Bad new Children’s Museums lovers! As of April 1, 2013 (yes, it’s a year away), the Association of Children’s Museums Reciprocal Program will be changing.
The current program allows you to purchase a ACM Reciprocal Membership from any of the participating museums and you’ll receive all the benefits of membership at that museum, plus you’ll receive free admission for at least 4 family members at other participating ACM member museums throughout the country.
As of April 1, 2013 the name will change to the ACM Reciprocal Network. Additionally:
- Families with reciprocal memberships will no longer receive free admission at participating museums, but only 50% discount on admission to those museums for up to 6 family members.
- Museums will be required to sell family memberships with ACM Reciprocal Network benefits for $125 or more.
- All current local restrictions will be eliminated.
It’s also possible that these changes may spur some museums to discontinue their membership with ACM, although I haven’t heard of any doing that yet.
My advice: Take full advantage of this program while you can! Purchase a membership to a children’s museum now (if you don’t already have one) and visit the museums as much as you can over the next year.
My previous post about ACM Reciprocal Memberships includes a spreadsheet of local museums that currently participate in this program and the cost and benefits of their ACM Reciprocal Family Memberships. This spreadsheet may help you choose the best museum to join to take full advantage of the program before the changes next year.
For more information about some of the local children’s museums, visit my posts of the following museums:
- The Children’s Museum of Oak Lawn
- DuPage Children’s Museum
- KidsWork Children’s Museum
- Kohl Children’s Museum
Update: I was confused (as were a few others) about what the effect date meant and whether it applied to everyone or whether memberships valid after the April 1, 2013 date would be subject to these new rules now. I spoke to someone at ACM and she confirmed that this is effective April 1, 2013 for everyone, meaning that if you purchase a membership today you will receive free admission to member museums through until April 1, 2013, and discounted admission after.
How do you feel about the changes to the ACM Reciprocal Program? Will it affect whether you purchase a museum membership? Will if change how often you visit children’s museums?