29 June 2022
Governor Lamont is announcing the return of a program that allows children free admission to Connecticut museums during the summer months
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont announced today that a popular state program A Connecticut Summer at the Museum is returning for the 2022 summer season, giving Connecticut kids free admission to more than 130 museums across the state during the summer months.
The governor established the program in 2021 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic as a way to offer children an engaging summer enrichment and learning experience. It is funded by an investment of $15 million in federal COVID-19 recovery funding that Connecticut received from the American Recovery Plan Act (ARPA).
Under the program, from July 1, 2022 through September 5, 2022, Connecticut children 18 and under — and one accompanying Connecticut adult — can receive free admission to any participating museum, including historic house museums, historic sites , historical societies. , art museums, children’s museums, science centers, museums of special interest, natural history museums, university museums, arboretums/botanical gardens and zoos.
The full list of participating museums is available at www.CTSummerMuseums.com.
Some notable attractions include:
- Connecticut Science Center, Hartford
- Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo, Bridgeport
- Hill-Stead Museum, Farmington
- Institute of American Indian Studies Museum and Research Center, Washington
- Kidcity Children’s Museum, Middletown
- Norwalk Marine Aquarium, Norwalk
- Mystic Aquarium, Mystic
- Mystic Harbor Museum, Mystic
- Prudence Crandall Museum, Canterbury
“We are thrilled to bring back this popular summer enrichment program for children and families in Connecticut at a time when affordability is a top priority for so many households.” Governor Lamont said. “World-class museums and cultural institutions across Connecticut offer unparalleled educational and recreational experiences that will engage children all season long and spark curiosity for years to come.”
“Governor Lamont and I are very proud to offer this program to the children and families of Connecticut,” Lieutenant Governor Susan Bysiewicz said. “Free entry to the museum is a great way to spark children’s curiosity and engage them before the next school year and continue learning at no cost to mum and dad.”
“We fought for federal ARPA funding to increase educational and cultural opportunities for Connecticut children,” members of Connecticut’s congressional delegation wrote in a joint statement. “Free access to Connecticut’s top museums and cultural institutions will provide our youth with countless educational, creative and recreational experiences.”
The Connecticut Summer at the Museum program is administered by the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development’s Office of Arts and Humanities in partnership with the Office of the Governor, the Connecticut State Department of Education, the Office of Early Childhood and the Office of Tourism.
While any museum in Connecticut can choose to participate in the program by offering free admission, eligible properties have had the option of applying for grants. More than 120 scholarships were awarded, calculated on the applicant’s average income from admissions of children over the same period over several years, plus a base award tied to the operating budget. The minimum grant is $1,000.
“Museums and other arts and cultural institutions play an important role in our local communities and economies, and are also rich canvases for the social-emotional development of young people,” Liz Shapiro, director of arts, preservation and museums for the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development, said. “This is the only program of its kind in the United States. We welcome all participating museums and encourage everyone to take advantage.”
“Between zoos, aquariums, museums and more, Connecticut children and families have access to enriching educational opportunities that ensure learning continues every day, everywhere during the summer months.” Connecticut Education Commissioner Charlene M. Russell-Tucker said. “This is critical to our collective efforts to accelerate learning this summer and into the next school year.”
“Connecticut has an incredibly diverse array of museums that reflect our state’s diverse histories, cultures and communities – all of which contribute to our vibrant tourism scene,” Noelle P. Stevenson, director of the Connecticut Office of Tourism, said. “We are thrilled to help spread the word about this unique program for state residents and the magnificent institutions it supports. ‘Find Your Vibe’ This Summer at Connecticut Museums!”
Participating museums may, at their own discretion, administer the Connecticut Summer at the Museum program to the best of their ability and according to their needs. Certain restrictions may apply and capacity may be limited (eg limit of one adult per household, blackout dates, exclusions for special events, etc.). Connecticut residents should check each museum’s website for any restrictions before visiting.
In addition, Governor Lamont is reminding residents that all public transit buses in Connecticut are running free until November 30, 2022 and are a convenient way to get to many of these great destinations.
Anyone taking advantage of this program is encouraged to share their experiences on social media using the program hashtag, #CTSummerMuseums.
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