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Membership Reopening FAQs

exterior of the Academy of Natural Sciences

Welcome back

The Academy is immensely grateful to our members for your patience and support. We have missed you and we look forward to welcoming you back to the museum! We are pleased to announce that the Academy will open to our members on July 24, 25 and 26 for a special members-only weekend. The museum will open to the public the following weekend of July 31, August 1 and 2.

To help you prepare for your visit, please read the following information and member-specific frequently asked questions.

We can’t wait to see you soon!

Hours

Members-only Reopening Weekend Hours 

10 a.m.–5 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, July 24, 25 and 26  

Museum Hours Starting July 31 (until further notice) 

Members only: 10 a.m.–11 a.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays 
Members and General Public: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays 

Tickets

For the health and safety of our members and visitors, we are offering timed ticketing. This allows us to reduce museum capacity to 25% or less and encourages social distancing of 6 feet, while providing a fun and relaxing experience for everyone.   

We highly recommend reserving your free member tickets online at bit.ly/ANSMemberTickets prior to your visit. For detailed instructions on the ticket reservations process, you may download the Member Tickets Guide for reserving your tickets on a desktop computer or on a mobile device. Your online tickets will be emailed to the email address you provide. When you arrive, we will either scan your tickets from your phone, or you may choose to print your tickets at home and bring them with you. 

A limited number of member entries will be available at the door, however, time slots are still required, and you may have to wait until a slot is available to enter the museum. 

Members will receive free, full access to the building. This includes Dinosaur Hall, the dioramas, and the special exhibits, Survival of the Slowest, where you can see our live sloth, Lulu, and Wildlife Photographer of the Year, opening September 5. To maintain visitor safety, some of our regular high-touch exhibits will be temporarily closed: Outside In, Butterflies!, and The Big Dig. We look forward to reopening those spaces soon. 

There will be no school and camp field trips until further notice. 

reopening guidelines

What to expect for your health and safety

The health and safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers is of the utmost importance to us. To ensure the health and safety of our guests, staff and volunteers, we have carefully developed new health and safety protocols, following guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the  Pennsylvania Department of Health, the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Drexel University, and in consultation with national museum organizations as well as fellow museums around the world, across the nation and in Philadelphia.

We are committed to these precautions and protocols for as long as necessary:

  • Face-coverings for visitors and staff ages three and up are required.
  • Advance-reservations are highly recommended.
  • Timed ticketing is in place to control the number of visitors and facilitate contactless transactions.
  • Limited building capacity to facilitate social distancing.
  • All are expected to practice social distancing.
  • All public spaces and surfaces will be cleaned and disinfected throughout the day.
  • Hand sanitizer stations installed.
  • Installation of plexiglass partitions in admissions and other areas.

Comprehensive health and safety protocols and training are in place for Academy staff. Public restrooms, elevators and steps are reserved for our visitors and volunteers.

Exhibits to Explore

The Academy will  continue to follow guidance from the state and city, plans and opening dates are subject to change.

Please review our frequently asked questions before your visit. 


Member Frequently Asked Questions


MEMBERSHIP EXTENSIONS, MEMBER BENEFITS AND RENEWING ONSITE


Will you extend my membership due to the museum closure?

Yes, we are offering membership extensions! 

If your membership expired between March and July 2020 (during the museum closure), we will automatically extend your membership based on the number of months you had left on your membership while the museum was closed.

If you renewed your membership or became a member between March and July 2020, we will automatically extend your membership to account for the closure and mail your new membership cards. 

All other active members can choose to extend their membership or donate the time to support the Academy by clicking here. After receiving your response, we will update our system and send your updated digital membership cards via email. If we do not receive your response by July 31, we will automatically extend your membership by four months.

My member benefits include invitations to events like Members’ Night, Toast to the Collections, Back from the Field or Spring Forward. Will you still be hosting these events?

We have currently moved all of our member events to a digital format and are reevaluating the format of all of our major membership events to be held this fall. Stay tuned for more information!

Can I renew my membership on my next visit to the museum?

Yes, you can absolutely renew your membership onsite. If you prefer a low-touch experience, we recommend renewing your membership online at ansp.org/renew or by calling us at 215-299-1022.


REOPENING MUSEUM HOURS AND MEMBERS-ONLY HOURS


What are your hours and will there be special members-only hours available?

When we reopen, our hours will be Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. 

We will host a special members-only weekend on July 24, 25 and 26 before the museum opens to the general public. The museum will be open only to members for those days. 

Additionally, after the museum opens to the public, we are reserving the hour of 10-11 a.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday for members only. Only Academy members will be able to reserve tickets for that time slot. While the first hour of the day will be held for members, Academy members are welcome to reserve tickets in any time slot throughout the day.


TICKETING


As an Academy member, do I need to reserve a timed ticket?

