Chicago's museums are world-class, but all those bones, weather simulators and rides in Chicago's first El train car don't come cheap. Throw in parking, special exhibits, and the gift shop, and it adds up fast. But in the philanthropic spirit of our fine city, most museums offer free admission for Illinois residents on certain days. Here's a complete calendar for the coming month. You're on your own in the gift shop.
Free days can change at the last minute, so ALWAYS call first to confirm before heading out to the museums.
Have a Bank of America card? Then on the first full weekend of each month present your card and get a free admission to The Art Institute of Chicago, the Adler Planetarium, the Chicago History Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and the Shedd Aquarium. One per cardholder, so it won't be free for the entire family (unless each of your children have a B of A credit card), but a free adult admission is nothing to sneeze at.
Check out Bank of America website.
June 2013: 4, 5, 6 and 10, 11 and 12
Free for all Illinois residents from 5-8 p.m. Thursdays. Kids 13 and under are always free.
Free 5-8 p.m. every Thursday and the first Sunday of every month for kids 15 and under. Always free to children under 1.
Free: July 4, 2013
Field offers free days throughout the year. Check fieldmuseum.org for dates.
Always free Tuesdays 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; children 12 and under are free every day.
June 2013: 3-7, 10
September 2013 9-13; 16-20; 23-27, 30
October 2013 1-2
November 2013: 4
December 2013: 9.
Bank of America Weekend:
On the first full weekend of the month, present your Bank of America/Merrill Lynch ATM, credit or debit card, along with photo ID, and receive one free mini-pass admission, valid for the cardholder only. This offer is not valid during special events or for admission to the 4-D theater. Upgrade your ticket to include the Abbott Oceanrium for an additional $6.95.
Thursdays are free for Illinois residents. Children under 3 are free every day.
The museum is free on Sundays and offers discounts to Chicago residents all other days. Admission and pricing
Free admission: Always free.