The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art's Center for Asian Art on Tuesday, February 17, 2016. STAFF PHOTO / NICK ADAMS

Local museums are FREE this Saturday

Sometimes, special day events just work in our favor. If you’ve been wanting to visit any local museums and have been putting it off, Saturday is the time to do it, during the Smithsonian Magazine’s national Museum Day Live events that make admission FREE.

To get your free admission tickets, visit smithsonianmag.com/museumday for a ticket for free admission for two people. All you have to do is enter your name and email to download the Museum Day Live voucher.

Participating museums in Sarasota-Manatee:

Ringling Museum

The largest museum in the state of Florida, Ringling offers a circus museum, the classic museum of art with 21 galleries, a recently opened Center for Asian art and beautifully landscaped grounds leading up to the Ca’D’Zan mansion on the bayfront. However, entrance into the mansion is not included with the Museum Day Live ticket; you’ll have to purchase that separately.

5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota. Saturday hours: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. 941-359-5700; ringling.org.

South Florida Museum

The largest natural and cultural history museum on Florida’s Gulf Coast, this museum is home to Snooty, the world’s oldest manatee, in its Parker Manatee Aquarium; the Bishop Planetarium with a multimedia theater for films and lectures, and a fabulous collection of fossils and other precious natural antiques. It also recently opened the exhibit “Dinosaur Discoveries: Ancient Fossils, New Ideas.”

201 10th Street West, Bradenton. Saturday hours: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. 941-746-4131; southfloridamuseum.org.

Historic Spanish Point

An outdoor museum that offers 30 acres of luscious gardens in Mrs. Potter Palmer’s Jungle Walk, a Sunken Garden, and one of the largest butterfly gardens on the Gulf Coast. Visitors can also see how Florida pioneers built and ran Sarasota’s first produce packing house, as well as an old chapel, cemetery and preserved Guptill House, built in 1901. And, dogs are welcome.

337 N. Tamiami Tr., Osprey. Saturday hours: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. 941-966-5214; historicspanishpoint.org.

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