Libraries Offer Free “Cultural Passes”

Want to check out some of the region’s exceptional museums and gardens for free? Your local library might be able to help. Washington County and Clackamas County libraries both lend cultural passes good for free admission at several popular family-friendly attractions in the area. Here’s the scoop:

Washington County Cooperative Library Services (WCCLS): The WCCLS Cultural Pass to Adventure is available for a one-day checkout from your local WCCLS branch. It’s a good idea to reserve the passes in advance. You must be 18 or older, a current WCCLS library cardholder in good standing, and provide valid identification or a library card to borrow one. If you return the pass late, there’s a $10 per day late charge beginning the morning after the loan day, and if you lose the pass, you could be responsible for the cost of replacing it.

Destinations include:
A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village (up to 5 guests age 1 and older)
Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum (2 people. Children 4 and younger are free.)
Lan Su Chinese Garden (2 adults and 2 children)
Pittock Mansion (2 adults and 2 children. Children under 6 are free.)
Portland Children’s Museum (1 adult and 2 children or 2 adults and 1 child)
Portland Japanese Garden (4 adults and all children 18 or under from the same household)
Washington County Museum (1 family)

For more info, visit wccls.org.

Clackamas County Library: The county has only one pass for each venue, so it’s best to reserve yours in advance. You’ll need a library card in good standing to check out a pass.

Destinations include:
Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden (1 family of 4)
Lan Su Chinese Garden (2 adults and 2 children. Children under 5
Pittock Mansion (2 adults and 2 children. Children under 6 are free.)
Portland Art Museum (2 adults. Children 17 or younger are free. Sunnyside Library only)
Portland Children’s Museum (1 adult and 2 children)
Portland Japanese Garden (2 adults and all children 18 or under from the same household)

Learn more at clackamas.us.

Multnomah County Library: Passes are available for the Portland Children’s Museum for up to three individuals for up to three days. Late fines are 25 cents per day, but if you lose the pass it’ll cost you $200 to replace it. You can place a hold on the pass through the library’s online catalog system. Get more details multcolib.org.

These passes are a great way to check out new attractions around the area with your kids, but they’re not intended for repeated use by the same family. If you find an attraction your family loves, consider saving on admission and supporting the organization by purchasing an annual pass.

Do you know of other library systems in the area that offer cultural passes or discounts? Please let us know in the comments below.




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