When a purchase pays you back...

Sometimes I buy something and I am happy I bought the item.
Sometimes I regret buying something because I paid too much.
Sometimes I regret buying something because I just didn't need it.
Sometimes  I buy something on the spur of the moment and it turns out to be golden.

That golden something is a boring museum membership.  
WAIT!  Don't run away...this is countrywide!  

We've had museum memberships in the past and they were great because we went a fair amount and certainly used our pass many times over the amount we paid.  THIS membership though has a spectacular reciprocal agreement with 250 - TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY museums around the country.  Most of the museums have a complete reciprocal agreement and you get in free.  Just show your pass.  A few (we haven't found any yet) might charge a reduced rate.  The trick is to buy your membership at an inexpensive museum.  We live in Harrisburg, so we purchased our membership here.  It cost $100 for our family of five, grandparents and some free IMAX tickets.  With one visit and the IMAX tickets, it is almost already paid for. 

The bonus is the reciprocal museums though.  On our trip to the shore last weekend, we stopped at two museums and were able to run around free for a few hours to break up our driving.  We didn't feel like we had to spend all day because we didn't pay a dime.  (...and isn't that freedom to leave when you need to the best part about any membership??)  The second museum we went to was the famed Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.  Admission to the Franklin Institute alone would have cost $125 - MORE than the cost of our membership.  

HERE is the link to the Whitaker Center's Membership information.  (Harrisburg)
HERE is the incredible list of all of the other museums you can visit with your membership.

I dare say we will be stopping at at least one museum on every vacation from here on out.  
SO much better than a rest stop and free education and deliciously cold air conditioning.  You can't ask for more!

Coming up next...DC on a dime and the Eastern shore for kids!!!


We have a membership to the Discovery Museum in our town (Winchester which is near D.C.). You can get into other museums with it although I have not investigated which ones yet. It is a nice deal though. Little Bit adores going there.
And I just looked at the link you gave and our museum is on there! Must be the same program. Small bloggy world ;D
denise said…
The reciprocal membership is something I forgot about! Thanks for the reminder. Looks like y'all had fun seeing the fishes. I love that 2nd pic with your boy's hands on the glass while he looks at the fish.
Maggie said…
And here I was, thinking I was so clever getting a household History Center membership and a State Parks pass for my car.
This is way better - especially when you take in to account that museums are air conditioned, which is huge here in the midwest where we were just slammed with a heat wave.
I'll have to pass this on to my roommates to keep in mind for their daughter!
Martianne said…
We love our reciprocal museum/zoo membership. It gets us into a small, local zoo, a big one in another state where we visit relatives, plus the Boston Science Museum, another local zoo and more. Aces!
That looks like a great museum! We have yet to get our boys to the one in Indianapolis and I can't wait to do it. I was just reading your bio and your favorite movie is You've Got Mail?! Mine too! We really could be best friends! :)
Small bloggy world is RIGHT!

Maggie - I'm a total fan of state parks stickers...if you go a lot, they are def. a fabulous deal! We used to get one to Mahoney State Park in Nebraska because we went so often...I haven't found anything here in PA that I would use as much...

...and Mandy - YES we could be friends! You've got Mail all the way...I totally want to be her :)



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