Museums Struggle To Survive Pandemic’s Pinch


As many as one-third of museums in the United States could face permanent closure as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

(NBC News) America’s museums are in trouble.
Cultural institutions are slowly reopening, but many will not be able to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Many museums, normally bustling with crowds on pre-pandemic days, are still empty.
New York’s museums are finally reopening this week, with new safety protocols.  That includes reducing capacity to 20-percent.
For the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the largest art museum in the United States, that’s a fraction of the 35,000 visitors it could draw on peak days.
San Diego’s Maritime Museum had to close and reopen three times. Now, it’s missing the usual tourist traffic that makes up 75 percent of its customer base.
“This is probably the most important collection of historic ships in the world, but there’s not much point to it if no one can see it,” says museum president Raymond Ashley.
Many museums have pivoted to virtual offerings, but these types of activities can’t fully replace the revenue stream of in-person visits.
According to the American Alliance of Museums, as many as one-third of museums in the U.S. will have to close for good.
“It does put museums that have less financial resources at graver risk for surviving into the future,” says Discovery Place president Catherine Horne.

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