The Fort Wayne Museum of Art will discontinue free admission on Sundays, it announced Wednesday in a statement.
Beginning July 6, patrons will pay general admission to go to the museum, which is open noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. The museum will continue free admission Thursdays from 5 to 8 p.m.
Amanda Martin, deputy director of administration and communications, says the museum has offered a free admission program on Sunday for at least 10 years. But the staff is at a point in their strategic planning where the focus is on generating revenue outside of foundation funding in an effort to help the museum become more self-sufficient.
Martin says with 150 to 200 visitors paying $5 to $7 for admission each Sunday, the museum will generate nearly $1,000 more a week.
Most healthy and progressive nonprofits have a strategic plan, and that plan consists of goals that are to be achieved over the next 3 to 5 years. One of our goals is to increase our revenue from $1.7 million to $2.2 million, Martin says. We have hovered at $1.5 (million), $1.7 million for the past 10 years, and if we’re going to grow, we have to look at every opportunity to bring in some revenue.
The museum will continue $1 admissions for Fort Wayne Cultural District’s Last Saturdays program and free admission for Be A Tourist In Your Own Hometown and Taste of the Arts. During Three Rivers Festival next month, the museum will offer free general admission for anyone with an official festival button. Martin says it’s important for the museum to continue being a community partner.
We don’t want to pull the plug on everything at once, and I don’t think that’s something we’re looking forward to, she says. It’s a way to stay a part of the community. It brings in visitors, as well as breeds good will. For those who find it helpful to have those reduced prices, you can look ahead to those days and weekends.