Frequently Asked Questions

COVID-19 related questions

 

All guests, including members, must make online reservations or call 815-963-6769. This regulates our capacity and ensures a quality visit for our guests. Reservations are for 2-hour visits listed on our website – 10:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm. If you make a reservation and are not able to visit, please let us know as soon as possible. If you would like to reschedule your visit, please contact us at 815-963-6769.

 

All guests, including members, must make reservations on our website. If you are unable to make online reservations, call 815-963-6769 and we will schedule you over the phone.

 

Guests will be greeted in the lobby where we will take your temperature (touchless) and ask several health screening questions.  You will then proceed to the admission desk at the beginning of your designated play period. Please have your phone with your electronic reservation ready for touchless scanning.

 

If your temperature is 100.4*F or higher you will be asked to wait in a separate area and your temperature will be taken a second time. If it still registers high, you will be asked to return for a visit when you are healthy. 

 

All guests ages 6 and older are required to wear a face covering. Face shields are not allowed unless worn with a mask covering the nose and mouth.  Children ages 5 and younger are not required to wear a face covering, but we strongly encourage it. Guests with medical conditions or disabilities that prevent them from wearing a mask safely are exempt. Caregivers visiting with children who have Autism Spectrum Disorder or similar processing differences are encouraged to let our staff know. Face coverings are NOT required in our outdoor park when social distancing can be maintained. 

 

We are following the guidelines set by the state as well as local health department. Face coverings are intended to trap respiratory droplets leaving the wearer’s nose and mouth, reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission, according to the CDC. They also help wearers refrain from touching their face with unclean hands. This is for the protection of both guests and staff.

 

We will contact the manager on duty to speak with you regarding this policy. As state and local guidelines change, we will adapt our policies.

 

The museum is open to guests Tuesday - Sunday from 9:30-11:30 am, 12:30 - 2:30 pm and 3:00-5:00 pm with advance reservations. Starting August 4, 2020 choose from two timed sessions:10:00 am - 12:00 pm or 1:00 - 3:00 pm Tuesdays-Sundays. Time between play periods is used to sanitize and deep clean exhibits and exhibit components as well as other surfaces.

 

Reservations are for 2-hour play periods from 9:30-11:30 am, 12:30 - 2:30 pm and 3:00-5:00 pm with advance reservations. Starting August 4, 2020 choose from two timed sessions:10:00 am - 12:00 pm or 1:00 - 3:00 pm Tuesdays-Sundays. This method of timed ticketing is used for all guests, including museum members.

 

There is nothing more important than the safety of our guests and staff. Below is a list of practices in which we engage to maintain the highest safety standards for you and your family or group. 

 

  • Timed entry tickets for pre-reserved entry and exit times to honor social distancing guidelines and provide a quality experience. Timed entry tickets required for all guests, including museum members. Scan your online reservation at our Admission desk for contactless entry.
  • Reservations may be purchased/reserved online or by phone at 815-963-6769 to honor social distancing guidelines.
  • Before entry to museum, all guests, including members, are required to have their temperature taken using a touchless thermometer and answer health screening questions. If someone has a temperature 100.4 F or above, the group will be asked to step aside to a private area for a second check. 
  • Guests will be encouraged to sanitize hands prior to entry.
  • Following local, state, CDC guidelines, all guests ages 6 and older are required to wear face coverings when medically able. Children age 5 and younger are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings. Caregivers visiting with children who have medical conditions, ASD and similar processing differences are encouraged to let our staff know. 
  • Staff members are required to have their temperature checked when reporting to the museum each day. Staff working more than 5 hours are required to have their temperature checked twice during the day. Staff are also required to wear face coverings and wash hands/use hand sanitizer frequently to ensure safe interaction with guests and coworkers.
  • Fresh air is circulated in the building frequently each day.
  • Installations of new sneeze guards at admission desk and health screening desk, as well as increased number of hand sanitizing stations to help protect the health of guests and staff.
  • Signage, as well as our staff, will encourage social distancing, hand washing, and other safe behavior.

 

Deep cleaning with CDC-approved disinfectant occurs after each timed session of guests. We use that time to sanitize exhibits and other high-touch areas including doors, door handles, elevator buttons, stair railings, and bathrooms. Loose toys and manipulatives, such as play food and balls, are rotated out with new sanitized sets for each new timed visit.

 

  • In accordance with the recommendations by local and state public health officials, the museum will re-open at a reduced capacity to allow for proper social distancing.
  • Increased outdoor experiences and demonstrations will allow for further social distancing.
  • Signage, as well as staff, will encourage social distancing, hand washing and other safe behaviors.

 

Admission is $9 for each person age two or older. Admission is FREE for Discovery Center Members and children age 1 and younger.

 

Due to current COVID-19 guidelines, guests can enjoy the museum in 2-hour time blocks. Remember, we are located on a museum campus, so there is also the Rockford Art Museum and Burpee Museum of Natural History you can visit, as well as many shops and restaurants located near us. We are a one-stop for family fun: play, learn, eat, shop - repeat!

 

Strollers are allowed in the museum. They may be left in our unattended coat area across from the Admission Desk or remain with you during your visit to the Museum. There is also space directly outside the Tot Spot area to park your stroller. Please refrain from leaving your stroller in high traffic areas such as exhibit entrances and exits.

 

Due to COVID-19 health protocols, food is temporarily not allowed in the museum. Water is allowed, as are bottles for babies. Water fountains are currently closed, but a water bottle filling station is available.

 

Discovery Center Museum is for the young and young at heart, but specifically, we target children from birth to age 12 and their families. Each of our exhibits, experiences and programs have been designed to engage a broad range of children’s ages and interests. Only Tot Spot is limited to children age 6 and younger and their caretakers.

 

Discovery Center Museum has great spaces for infants and toddlers. Tot Spot is designed for children age 6 and younger and their parents. This interactive fun-filled wonderland offers tots the opportunity to explore, discover, experiment and wonder. Tot Spot is located on the second floor. Inside Tot Spot is Baby Spot, an area designed specifically for babies 18 months and younger. Also inside Tot Spot is a quiet room made especially for nursing mothers and children that may just need a little quiet time.

 

You can contact us at 815-963-6769.

 

Discovery Center Museum is committed to providing exhibits, programs, and public spaces that are inclusive and interactive for all visitors. Please visit our accessibility page for more information on the accommodations offered by the museum. We  have  wheelchairs available upon request. We also have a Visual Systems Guide for families to use during their visit.

 

We ask that all children under the age of 15 be accompanied by an adult or chaperone at least 16 years of age at all times.  Any child under 14 on his/her own will be escorted to the Admission Desk to remain there until a parent or caretaker is located. Each non-adult chaperone (ages 16-17) may be responsible for no more than three children under the age of 12.

 

While COVID-19 restrictions are in place, the museum will have limited capacity. Therefore, crowds will not be an issue. The Tot Spot exhibit area is typically busier in the mornings. 

 

As posted at the entrance to the Museum and according to laws from the State of Illinois, for the safety of our children, no weapons (including concealed or open carry) are allowed in the Museum. The only exceptions to this policy are for law enforcement.

 

Museum Members receive unlimited free admission for a full year! Members receive a variety of benefits, from discounts to birthday parties, classes and special traveling exhibitions, to special members-only events. And, for a family of four, a Family Membership pays off in just three visits!

If you would like to buy a membership, please visit the Admissions Desk before it closes at 5:00 pm for the day’s admission to be applied to your membership purchase.


Please note: Admission already paid will be applied to membership balance if purchased on the same day only.
 
Additionally, Gift Memberships of various levels are a great way to give the gift of innovative, child-centered fun to someone else!