Every second Sunday of the month, the High Museum offers free admission for everyone. Our little family ventured out to the High Museum free day called Second Sunday in July, but you can attend the second Sunday of any month, and every event is different, so there is always something new to discover. If you are not familiar with this event, it is definitely a can’t miss for families! Here’s why.
Second Sunday is the High Museum Free Day
I have to be honest and admit that I haven’t visited the High since having kids. My boys are preschool age, so I wondered if they would have a hard time engaging with the artwork. I’m so glad that my fears were unfounded! The High Museum staff did an excellent of job making this a family friendly day. They even have this wonderful step-by-step guide to Second Sunday that you can review with your child before you go, so they know what to expect.
Second Sunday Activities
The museum is open from 12:00-5:00 pm on Sundays, with scheduled activities starting at 1:00 pm and going until 4 pm. I would definitely recommend arriving as close to opening as you can. The crowds did grow as the day went on.
In addition to the regular museum exhibits, there are also several hands-on stations during the Second Sunday events. During our visit there was kids yoga, a screen printing station, and a photo booth to name a few. Each event is a little different, so check the High website for the special activities on the day you are planning to attend.
The day we were there, you had the opportunity to join the High Museum’s Kids Club and receive a free SmARTbox full of art supplies for your little ones! After we were all set in the lobby, we headed to the Greene Family Learning Gallery. This Gallery has been completely renovated and expanded in fall of 2018, and is really a fantastic space for the youngest art lovers.
The Greene Family Learning Gallery
The Greene Family Learning Gallery is located in the Stent Family Wing on the first floor. The renovation has expanded the footprint of the gallery from 2,000 to 4,000 feet of fun within two sections called CREATE and EXPERIENCE.
If you’ve been before, the previous 2,000 foot Greene Family Learning Gallery has been renovated into the CREATE section. It is a bright and open studio devoted to developing young visitors’ art-making abilities and encouraging the creative process.
Across the hall is the brand new 2,000 foot space called EXPERIENCE. This is a deeply immersive gallery that enables visitors to explore what art means, how it feels and where it can take us. Both spaces will include a quiet space with activities designed for reflection, as well as an area specifically for infants and toddlers.
Stroller Access at the High
Since we knew there would be quite a bit of walking (and in an effort to help preserve the art from little hands), we took my two-year-old in his stroller. It was surprisingly easy to maneuver around with the stroller at Second Sunday.
When you head into the center of the Stent wing, you’ll see the ramps that head up to each floor. A single stroller can easily fit on the ramps (I wouldn’t recommend a side-by-side double). If you do have a larger stroller, there are still elevators that are also easily located on each floor, so fear not!
High Museum Exhibits with Kids
We spent the next hour meandering through the different floors and exhibits. Our family really enjoyed the modern and contemporary art exhibit on the top floor. The boys loved all the three dimensional pieces, and my husband and I really enjoyed the special Paul Graham photography exhibit that was on display in this section of the museum; really thought provoking work. During Second Sunday you have access to all of the High Museum’s permanent collections, as well as the special exhibitions. (Note: an exception to this is Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors)
High Museum Traveling Exhibits
Second Sunday activities often correspond to the traveling exhibits. The day we visited there was a special exhibit of more than 250 Andy Warhol prints on loan from the Jordan D. Schnitzer collection. My children loved all the vivid shapes, colors and textures.
As part of the Second Sunday family programming, my oldest was able to create a silkscreen print influenced by Warhol’s work; he still proudly carries his cat print all around the house.
Lots of Kids Items at the Museum Shop
Feed your child’s love of art by taking home something from the gift shop. There are always items based on the latest exhibit, like a soup can full of crayons based on the Warhol exhibit or the Where’s Warhol book (I always love the search and find books too)
Kids love the puppets in the Greene Family Learning Gallery. At the museum store you can find finger puppets to take home. And of course there are lots of wonderful books to introduce your child to famous artists, or different art techniques.
For those that are more interested in doing than reading, you can find some innovative art project kits. Museum members get a 10 percent discount on anything you purchase at the store.
Parking at the High Museum
The easiest parking is in the High Museum Parking deck. The entrance is located around the back of the museum, across from the MARTA station. Expect to pay between $12 and $16 to park in the deck. On normal days if available, you can pre-purchase parking when you order your tickets online. There are also limited meter spots along Peachtree, and if you dare, you can sometimes find street parking in neighborhoods, but don’t tell anyone I told you that. I’m sure that’s not an ‘official’ suggestion.
Disclosure: We are happy to work with the High Museum of Art as a 365 Atlanta Family Ambassador. The High is an amazing place for kids (and adults) to enjoy world class art.