Frequently Asked Questions


 

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Reopening Plan

Members’ only weekends: Bill’s Backyard opens to members’ only Saturday and Sunday, September 26 – 27 and the following Friday, Saturday, Sunday on October 2 – 4, with two play sessions with limited capacity.

Public opening: Bill’s Backyard opens to the general public on Friday, October 9 – 11, with two play sessions each day, and every Friday, Saturday and Sunday thereafter.

The Museum is following the guidelines and recommendations set forth by the Santa Clara County Public Health Department, the State of California, and the CDC to ensure the safety and health of our employees and visitors.

The Museum will open in phases, starting with Bill’s Backyard in Phase I. There will be two play sessions every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday with an one hour break between sessions for deep cleaning and sanitizing. The morning and afternoon sessions are two and a half hours each.

  • 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
  • 1:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Ticketing

How does the timed ticketing work?

The Museum will have two play sessions every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday with an one hour break between sessions for deep cleaning and sanitizing. The morning and afternoon sessions are two and a half hours each.

  • 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
  • 1:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Tickets must be purchased in advance to guarantee your family a spot. We will have a limited number of tickets available for walk-ups each day, but we cannot guarantee you a reservation at the door. You may arrive any time during your play session, but exit promptly when it ends. 

You will be required to complete a COVID-19 form agreeing to our health and safety guidelines  when making a reservation and when purchasing tickets at the Museum.  When buying in advance, you have agreed to reschedule your visit should any symptoms present themselves before entry. To encourage compliance, you can reschedule your visit, or request a refund. 

If you cannot make your scheduled time, please kindly let us know 24 hours in advance of your reservation, so we can accommodate another family. If you would like to reschedule your visit, please contact admissiontickets@cdm.org and include your order number from your reservation confirmation.

Is proof of my timed ticket required to get into the Museum?

Yes, please plan to show your confirmation on your phone or bring a print out of the ticket confirmation with you.

Can I purchase a ticket at the Museum?

For the health and safety of everyone, we request that you purchase your tickets in advance. However, tickets can be purchased at the Museum. We will have a limited number of tickets available for walk-ups each day, but we cannot guarantee you a reservation at the door. You will be required to complete a COVID-19 form agreeing to our health and safety guidelines when purchasing tickets at the Museum or in advance.

Do you accept cash?

To minimize the contact between visitors and employees, credit cards/debit cards are preferred for a contactless purchase; however, we will accept cash purchases.

I’m a member, do I need to reserve a day and time to visit?

Yes. Due to the Museum’s new safety protocols and limited capacity, members need to make a reservation before visiting. You must make a reservation for everyone in your family, regardless of their age, so capacity numbers can be tracked. Two play sessions are available Friday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. We appreciate your courtesy and cooperation as we navigate this limited capacity time at the Museum.

Instructions: To make a reservation, click on Tickets and sign in or register. Once you sign in, enter the number of adults, children, seniors and infant tickets. You’ll be prompted to select the day and a two and a half hour play date for either the morning or afternoon. Member tickets are free. The system will automatically apply the member discount at checkout.

Upon arriving at the back gate of Bill’s Backyard, please plan to show your ID and confirmation, preferably on your phone, or with a printed confirmation.

Will I be required to do a health screening?

No. But as a precautionary measure you will be asked to sign a waiver at the time of your ticket purchase. This ensures that all of our visitors are aware of the Museum’s expectations for visiting. When buying in advance, you have agreed to reschedule your visit should any symptoms present themselves before entry. To encourage compliance, you can reschedule your visit, or request a refund.

Why do I need to sign a waiver?

By signing this waiver, we ensure that all of our visitors are aware of the Museum’s expectations for visiting. This helps us provide a safe environment for you and your family and our employees.

If I answer yes to one of the questions on the waiver form, but I feel fine, can I still visit the Museum?

Out of an abundance of caution to ensure the health and safety of our employees and visitors, we will ask anyone who answers yes to one or more of the questions to visit another day. You can apply the total amount of your ticket purchase to another day or a full refund will be provided for any tickets purchased in advance of the visit.

What will you do with this information?

This information is securely stored in our ticketing database. We will not use your information other than to contact you, nor will we sell or give your information to a third party, with one exception. It will be shared with the Santa Clara County Public Health Department if contact tracing is needed.

Do I need to make a reservation if my child is age 1 or under?

Yes, every person who enters the Museum must be accounted for so we can track capacity levels and comply with the Santa Clara County Public Health Department contact tracing guidelines. However, you do not have to pay for your child age 1 or under.

If I can’t make my reservation, can I get a refund?

We know that plans change. We request that you kindly contact us at admissiontickets@cdm.org 24 hours in advance of your scheduled visit so that we can accommodate another family. You can apply the total amount of your ticket purchase to another day and time or a full refund will be provided for any tickets purchased in advance of the visit. We appreciate your courtesy and cooperation as we navigate this limited capacity time at the Museum.

