Blue Star Museum Program – Free Admission For Active Duty Military & Families

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Blue Star Museum Program – Free Admission for Active Duty Military & Families

Blue Star Museums is once again offering free admission to museums around the country for active duty military, National Guard & Reserve military personnel and up to 5 family members.  This offer is available from Saturday May 15,  2021 (Armed Forces Day) through Monday, September 6,  2021 (Labor Day). This is a great opportunity to check out local museums you have been wanting to visit as well as consider visiting museums on any road trip or vacations you are taking this summer as a great way to save money & make it a more frugal vacation.

There aren’t quite as many participating museums as there were in the past, but there are still some good ones like Museum of Flight, Seattle Art Museum, Portland Art Museum, Museum of Glass in Tacoma & more. You can find participating museums by state here.  They list 24 museums for WA area & 19 around Oregon.

Here are a few of the participating NW museums:


  • Burke Museum, Seattle
  • Pacific Bonsai Museum (this is at the Rhododendron Gardens in Federal Way)
  • Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma
  • Lakewold Gardens, Lakewood


  • High Desert Museum, Bend
  • Columbia Gorge Discovery Center, The Dalles
  • Columbia River Maritime Museum, Astoria

Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and thousands of museums across America to offer free admission to the nation’s active duty military personnel including National Guard and Reserve and their families.

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, which includes active duty U.S. military  – Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, National Guard and Reserve, as well as members of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, NOAA Commissioned Corps – and up to five family members. A family member of active duty military may include a spouse or child, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc.

Find more details on the Blue Star Museum program or check out our big round up of Things To Do in Seattle if you are looking for something affordable to do!


One Comment

  1. Thrifty, please welcome your readers to play mini-golf at Tacoma Art Museum for free! On June 18, Tacoma Art Museum and the City of Tacoma host a kick-off event for Pop-Up Art Putt! Local Tacoma artists were selected to design 10 mini-golf holes, which will be installed along the Prairie Line Trail, in Tollefson Plaza, and in front of TAM. The opening party on Thursday June 18 from 5-8 pm includes free museum admission, live music with local band The Cloves, local artists on site, hands-on art making, a beer garden for 21+, and free mini-golf fun. Vote for your favorite artist designed hole! Pop-Up Art Putt! is open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday too. Sunday June 21 TAM presents Summer Solstice and Sculpture Festival, also offering free museum admission and mini-golf with sculpture activities and local artists. Fore more info:

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