Free 2018 Museum Days in Chicago Area

1/26/2018 10:52:13 AM
Free 2018 Museum Days in Chicago Area - KidTrail Pick
With 2018 in full swing, check out the list of amazing Chicago and suburb museums that offer Free Museum Entry in 2018. It is a great opportunity to enrich your kiddos experiences without breaking the bank. Free museum days are for IL residents only.  The city and the suburbs offers some of the best places to visit from The Adler Planetarium in Chicago to the Morton Arboretum in the west suburbs. We have compiled a list of some of the popular museums and their FREE entry days for 2018.  While exposing your kiddos to museums can be culturally and educationally enriching, it can also put a little dent in your pocket.  So, take advantage of these FREE days! Enjoy, be cultural and save a little money! 

Shedd Aquarium

FREE Days: 
On select days throughout the year, Illinois residents with a valid ID receive free admission!

Experience unbelievable animals from around the world! Admission includes all permanent exhibits, aquatic presentation (subject to availability) and seasonal Stingray Touch (open late May to October). 4-D Experience admission is a $4.95 upgrade for all guests.

When: 
The following are the discount days for 2018:
January 15, 18, 19, 22-26
February 2, 14
June 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, 19
September 4-30
October 3, 10

Location:
Shedd Aquarium
1200 S. Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60605

Museum of Science and Industry

FREE Days:
On 52 days throughout the year, MSI offers Illinois residents free Museum Entry with valid proof of residency

When:
Illinois residents receive free Museum Entry at MSI on the following dates in 2017:

January 8–11, 15–18, 22–25, 29–31
February 1, 5–8, 12–15, 20–22, 26–27
March 14
June 4–7, 11–12
September 4–6, 10–13, 17–20, 24–27
November 12

Location:
Museum of Science and Industry
5700 S. Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60637

The Field Museum

Free Days:
On Free Admission Days, basic admission is free for Illinois residents with valid proof of residency. 

2018 Free Admission Days: 
January 27, 28
February 1-28
June 20-22

Illinois residents also have the opportunity to see ticketed exhibitions and 3D films at a special price. Choose a Discovery Pass and see one special exhibition or 3D film, or see it all with an All-Access Pass!

Discounted passes must be purchased on arrival at The Field Museum and are not available online in advance.

Location:
The Field Museum
1400 S. Lake Shore Dr.
Chicago, IL 60605

Adler Planetarium

Free Days:
Come learn more at the Adler Planetarium during our Illinois Resident Discount Days—where Illinois residents receive FREE General Admission to the museum. General Admission provides access to all exhibitions and experiences (excluding the historic Atwood Sphere Experience and sky shows.)

When:
2018 Illinois Resident Discount Days
January 3, 4, 7-12, 15-19
February 2, 5-9, 19-22
June 21
August 27-31
September 9-16
October 8, 21, 24, 25
November 11, 12, 14, 15
December 1, 3-7, 10

Dates subject to change. Check back frequently for updates.

City of Chicago residents, with proof of residency, receive discounts on all admission passes in recognition of the generous support from the city.

Location:
Adler Planetarium
1300 S. Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60605

Chicago Children’s Museum

FREE Days: 
Sponsored by Target, FREE days at Chicago Children’s Museum is available throughout the year for kiddos and families to enjoy. Please bring Illinois ID to show proof of residency.

When:
Target Free Family Night is every Thursday evening from 5 – 8 PM.  On Thursday, FREE admission is for everyone, adults and children. Groups of 18 or more must register by calling 312-464-8249.
In addition, the First Sunday of every month is also FREE. However, FREE admission is for ages 15 and under only.

Location:
Chicago Children’s Museum
700 E. Grand Ave at Navy Pier
Chicago, IL 60611

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

FREE Days:
Every Thursday in 2018 is FREE general admission at Peggy Notebaert. Donations welcome.

Location:
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
2430 N. Cannon Dr.
Chicago, IL 60614

Art Institute of Chicago

FREE Days:
Admission is always free for children under 14.

Free Thursday Evenings
General admission is free to Illinois residents every Thursday from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Location:
Art Institute of Chicago
111 S. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60603

Museum of Contemporary Art

FREE Days:
General admission at Museum of Contemporary Art is FREE every Thursday from 5 PM to 8 PM.

Location:
Museum of Contemporary Art
220 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611

DuSable Museum of African American History

FREE Days:
Free Tuesdays with a valid IL ID for all IL residents.  

Military Admission:
All Military Duty Personnel, all Branches, receives complimentary admission. Personnel must show ID or be in uniform. Active or Non-Active Duty Personnel/ POW’s (Illinois Residents); receives complimentary admission. Must show VA ID w/POW status on front.

Location:
DuSable Museum of African American History
740 E. 56th Place
Chicago, IL 60637

Chicago History Museum

FREE Days:
The Museum is free to Illinois residents every Tuesday* from 12:30 to 9:00 p.m. and on Commemorative Days: Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents’ Day, March 4, and July 4. *Excludes January 2, January 9, December 18th & December 25th.

Military:
Free admission to active duty military, including Army,Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marines, National Guard, and Reserve members, with up to five family members. The program runs from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Kids age 12 and under are always FREE.

Location:
Chicago History Museum
1601 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614

Chicago Architecture Foundation

FREE Days:
Admission to Chicago Architecture Foundation, including exhibitions, is always FREE.

All of our adult programs and most family programs are fee-based and an admission price is listed with each event description. Tour pricing begins at $15.

Location:
Chicago Architecture Foundation
224 S. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60604

Lincoln Park Zoo

Always FREE:
Lincoln Park Zoo is open 365 days a year and is always free. Lincoln Park Zoo has something for everyone. Meet animals from around the world, relax among Chicago’s most-visited gardens and join us for exciting daily programs and events.

Location:
Lincoln Park Zoo
2001 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614

Kohl Children’s Museum

FREE Days:
Kohl Children’s Museum offers FREE admission on Wednesdays from 1 – 5PM for Glenview, IL residents only.  Must present valid ID for FREE admission.

Location:
Kohl Children’s Museum
Area: North Suburbs
2100 Patriot Blvd.
Glenview, IL 60026

The Morton Arboretum

FREE Days:
The Morton Arboretum offers free general daily admission year-round to active-duty service men or women with a valid ID.

Location:
The Morton Arboretum
Area: West Suburbs
4100 Illinois Route 53
Lisle, IL 60532

Brookfield Zoo

FREE Days:
General Zoo Admission is free on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays through Feb. 28, 2018.

In addition, there is year round free admission to Brookfield Zoo to all active, reservist, and retired members of the military. Qualified personnel who present a valid ID at one of the zoo's admission booths will be admitted free of charge.

Location:
Brookfield Zoo
Area: West Suburbs
3300 Golf Road
Brookfield, IL 60513

Chicago Botanic Garden

Free Days:
Admission is always FREE but you must pay for parking.

Parking fees:
$25 per car
$10 for senior citizens on Tuesdays (age 62+, includes tax)
$30 per van (includes tax)
$65 per limousine, minibus, bus & RV (includes tax)
Discounts apply for Cook County residents. The Garden reserves the right to ask for proof of residency upon entry.

Military Free:
The Garden would like to thank our active duty U.S. military personnel and/or their families, reservists, and former POWs for their years of service. Please present your ID at the entry gatehouse for FREE parking (one car/van vehicle per entry).

Location:
Chicago Botanic Garden
Area: North Suburbs
1000 Lake Cook Road
Glencoe, IL 60022

Photo Credit: Museum of Science & Industry

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