Guest Policies

guest policies

We can’t wait to see you in the Museum! To ensure everyone has a safe and fun visit, all guests are expected to follow the Museum’s guest policies as outlined below.

  • National Children’s Museum exhibits and programs are designed for children ages 0-12. To enter the Museum, your group must include a child (ages 0-12). Close relatives of that child ages 13-17 are welcome. We welcome individuals with disabilities who will benefit from our exhibits and programs. Parents 16+ are welcome with their own children.
  • Adults (age 18+) will not be admitted alone.
  • For the safety of all our guests, children must be supervised by an adult caregiver at all times.
  • Children should not leave the Museum unless accompanied by an adult.
  • Guests are expected to follow all verbal and written directions by National Children’s Museum staff, including health and safety policies. The Museum reserves the right to remove any person who refuses to comply with institutional policies.
  • All guests must use their “walking feet.” Running is discouraged in order to provide a safe, enjoyable experience for everyone.
  • To prevent falls and injuries, no riding on shoulders is allowed.
  • Guests should not leave personal items unattended. Guest items left unattended will be moved and/or parked along the nearest wall to keep pathways clear.
  • Strollers can be taken throughout the Museum or they can be left in the free, unattended stroller parking area on the entry level. When possible, parked strollers should be collapsed. The Museum is not responsible for lost or stolen items. All other recreational wheeled-devices (wagons, bikes, skate shoes, etc.) are prohibited.
  • Appropriate attire must be worn at all times in the Museum. Certain types of clothing, accessories, items, or slogans displayed on clothing are inappropriate for a setting where children are present. Such clothing and items include uncovered diapers, uncovered swimsuits, and t-shirts or other clothing with offensive slogans (such as foul, hate, or obscene language) or suggestive images (explicitly sexual or hate symbols).
  • Except in an emergency, children may not touch fire alarms or emergency exits.
  • Children are generally prohibited from climbing, jumping, hanging, or sitting on exhibits. Climbing inside of specific areas of the Dream Machine is allowed.
  • Weapons are strictly prohibited at the Museum, which is located within the federal Ronald Reagan Building. This policy applies to all visitors, including those with permits, with the exception of Federal Protective Service officers per federal building policy. Any guest seen with a weapon will be asked to leave immediately.
  • Upon entry, all guests, including children, will pass through a security screening.
  • Smoking and vaping are strictly prohibited in the Museum. Any guest seen smoking or vaping will be asked to stop and if they refuse may be asked to leave.
  • Outside alcohol is prohibited in the Museum.
  • Profanity is prohibited. If a guest becomes physically or verbally abusive to staff or other guests, they will be asked to leave.
  • Unless specifically invited to do so, guests may not remove items from the Museum (e.g., exhibit props like the pinewood derby cars).
  • Guests should conduct themselves in a manner appropriate for a children’s museum. In order to maintain a high standard of service and safety for all guests, the Museum reserves the right to refuse or discontinue service to any visitor.