What if I arrive late for my reservation time?

Your ticket is valid for the entire length of your time slot and you may enter at any point during this time. However, tickets are only valid for the date and time you selected for your purchase. You may arrive any time during your play session, but must exit promptly when it ends.

Can I leave and come back during my time slot?

You may leave the Museum and return during your time slot.

Can I make a group reservation?

We are not currently taking group reservations. As we adjust to new circumstances, we will be considering this option as soon as we are able to do so safely and within the county and state guidelines.

Can I use a free or discount pass that I have?

We are not currently accepting any discounted or free passes. We look forward to reinstating and honoring our discount program once we are able to return to full operations.

My company is a Corporate Member, can I get a corporate discount?

We are not currently administering any discount programs.

Will you continue to offer the Museums for All program?

We will continue to offer our longstanding “Museums for All” program, which makes the Museum experience affordable for all families with the presentation of a state Electronic Benefit Card, WIC folder, or a BIC card and personal ID.

Tickets for “Museums for All” must be purchased at the Museum.

Health and Safety

What changes has the Museum made to ensure a safe place to play?
  • Timed entry tickets will cap attendance at 25% of capacity to honor social distancing guidelines and ensure a safe and quality experience for everyone. Scanning your online reservation at the entrance provides a contactless entry. 
  • To protect the safety of our employees and visitors, plexiglass shields have been installed at the admissions area.
  • Separate entrances and exits to Bill’s Backyard and to appropriate exhibit areas have been established to help maintain safe social distances. 
  • New layouts of the exhibit spaces in Bill’s Backyard have been designed to limit the number of families in each area. 
  • Signage in three languages is placed throughout Bill’s Backyard to encourage and remind visitors of safe distancing. 
  • All visitors over the age of six will be required to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth, per the City of San Jose's ordinance. Visitors who can’t wear a mask without assistance and those advised by medical professionals to not wear a mask will be asked to bring their own face shield to wear while at the Museum.
  • The Purple Museum team is onsite cleaning and disinfecting throughout the day with CDC and EPA-approved disinfectants, especially on high-touch places (Diversey Oxivir  TB).
  • Daily deep cleaning with CDC and EPA-approved disinfectants will occur between each morning and afternoon play sessions and at the end of every day. 
  • Clean and dirty bins are onsite for placing loose toys and manipulatives. Newly sanitized toys and manipulatives will be single-use only and will be disinfected between each use.    
  • Nanoseptic tape will be placed on many high-touch surfaces, such as exhibit handles, buttons, and door handles. 
  • We’ve added eight hand sanitizing stations in Bill’s Backyard.
  • Staff are required to take a daily health screening, wear face coverings, and wash and sanitize their hands throughout the day to ensure safe interactions with staff and visitors.
What additional cleaning and sanitizing procedures have you implemented?

We’ve redoubled our stringent cleaning protocol. Throughout the day, the Purple Museum team will clean and sanitize exhibit areas, the restroom and the admissions area with an emphasis on high-touch surfaces using CDC and EPA approved disinfectants (Diversey Oxivir TB). The Museum will close each day for an hour cleaning break between the morning and afternoon play sessions. This cleaning includes high temperature sanitizing of all manipulatives and disinfecting high-touch surfaces throughout Bill’s Backyard with CDC and EPA approved disinfectants. (Auto-Chlor for manipulatives)

What physical changes to the Museum have you made to enhance safety?

The admissions area has been streamlined to reduce contact and time entering Bill’s Backyard. Plexiglass shields have been installed at the admissions area to protect staff and visitors. Exhibit areas in Bill’s Backyard are marked with separate entrances and exits and additional hand-sanitizers that contain CDC-recommended 60% alcohol have been installed in Bill’s Backyard.

Will everyone need to wear a mask, including children?

All visitors over the age of six will be required to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth, per the City of San Jose's ordinance. Visitors who can’t wear a mask without assistance and those advised by medical professionals to not wear a mask will be asked to bring their own face shield to wear while at the Museum.

What if I forget my face covering? Can I still visit the Museum?

Wearing a face covering is the law and is the right thing to do so that we can ensure the safety and health of our employees and visitors. No one will be allowed in Bill’s Backyard without a face covering unless they are six years old or younger or are advised by medical professionals to not wear a face covering. Visitors who can’t wear a mask without assistance and those advised by medical professionals to not wear a mask will be asked to bring their own face shield to wear while at the Museum.

Will you have masks available?

As a non-profit, it’s not feasible for us to provide masks. All visitors are responsible for bringing their own masks. A limited number of disposable masks will be available for $1 at the admissions area.

