Free, discounted museum and zoo tickets for NYC students

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York City officials are encouraging students to take advantage of free or discounted museum and zoo tickets before classes start.

Some museums, like the Natural History Museum and the Met are always pay-as-you-wish for New York City residents.

Other institutions, like the Bronx Zoo, Morgan Library and MoMA are putting aside free passes for kids and their caregivers this week.

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"New York City kids continue to show their resilience every day. I'm thrilled to see these extraordinary institutions open their doors to young people and families across the five boroughs," said Mayor Bill de Blasio. "Arts and culture are a critical part of New York City's social fabric, and we thank these organizations for providing our kids with safe, educational activities before schools open next week."

Participating organizations include:

-American Museum of Natural History
-Metropolitan Museum of Art
-Morgan Library and Museum
-Museum of Arts and Design
-The Museum of Modern Art
-National September 11 Memorial Museum
-New Museum
-South Street Seaport Museum
-Staten Island Museum
-Whitney Museum of American Art
-Wildlife Conservation Society

Make sure to reserve tickets in advance on each institution's website as capacity is limited to adhere to social distancing guidelines.

"The reopening of our cultural organizations has lifted New Yorkers' spirits," said New York City Cultural Affairs Commissioner Gonzalo Casals. "We encourage young people and their families to engage with the amazing artwork and experiences provided by our incredible cultural organizations, where we go to be inspired and to make sense of the changes happening around us."

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The sense of doom grew, especially after March 1, when the first confirmed case arrived in Manhattan. Soon, there was a hotspot in New Rochelle, and small curfews and containment zones across the area offered a hint of a frightening future we still thought we could avoid.

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