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Oakland Museum of California Announces Its Reopening to the Public on Friday, November 27 With Free Weekend Access

(OAKLAND, CA) November 12, 2020Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) today announces it will reopen to the public on Friday, November 27, 2020 with three free community access days over the weekend through Sunday, November 29. OMCA Members will be welcomed back the weekend of November 20.

In its initial phase, the Museum will be open to the public Friday through Sunday from 11 am to 5 pm in order to manage capacity and prioritize safety. In addition to the newly-redesigned OMCA Gardens, which will be accessible for free, the Museum’s Galleries of California Art, History, and Natural Sciences will all be open for visitors to enjoy with a reserved ticket.

Due to the impacts of COVID-19, OMCA has remained closed to the public for eight months. During this time, the Museum’s newly-formed safety re-opening team has been dedicated to making adjustments for the health and safety of OMCA staff and visitors, designing and implementing new protocols, adjusting on-campus experiences to meet the health requirements of Alameda County, and creating additional signage that will help visitors navigate safely through the Museum.

Among the changes visitors will experience: implementation of timed entry procedures, capacity limitations, increased cleaning and sanitation, physical distancing practices including a one-way path of travel, and touchless transactions for onsite purchases. In order to ensure that the Museum will not exceed capacity, all visitors, including Members and children, will be required to purchase or reserve a ticket in advance. Tickets for specific time slots will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information on OMCA’s new protocols, please visit  

Health & Safety
Following the guidelines and best practices recommended by Alameda County, OMCA is implementing the following changes and requirements for all staff and visitors:

For more information about OMCA’s new safety protocols and changes to the onsite experience, visit

“As we welcome our visitors and community back to campus after several long months of closure, OMCA is committed not only to offering a place of healing and connection, but most importantly, to maintaining a safe and enjoyable experience for both staff and visitors,” said Director & CEO Lori Fogarty. “Our staff have made the necessary changes for a safe re-opening, and we are all so thankful to have the opportunity to reopen our doors to our transforming campus. I think visitors will be pleasantly surprised to see our new look!”

Opening November 27: OMCA’s Newly Redesigned Gardens
Upon return to OMCA’s campus, visitors will also get the first glimpse at the Museum’s extraordinary re-landscaped gardens, nearing completion as part of a campus transformation that also will include new entries at 12th Street and 10th Street and a renovated café, all planned for completion in the next few months. The campus plan is funded through a five-year $85 million comprehensive fundraising effort, All In! The Campaign for OMCA, which has surpassed its $80 million in funds raised to date.

During the temporary closure, significant progress has been made to the multi-phased project, including new paving areas, newly-installed sculpture, new native trees and plantings, a new lawn, and a new outdoor stage that will soon be used for programming and performances once visitors are again able to safely gather. Part of a long-term vision to expand the Museum’s role as a public gathering place, the renovated gardens will offer a safe and welcoming environment for increased social distancing on campus. In addition to private philanthropy, this project is funded in part by Capital One Commercial Bank, Oakland Renaissance NMTC, Inc. and the City of Oakland.

Mothership: Voyage Into Afrofuturism to Open in January
OMCA plans to resume its regular hours when its next special exhibition Mothership: Voyage Into Afrofuturism, opens to the public on January 16, 2021. As OMCA reopen its doors after months of shelter-in-place, Mothership will offer a powerful reason to gather—even if it’s at a distance—and celebrate Black imagination.

Coming Soon: Town Fare by Tanya Holland
OMCA will also soon introduce a new destination dining experience—Town Fare by Tanya Holland. As part of OMCA’s campus renovation, the Museum is working to complete the newly-renovated cafe this fall and plan to open Tanya Holland’s new restaurant, Town Fare, soon. Because restaurants adhere to a separate set of COVID-19 guidelines, the Museum is working closely with Alameda County health officials to determine next steps regarding the opening. In the interim, the OMCA Store will offer pre-packaged food and bottled drinks for purchase.

The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) tells the many stories that comprise California, creating the space and context for greater connection, trust, and understanding between people. Through its inclusive exhibitions, public programs, educational initiatives, and cultural events, OMCA brings Californians together and inspires greater understanding about what our state’s art, history, and natural surroundings teach us about ourselves and each other. With more than 1.9 million objects, OMCA brings together its multi-disciplinary collections of art, history, and natural science with the first-person accounts and often untold narratives of California, all within its 110,000 square feet of gallery space and seven-acre campus. The Museum is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year as a leading cultural institution of the Bay Area and a resource for the research and understanding of California’s dynamic cultural and environmental heritage for visitors from the region, the state, and around the world.


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