Free Museum Memberships for New York City ID Card Holders

A year of free visits to the Met, Brooklyn Museum, MoMA PS1, and more.

Metropolitan Museum of art New York
The New York City Municipal ID will come with a free one-year memberships to museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

New Yorkers have something big to look forward to in 2015. Thanks to mayor Bill de Blasio’s new City Municipal ID will officially come with free one-year memberships at all 33 members of the Cultural Institutions Group (CIG), including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, MoMA PS1, and the Brooklyn Museum.

The card is meant to help undocumented immigrants lacking official ID, with the significant cultural perks serving as incentive for all New Yorkers to sign up, so that card-carriers are not assumed to be here illegally (see “Will NYC’s New ID Cards Grant Free Museum Admission?“).

The CIG comprises private nonprofit cultural organizations housed on city property. Each member institution will offer its standard one-year membership package, which generally includes free admission, gift shop discounts, and access to special events.

“The municipal ID is a powerful tool to bring more New Yorkers out of the shadows and into the mainstream. It is now also a key that opens the door for hundreds of thousands of more New Yorkers to our City’s premier assets in culture, science and entertainment,” de Blasio said in a press release. “The Municipal ID Card embodies the values we cherish most about inclusivity and equality, and these memberships are another step forward on providing greater access and opportunity for our people.”

“I am thrilled with the generous benefits each member of the Cultural Institutions Group will offer to ID holders,” added cultural affairs commissioner Tom Finkelpearl (see “Tom Finkelpearl Promises to Make New York Livable for Artists“), who worked closely with museums to hammer out ID card benefits. “There is something for everyone at gardens, zoos, museums, and performing arts centers in every borough. The CIG leadership has really come through for all New Yorkers and I will be one of the first in line to get the municipal ID!”

The program will launch in January 2015, and the yearlong CIG benefits will be available to new New York City ID card holders who sign up before the year’s end. Individuals who are already members at CIG institutions, or whose membership has lapsed since the beginning of 2012 cannot use the free card to renew their membership at said institutions, but will receive the full benefits at all of the other participating museums and organizations.

“There is no doubt that New York City residents are set to gain an incredible amount from their participation in the municipal ID card program, and this partnership is a huge part of that,” said Carlos Menchaca, the chair of the City Council Immigration Committee. “These new cultural benefits will ensure that all New Yorkers are excited about getting a municipal ID card—a key to New York City.”

Participating Institutions

The 33 participating institutions are listed below by borough, and full benefits can be read here:

Bronx
1. Bronx County Historical Society
2. Bronx Museum of the Arts
3. New York Botanical Garden
4. Wave Hill
5. Wildlife Conservation Society (includes Bronx Zoo, New York Aquarium, Central Park Zoo, Queens Zoo, and Prospect Park Zoo)

Brooklyn
6. Brooklyn Academy of Music
7. Brooklyn Botanic Garden
8. Brooklyn Children’s Museum
9. Brooklyn Museum

Brooklyn Museum

The Brooklyn Museum.
Photo: Adam Husted

Manhattan
10. American Museum of Natural History
11. Carnegie Hall
12. New York City Ballet
13. El Museo del Barrio
14. Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Inc.
15. Metropolitan Museum of Art
16. Museum of Jewish Heritage
17. Museum of the City of New York
18. New York City Center
19. Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival
20. Studio Museum in Harlem

Geffen has won the naming rights to the Avery Fisher Hall (right) as part of his $100 million pledge. Photo: Nils Olander via Wikimedia Commons

The Avery Fisher Hall (right) at Lincoln Center.
Photo: Nils Olander via Wikimedia Commons

Queens
21. Flushing Town Hall
22. Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning
23. Museum of the Moving Image
24. New York Hall of Science
25. MoMA PS1
26. Queens Botanical Garden
27. Queens Museum
28. Queens Theatre

Staten Island
29. Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden
30. Staten Island Children’s Museum
31. Staten Island Historical Society
32. Staten Island Museum
33. Staten Island Zoological Society


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