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National Aquarium's Community Programs Welcome Locals for Less


The National Aquarium is pleased to offer an ever-expanding lineup of community programs this fall as part of its continuing commitment to serving Maryland residents. These opportunities aim to provide locals, whether frequent guests or first-time visitors, free or reduced admission to their world-class Aquarium.

"Our conservation mission comes to life in our communities — in local classrooms, in Baltimore neighborhoods and along the Chesapeake Bay — but some of the most transformative experiences occur or begin within the Aquarium's walls," said Jenny Hamilton, National Aquarium community programs manager. "Offering programs for locals to visit for less ensures our neighbors, our essential partners in protecting local waterways, are connected to and inspired to care for our aquatic wonders. Guests not only explore their hometown aquarium, they also return to their communities ready to take action."

The Aquarium's popular Maryland Mornings program (available September 2018 — February 2019) offers Maryland residents $10 off adult admission and $5 off child admission before noon, Sunday through Friday.

Through another exciting opportunity, Baltimore-area children in fifth grade and younger with a Pratt Library card are invited to participate in the Read to Reef Book Club, in partnership with the Enoch Pratt Free Library. Starting October 1, children can visit their local Pratt Library branch, receive a special bookmark (while supplies last), read aquatic-themed books and receive Aquarium admission for themselves and up to three guests. Since the program launched in 2016, more than 25,000 young readers and their families have visited the Aquarium after reading more than 35,000 books.

The National Aquarium also offers several special access days this fall and throughout the remainder of the year.

  • The National Aquarium will offer free admission after 5 p.m. on Friday October 26 during the Free Fall Friday Night event. This is in collaboration with the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts' citywide celebration of culture, Free Fall.
  • Pay What You Want Day, made possible with the generous support of T. Rowe Price, will return on Sunday, November 4. Guests can donate an amount of their choice for admission to the Aquarium, knowing their contribution supports conservation efforts.
  • Additionally, Dollar Days, an annual holiday tradition in collaboration with the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore, will return on Saturday, December 8 and Sunday, December 9, with $1 admission on both days.
  • As always, admission is half-price every Friday after 5 p.m. through Half-Price Friday Nights, presented with the generous support of M&T Bank.

Guests planning to take advantage of these special access days should be aware that, due to anticipated popularity, crowds may be heavier than usual and the Aquarium may sell out. Tips to plan a visit can be found on

In 2017 alone, the Aquarium welcomed more than 100,000 guests for free or reduced admission through these community programs, sharing educational and enjoyable experiences with local and state residents.

For more information about these National Aquarium programs, visit