Virginia Museum of Transportation is the Official Transportation Museum of the Commonwealth of Virginia featuring steam locomotives, rail equipment, model trains, antique cars, historical photographs and interactive kid’s exhibits. There really is something for everyone interested in history or trains at The Virginia Museum of Transportation.
Personal story: This museum holds a special place in my heart. It is one of my son’s favorite places to visit. We go each year with friends around his birthday. One year with a picnic lunch in tow, we visited planning to have a birthday lunch outdoors on the playground. When torrential rains began to fall, the always-friendly staff came to our rescue and set up a table for us in a room and even put up some birthday decorations for us in jiff.
More Roanoke and Bedford County area museums participating in Free Museum Day 2010:
The History Museum of Western Virginia
O. Winston Link Museum (photography)
Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest, Forest, VA
1542 Bateman Bridge Road, www.poplarforest.org
Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest is in beautiful Bedford County, Virginia. See Jefferson’s place of retreat. On Museum Day visitors can enjoy cooking demonstrations in the restored kitchen and hands-on activities from 11 am to 3 pm. Experience American History here.
One of my favorite stops at Poplar Forest: The house is magnificent of course but I treasure a photo of my husband and daughter standing inside Jefferson’s brick, octagonal outhouse.
More of my favorite Virginia Museums participating in Museum Day 2010:
Amazement Square, The Rightmire Children’s Museum, Lynchburg, VA
Danville Science Center, Danville, VA
Virginia Discovery Museum, Charlottesville, VA
Each of these museums were featured in my article Science Field Trips for Elementary School Students.
You can find a complete list of Virginia museums participating in Museum Day 2010 here.
Don’t forget the Smithsonian Museums in Washington, D.C. are free and open 7 days a week except for December 25th. The Smithsonian is educational with a “capital” or should that be a “capitol” E.
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