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20 Amazing Years of Sacramento Museum Day

26 Sacramento Area Museums and local destinations will take part in celebrating the 20th Annual Sacramento Museum Day, which takes place on Saturday, February 3. Presented by Sutter Health and sponsored by California Family Fitness, the special day is highlighted by 26 local museums opening their doors for free or half-priced admission to the community from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Most of the museums will offer free admission whereas two destinations located in residential areas – the Sacramento Zoo and Fairytale Town – will offer half-priced admission to offset parking and traffic control costs.

Coordinated by the Sacramento Area Museums (SAM) and Visit Sacramento, the annual event is a popular cultural tradition designed to encourage all members of the community to experience the Capital City’s incredible wealth of art, history, science and wildlife – at little or no cost. Many of the museums are within walking distance of each other and easily accessible via public transportation.

To help easily and conveniently transport guests who wish to visit multiple museums in Sacramento’s urban core, Sacramento Regional Transit (SacRT) is offering free rides on all buses and light rail trains on Saturday, February 3 only with a printed SacRT Museum Day flyer (only one flyer needed per family or group). To print a copy of the flyer, please visit SacRT.com. For more information specifically about SacRT park-and-ride stations and schedules, visit sacrt.com/services.

Museum guests will also receive exclusive offers by Museum Day sponsor California Family Fitness at all of the 26 participating museums (while supplies last). In addition, California Family Fitness team members will be on-site at these following six museums to welcome guests, hand out free promotional items and assist anyone with any inquiries they may have about their fitness clubs: California Automobile Museum, Fairytale Town, Powerhouse Science Center, Sacramento Children’s Museum, Sacramento History Museum and the Sacramento Zoo.

“We are thrilled to present the 20th Annual Sacramento Museum Day and invite the community to join us during this celebratory year,” said Sacramento Area Museums Chair Lynda Walls. “And we’d especially like to thank our presenting sponsor – Sutter Health – along a new sponsor this year – California Family Fitness – for providing much-needed resources to help us to present this important event. Our continuing goal for Museum Day is to introduce the community to the amazing array of arts, culture and museum offerings available in the greater Sacramento region.”

In addition to offering free or reduced cost admission, many of the destinations are offering special activities during Sacramento Museum Day. The activities range from special staffing by docents (for some smaller museums not normally open on Saturdays) to the following:

  • The California Automobile Museum will feature a special Story Time at 11 a.m. and 12 p.m.  Also, some of the eye-catching class cars will be on display outside the Museum (weather permitting);
  • The California State Library will be featuring water transportation in California and a special Haiku and Japanese Art exhibit. The State Library has the largest haiku collection outside of Japan. Plus, kids can visit with the Library’s very own robo-dog, Browser;
  • Maidu Museum & Historic Site will offer trail tours, children’s activities, tables for grinding acorns and beaded bracelets or necklaces;
  • Museum of Medical History will be staffed by retired physicians to answer questions and enhance the visitor experience on Sacramento Museum Day;
  • Powerhouse Science Center Discovery Campus guests will have the opportunity to experiment with some of the hands-on engineering design activities offered in Design Lab and see live critters and insects up-close in the Nature Discovery Area. Additionally “Scooter” the Air Quality Management District’s mascot is plans to make a special guest appearance;
  • The Roseville Utility Exploration Center will present a special “Bird and Bug Bonanza” from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This free family-friendly event will feature interactive activities such as a creek crawl in Cruddy Creek, joining the bug squad, story time with the library, exploring the local habitat and building a birdhouse (birdhouse requires $10 materials fee);
  • The Sacramento Historic City Cemetery will offer tours that day and, if Museum Day guests make a donation to the Cemetery, they will have the unique opportunity to ring the big fire bell;
  • The Sacramento History Museum will offer their interactive and fun gold panning activities for kids outside in front of the Museum;
  • The Sacramento Zoo will have craft stations hosted by Zoo teens and docents available throughout the day to answer animal questions and share biofacts. Also, guests are encouraged to stop by the Reptile House Lawn at 11 a.m. to meet some of the Zoo’s animal ambassadors during an Animal Encounter.

