A Day out at the Milwaukee Public Museum!

Milwaukee Public Museum

A short drive from the Fox Cities, Milwaukee has so many exciting things for families. We shared a bunch of great ideas here. One classic and yet still family favorite is the Milwaukee Public Museum (MPM). I remember strolling the Streets of Old Milwaukee on a middle school field trip! You’ll find hidden treasures and learn a thing or two too. Make sure to plan enough time here, you could totally get lost for an entire day exploring.

The museum is 4 levels. Make sure to grab a map when you purchase your tickets or download one here. We visited on a Saturday and although it there were LOTS of people there, there is so much space that it didn’t seem crowded and lots of room to push a stroller around.

COVID-19 Precautions & Procedures

  • Timed Tickets Required
    • Purchase in advance
    • No cash accepted at the museum
    • Admittance without an advance ticket is dependent on visitor numbers.
  • Masks are required for all visitors over three.
  • No food allowed in the museum. Bottled water only.
  • Enter only at main entrance on Wells Street during the window indicated on your tickets.
  • Follow the one-way path throughout the museum.
    • Some exhibits and features are closed including:
      • Daniel M. Soref Dome Theater and Planetarium 
      • Haymarket General Store 
      • Puelicher Butterfly Wing 
      • Bugs Alive!
      • Exploring Life on Earth 
      • Crossroads of Civilization 
      • Igloo in the Arctic
      • Living Oceans 
      • Third Floor Mezzanine
      • Select interactive exhibits and features 
  • Café and store are closed.
  • Personal Care and Sensory Rooms are open.
  • Maintain 6 feet of distance from those outside of your family group.
  • Hand sanitizer stations are available throughout the museum.
  • Exit at MacArthur Square parking structure exit.
  • The following services are discontinued at this time:
    • Locker rental 
    • Stroller rental 
    • Drinking fountains 
    • Member Clue Crew 
    • Photobooth 
    • Penny press 
    • Live programming 
    • Guided tours 
    • Explorer Kits
    • Noise-reducing headphones
  • read more

Some of our Favorite Spots

  • Streets of Old Milwaukee (1st Floor) – Stroll along the streets in the 19th Century. This popular exhibit just recently reopened with a refresh! The moody lighting and lifelike town is fun to explore. Note, there is a real candy store right in town, the Haymarket Candy Store. The line was outside the door when we were there so we distracted the kids and kept walking!
  • Jack Puelicher Butterfly Garden (1st Floor) – CURRENTLY CLOSED You will discover what seems like hundreds of butterflies in this indoor garden. One of our kids thought this was pretty cool, the other one was twitching and begging to get out. Make sure to get a butterfly kiss!
  • A Tribute to Survival (2nd Floor) – This is a fun exhibit exploring parts of Native American culture. Tepees, hunting, and a modern-day pow-wow are just some of the fun things to learn more about. Extra bonus points if you find the hidden rattlesnake button and stump the kiddos (hint: it’s over by hunting display near the tepee).
  • Living Oceans (3rd Floor) – Our girls loved the beautiful display of shells.
  • One Other Note: There is a Small Family Quiet Space on the 2nd Floor for private nursing or families with small children. I don’t remember seeing it but if you can’t find it just ask an employee, you’ll find many walking the floors.

Things to Know

  • MPM Current Hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 10 am – 4 pm
  • MPM General Admission – Includes all open Permanent Exhibits. Prices subject to change without notification.
    • Ages 14-64: $18
    • Youth (Ages 4 – 13): $12
    • Children 3 and younger: FREE
    • Senior (Ages 65+): $14 (with valid ID)
    • College Student / Active Military: $14 (with valid ID)
  • MPM is a partner with Museums for All — families who receive SNAP benefits can present their EBT card for reduced admission at $3/per family member up to four people. Call ahead (414)278-2728 for these tickets or a limited walk-up number may be available at the museum.

2021 FREE General Admission Days

  • Sunday, May 9, 2021 – Mothers Day
    • Free for mothers.
  • Sunday, June 20, 2021 – Father’s Day
    • Free for fathers.

Milwaukee Public Museum

  • 800 W. Wells St, Milwaukee, WI 53233
  • (414) 278-2728
  • www.mpm.edu

For more information about Milwaukee for your next trip visit: visitmilwaukee.org

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