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  1. #16

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Just going to go over a couple of your points here:

    A) Disneyland is something Walt probably couldn't have afforded when he was a kid ... even at the prices Disneyland was charging when Walt was alive (so no WWWD).

    B) You say in your post that most of these kids have gone to SFMM and Disneyland, but not museums. Last time I checked, most (read ALL) museums cost less $$ than SFMM and Disneyland. This is a matter of PRIORITIES, not finances.

    C) There ARE museums that are priced less than the $20 charged by the WDFM, some were already pointed out to you. The Getty in LA is actually FREE (you only need to pay for parking or take the bus to get there). I wonder how many lower income families have taken advantage of that? The LACMA is free for children, $15 for adults. So $30 get's a family of 4 in there ... cheaper than a movie.

    D) Speaking of movies, I'm sure many of the lower income families you speak of make it a point to go see the latest 3D cartoon or Transformers movie. Those tickets are at least $10 a piece, if not more (for 3D).

    Again, it's all about priorities, and parents these days seem to be keen on doing activities other than museums. So the museums have to price accordingly for the people who do visit in order to keep their doors open. Just the way it is.


  2. #17

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    Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Quote Originally Posted by sir clinksalot View Post
    Just going to go over a couple of your points here:

    . . . C). . . The Getty in LA is actually FREE (you only need to pay for parking or take the bus to get there). I wonder how many lower income families have taken advantage of that? The LACMA is free for children, $15 for adults. So $30 get's a family of 4 in there ... cheaper than a movie. . . Again, it's all about priorities, and parents these days seem to be keen on doing activities other than museums. So the museums have to price accordingly for the people who do visit in order to keep their doors open. Just the way it is.

    Good post. I re-dub thee Sir Thinksalot.

    The free membership for kids at LACMA allowed my daughter to take a guest when she and I visited, so I got in for free too. And I love both Getty museums. Even with the parking charge it's a great value. We took a group of public (mostly lower income) high school students to the Getty because entrance was free, and we skipped taking the students to the Huntington in San Marino because of its steep admission price. (The Huntington is free once a month with reservations, but it can get crowded that day. They've capped the # let in--I don't know how crowded that free day is now.)

    Museums are about education, enrichment, edification, etc., so as with free education in schools, I would like every kid to be able to get into any museum. I LOVE Bank of America's program which allows their many customers to get into museums without paying! The first time they offered that my daughter and I visited five of them--three of them twice.

    Among famous people, Walt Disney has been one of my two biggest heroes since I was 7. So this museum seems kind of like a church to me. People should enter, remove their hats, speak quietly, bow a few times, and, if inspired, make a donation or perhaps tithe to support it.

    I enjoyed the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, which had a steep admission price, but like Madame Tussaud's great wax museum in London, it seemed to me to be mostly about entertaining--like EPCOT. Hmmm, maybe Disney should have a program for lower income students in Orlando to visit EPCOT for free. Do they?
    Last edited by jcruise86; 04-19-2011 at 08:55 PM.

  3. #18

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Just use your AAA card and get 5 bucks off. problem solved I think it;s worth every penny.

  4. #19

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    Thanks! ! ! ! !

    Quote Originally Posted by biggsworth View Post
    Just use your AAA card and get 5 bucks off. problem solved I think it;s worth every penny.
    That's an excellent discount!
    Thank you, AAA and biggsworth!

  5. #20

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    I've actually found most museums, aquariums, and zoos to be cheaper on the budget vs movies and/or theme parks. The AP is a fraction of the cost, the crowds are usually light, and the exhibits generally change out as new ones rotate through (or in the case of Zoos/Aquariums exhibits are renovated/updated). This statement is from a father with 5 kids I might add...

    Another often overlooked piece of California history is the Mission system. Sure everyone knows the 4 or 5 perfect examples... but what about the others in the 20+ chain stretching up the coast? I hope that by the time my kids are in high school they will have seen each Mission.

    For those living on the East Coast you may want to look into Civil War battlefields within your state. Or if the state is old enough, Revolutionary battlefields... because many of them are "almost forgotten". They've become small parks and monuments, surrounded by forgotten towns. Little gems of history just waiting to be rediscovered.

