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Thursday, August 4, 2016

First Thursdays

Today is the first Thursday of the month of August. Do you know what's so special about first Thursdays?

In many cities, Seattle included, the first Thursday of each month means free admission to various museums that normally charge an admission fee.

So, here in Seattle, there are several major art museums, the natural history museum, the Museum of Flight,  a museum dedicated to railways, the Museum of History and Industry, and a maritime museum -- that are free today. 

On top of free museum admission, many cities have an art gallery walk on First Thursdays, in the evenings, sometimes offering free parking.  For example, in Seattle's downtown Pioneer Square area, from 6 to 8 pm, tonight, almost 3 dozen art venues open their doors to visitors. It's a walking tour of the various galleries, museums, shops and small restaurants, with free parking in a few select parking garages in Pioneer Square. 

Some cities choose a different day for free museum admission, sometimes the first Friday or first Tuesday of the month. In some cities, it's referred to as "residents free day". It's worth a google, to see what's available in your area, if museums interest you.

Anyways, these free days make for great outings for me, and the opportunity to take in some of my area's wonderful cultural exhibits, without breaking the budget.

Does your community offer any First Thursday art walks, events or freebie admission?


  1. I have nothing like that nearby, but there are great opportunities within an hour or two. There are all of the museums and monuments in Washington, DC, that are free. The Baltimore Aquarium doesn't have any free events, but if you go on certain evenings, you can get in half price. Another town about 40 minutes away has First Fridays, where in the evening all of the art galleries and quaint shops are open and often have special exhibits. We take advantage of these things from time to time, but the only problem is dealing with the traffic and parking. On some days, the hassle is just not worth it for us. In the meantime, we enjoy the local library programs and school plays. We still need to check out some a free concert at a local parks.

    1. Hi live and learn,
      traffic and parking is big issue in Seattle, as well. I've gotten comfortable with the buses, here, to avoid both parking and traffic. Public transit is pretty good in our area.

      I would love to have DC nearby and see all of the museums/monuments there! What a wonderful place to live within driving distance of.

    2. It is a good place to live. When we first moved here, we took our kids to see much of what Washington had to offer. We tried to impress on them that people come from all over the world to see what they were seeing that day with just a short drive. They didn't quite get it. They were little boys and just as happy to chase the pigeons and see the squirrels. As they got older, the did appreciate things more.

      We have taken buses and subways sometimes, but the system is having a lot of problems now besides being expensive. So at this point in time, we don't consider it an option.

  2. Wish we had this in CT! How wonderful. We only have one day, usually in June, where there is free/reduced admissions to museums.

    1. Hi Carol,
      That's a shame that it's limited to one day per year where you live. Wish I could send our museums (or at least their policies) out to your area.

  3. None that I an aware of, but I really haven't kept up with events. I usually don't like crowds, so stay clear of most events. I took our children to a First Friday event long ago, as well as art museums. Funny how I don't mind crowds when I have the grandkids but I am annoyed when it is just husband and me.

    Hope you enjoy yourself today!!


    1. Hi YHF,
      I don't like crowds much either. Some people seem to thrive in crowds. They make me edgy. But, I'll put up with the crowds if it's something I really want to do or see. I had a great day -- thanks!

  4. Our art museum used to have a couple of free hours on Thursdays, but I'm not sure if that is still true. We have a few free museums in our town and a neighboring town--they aren't huge, but a fun way to spend an hour or so. We have many opportunities for free concerts--like Live and Learn, I haven't had opportunity to try the outdoor ones this summer, but hopefully I can get in one or two before the summer is out. A local Episcopalian church has free concerts once a month during the lunch hour--they have professional classical musicians and it's always a treat to attend those.

    1. Hi Kris,
      I do love a free concert! I'll have to look into concerts near me. There are some in downtown Seattle, but given they're just an hour, midday, I'm not inclined to go downtown for them. I may have to rethink my priorities.

  5. In San Diego it is Tuesday that they rotate thru different free museums for residents.

    1. Hi Patti,
      I hope you're able to take advantage of the free museum days, from time to time!


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