As Spurlock Museum reopens to the public, you can take your family on an educational (and fun!) outing to a museum right here in Champaign-Urbana for free
As many of our community favorites safely re-open to the public, we are grateful that Spurlock Museum of World Cultures has again opened its doors to Champaign-Urbana area families for a nearby, FREE field trip we can enjoy together. We have everything you want to know about how to make a reservation, what you can expect upon arrival and how much fun you can have exploring together.
Schedule Ahead of Time (in Some Instances)
Are you catching on to a theme with reopenings in our community? You may need to plan ahead and schedule your visit ahead of time to ensure that you will be able to visit on the day you desire. Spurlock states on their website, “No advanced reservations are required for groups of 4 or fewer at this time. If you plan to visit in a group of 5 or more, we encourage you to book your visit in advance.”
They are only allowing a maximum of forty people in the museum at a time. We went ahead and used the reservation system and we had confirmation in about a day that we could visit on the day we preferred.
We entered the museum and approached the front desk. The staff member working was several feet away from us and directed us to fill out our contact information, in case it were to be needed for contact tracing purposes. We used hand sanitizer and our kids were told they could pick up clipboards for exhibit bingo during our visit. (This turned out to be so much fun, so highly recommend grabbing a clipboard on the way in for each child old enough to play.) Of course, masks are required during the whole visit.
And then we were off! We know the museum is only allowing a maximum of forty people in at any given time, but we only saw ONE group of three people in there besides for our family and museum staff members and security during our 90 minute visit.
Enjoying the Museum
There are two floors full of exhibits to see and experience at Spurlock Museum. This isn’t a hands-on, touch-the-things museum, but you are allowed to get up close to the items on display to get a feel for them (without touching that is). This is where exhibit bingo really gets fun! Our kids had a great time trying to make a bingo and then deciding to look for EVERY item on the sheet. There are so many different rooms with permanent exhibits on display (the East Asia room was a favorite) and there are exhibits that are displayed for a period of time in certain areas, too.
Be aware that the Ancient Mediterranean gallery is full of large sculptures of unclothed individuals (especially men), as is typical of art from this time period and region. While your children may be accustomed to this type of art, you may just want a heads up on what is displayed in there before you visit so you can choose if you wander in that room or not.
A visit to the Spurlock Museum is probably best for elementary aged kids and up. Of course, if you have younger kids in the family you can bring them with, too. There are a lot of displays with content to read around the museum and that’s where a lot of the time can be spent on your visit. You can plan on 60-90 minutes for a visit to the Spurlock Museum on the campus of the University of Illinois.
And while you’re there, be sure to check out our favorite places to eat in Campustown, too!