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MFA cancels all events through the end of August

The MFA has e-mailed patrons and visitors that it's cancelling all of its programs and events through Aug. 31, due to Covid-19 concerns.

Makeeba McCreary, the museum's chief of learning and community engagement, wrote:

Due to ongoing concerns regarding COVID-19, we have made the difficult decision to cancel all of the Museum’s events and programs through August 31, 2020. We came to this decision with great care - in consultation with community and cultural partners, performers, and city officials - to put the safety of our staff, volunteers, and visitors first. Where feasible, we are rescheduling programs for the future.

If you purchased tickets to any upcoming MFA event, you will receive a follow-up e-mail with instructions on how to request a refund or donate a portion of the value of your tickets to the MFA Fund. As the Museum weathers this unprecedented closure, a gift in any amount helps us resume outstanding programs in the fall to share art with Boston’s students, families, and the creative community.

Via Steve Garfield.

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Comments

The arts and nonprofit institutions sector has been hit harder than I thought. Hopefully, this prolonged closure means more certainty for the MFA (and others), and will allow them to more fully resume operations when they do reopen.

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Understandable, but really a shame. One of the things getting me through this was looking forward to visiting the MFA and the Gardner again to refresh my soul once we emerge from this isolation.

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This letter does not necessarily mean that the museum will remain entirely closed until August 31. It says only that films, concerts, lectures, and the like are cancelled until then.

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It's likely that when museums do reopen they will have to limit admission numbers for some time, so need to have a strategy in place-advance sales only, no group tours, etc. Libraries will have an even harder task in managing expectations for public access. The MFA is acknowledging that social distancing is not going away in the foreseeable future.

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With limited or appointment admission one would have the place more "to oneself" for a while to contemplate. No hordes of tourists or kids running all around. A silver lining.

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I work in an event-related field (leaving this deliberately vague) and there's a growing consensus that even after the ban on groups is lifted people will be nervous about being in large crowds and/or enclosed spaces with strangers. Plus events have vendors, performers, speakers, etc as well as ticket holders who need to be contacted and refunded in advance. The MFA may want to bite the bullet and just do it now instead of perpetually sending out cancelation notices on a rolling basis.

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The exhibits are great but my kids are heartbroken about Riley. Is he locked inside or wandering the streets? They’re really concerned about him and want to make sure he’s OK. They haven’t said it yet but are probably hoping he needs a place to live with a couple of toddlers to keep him company.

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Voting closed 10

Have you reassured them that Riley is ok? While I don't have any inside knowledge, I'm 100% sure that the museum would not abandon their bug-sniffing dog. The museum is just closed to visitors. It's not abandoned and out of business.

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MFA was going to have free annual membership available to anyone who attended one of their public events this year. The first opportunity had been scheduled for march. Too bad !!

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Wednesday nights are free.

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So is the first weekend of the month if you have a Bank of America card.

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Free memberships that people already have (such as the one I received at Juneteenth last year) will be extended, but I don't think they have worked out details yet of how this will work.

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Voting closed 10