    Financially speaking we may struggle sometimes, but our priority has always been on experience and education. We budget our trips and try to make the most of each visit. There are plenty who are far worse off than we are... but if you really want to see something you can save up to go see it.
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  6. #21

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    I know this is really late but the WDFM is a private foundation unlike the Smithsonian (Which is amazing BTW) I think $20 sounds about right. The museum is ran by the Walt Disney Family Foundation which is a non-profit organization. Donating $20 for your visit will go towards a foundation that is dedicated to preserving the memory of Walt. For me, I'll shell out the 20 bucks for that. Supporting the museum and foundation seems just okay to me. Of course it could be a tad cheaper though. like 10-15.
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  7. #22

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    Smile Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    I'd like to chime in on why I did not visit the museum when I visited SF last, and probably never will....

    First of all, let me say that I am very familiar with the SF area, having been born there and having lived within two hours of the city for about 1/3rd of my life. I love SF and vacation in it whenever I can. My wife and I even spent half our honeymoon in the city; it is an incredibly romantic place. It is an iconic, beautiful city with so much to do it staggers the mind. It is also incredibly expensive, in some respects.

    However, with that said, whenever I vacation there, I do not spend copious amounts of money on activities. It is unnecessary. The most money I think I've ever spent there on an activity (besides eating and hotel!) is visiting the SF Zoo, then 11.00 (it has since risen to 15.00 per adult, something I'll have to rethink next time we go) or the 6.00 (something else that has steadily risen in price) fee to come back across the Golden Gate Bridge from visiting such places as Stinson Beach, the Marin Headlands, Rodeo Cove and the Marine Mammal Center, Mt. Tamalpais, Point Reyes and other points north. There are so many things to do and see in the Bay Area, it just isn't necessary to spend a lot of dollars on activities.

    When I went to the museum last year with my wife and our two kids, very much looking forward to seeing it (I proudly admit that Walt is one of my biggest heroes) I was a little taken aback by the price. My two children are under age six, so they were free, but still...40.00 for my wife and myself seemed a bit much for a couple of hours entertainment. I was sorely tempted, even so, because of my love for Walt. In the end what decided it for me was two things; can't take strollers, and I wasn't going to hold my 1 1/2 year old in my arms the entire time and also I couldn't take any photos for memories of my 20.00 tour, so, no way no how.

    I drove away from the museum, disappointed, yet in retrospect I'm glad I didn't fall prey to my temptation and go in anyway. If I was going to spend that kind of money, I'd just spend a little more and take them to something that my kids would learn more from and the whole family would enjoy a lot more, like the California Academy of Sciences, which is something they could enjoy for most of the day.

    But this is just my humble opinion. To those who go and enjoy it, I say bravo. Hope it's all you thought it would be and more. My own enjoyment of San Francisco and Disney in general will be in no way affected by my not having seen the WDFM; it would be nice, but its just not a "must see" for myself and my family.

  8. #23

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    I understand you points CreepyMonkey, and you are correct there are quite a few things that can be done around the Bay Area inexpensively, relatively speaking. However, there is one cost you missed that can added and unforseen cost... Fuel, but...

    Your two noted points of contentions...

    One... Photography in the galleries. Put aside that many of the artifacts in the collection are still under copywrite protect, there are also many reflective display cases in the collection. Not only does this make taking picture a challenge because of the flash, it also become distractive to the other guests and detracts for everyones' experience. And I have experience this in other museums that do allow photography, and have found it quite annoying.

    Two... Stollers in the galleries. No disrespect, but if your little ones are not capable of making it through the galleries, the Walt Disney Family Museum is probably not a good match for your family. Again nothing against you, but, the way I have seen some parents wield stollers move as weapon than modes of transportation, again not a good match for some of the narrower passage ways of the galleries, and the effect it could have on other guests.

    So while I can appreciate you views, and disappointment, it sound to me like you would not have been able have a pleasurable experience had you chosen to visit anyway. And, I understand how anyone can assess the experience value against the entrance cost without having visited the galleries. But, that's just me. As for the admission cost, I must admit that the cost is not an issue for me, as I don't have to pay it, as a Museum member. So I may be a little biased here, but, I still don't think it is all that out of line with equivalent venues around the Bay Area.

    I do hope that you decide to visit some day, it really is a truly amazing collection of artifacts telling the story of an American Icon.


  9. #24

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Quote Originally Posted by Second Star View Post
    ...there is one cost you missed that can added and unforseen cost... Fuel, but...
    I thought about including that in the post but it seems like such an obvious given I decided not to.

