With museum admission rates at an all-time high–costing a family of four as much at $100–Chicago Museum Week presents the perfect opportunity to explore Chicago’s world-class cultural institutions for little or no money.
The first-ever Chicago Museum Week will kick off Thursday, October 1 through Wednesday, October 7 with special discounts and events from 12 of Chicago’s world-class museums.
Deals include free admission on certain days at specified institutions, discounted memberships, extended hours and free behind-the-scenes tours.
Here are some of the highlights:
Free general admission will be offered to Illinois residents during Museum Week at the times and days listed here.
- The Field Museum, October 4, all day
- The Art Institute of Chicago, October 1 (5-8 p.m.)
- The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, October 1, all day
- DuSable Museum of African American History, October 4, all day
- Adler Planetarium, October 5, 6, and 7, all day
- Museum of Science and Industry, October 5 and 6, all day
- Shedd Aquarium, October 5 and 6, all day
- Museum of Contemporary Art, October 6, all day
- Lincoln Park Zoo, always free
- National Museum of Mexican Art, always free
- National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture, always free
- The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum: Every visitor will be given the opportunity to enter to win a LIFETIME membership to the museum. In addition, the Nature Museum is offering $15 off one-year memberships and $25 off two-year memberships.
- Adler Planetarium: $10 off any standard membership
- The Art Institute of Chicago: $10 off memberships
- Chicago History Museum: 20% off any standard membership
- DuSable Museum of African American History: half-price individual memberships
- Lincoln Park Zoo: 10% off memberships
- Museum of Science and Industry: $20 off any standard membership
- DuSable Museum of African American History: 2-for-1 tickets; 10% off at store
- Chicago History Museum: $4 off admission; 20% off at café and store
- Museum of Contemporary Art: half-off admission if you bring in a receipt from another museum visited during Museum Week
- National Museum of Mexican Art: 15% off at store
- National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture: 10% off at store
- The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum: $5 off if you bring in a receipt from another museum visited during Museum Week and 10% off at store
- Shedd Aquarium: Get exclusive purchase when you buy in advance online; and special discount offers on Extraordinary Experiences
- DuSable Museum of African American History will offer special guided tours of the museum.
- Adler Planetarium is offering an exclusive look at items from the Adler Collections that are not generally seen by the public, plus an accompanying talk with the Curator each day of Museum Week
- The Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) will host MCA Prime Time on Friday, October 2, 7-11 p.m. The event will include live music, performance art, film screenings and interactive programs.
- Chicago History Museum (CHM) will keep its doors open late on Tuesday, October 6, 5-8 p.m. The event will allow visitors to explore exhibitions with museums curators and staff plus special tours. They will also premier 30-minute highlight tours of “Chicago: Crossroads of America,” and excursion tours to Union Station, Old Town, Gold Coast, Lincoln Park and on the CTA Blue and Brown lines.
EVENTS FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES
- Adler Planetarium will offer fall family science activities throughout the week and story time with Curious George on Oct. 5.
- The Art Institute of Chicago will offer daily tours and open the Artist’s Studio on Oct. 3 and 4 for free drop-in family art-making.
- Lincoln Park Zoo’s Fall Fest, Oct. 2-4, will include fun rides, a hay maze, educational activities and its Pritzker Family Children’s Zoo will be transformed into a pumpkin patch.
NEW EXHIBITS OPENING MUSEUM WEEK
- “Metamorphosis of Divine Entanglements” from Chicago artist Oscar Luis Martinez at The National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture.
- “City Creatures: Animal Encounters in the Chicago Wilderness” and “Peanuts…Naturally” at The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum.
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