Looking for Something to Do? Here Are Upcoming Free Museum Days in Chicago

Looking for another way to spend your summer in the city? Without spending a dime, here are some of Chicago's award-winning museums to visit.

Here's our most up-to-date list of free museum days in Chicago in 2022.

Field Museum

Free day tickets are only available on-site and cannot be reserved in advance. All general admission exhibitions, such as Evolving Planet, The Ancient Americas, and Inside Ancient Egypt, are included in the free tickets.

Teachers in Illinois (pre-K through 12th grade) and active military members receive free basic admission all year.

Upcoming free museum days for the public:

  • Aug. 23, 24, 30, 31
  • Sept. 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27, 28
  • Oct. 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, 19, 25, 26

Museum of Science and Industry

For the rest of 2022, admission to the Museum of Science and Industry is free for Illinois residents on these specific dates.

  • Sept. 6 ,7, 12, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 26, 27
  • Oct. 4 , 5, 10 ,11, 17,18
  • Nov. 1 and 8

For US military active members and veterans, Illinois POWs, Chicago firefighters, Chicago police officers, and Illinois teachers, admission to the Museum of Science and Industry is always free.

Art Institute of Chicago

Throughout the year, the Art Institute of Chicago offers free admission days to Illinois residents. Residents of Illinois must reserve them in advance online.

For Chicago teens under the age of 18, all children under the age of 14, WIC cards, active-duty military, and Illinois educators, admission to the museum is always free.

Shedd Aquarium

On select dates throughout the year, the Shedd Aquarium provides free admission to all permanent exhibits, including special exhibits Underwater Beauty and the seasonal Stingray Touch.

Reservations are needed; no tickets will be offered onsite. Online reservations for Illinois Free Day include a $3 transaction fee per order.

Chicago History Museum

Throughout the year, the Chicago History Museum offers free admission on certain holidays and dates.

Active service military and veterans, active duty Chicago police and firemen, Illinois teachers, Illinois residents under the age of 18, and all children under the age of 12 are always admitted free.

Upcoming free museum days for the public:

  • Aug. 23, 24, 25, 26, 30, 31
  • Oct. 10

Chicago Children’s Museum at Navy Pier

Every day, veterans and active-duty military personnel are given free entry to the Chicago Children's Museum. They also provide free admission to families that qualify for state food assistance and have an EBT or WIC card.

Adler Planetarium

The Adler Planetarium has a number of discounted ticket days. All tickets must be purchased in advance and online. Teachers from Illinois are always admitted free of charge (pre-K through 12).

Upcoming free museum days for the public:

Every Wednesday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

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