Sunday, January 24, 2016

Boonshoft Museum of Discovery and Reciprocal Admissions Program

We had to make a bit of a side detour after leaving Toledo to the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery in Dayton, Ohio.

***I'll warn you now if you are towing a trailer or a Fifth Wheel the parking lot entrance and exit is narrow and has a tight turn. We made it pulling our 36' trailer behind our 20' truck but it was a close call on the way out. There really is not a lot of room for error so drive with caution or unhook and drive in without your trailer.***

We arrived about 1/2 hour before they opened so we had ample space to find parking. There is a lot of parking but I can see that at busy times it would be difficult to find parking while hitched up.

Since we wanted to buy a membership here (I will explain why at the end of the post) we decided to take an hour and have a quick visit inside. With a seven hour travel day planned we couldn't afford to spend any more time then that here. We didn't get to see everything but our girls had a blast.

Their first stop was the climbing structure in the centre of the Museum.


Next up was the grocery store and pizza shop. Both my girls could have stayed here all afternoon taking orders and making their pizzas.

We had to put the pizza stuff away though and head through their little zoo and aquarium area.

Then it was off to the courthouse where daddy was the judge and me and the girls were the jury.

A few other shots from around the museum...

 Sierra wasn't so sure what to think about the real mummy and was pretty quick at leaving the room.

We may only have had a short time to visit here but we will make great use of our membership in the months to come.

When we took our Maiden Voyage and hit 35 States in 2011, we purchased a membership at the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens State Park in New Mexico (you can see our trip there HERE).That membership gave us admission to many zoos and aquariums in the Reciprocal Zoo program so we could attend for half price or even some of them for free. We made such good use of it.

This time with a bit more research I learned that if we buy a membership at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery we now have access to not only zoos and aquariums, but also many science centres and some Childrens Museums (to get admission to more Children's Museum you need the $135 Adventurer membership). This is extremely helpful for this winter as we will be spending all our time in Florida so it makes the $100 family membership cost of the membership worthwhile having more places to use it.

If your interested in learning more about the Zoo and Aquarium's Reciprocal Program please visit HERE. They have a list of participating zoos and aquariums across the US by State.

You can find out more about the ASTC Travel Program for Science centers HERE .

Last but not least you can visit the Association of Children's Museums HERE.

Be sure to always call ahead of time before you drive too far out of your way as sometimes programs change but we have never run into a problem ourselves. Parking sometimes is not included as well as there may be extra costs for extended programs like IMAX theatres etc. Also Boonshoft allows two named parents on the membership and up to six children, however you should call ahead to the reciprocal places you want to attend as they may have extra fees for larger families.

Travelling to Florida for the winter with our Canadian exchange rate this year is more expensive then planned for with our quick decision and house sale, so we are always looking for ways to save a bit of money where we can so we never have to feel like we are missing out on anything. This program is truly amazing.

Want to see a couple of the places we visited on our maiden voyage using our reciprocal membership?

We visited the Tampa Lowry Zoo in Florida HERE,

Texas State Aquarium HERE (middle of post).

With more time on this trip we have quite a few places in Florida we will be using our membership at this winter.

Have you used this program before? What did you think?

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