Our site is ad-supported and this post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. If you complete a purchase using one of our links, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more about our editorial and advertising policies.
Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, qualifying active duty military service members and their families can enjoy FREE admission to over 2,000 Blue Star Museums nationwide! There are Blue Star Museums all over the United States, including Washington DC, Puerto Rico and American Samoa!
UPDATE: Most Blue Star Museums have not been operating for much of this past year, because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The National Endowment of the Arts (NEA) and Blue Star Families have suspended the program but are offering online activities, like Virtual Bingo, for families who would ordinarily be eligible for this program. And they have plans to make 2021 a great year.
What are Blue Star Museums?
Blue Star Museums are part of a collaboration between Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, the National Endowment for the Arts, and more than 2,000 museums nationwide. They provide free admission for active duty military service members and their families. This is a nationwide “thank you” for the sacrifices that military families make every day.
Who qualifies for Blue Star Museums?
To qualify, a family must have a family member currently serving in the military on active duty. National Guard and Reserve members, US Public Heath Service Commissioned Corps, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Commissioned Corps also qualify.
The active duty service member does not need to be present in order for the family to gain free admission. Your family can use this benefit while your eligible family member is deployed or simply unable to attend the museum for any reason.
Please note that veterans and retirees are NOT eligible for participation with the Blue Star Museums program. Parents with a child on active duty, or parents who have lost a child that was serving on active duty, are also not eligible. The program was specifically intended to support families, especially the children, of active-duty and deployed military members.
What do I need to bring to the museum?
For entry, you must provide a Geneva Convention Common Access Card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID Card, or a DD Form 1173-1 ID Card. Each card provides entry to the cardholder and up to five immediate family members. Family members are defined by the program as a spouse, child, aunt, uncle, grandparents or other close family member.
Families can go to the museum even if their qualifying service-member is currently deployed. Just bring your ID card with you!
What will I be able to do at the museum?
Your free admission through the Blue Star Museums program may have some limitations. It usually includes general admission only and does not include any paid upgrades for special exhibits or features. Many participating museums list on their websites which benefits they include with Blue Star entry.
How can I find a Blue Star Museum near me?
There are over 2,000 museums participating in this program nationwide. However, some of those museums offer free admission for everyone, all year long. You can click here to find a Blue Star Museum in YOUR area!
Thank you for your service!
Thank you so much for your service and sacrifices on behalf of our country. Remember, you can always find resources for military families at LowIncomeRelief.com!