Campus museum to offer day of free attendance
Michaela Kane /The Daily Wildcat
The basketry exhibit at the Arizona State Museum is showcases traditional woven baskets for visitors.
This Saturday, the Arizona State Museum is participating in the Smithsonian Institution’s “Museum Day Live!”, which will see museums across the country opening their doors for free.
The museum has been affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution since 2000 and first engaged in “Museum Day Live!” five years ago, said Deputy Director Irene Romano.
The museum’s staff is pleased to offer free admission to the public as often as possible, she added, and hosts a number of other free events throughout the year. Recognized around the world, the museum is home to Native American basketry and pottery, which stand as two nationally designated collections, Romano said.
“ASM is an incredible resource for the local community — a place where culture and science come together and where visitors gain an understanding of the rich cultural heritage of this region,” Romano said. “We would love the Tucson community to get to know ASM better and to participate in everything ASM has to offer.”
Romano said she loves to see families and students leave the museum enlightened with knowledge and, in some cases, a desire to learn more about Native American culture or to create their own works of art.
“As a teacher and a museum professional, there is no greater pleasure than to inspire people to learn and invite people into your world,” she added. “We hope that all UA students graduate with some understanding of the uniqueness of this region, its culture and history.”
The museum is always free to students. “Museum Day Live!” is a chance for members of the campus community to bring their families and friends to the museum for free. Additionally, students will get a 10 percent discount in the gift shop, where unique gifts are for sale, Romano said.
The Smithsonian’s “Museum Day Live!” shines a national spotlight on numerous American museums and their surrounding communities, said museum Director of Marketing Darlene F. Lizarraga. The museum is a place of exhibits, cultural celebrations, lectures, workshops, sales and travel tours.
“We offer many meaningful opportunities and many fun reasons to experience the … enduring cultures of the region,” Lizarraga said. “We are here year-round for our community — especially the UA community.”
The museum serves as a significant historical site in the state of Arizona, and “Museum Day Live!” raises awareness about the museum and the tribes of Arizona, said Assistant Curator Martina Dawley.
“We want every UA student to have experienced ASM at least once — and hopefully many times — in their career here,” Romano said. “‘Museum Day Live!’ is a great way to begin that experience.”