How are you maintaining social distancing?
  • In accordance with the Santa Clara County Public Health Department, we will be open with a limited capacity of 25% to allow for proper social distancing. 
  • We will offer two play sessions for two and a half hours each, one in the morning and one in the afternoon with an hour break in between for deep cleaning and sanitizing. 
  • The exhibit areas will each have occupancy limits based on 6 ft to 10 ft. between each family. 
  • Each exhibit area will have one entry point and one exit.
  • Signage in three languages is placed throughout Bill’s Backyard to encourage and remind visitors of safe distancing, including directional arrows and spacing dots on the ground. 
Are you taking temperatures?

At this time, Children’s Discovery Museum will not be taking temperatures.

Is your staff having temperature checks?

All Museum staff are required to complete a daily health check before entering the Museum.

Membership

Will my membership be extended due to Covid-19?

Yes, eight months will be added onto current expiration dates. This applies to all members who were active as of March 1, 2020.

I’m a member, do I need to reserve a day and time to visit?

Yes. Due to the Museum’s new safety protocols and limited capacity, members need to make a reservation before visiting. You must make a reservation for everyone in your family, regardless of their age, so capacity numbers can be tracked. Two play sessions are available Friday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. We appreciate your courtesy and cooperation as we navigate this limited capacity time at the Museum.

Instructions: To make a reservation, go to Tickets and sign in or register (watch our short registration tutorial). Once you sign in, enter the number of adults, children, seniors and infant tickets. You’ll be prompted to select the day and a two and a half hour play date for either the morning or afternoon. Member tickets are free. The system will automatically apply the member discount at checkout.

Upon arriving at the back gate of Bill’s Backyard, please plan to show the staff member your ID and confirmation, preferably on your phone, or with a printed confirmation.

What if my membership expired during the shutdown? Can I still visit as a member?

Yes, you can visit as a member. Your membership has been extended by eight months and is current, but you will still need to make an advance reservation to visit.

Can I bring a friend with one of my guest passes?

We are not currently accepting any member guest passes, including the Super Guest Pass. As we adjust to new circumstances, we will be revisiting our ability to administer member passes.

What if I can’t make my reserved time?

We know that plans change. We request that you kindly contact us at admissiontickets@cdm.org 24 hours in advance of your scheduled visit so that we can accommodate another family. We appreciate your courtesy and cooperation as we navigate this limited capacity time at the Museum.

The Museum Experience

What should I know before I arrive?
  • Tickets: Make sure to purchase your tickets in advance. This includes members. 
  • Parking lots: The two parking lots across from the Museum are open and light rail is running. 
  • Strollers: To protect the health and safety of our employees and visitors, strollers will not be allowed in Bill’s Backyard. Please leave your stroller at home or in your vehicle. 
  • Water: Our hydration station will be open, so bring a water bottle for refilling. 
  • Food: Light snacks but no meals will be allowed in Bill’s Backyard. FoodShed cafe is not open. 
  • Face coverings: Don’t forget to grab your masks. We encourage everyone to wear a mask. They’re required for those over the age of 6 years old. (See more detail under the Health and Safety section above.
Where do I enter Bill’s Backyard?

The entrance and exit to Bill’s Backyard are located at the back of the Museum. Upon arriving at the Museum, follow the signs and head toward the back of the building where you will find the entrance to Bill’s Backyard.

Can I bring a stroller?

To protect the health and safety of our employees and visitors, strollers will not be allowed in Bill’s Backyard. Please leave your stroller at home or in your vehicle.

Are there any exhibit areas closed or modified?

There are no exhibit features closed in Bill’s Backyard. However, the spaces have been reconfigured to limit the number of families in each area and to create one entrance and one exit in and out of exhibit areas where appropriate. The climbing hand-holds on the rock climbing structure have been removed. 

NEW! We’re excited to open a new observation beehive, along with some new activities and additional observations, in the Junior Ranger Station.

Will the restroom in Bill’s Backyard be open?

Yes, the restroom in Bill’s Backyard will be open.

Can I bring food and water into Bill’s Backyard?

Due to Covid-19, only light snacks are allowed in Bill’s Backyard, no lunches or meals. The hydration station is open for refilling your own personal water bottle. FoodShed cafe is not open.

What if I lose something at the Museum?

Due to Covid-19, we will only hold lost and found items for 24 hours. Retrieving from the lost and found bin will be self-serve.

Will water fountains be open?

Our hydration station will be open for refilling a personal water bottle.

Will FoodShed be open?

FoodShed will not be open.

Where can I change a diaper?

Diaper changing is only allowed in the restroom in Bill’s Backyard.

Is there a private area for breastfeeding?

Due to limited space and social distance guidelines, there is no private area for breastfeeding in Bill’s Backyard.

What if I feel uncomfortable after entering the Museum?

If you feel uncomfortable after entering Bill’s Backyard, please speak to a staff member. We value your feedback and want everyone to have a safe and satisfying experience.