Here are 11 Tampa Bay museums offering free admission this Saturday

Sept. 18 is Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day.

Share on Nextdoor
click to enlarge Florida Museum of Photographic Arts in Tampa, Florida is offering free admission on Sept. 18, 2021. - FloridaMuseumOfPhotographicArts/Facebook
Florida Museum of Photographic Arts in Tampa, Florida is offering free admission on Sept. 18, 2021.

On Saturday, Sept. 18, museums across the country are celebrating the Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day with free entry. Choose wisely, you’re only allowed one ticket, to one museum per email address—but the one ticket gets two people in the door.

In the Tampa Bay area alone Tampa Museum of Art, Tampa Bay History Center, The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, The Florida Holocaust Museum, and Imagine Museum are a few of places participating. 

The Tampa Museum of Art currently has the Skyway 20/21 exhibit which celebrates the work of local artists including Selina Román, Mike Solomon, and Kirk Ke Wang. The History Center is a family-friendly experience with the current temporary exhibit “Tusk to Tails: A Fossil History of Florida.”

If you’re up for a day drive, Lakeland’s Polk Museum of Art and Ocala’s Appleton Museum of Art are included on the list of 36 stops in Florida.

What’s more is that other local museums are letting folks in for free if they make advanced reservations. See a list below.

Before you go, check for Covid-19 protocols and hours of operation—each place is different. For a full list of participating museums or to get a ticket, go to

Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day in Tampa Bay
Ticket gets two people to free admission for one museum per email account

  • Florida Holocaust Museum 55 5th St. S, St. Petersburg.
  • Florida Museum of Photographic Arts 400 N Ashley Dr., Tampa.
  • Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art 600 E Klosterman Rd., Tarpon Springs.
  • Tampa Bay History Center 801 Water St., Tampa.
  • Tampa Museum of Art 120 W. Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa. (of note is that TMA already has a pay-what-you-will Thursday admission, plus monthly first Saturday promotion with Bank of America and Museums for All)
  • Ybor City Museum State Park 1818 Ninth Ave., Tampa,

Museums not officially part of Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day in Tampa Bay but still offering free admission
Check in advance re: limited hours and ticket limitations

  • The Dalí Museum 1 Dalí Blvd., St. Petersburg. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (Pinellas County residents only)
  • Imagine Museum 1901 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. (free ticket for first floor galleries only)
  • The James Museum of Western and Wildlife Art 150 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Museum of Fine Arts, St. Pete 255 Beach Dr. NE, St. Petersburg. 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • The Ringling Museum 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. (Ca’ d’Zan is an extra $10).

Support local journalism in these crazy days. Our small but mighty team works tirelessly to bring you updates on events happening in Tampa Bay and surrounding areas. Please consider making a one time or monthly donation to help support our staff. Every little bit helps.

Subscribe to our newsletter and follow @cl_tampabay on Twitter.

About The Author

Stephanie Powers

Freelance contributor Stephanie Powers started her media career as an Editorial Assistant long ago when the Tampa Bay Times was still called the St. Petersburg Times. After stints in Chicago and Los Angeles, where she studied improvisation at Second City Hollywood, she came back to Tampa and stayed put.She soon...
Scroll to read more Events & Film articles


Join Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.