The National Eagle Center is one of more than 2,000 museums across America to offer free admission to military personnel and their families this summer in collaboration with the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, and the Department of Defense.
The National Eagle Center announced the launch of Blue Star Museums, a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 2,000 museums across America to offer free admission to the nation’s active duty military personnel including National Guard and Reserve and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day 2016. The program also provides families an opportunity to enjoy the nation’s cultural heritage and learn more about their new communities after a military move. The complete list of participating museums is available at arts.gov/bluestarmuseums.
“The bald eagle is our national symbol and holds special meaning for those who serve our nation in the military”, said Rolf Thompson, Executive Director at the National Eagle Center. “We understand that there is incredible value in sharing that symbol with the families of those who serve and we are excited to participate in this program.”
“The Blue Star Museums program is a fun, free activity for military families to enjoy during the summer months,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The program is also a great way for service member families to connect to their new communities, and it can provide a meaningful way for families to reconnect after deployment. The Blue Star Museums program is also a perfect way for the arts community to say ‘thank you’ to our service members and their families for the sacrifices they make on our behalf, every day.”
“Blue Star Museums has grown into a nationally recognized program that service members and their families look forward to each year,” said Blue Star Families Chief Executive Officer Kathy Roth-Douquet. “It helps bring our local military and civilian communities together, and offers families fun and enriching activities in their home towns. We are thrilled with the continued growth of the program and the unparalleled opportunities it offers.”
This year, more than 2,000 (and counting) museums in all 50 states are taking part in the initiative. This year’s Blue Star Museums represent not just fine arts museums, but also science museums, history museums, nature centers, and dozens of children’s museums.
Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 2,000 museums across America. The program runs from Memorial Day, May 30, 2016 through Labor Day, September 5, 2016.
The free admission program is available to any bearer of a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID card (dependent ID), or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card, which includes active duty U.S. military – Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, as well as members of the National Guard and Reserve, U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, NOAA Commissioned Corps – and up to five family members.
Blue Star Families is a national, nonprofit network of military spouses, children, parents and friends, as well as service members, veterans and civilians, dedicated to supporting, connecting and empowering military families. Visit bluestarfam.org for more information.
The National Eagle Center is a nonprofit educational center on the banks of the Mississippi River in Wabasha, MN. The National Eagle Center fosters environmental stewardship through educational programs and exhibits, up-close encounters with non-releasable bald and golden eagles, and opportunities to view eagles in the wild. For more information and upcoming programming, visit nationaleaglecenter.org.