Credit: Cathy Carver

The pandemic isn’t yet over, but D.C. is unquestionably reopening. On May 21, Mayor Muriel Bowser lifted capacity restrictions at most venues, including restaurants, schools, offices, and retail. (Tell us how your outings to your favorite bars went by responding to this email and we’ll include as many responses as we can in a future edition of DLD.) On June 11, restrictions will be lifted for nightclubs and entertainment venues. If you haven’t noticed, local music venues are booking shows for the coming months, theaters are preparing to offer live performances, and museums on the Mall and elsewhere across the city are welcoming patrons back (though don’t expect everyone to be ready to go on June 11—the announcement was abrupt). Yesterday afternoon, the Smithsonian announced reopening dates for its 10 museums that remained closed to the public; the entire system will be open to visitors for the first time since March 2020 at the end of August. Nature is healing, etc.

The CDC says that “indoor and outdoor activities pose minimal risk to fully vaccinated people,” COVID-wise, and that those fully vaccinated people are probably not going to get the unvaccinated in their lives sick either. On a chart about choosing activities, going to an indoor, uncrowded venue is marked “safest” for the vaccinated. (Important note if you’re not two weeks out from your final dose of a COVID vaccine: Going to an indoor museum, even an uncrowded one that requires masks, is “less safe” for those who aren’t fully vaccinated, according to the CDC.) 

So in that spirit, here’s a lightly curated roundup of what museums are open around the city when. Many places will require timed entry and masks on the premises. 

Open, no timed passes required:

Open, timed entry passes required:

Reopening in June, timed entry passes required:

Reopening in July, timed entry passes required:

Reopening in August:


—Emma Sarappo (tips? esarappo@washingtoncitypaper.com)

By Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? agomez@washingtoncitypaper.com)

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By Mitch Ryals (tips? mryals@washingtoncitypaper.com)

Credit: Darrow Montgomery/file

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By Emma Sarappo (tips? esarappo@washingtoncitypaper.com)

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By Kelyn Soong (tips? ksoong@washingtoncitypaper.com)