Submitted by Washington State Historical Society
After being given the option to reopen by Governor Inslee last month, the museums of the Tacoma Museum District – Washington State Historical Society, Tacoma Art Museum, Museum of Glass, LeMay – America’s Car Museum, Foss Waterway Seaport, and Children’s Museum of Tacoma – will begin opening their doors to the public starting September 25, 2020.
The reopening timelines, days of operation, and onsite protocols will vary from museum to museum, based on staffing and exhibit configurations. The museums recommend purchasing tickets online in advance. Visitors are encouraged to check each museum’s website for specifics before visiting.
Throughout the pandemic, the directors of the individual institutions have consulted with local experts and worked in concert to monitor local COVID-19 transmission rates and trends. The decision to reopen comes after thoughtful consideration for the safety of guests, staff, and volunteers, and in accordance with specific protocols established by Washington State, the Department of Labor & Industries, and the Department of Health. Among these protocols are universal mask-wearing, the addition of sanitizing stations throughout the facilities, one-way routes through galleries, monitored social distancing between groups, reduced occupancy, and enhanced cleaning schedules. Each museum has also installed safety features and procedures specific to their individual building layout.
Initially, some venues will operate with reduced schedules:
Museum of Glass: Opening September 25; operating hours Friday through Sunday – 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
LeMay – America’s Car Museum: Opening September 25; operating hours Friday through Sunday – 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Washington State Historical Society: Opening date to be announced soon. Operating hours will be Tuesday through Sunday – 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. with seniors-only hours Tuesdays 10:00 a.m.-noon (ages 65+). Initially, the Great Hall of Washington History (third floor) will be open and fifth-floor galleries will remain closed for the installation of new exhibitions; admission will be half price during this time. Tickets may be purchased online or using credit/debit cards at the museum (cash will not be accepted).
Tacoma Art Museum: Opening October 9; operating hours Friday through Sunday – 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Foss Waterway Seaport: Opening October 16; operating hours Fridays from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and Sundays from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Children’s Museum of Tacoma: Will remain closed until 2021 due to the hands-on, interactive nature of the galleries. Greentrike, the museum’s parent company, will continue to provide Distance Learning Camps and licensed child care for our community’s youngest children.
You can read the governor’s COVID-19 requirements for museums here: https://www.governor.wa.gov/sites/default/files/COVID19%20Phase%202%20and%203%20Museums%20Guidance.pdf?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery
You can find more information on the Tacoma Museum District’s Facebook page (@TacomaMuseums) and each museum’s website (www.WashingtonHistory.org, www.TacomaArtMuseum.org, www.MuseumofGlass.org, www.AmericasCarMuseum.org, https://fosswaterwayseaport.org/, and https://playtacoma.org). The museum teams look forward to seeing you again.