The Rockford area has some fantastic museums and gardens! If you want to visit these gems with your kids, you don’t have to break the bank. Here’s a list of 2022’s free or donation days for attractions in the Rockford area. Free and donation days took a break for the past few years, but they are back for many museums this year!

Anderson Japanese Gardens

Donation Days are the third Thursday of every month.

May 19

June 16

July 21

August 18

September 15

October 20

Burpee Museum of Natural History

Donation Days are ONLY for Illinois residents. Wisconsin residents, and others, will be charged full price.

April 20, 28

May 4, 10, 16, and 24

June 1, 13, and 27

July 18

August 16, 25, and 29

September 6, 14, 22, and 28

October 4, 10, 18, and 26

November 3, 9, 15, 21, and 29

December 5, 7, 13, 15, 19, 21, 27, and 29.

Donation Days are subject to change. Please check Burpee’s website to confirm.

Discovery Center

Free for IL residents only.

The Discovery Center does not publicize donation days. Call the museum at 815-963-6769 to ask about upcoming donation days.

Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden

May 6 – May 13, 2022 from 9 am – 4 pm daily for Go Public Gardens Days.

Klehm is always free for any individual or family that receives SNAP benefits through the Museums for All program. Learn more about that program here.

Midway Village

May 1, 2022 for Peaches Playdate

August 15, 2022 for 815 Day

Nicholas Conservatory and Gardens

Nicholas Conservatory does not offer donation or free days, but does offer a Tropical Tuesday discount $4 for Rockford residents, $5 for non-residents.

Rockford Art Museum

Museum entry is free every day!

Rotary Botanical Gardens

June 21, 2022 from 11 am – 1 pm

Tinker Swiss Cottage

Every Wednesday in April

Every Tuesday in May

June 1 & 5

September: Every Tuesday

Donation days from October – December have not been published yet.

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