A day at the museum

There are few things more stunning and iconic than the Blue Whale at New York’s American Museum of Natural History (AMNH). Created from 21,000 pounds of fiberglass and measuring 94 feet long, the whale is the centerpiece of the world-renowned institution and is a must-see for the millions of people that visit every year. Funded through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the library’s Museum Pass Program now offers complimentary admission vouchers to AMNH, available for reservation by PPL cardholders.

For those who are already familiar with our Museum Pass Program, in which borrowed passes may be reserved up to 90 days in advance for a single day use, our admissions vouchers to AMNH works slightly differently. Rather than needing to return a borrowed pass the morning after your visit to a museum, the vouchers to AMNH do not need to be returned – which means you can plan that long weekend trip to the city and still take advantage of this lovely library membership benefit. In addition to free admission, your voucher also includes one special exhibition, film, or live animal exhibition of your choosing. We currently have a limited number of vouchers available, so now is a great time to start thinking about those summer plans!

By the way, if you’re unable to snag a voucher this year, there are plenty of other places you can visit, as well. Check out our fantastic list of other museums and cultural sites to explore with one of our passes.

So what can you do once you arrive at AMNH? In addition to the permanent collections and exhibits, the annual Butterfly Conservatory is open now through May 25. Visitors can learn about anatomy and the metamorphosis process, interactions with plant species, and even tools to create your own butterfly garden. If existence beyond Earth is more to your interest, visit the Hayden Planetarium Space Theater to view Dark Universe, where astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson will teach you about the history of the universe and the discoveries that influence our knowledge of space today. And calling all budding scientists and collectors – your big day has arrived. Visit the museum on May 9 and you will be able to participate in Identification Day, in which scientists will help identify specimens you have found.

Prior to your day at the museum, visit AMNH’s website to view the Learn & Teach section, which features suggested activites to complete at the exhibits, as well as STEM opportunities grouped by grade level. 

For more information about our Museum Pass program or other library cardholder benefits, visit https://princetonlibrary.org/about/library-cards.

Photos courtesy of flickr user Steven Severinghaus.

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