Free and Discounted Portland-Area Museum Days

The Portland area has quite the museum scene. But when you are taking your whole family for a museum outing, things can get a bit expensive. Enter: free and reduced admission days. Below you’ll find ways to save on some of Portland’s most popular kid-friendly museums.

Courtesy of Portland Art Museum

Oregon Historical Society. Admission is always free for Multnomah County residents and anyone 5 and under. The Oregon Historical Society’s permanent History Hub exhibit tells stories of the diverse people and events that have shaped Oregon history. 1200 SW Park Ave.

Oregon Rail Heritage Center. This railroad museum near OMSI is free all the time, with three vintage engines and changing exhibits. See website for details on train rides. 2250 SE Water Ave.

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Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI). Guess what? $5 Day on the first Sunday of every month is back! There are other ways to save any day of the month: If you qualify for Arts for All, you may buy up to four $5 general admission tickets; OMSI provides up to a 55% discount on any level of individual membership, with an EBT card and matching ID; they also offer educator previews and military discounts. Learn more about Admission Access at OMSI. Children 2 and under are free. 1945 SE Water Ave.

Portland Art Museum. The Museum also offers free admission and discounts several times a year. Not only are kids 17 and under always free, the whole family can attend for free on the first Thursday of the month. Follow Portland Art Museum on Instagram or sign up for their newsletter to be in the know when the free tickets are available to reserve on other special days, including Miller Family Free day which is typically on a weekend. Portland Art Museum also offers Arts for All $5 tickets to those who qualify. 1219 SW Park Ave.

Oregon Zoo. Discounted admission is offered for recipients of income assistance programs. Check their website for periodic general admission deals, such as Second Tuesdays in winter or Twilight Tuesdays in summer. Infants under 2 are free. 4001 SE Canyon Rd.

Rice Museum of Rocks & Minerals. Receive a reduced rate admission of $3 per person (for up to 4 people) with an EBT card and valid form of photo ID. Free admission with military ID between May 21-September 5. Children up to 5 years are always free. 26385 NW Groveland Dr., Hillsboro.

Japanese American Museum of Oregon. Enjoy free admission on the first Sunday of each month at this Old Town museum “sharing and perserving Japanese American history and culture.” (This special is confirmed through 2024.) Don’t forget to visit the Japanese American Historical Plaza in Tom McCall Waterfront Park while you’re there. 4111 NW Flanders St.

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Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education. Ever first Sunday you can visit the Oregon Jewish Museum for free to learn about the “legacy of the Jewish experience in Oregon,” the Holocaust, and more in the rotating exhibitions and public programming. The outdoor Oregon Holocaust Memorial in Washington Park is always free to the public. 724 NW Davis St.

The Lobby at Ellen Browning Building. “The Lobby,” a public art space on the ground floor of the Ellen Browning is always free to the public, and offers a new rotating exhibit every six months. On the first Saturday of every month they also offer a free kids art class at noon for children and their families. 2871 SE Division Street.

Five Oaks Museum (formerly Washington County Museum). Learn about the unique history of the Tualatin Valley. Admission is free, with a $5-$10 suggested donation to “keep the lights on and sustain museum programming.” 17677 NW Springville Rd.

The Historic Belmont Firehouse. Slide down a fire pole and “ride along” on an emergency ride in the back of a mock fire truck while learning about fire safety. Free and open to the public Wednesdays and the second Saturday of every month from 9 am to 3 pm. 900 SE 35th Ave. (at Belmont).

Don’t forget your local library’s free passes to Portland-area museums and cultural institutions. And if you are a Bank of America cardholder, you can get free admission to OMSI, Portland Art Museum, and Portland Japanese Garden through their Bank of America Museums on Us Program. Speaking of gardens, as of this writing Leach Botanical Garden offers free admission to ages 5 and under, and free entry to anyone who requests it, to support both individuals for whom admission is a barrier, whether or not they qualify for assistance programs.

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