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Best Free Museums in Ontario

By: Cityseeker
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Ontario Museum of History & Art

The Ontario Museum of History and Art aims to expand the community's knowledge of local culture through educational programs, exhibits and special events. The museum exhibits in detail, the life and people of the Inland Empire and the docents organize various outreach programs and field trips throughout the year. One of the highlights during Autumn is the Dia de los Muertos festival, when local artists showcase the macabre through painting, sculpture and crafts. Every year the event draws in thousands over the Halloween season.

Ontario, CA, United States
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African American Museum of Beginnings

The African American Museum of Beginnings has art, artifacts and cultural events that feature and highlight the African arts, culture and civilization from the bygone era. The Pomona gallery displays art and sculpture from various African cultures as well as those from the United States and beyond. Their assemblage features creative exhibits made by the town's preschoolers, apart from some breathtaking art works depicting the heritage, milestones and contemporary issues of the African community spread in different parts of the world.

Pomona, CA, United States
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Pomona College Museum of Art

Located in the city of Claremont, the Pomona College Museum of Art is a teaching museum which features student artwork from the private liberal-arts college as well as pieces from more established artists. The exhibitions are definitely eclectic, some of the past ones have included exhibits on Chinese snuff bottles, stencil drawings, sculpture and paintings from writer-composer and Pomona alumnus John Cage. Needless to say the varied media is impressive. Moreover, the James Turrell Skyspace is an architectural wonder which focuses on the nature of light and how it is emitted. The lighting programs within the room are timed for sunrise and sunset in order to amplify the color in the space.

Claremont, CA, United States
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Wignall Museum of Contemporary Art

Located on the Chaffey College campus, the Wignall Museum of Contemporary Art is a teaching museum that primarily highlights work from students, but it also hosts other temporary exhibits from artists in the Inland Empire. In addition to contemporary art, the Wignall hosts talks and conferences for the benefit of the college as well as the community. Admission is always free and the galleries are closed on Fridays, Sundays and Holidays.

Rancho Cucamonga, CA, United States
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Mary Vagle Museum & Nature Center

Located at the base of the Jurupa Hills, the Mary Vagle Nature Center serves as an educational point-of-interest that highlights the Inland Empire's flora and fauna. The center also works as a good starting point for exploring the hills themselves. In the area surrounding the center, visitors can see myriad wildlife, from birds and butterflies to reptiles and smaller mammals. If you venture towards the top of the hills, the vantage point offers a superb view over the Inland Empire; it also provides a great place to have a picnic.

Fontana, CA, United States
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Jurupa Mountains Discovery Center

Located around 15 miles from Ontario in the Jurupa Valley, this Earth-science museum is dedicated to educating the public about the region's flora and fauna. The museum provides information as well as exhibits about the entire Riverside area and the replica dinosaurs in the Granite Hill Nursery are always fascinating for the kids. Throughout the year, the museum leads tours, field trips and nature camps. All in all, this is the perfect destination for a fun and educational trip with the family.

Riverside, CA, United States
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