Arts & Theater

‘That’s what Museum Day is all about’: Learn and have fun Saturday in Sacramento area

The Aerospace Museum of California in McClellan draws a crowd.
The Aerospace Museum of California in McClellan draws a crowd.

Museum Day isn’t one to miss Sacramento.

Dozens of museums in the metropolitan area are offering free admission on Saturday as part of Sacramento Museum Day – coordinated by the Sacramento Association of Museums (SAM) and Visit California, and sponsored by Sutter Health and California Family Fitness.

Now in its 20th year, 26 museums will welcome people of all ages from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last guests will be admitted at 4 p.m.), opening their doors to treasures that honor the past on topics such as pharmacology, automobiles, native Californian culture, nursery rhymes, wildlife, art and architecture. Some museums look toward the future, too, focusing on space, science and technology, and showcasing contemporary works of art.

It’s tempting to try to make as many pit stops as possible during the day’s journey through history, but SAM suggests visiting no more than two locations to allow for enough time to really each museum.

SAM chairperson Lynda Walls said the day helps remind the community just how much museums have to offer. Her favorite part after 10 years? When she overhears visitors say they didn’t know the museum they are visiting existed and chatter excitedly about how much fun they are having.

“That’s what Museum Day is all about,” she said.

Many museums are wholeheartedly embracing the trend toward interactive activities.

“People are thinking of museums as places full of activity now,” she said, “some place they can go to have fun and learn.”

Museums not participating include the California Agriculture Museum, which is offering special adult programming until 2 p.m.; California Statewide Museum Collections Center; Crocker Art Museum, which is charging $5 admission; and the Governor’s Mansion State Historic Park, which is closed to the public, according to SAM’s website.

2018 Museum Day

Below is the full list of this year’s participating museums. For more information, visit or call Visit California at 916-808-7777.

▪  Aerospace Museum of California; 3200 Freedom Park Drive, McClellan;

▪  California Automobile Museum; 2200 Front St., Sacramento;

▪  California Museum; 1020 O St., Sacramento;

▪  California State Capitol Museum; 1315 10th St., Sacramento;

▪  California State Library; 914 Capitol Mall, Sacramento;

▪  California State Railroad Museum; 125 I St., Sacramento;

▪  Don & June Salvatori California Pharmacy Museum; 4030 Lennane Drive, Sacramento

▪  Fairytale Town; 3901 Land Park Drive, Sacramento, half-price admission;

▪  Folsom History Museum; 823 Sutter St., Folsom;

▪  Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park; 800 N St., Sacramento;

▪  Maidu Museum & Historic Site, 1970 Johnson Ranch Drive, Roseville;

▪  Museum of Medical History; 5380 Elvas Ave., Sacramento;

▪  Old Sacramento Schoolhouse Museum; 1200 Front St., Old Sacramento;

▪  Old Sacramento State Historic Park; between J and I streets, west of Interstate 5 to the Sacramento River, Sacramento;

▪  Powerhouse Science Center Discovery Campus; 3615 Auburn Blvd., Sacramento;

▪  Roseville Utility Exploration Center; 1501 Pleasant Grove Blvd., Roseville;

▪  Sacramento Children's Museum; 2701 Prospect Park Drive, No. 120, Rancho Cordova;

▪  Sacramento Historic City Cemetery; Broadway at 10th Street, Sacramento;

▪  Sacramento History Museum; 101 I St., Old Sacramento;

▪  Sacramento Zoo; 3930 Land Park Drive, Sacramento CA, 95822, half-price admission;

▪  Sojourner Truth African American Museum; 2251 Florin Road, Sacramento;

▪  State Indian Museum; 2618 K Street ., Sacramento;

▪  Sutter's Fort State Historic Park; 2701 L St., Sacramento;

▪  Verge Center for the Arts; 625 S St., Sacramento;

▪  Wells Fargo History Museums; Old Sacramento – 1000 Second St., Sacramento, and 400 Capitol Mall, Sacramento;

Sacramento’s Powerhouse Science Center prepares to move from its humble suburban home to historic site on Sacramento River.

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