From 2016 Museum Mile Festival. Video via Max Scheidhauer for Viewing NYC
The Museum Mile Festival is an annual event in which the Upper East Side section of 5th Avenue from 82nd through 105th Street — aka Museum Mile — is closed off to cars for a block party that celebrates the various museums along the stretch.
Begun as an initiative to spur the development of new museum audiences and to increase support for the arts during the fiscal crisis of the 1970s, Museum Mile was formed as a consortium by the museums that share the Fifth Avenue address. The first festival, held in June of 1978, was an instant success. Not only did it expose New Yorkers and NYC visitors to an incredible collection of New York’s artistic riches, it also brought together disparate New Yorkers. From the barrios of East Harlem and the townhouses lining the Upper East Side, to the winding streets of the Village and the clustered neighborhoods of the outer-boroughs, people came to celebrate their shared pride in their city. Museum Mile Festival promoted public awareness through increased visibility, accessibility and attendance at all the museums, and brought many New Yorkers to upper Fifth Avenue for the first time.
This year's Museum Mile Festival is this Tuesday, June 13th, 2017 from 6pm to 9pm and includes free admission to the following museums:
- El Museo del Barrio - 1230 Fifth Avenue (at 104th Street)
- Museum of the City of New York - 1220 Fifth Avenue (at 104th Street)
- The Jewish Museum - 1109 Fifth Avenue (between 92nd & 93rd Streets)
- Cooper Hewitt, National Design Museum - 2 East 91st Street (off Fifth Avenue)
- Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum - 1071 Fifth Avenue (at 88th Street)
- Neue Galerie New York - 1048 Fifth Avenue (at 86th Street)
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art - 1000 Fifth Avenue (at 82nd Street)
As amazing as The Met is, you can get in for less than the "suggested admission price" any day of the year, so you should probably skip The Met and head to one of the other participating, normally pricier galleries during the 3-hour event.
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