    Quote Originally Posted by Second Star View Post
    So while I can appreciate you views, and disappointment, it sound to me like you would not have been able have a pleasurable experience had you chosen to visit anyway. And, I understand how anyone can assess the experience value against the entrance cost without having visited the galleries. But, that's just me. As for the admission cost, I must admit that the cost is not an issue for me, as I don't have to pay it, as a Museum member. So I may be a little biased here, but, I still don't think it is all that out of line with equivalent venues around the Bay Area.
    You are a tad biased, but then again aren't we all when it comes to our favorite Disney venues? So you can certainly be forgiven for that.

    I guess the rub is, it's the Disney Family Museum and ironically it really isn't for families! It is for adults to enjoy. Maybe one day when my kids are either (a) old enough and big enough Disney fans or (b) grown and out of the house I will enjoy visiting it. Until then there are other entertainment and educational venues out there for my family to enjoy together, and we'll have our Disney experiences in the Parks and Disney Stores.

    Quote Originally Posted by Second Star View Post
    I do hope that you decide to visit some day, it really is a truly amazing collection of artifacts telling the story of an American Icon.
    I hope one day to visit it as well. I've read everything I could ever get my hands on about Walt Disney, much of my homegrown philosophy has been affected by things I know about Walt and even my work philosophy with my employees is affected by what we fondly call "The Disney Way".

    Post Script - As an aside, I do think that San Francisco was a slightly peculiar pick for the location of the museum. I would think there would be much more obvious choices, such as Marceline or Kansas City; even Chicago seems like a more natural choice for it.

  10. #25

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Quote Originally Posted by CreepyMonkey View Post
    You are a tad biased, but then again aren't we all when it comes to our favorite Disney venues? So you can certainly be forgiven for that.
    Guilty as charged.


    Quote Originally Posted by CreepyMonkey View Post
    Post Script - As an aside, I do think that San Francisco was a slightly peculiar pick for the location of the museum. I would think there would be much more obvious choices, such as Marceline or Kansas City; even Chicago seems like a more natural choice for it.
    Not so peculiar when you understand that most of the Miller family lives in the North Bay Area. Ron and Diane own Silverado Winery up in Napa, and are at the Museum often, as well as many of their children. If the Museum had been built in one of those other locations, I don't think we'd see the Millers there as often.

  11. #26

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    I enjoyed the Museum immensely but I can see younger children expecting something totally different. Sure I'd like to see the price lower but not through a government subsidy. Not everything is affordable for everyone so if this is a priority of yours, save accordingly.

  12. #27

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Yah, I really don't see this museum as something for children. There's a lot of text to go through and while the visual displays are crazy insane, kids will not understand the significance at their age. But I loved walking through the museum and I'd do it again. it's gorgeous inside. It's a must see for fans of Walt and will bring a tear to your eye.


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  13. #28

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Quote Originally Posted by Coheteboy View Post
    Yah, I really don't see this museum as something for children. There's a lot of text to go through and while the visual displays are crazy insane, kids will not understand the significance at their age. But I loved walking through the museum and I'd do it again. it's gorgeous inside. It's a must see for fans of Walt and will bring a tear to your eye.
    Yup, probably wouldn't take a kid under the age of 8.

    And, YES... Especially Gallery 10. I never get out of the gallery without tears in my eyes.

  14. #29

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    Quote Originally Posted by Second Star View Post
    Yup, probably wouldn't take a kid under the age of 8.

    And, YES... Especially Gallery 10. I never get out of the gallery without tears in my eyes.

    That one is horible!!!!

  15. #30

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    Re: Disappointed at $20 admission fee

    It's a beautiful museum with a public collection unlike any other. I spent a good three hours there walking through the storyline of Walt's life. I was quite impressed with how honest it was — I really didn't expect to see the Studio animator's strike mentioned nor the House Un-American Activities Committee, but there they were. I also appreciated the small walls representing Walt's family life with photographs of his non-Studio related events.

    My one and only gripe about the place has nothing to do with the cost of admission — I'd have paid more than $20 for my three hours there. My gripe has to do with the beginnings of Disneyland. The Disney Family Museum states that Walt was inspired to build Disneyland out of his love for miniatures and the Griffith Park Carousel. Yet there was so much more to it than that. What about Walt's relationships with Bud Hurbut and Walter Knott? Disney and his designers studied and visited Knott's Berry Farm for years before Disneyland broke ground. Where's the Walter Knott / Walt Disney connection in the museum? Sad to say, the family ignored it completely.

    Still, $20 is fair price to pay to see that incredible museum and it's shocking collection of mementos. Too bad they forgot to put Walt Disney's Knott's Berry Farm ticket stubs on display.

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