The Deering Estate at Cutler has announced the launch of Blue Star Museums, a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, 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 through Labor Day.
Leadership support has been provided by MetLife Foundation through Blue Star Families.
“The historic Deering Estate at Cutler is proud to be part of Blue Star Museums, a national appreciation program to thank our military families for their service and share with them America’s cultural treasures,” said William N. Irvine, director of the Deering Estate at Cutler.
“As we kick off our fifth year of Blue Star Museums, more museums than ever are part of this military appreciation program,” said NEA acting chair Joan Shigekawa. “Together with Blue Star Families and more than 2,000 museums, we are proud to help connect military families with the cultural resources in their communities.”
“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 CEO 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 museums in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and American Samoa are taking part in the initiative. Museums are welcome to join Blue Star Museums throughout the summer. The effort to recruit museums has involved partnerships with the American Alliance of Museums, the Association of Art Museum Directors, the Association of Children’s Museums, the American Association of State and Local History, and the Association of Science Technology Centers. 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.
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.
Some special or limited time museum exhibits may not be included in this free admission program. For questions on particular exhibits or museums, contact the museum directly. To find participating museums and plan your trip, visit <http://arts.gov/national/bluestar- museums>.
The Deering Estate at Cutler, a Miami-Dade County Park, is located at 16701 SW 72 Ave. This 444-acre natural and archeological preserve and historic site is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and serves as a center for education, culture and recreation. For more information on the Deering Estate’s educational and cultural programs, visit <www.deeringestate.org>.