Blue Star Museums is a partnership among the Blue Star Families, National Endowment for the Arts, and more than 1,800 museums across the country. The program offers free admission to active-duty military and their family members from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
If you are active duty military personnel and/or an immediate family member, all you need to do is show either a Geneva Conventions CAC Card, a DD Form 1173, or a DD Form 1173-1 at the museum admissions desk. Immediate family members under the age of 10 must be accompanied by an appropriate ID holder.
We encourage you and your family to explore as many museums as possible.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is Blue Star Museums?
Blue Star Museums is a program that offers free admission to museums for all active duty military personnel and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
What museums are participating?
More than 1,800 museums in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and American Samoa are participating in Blue Star Museums. These include children’s museums, fine art museums, history and science museums, and nature centers.
Who is eligible for free museum admission through Blue Star Museums?
The free admission program is available to any bearer of a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID card, or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card, including those stamped URW and DB. These include active duty military (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard), active duty National Guard and active duty Reserve members and up to five family members. Please see the chart of the acceptable IDs(PDF).
How do you define an family member?
A family member of active duty military may include a spouse or child, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc.
What if my spouse is deployed? Can my family and I still participate?
Yes, spouses of deployed military are eligible for Blue Star Museums. Just bring your DD Form 1173 ID Card, or DD Form 1173-1 ID Card, for active duty military family members.
How many military personnel and/or family members are allowed in for free per visit?
The military ID holder plus up to five family members.
What if my child is under the age of 10 and doesn’t yet have a military ID?
Children under the age of 10 without military ID are welcome to attend with their parents who either hold a Geneva Convention Common Access Card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID Card, or a DD Form 1173-1 ID Card.
Does the Blue Star Museums program include admission for veterans and retirees? For unmarried partners? For parents with a child currently serving on active duty, or for those who have lost a child on active duty?
Admission for these individuals is not included in the scope of this program, unless they are the bearer of a Geneva Convention Common Access Card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID Card, or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card, including those stamped URW and DB.
Blue Star Museums is a partnership among Blue Star Families, the National Endowment for the Arts, and more than 1,800 museums across America to offer free admission to families with a member serving during this time of combat in Afghanistan and Iraq, especially focusing on the approximately 1 million children who have had at least one parent deployed. This program offers these families a chance to visit museums this summer when many will have limited resources and limited time to be together.
Will I receive free entry to special, fee-based exhibits?
Some special or limited-time museum exhibits may not be included in this free admission program. For questions on particular exhibits or museums, please contact the museum directly.
Is there a limit on the number of Blue Star Museums I can visit this summer?
No, there is no limit on the number of participating museums that eligible parties can visit.
If a museum already offers free admission, can it still participate in Blue Star Museums?
Museums with free admission are also welcome to join the Blue Star Museums list on the NEA website.
How can museums join the Blue Star Museums program?
Museums that wish to participate in Blue Star Museums may contact firstname.lastname@example.org, or Wendy Clark at 202-682-5451.
Who are the national partners on Blue Star Museums?
Blue Star Museums is a partnership among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families — an organization which raises awareness of the challenges and strengths of military family life — and more than 1,800 museums. To learn more about Blue Star Families, please visit BlueStarFam.org.