14:15 PM

Five Philadelphia Cultural Institutions Announce Six-Week Closure, Effective November 20, 2020

Philadelphia, PA (November 17, 2020)—For the safety of our staff, visitors, members, and volunteers, and in accordance with new restrictions announced yesterday by city government and health officials, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, the Barnes Foundation, Eastern State Penitentiary, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art jointly commit to temporarily close to the public in support of Philadelphia’s broad-based, stepped-up effort to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our cultural institutions are united in shared service to the community and will work alongside our elected officials and health authorities. Effective Friday, November 20, we will close for a period of six weeks, and expect to reopen our doors early in the new year, on a date or dates to be announced later.

The leadership of the above institutions have issued the following statement:

“It is extremely discouraging to close our doors at a moment when, during a normal year, we would be preparing to welcome even more visitors for the holiday season. We understand that it is vitally important to ensure the safety and well-being of our staff, visitors, members, and volunteers and we support the efforts of our government and medical professionals in reducing the spread of the virus. As cultural and educational institutions, we take our civic responsibility very seriously, and as we work to defeat the pandemic together, we also firmly believe that our cultural institutions will play a central role in the city’s ultimate recovery. We encourage our community to support our institutions in other ways during the season of giving, so that we can emerge from this period and welcome our visitors in the new year.”


Scott Cooper, President and CEO, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Thom Collins, Neubauer Family Executive Director and President, Barnes Foundation

Sara Jane Elk, President and CEO, Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site

Brooke Davis Anderson, Edna S. Tuttleman Director of the Museum, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

Timothy Rub, George D. Widener, Director and CEO
Gail Harrity, President and Chief Operating Officer



Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University:
Carolyn Belardo, Director of Public Relations

The Barnes Foundation:
Deirdre Maher, Director of Communications
215.278.7160, press@barnesfoundation.org

Eastern State Penitentiary:
Nicole Frankhouser, Director of Marketing and Communications
215.236.5111 x219, nf@easternstate.org

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
Ryan Burton-Romero, Senior Vice President for Enrollment Management & Strategic Communication
215-391-4807, press@pafa.org

Philadelphia Museum of Art:
Norman Keyes, Director of Communications
215.684.7860, pressroom@philamuseum.org