Yes. Since we are tracking capacity, we recommend reserving your timed tickets at bit.ly/ANSMemberTickets before you arrive. You will not be charged—you are simply reserving a time slot for your visit.

What is a timed ticket?

For us to maintain a 25% building occupancy at all times, we will be asking members and visitors to select a visitation time slot when reserving or purchasing tickets.

Academy members may reserve tickets for members-only hours held from 10 – 11 a.m. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Members are also welcome to reserve tickets for any of the other timeslots throughout the day.

Academy members will have priority access to timed tickets. Member timed tickets can be reserved for the following arrival times: 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. 4 p.m. is the last available time slot of the day. Please ensure that your visit begins during your reserved timeslot.

With our current exhibit offerings, we estimate your length of visit to be around two hours.

How do I reserve my tickets?

We highly recommend reserving your free member tickets online at bit.ly/ANSMemberTickets prior to your visit. For detailed instructions on the ticket reservations process, you may download the Member Tickets Guide for reserving your tickets on a desktop computer or on a mobile device. Your timed tickets will be emailed to the email address you provide. When you arrive, we will either scan your tickets from your phone, or you may choose to print your tickets at home and bring them with you.

What will my online reservation cost?

Your online reservation will have no charge. All Academy members will get free access to the entire museum, including special exhibits, upon reopening.

Can I visit the museum without making an online reservation?

Yes. We are setting aside a limited number of member tickets at the door. However, walk-up tickets will be limited and time slots are still required. You may have to wait until a slot is available to enter the museum. If possible, we highly encourage online reservations before arrival.

Which entrance should I use?

  • If you have reserved your tickets online, please enter through the Parkway entrance.
  • If you have not reserved your tickets ahead of your visit, please enter through the 19th Street entrance.
  • If you have a stroller or need wheelchair accessibility, please enter through the 19th Street entrance.

Please contact us directly at 215-299-1060 if you have specific requests and we will be happy to assist you.

Which exhibits will I see on my visit?

Entrance to our special exhibits are now free for all members! Members will get full access to the museum, including Dinosaur Hall, our dioramas and the special exhibits, Survival of the Slowest and Wildlife Photographer of the Year opening September 5.

For your safety, some of our high-touch exhibits and spaces will be temporarily closed, including Outside In, Butterflies!, and The Big Dig. We look forward to reopening these exhibits soon!

In addition, the Academy Shop and Academy Café (including the tables in the Café) are temporarily closed.

To allow for proper social distancing, we will be operating at 25% capacity or less, and staff will be monitoring the number of visitors in and out of our smaller galleries and other public spaces.


HEALTH AND SAFETY


The health and safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers is of the utmost importance to us. Here are some of the health and safety steps we have taken to make your visit feel safe, relaxing and enjoyable.

Do I need to wear a face covering?

Yes. We are following guidelines provided by the CDC, state and city health departments, Drexel University and others. We require face coverings for all visitors age 3 and older, staff, and volunteers unless they are unable to wear a face covering for medical reasons. The face covering must be worn throughout the museum visit and most cover the mouth and nose at all times. For information on CDC guidelines on usage please click here.  

Will there be hand sanitizing stations?

Yes, we have installed many hand sanitizing stations throughout the museum for visitor use.

How are you ensuring that the museum stays clean?  

We’ve been planning for our reopening since we temporarily closed. We formed a multi-departmental team, surveyed our audience and consulted with national museum organizations and sister institutions. We developed comprehensive guidelines and step-by-step procedures to make visitors of all ages feel safe, comfortable and at ease from the time they enter the building to the time they leave. 

We also have comprehensive guidelines for our staff. We looked at the visitor journey and staff journey and made sure we limit capacity and in both cases, ensure the proper safety protocols are in place.   

In addition to an increased frequency of building-wide cleaning, we have enhanced our cleaning protocols to include the use of hospital grade cleaning solutions and regular cleaning of high-touch surfaces (like elevator buttons, door knobs and handles, railings and restroom fixtures) and common areas throughout the day.

What other safety protocols will be in place? 
 
In addition to hand sanitizer stations and increased cleaning protocols, we urge visitors to maintain a 6-foot distance between groups. Look out for signs around the building that will help guide you on your journey through the museum.  

Only one family in each elevator at a time. Most bathrooms have reduced fixtures to encourage social distancing.   

Please note that a risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present.  When guests redeem their tickets, they acknowledge notice and acceptance of the COVID-19 exposure risks associated with visiting the Academy of Natural Sciences.

Upon redemption, guests agree to hold the Academy and Drexel University, their trustees, officers, employees and affiliates harmless from any and all causes of action, claims, damages, costs, expenses and compensation for injury or loss, that may result from exposure to COVID-19 during their visit to the Academy.  This release extends to heirs and personal representatives.

Let's continue to keep each other healthy. Please follow all signposting and notices throughout the Academy. Thank you and we look forward to seeing you!