2 MIN READ – As autumn rolls in, museums are a great cultural respite, of course with strict guidelines in place. If you’re itching to get a dose of arts and culture, mask up and find out which museums are now open downtown in the Loop.
The Art Institute reopened in late August, with guidelines in place for visitors. Be sure to reserve your free ticket online before your visit. Check out their newest exhibit, Monet and Chicago, here until January 2021. Current exhibits on display are El Greco: Ambition and Defiance, Malangatana: Mozambique Modern, Toulouse-Lautrec and the Celebrity Culture of Paris and more. The museum is open to the public Saturday through Monday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Thursday and Friday from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Be advised that the museum will open an hour prior for members only.
The American Writers Museum is now open to the public. Adjusted hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday. The museum is the first in the nation devoted to American writers and their works. Through innovative and dynamic state-of-the-art exhibitions, the American Writers Museum educates, enriches, provokes, and inspires visitors of all ages.
As of June 20, the Chicago Architecture Center has resumed select CAC walking tours in accordance with safety measures and precautions mandated by public health officials. The Center is also open with adjusted hours (10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday-Monday) and safety policies for visitors, staff, and volunteers. Chicago Architecture Foundation Center River Cruises aboard Chicago’s First Lady (and soon the Emerald Lady) also resumed with 25% capacity.
The Museum of Contemporary Photography (MoCP) at Columbia College Chicago is the world’s premier college art museum dedicated to photography. Enjoy the exhibit Temporal: Puerto Rican Resistance through September 19, which explores Puerto Rico’s contemporary history as a US territory, and showcases images of protest and organized resistance. As an international hub, the MoCP generates ideas and provokes dialogue among students, artists and diverse communities through groundbreaking exhibitions and programming. The museum will be reopening under strict guidelines for safety, including timed tickets, required face masks, and social distancing.
The Pritzker Military Museum & Library is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. With the reopening of the 2nd floor Museum exhibits, guests can now visit their current exhibit, The Allied Race To Victory, and the permanent Medal of Honor exhibit safely while also adhering to social distance guidelines. Please note 3rd floor exhibits and all library stacks are still closed to the public, and they are currently only offering Library Express Services for museum members.
The International Museum of Surgical Science is now open. Have you ever wanted to see an iron lung or an early X-ray machine? Now’s your chance. The museum offers four floors of objects, paintings, and statues that tell the history of medicine all over the world from 4000BC through today. Housed in an elegant Gilded Age mansion from 1917 that overlooks the lake, the International Museum of Surgical Science is your perfect picturesque destination. The Museum is open normal hours, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on weekends.
One of the city's most iconic museums, the Field Museum is open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday-Monday. They used CDC recommendations as well as museum guidelines from the State of Illinois to create their reopening policies and procedures. Of note is that all tickets have an entry time, and online ticket purchasing in advance is encouraged. Not only will you have a contactless admission experience, but online orders also get a $3 discount on the All-Access Pass and up to 15% off the cost of membership.
The Chicago River Museum is now open with new exhibits at the museum exploring the improved connectivity of the river for people and wildlife, effects of climate crisis on the river system, creation of a blue-green corridor of interconnected green spaces, Clean Water Act, and nature-based green infrastructure. With pandemic safety protocols, the museum is open on Thursdays from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Fridays from noon to 7:00 p.m., and Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Bridgehouse Museum's season ends on October 31.
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