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Mystic Seaport offers free admission to families with SNAP benefits

The Mystic Seaport Museum is now offering free admission for families who are enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for the rest of the year through its Caring for the Community initiative to encourage more diverse audiences to tour one of Mystic’s biggest tourist attractions.

The initiative is part of the Museums for All program through the Institute for Museum and Library Services and administered by the Association of Children’s Museums. The benefit, now available at Mystic Seaport, is also available at 850 museums across the country, according to a press release from Mystic Seaport.

“We are committed to leveling the playing field by making the Museum more accessible and by nurturing an environment of inclusion and diversity for our local community and beyond,” said Seaport Museum President Peter Armstrong.

Mystic Seaport had initially raised money during its 2021 Gala to offer children free admission to the museum during the summer of 2022, according to the press release. 

However, after the State of Connecticut continued its pandemic-related initiative granting children free access to a number of museums and parks throughout Connecticut this past summer, Mystic Seaport decided to reallocate the funds for this newest initiative. 

Mystic Seaport Museum, one of the premier attractions in Mystic along with the Mystic Aquarium, offers live demonstrations of old woodworking, coopering, blacksmithing and ship-building techniques, along with tours of old whaling vessels set in a town-like outdoor area.

The Seaport Museum is also touting a new Venetian glass exhibition opening October 15, part of a collaboration with the Smithsonian Art Museum.

Despite having to close and lay off staff during the COVID pandemic, museum officials say the museum is back, fully staffed and continuing its operations as the town of Mystic has seen increased growth as a tourist destination.

The museum is also allowing employees two days of paid time off to volunteer for a charitable organization of their choosing and offering free admission to educators during the months of April and May as part of their Caring for the Community Initiative.

The free admission is offered to families with up to four children and two adults and requires only the presentation of a SNAP benefits card at the admission desk or can be purchased online.

The Museums for All initiative includes 20 participating museums in Connecticut, including children’s museums and the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk.

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Marc E. Fitch, Senior Investigative Reporter

Marc E. Fitch

Marc worked as an investigative reporter for Yankee Institute and was a 2014 Robert Novak Journalism Fellow. He previously worked in the field of mental health is the author of several books and novels, along with numerous freelance reporting jobs and publications. Marc has a Master of Fine Arts degree from Western Connecticut State University.

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