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Where To Celebrate Free Museum Day Across Tampa Bay On Saturday

Sep 18, 2019

Free Museum Day is returning to Tampa Bay on Saturday. Hosted by Smithsonian Magazine, museums and cultural institutions across the country provide free admission as part of this "annual celebration of boundless curiosity."

“This event is important as it highlights the culture, history, science, art, and nature that each state has to offer and represents a national commitment to access to these unique places,” said Amy Wilkins, Chief Revenue Officer at Smithsonian Media.

This year’s theme, “The Smithsonian Year of Music,” is the focus of exhibitions nationwide. The Tampa Museum of Art will be featuring live Puerto Rican bomba music and the Tampa Bay History Center will have three showings of the Smithsonian Channel’s documentary, “Rock ‘n’ Roll Inventions: This Damn Music.”

Anyone with a Museum Day ticket will receive free entry for two people at institutions affiliated with the Smithsonian, but many other locations will also be offering free admission and events. 

Each museum has different experiences available to celebrate, so make sure to check each museum's website for details:

Tampa

  • Cracker Country
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - Tour historic buildings and experience later 19th century rural Florida life
    - Trail Dogs Bluegrass Band performs at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
     
  • Florida Museum of Photographic Arts
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - Historic and contemporary works by nationally and internationally known photographic artists
    - “Stephen Wilkes: Day to Night,” exploring well-known landmarks around the world
     
  • Henry B. Plant Museum
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - See the exhibition “Henry Plant: He’s More Important Than You Thought”
    - Explore the opulence of turn-of-the century America at the historic Tampa Bay Hotel
     
  • Tampa Bay History Center
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - Screening of the Smithsonian Channel documentary “Rock ‘n’ Roll Inventions: This Damn Music”
    - See the exhibition “History by the Pint: Beer and Brewing in Tampa Bay”
     
  • Tampa Museum of Art
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - Free art-making activities for children
    - Live Bomba music and dance performances

St. Petersburg

  • The Dali Museum
    - Free for Pinellas residents with ID
    - Non-Pinellas residents who purchase a ticket will receive a voucher for a free return visit
    - Download the app to experience “Visual Magic: Dali’s Masterworks in Augments Reality”
     
  • The Florida Holocaust Museum
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - View “Beaches, Benches, and Boycotts: The Civil Rights Movement in Tampa Bay”
     
  • Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - View “Above the Fold: New Expressions in Origami” before it closes on Sunday
     
  • James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art
    - Free admission, no ticket required
    - Admission includes access to the special exhibition “Environmental Impact II”
    - Go on a scavenger hunt through the galleries
     
  • Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum
    - Free and open to the public
    - Check out the Florida Orchestra Petting Zoo
    - Enjoy artist talks and a free drum circle
     
  • Florida CraftArt Gallery
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - See “Beautiful & Bizarre: Figurative Ceramics Invitational of Renowned National Artists”
     
  • Imagine Museum
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - For a $10 fee, reserve a spot for “Imagined Realities,” their virtual reality experience

Sarasota

  • The Ringling
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - Check out “Hippos: A Truly Big Show!” which looks into circus posters with performing hippos

Lakeland

  • Exploration V Children’s Museum
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - Explore three floors of hands-on exhibits in the arts and sciences
     
  • Polk Museum of Art
    - Admission is always free
    - Enjoy a variety of exhibitions, such as “Pierre Henri Matisse: Stories of Creativity” and “Paul Fullerton: Forces of Nature”

Palm Harbor

  • Palm Harbor Museum
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - Featuring exhibits highlighting local, state, and national history

Tarpon Springs

  • Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art
    - Admission with Museum Day ticket
    - See “Comin’ Back to Me: The Music and Spirit of ’69, a Tribute to Marty Balin” before it closes Sunday

Brooksville