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Salt Lake City's Free Museums

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Salt Lake City has a number of interesting free museums. Other museums that normally charge admission have free exhibits or regular free days.

Clark Planetarium

Photo by Marsha Maxwell

The star shows and IMAX theater at the Clark Planetarium aren't free, but the planetarium does have a number of free exhibits that are interesting and worth a look, especially if you're in the area.

110 S. 400 W.
801-456-STAR (7827)

Opens at 10:30 a.m. every day
Closes following the beginning of the last show of the day, generally Sundays at 6 p.m., Mon.-Wed. at 8 p.m., Thur. at 9 p.m., Fri. and Sat. at 11 p.m.

Fort Douglas Military Museum

Fort Douglas Military Museum

The Fort Douglas Military Museum is dedicated to the history of Fort Douglas and U.S. military history, with hundreds of weapons uniforms, and other items on display. The Fort Douglas grounds offer lots of opportunities for historical exploration, including displays of cannons, helicopters and armored vehicles.

The Fort Douglas Military Museum is part of the Foothill Cultural District, which includes Red Butte Garden and Arboretum, the Utah Museum of Natural History, Hogle Zoo, This is the Place Heritage Park, the Utah Museum of Fine Arts and Olympic Cauldron Park. All of these attractions are located on land that was once part of historic Fort Douglas.

Fort Douglas Military Museum
32 Potter Street
Fort Douglas, UT 84113
(801) 581-1251

Open Tuesday-Saturday, 12-5 p.m.

LDS Church History Museum

Image courtesy of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

This free museum houses art and artifacts related to the history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

45 North West Temple St.
801-240-3310

Mon.-Fri. 9 a.m.-9 p.m.
Sat.-Sun. 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

Natural History Museum of Utah

Photo courtesy of the Utah Museum of Natural History

The Natural History Museum of Utah is a working scientists' museum that's interesting for the whole family. The museum includes paleontology exhibits and a lot more. Here are the museum's free days for 2013 and 2014:

  • Monday, January 14, 2013
  • Monday, April 15, 2013
  • Monday, July 15, 2013
  • Monday, October 14, 2013
  • Monday, January 13, 2014
  • Monday April 14, 2014
  • Monday, July 14, 2014
  • Monday, October 13, 2014

It's strongly recommended to reserve tickets online for the free days; these are released a week to ten days in advance. Check the website for details.

301 Wakara Way
801-581-4303

Open Daily 10 a.m.-5 p.m. - Last Admission is 4 p.m.
Open Wednesdays 10 a.m.-9 p.m. - Last Admission is 8 p.m.

Pioneer Memorial Museum

Photo courtesy of the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers

The free Pioneer Memorial Museum on the grounds of the Utah State Capitol is dedicated to the lives and belongings of Utah's Mormon pioneers. Highlights include Brigham Young's wagon and an antique steam fire engine.

300 N Main St.
801-532-6479

Sept.-May hours: Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
June-Aug. hours: Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. 1 p.m.-5 p.m.

Admission is free. Voluntary contributions welcome.

Utah Museum of Contemporary Art

Photo courtesy Utah Museum of Contemporary Art

The Utah Museum of Contemporary Art hosts changing contemporary art exhibits, film events, lectures on art, and photography and ceramics classes. UMOCA suggests (but does not require) a donation of of $5 per person for admission, but the museum hosts free "Family Art Saturdays" with hands-on art activities the second Saturday of every month from 2-4 p.m.

20 South West Temple
801-328-4201

Tue.-Thur., Sat. 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Fri. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Closed Sundays, Mondays and Holidays

Utah Museum of Fine Arts

Photo courtesy of the Salt Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Utah Museum of Fine Arts on the University of Utah campus focuses on art from different cultures around the world and includes special collections of Native American and Western American art.

The museum is free the first Wednesday of every month, and also the third Saturday of each month with free art activities for families from 1-4 p.m. It's always free for students and employees of the University of Utah.

Marcia & John Price Museum Building
410 Campus Center Drive
801-581-7332

Tue.–Fri. 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Wed. 10 a.m.–8 p.m.
Sat.-Sun. 11 a.m.–5 p.m.

Closed Mondays and Holidays

Wheeler Historic Farm

Photo courtesy of Wheeler Historic Farm

The Wheeler Historic Farm includes tours of the historic Wheeler home, live farm animals, farm chore demonstrations and wagon rides. Admission to the farm is free, but there are small charges ranging from $.50 to $2 for some of the activities.

6351 S. 900 E.
801-264-2241

Open every day dawn until dusk

Suggest a Free Museum in the Salt Lake City Area

What's your favorite free museum or free museum event in the Salt Lake City area? Send me your suggestions and I'll add them to the list!
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