In addition to the 26 museums participating in the 2018 Sacramento Museum Day, a dozen local restaurants are also extending special offers and discounts to participants. The following local restaurants and eateries are extending the special offers on February 3 to those wearing a Sacramento Museum Day sticker they receive at any of the participating museums and destinations that day*:

  • Crazy for Yogurt (three locations: 5150 Arden Way in Sacramento, 4005 Manzanita Ste. 39 in Carmichael & 10824 Olsen Drive #D in Rancho Cordova) – 20 percent off any purchase of $5 or more
  • Danny’s Mini Donuts (900 2nd Street, Old Sacramento) – $2 off a dozen mini donuts
  • DISTRICT (1022 2nd Street, Old Sacramento) – 25 percent off food bill (excluding alcohol)
  • Dos Coyotes (6450 Folsom Blvd. #101, Sacramento) – 20 percent off food bill (excluding alcohol)
  • Evan’s Kitchen and Catering (855 57th Street, Sacramento) – 15 percent off food bill (excluding alcohol)
  • Fat City Bar & Café (1001 Front Street, Old Sacramento) — Free children’s meal with purchase of adult meal
  • Kampala Café inside Sacramento Zoo (3930 W. Land Park Drive, Sacramento) – 10 percent off food bill (excluding alcohol)
  • MOD Pizza (Howe Bout Arden) – Buy one MOD size pizza, get a second for free (BOGO)
  • Railroad Fish & Chips (1100 Front Street, Old Sacramento) – 10 percent off entire bill
  • Sactown Sports Bar & Grill (106 J Street, Old Sacramento) – 15 percent off entire bill
  • Steamers Bakery & Cafe (101 K Street, Old Sacramento) – 15 percent discount on all food
  • Ten22 (1022 2nd Street, Old Sacramento) — 25 percent off food bill (excluding alcohol)
  • The Firehouse (1112 2nd Street, Old Sacramento) – 15 percent off food bill (excluding alcohol; restaurant open for dinner on Saturday)

*Restaurant offers and discounts are valid only on Saturday, February 3, 2018 for guests wearing Sacramento Museum Day stickers.

While admission is free at most of the participating museums during Sacramento Museum Day, admission to two destinations located in residential areas are half-priced as follows: Sacramento Zoo is $7.50 for adults, $5 for children ages 2-11 and free for children under two; Fairytale Town is $2.88 per person and free for children ages one and under.

Event coordinators suggest that guests plan to visit no more than two or three different museums on this day in order to allow adequate time to enjoy the experience and to travel between individual sites.  Due to the popularity of Sacramento Museum Day, some locations must limit the number of admissions for safety reasons. The event is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. but note the last guests will be admitted at 4 p.m.

More detailed information about participating museums, addresses, limitations, suggested parking and public transit options is available at www.sacmuseums.org (click on “News & Events”), or by calling Visit California at (916) 808-7777.

**SAM member museums not able to officially participate in the 2018 Sacramento Museum Day include the following:  California Agriculture Museum (that is offering special adult programming that day until 2 p.m.); California Statewide Museum Collections Center; Crocker Art Museum (charging $5 admission that day) and the Governor’s Mansion State Historic Park (closed to the public).  Also, Locke Boarding House Museum – a SAM Affiliate member – plans to be open for guests that day.

For more information about upcoming activities offered by Sacramento area museums, “like” them on Facebook at Facebook.com/SacMuseums, follow them on Instagram and Twitter @SacMuseums or visit the user-friendly website at SacMuseums.org.


About the author

Traci Rockefeller Cusack

Traci Rockefeller Cusack has 25+ years of media and public relations experience.  Her work experience includes News10 (ABC) as Promotion Manager from 1989-1998 (where she developed and launched “Coats for Kids’ Sake,” a winter coat drive that lasted 20+ years plus coordinated Oprah Winfrey’s first ever visit to Sacramento) and Fleishman-Hillard as Vice President from 1998-2005 (where she led the wildly successful statewide “California Grown” program and also produced the five-minute video that played on the Jumbotron on Opening Day at Pac Bell Park). In 2007, she launched T-Rock Communications and currently handles a wide range of marketing activities for a number of top-notch organizations.

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