Supporting Our Families Who Serve

The National Eagle Center is once again proud to be a Blue Star Museum. Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 2,000 museums across America to offer free admission to the nation’s active-duty military personnel including National Guard and Reserve and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Blue Star Museums, organized by families of deployed military service members, is focused on serving active duty service members, not veterans.

Blue Star Museums is an effort to improve the quality of life for active-duty military families, especially focusing on the approximately 1 million children who have had at least one parent deployed. Blue Star Museums was created to show support for military families who have faced multiple deployments and the challenges of reintegration. This program offers these families a chance to visit museums this summer when many will have limited resources and limited time to be together.

Who is eligible for free museum admission through Blue Star Museums?

Blue Star Families is an organization dedicated to supporting active duty and deployed members of the military. They support service members and their families in a variety of ways, including sending care packages and setting up programs for families to have access to museums and other family activities during deployment.

The free admission program is available to any bearer of a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID card (dependent ID), or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card.

How many military personnel and/or family members receive complimentary admission per visit?

The military ID holder plus up to five family members. The military ID holder can either be active-duty service member or other dependent family member with the appropriate ID card. The active duty member does not have to be present for family members to use the program.

What if my spouse is deployed? Can my family and I still participate?

Yes, spouses of deployed military are eligible for Blue Star Museums. Just bring your DD Form 1173 ID Card, or DD Form 1173-1 ID Card, for active-duty military family members.

How do you define a family member?

A family member of active duty military may include a spouse or child, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc.

Does the Blue Star Museums program include admission for veterans and retirees, unmarried partners, parents with a child currently serving on active duty, or for those who have lost a child on active duty?

Admission for these individuals is not included in the scope of this program, unless they are the bearer of a Geneva Convention Common Access Card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID Card, or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card.

The National Eagle Center offers complimentary admission to veterans over Veterans Day weekend and brings an eagle to several veterans events throughout the year (free of charge). We make four visits each year to the VA hospital in Minneapolis with one of the eagle ambassadors as part of our commitment to honor the sacrifice and service of veterans.

What if they don’t have any ID, or I’m not sure if they qualify?

At the National Eagle Center, our default position would be to welcome them for complimentary admission if they present themselves as family of active duty military service member. If they don’t have the card, or you’re not sure, please welcome them with complimentary admission using the Blue Star Museums SKU.

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