More than 40 museums in the Austin area will be free of charge this coming Sunday, during the 21st annual Austin Museum Day.
The community event is hosted by the Austin Museum Partnership, an organization that supports and unites museums around Austin. In addition to free admission, the museums will offer free activities for visitors, such as art projects and games.
Kaitlin Lloyd-Leva, external affairs co-chair at the Austin Museum Partnership, said there are about 46 museums participating in Austin Museum Day this year, including the Blanton Museum of Art and Landmarks UT on campus.
“If the weather is beautiful, or even if the weather is not beautiful, it’s kind of a good excuse to visit a museum.” Lloyd said. “There are actually a lot of museums in the UT area and in the downtown areas that are walkable for people that are wanting to come explore their own backyard.”
The event also aims to inform people of the smaller museums that are not well-known to the community, said Lani Gonzalez, Austin Museum Partnership’s co-chair.
“The purpose of Austin Museum Day is to give a chance for the community to discover all that Austin museums have to offer,” Gonzalez said. “A lot of the museums in our partnership are free every day, but people don’t necessarily know about them.”
The participating museums are organized into four categories: culture, science, art and history. Gonzalez said the variety of the museums provides something for both UT students and the Austin community.
Anthropology junior Angela Smith worked at the Bullock Texas State History Museum last year and said she recalled the event having a large turnout.
“It’s a good idea having free admission to get people interested,” Smith said. “People like free events so it could attract a wider audience than who would normally go to museums.”
The communities of UT and the greater Austin area will also have the opportunity to become closer and to interact with one another through Austin Museum Day, Lloyd said.
“It helps intertwine the Austin community, because you will be amongst the community,” Lloyd said. “While you’re out on this day, as you move around going to different museums, you’ll be around people that live in your own neighborhood, people that you’ve never met before, and people from out of town that are coming in for the first time.”