CHICAGO (CBS) — Five of the city’s most popular museums will stay open late on Friday to welcome back visitors as the state fully reopens without capacity limits for the first time since the early days of the pandemic.

“One of the best ways we can celebrate our city’s reopening is by spending time at our renowned museums, which have undergone so many challenges over the course of this past year,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement. “That’s why I am thrilled that so many of our most iconic museums will be opening their doors until late this Friday night to give residents and visitors a headstart on returning to a sense of normalcy. I want to thank our museums’ leadership teams for their collaboration and am looking forward to seeing our beloved cultural institutions fully and safely come back to life in the coming days, weeks, and months.”

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Most of Chicago’s museums began reopening in January and February as the state began easing COVID-19 restrictions statewide following a second surge of the pandemic that began in the fall, but with capacity limits and reduced hours.

On Friday, museums and all other businesses statewide will see capacity limits lifted entirely as the state fully reopens for the first time since restrictions first went into place in March 2020.

Five prominent Chicago museums will stay open late Friday night to celebrate the state’s full reopening, and will resume normal hours on Saturday, according to the mayor’s office: 

The Field Museum (1400 S Lake Shore Drive) 

The iconic Field Museum, which features nearly 40 million artifacts and specimens is one of the largest natural history museums in the world. Right now, patrons can visit the Becoming Jane: The Evolution of Jane Goodall exhibit which highlights the world-renowned research Dr. Goodall did that gave the world a deeper understanding of chimpanzees, our closest living relatives. They will remain open on Friday, June 11 until 9 PM.

The Shedd Aquarium (1200 S Lake Shore Drive) 

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The Shedd Aquarium, home to over 32,000 animals will be open until 9 PM on Friday to celebrate Open Chicago. Whether you visit the Polar Play Zone, stroll over to the Abbott Oceanarium, or say hello to the giant pacific octopus with an average arm span of 14 feet, there will be plenty to do Friday night.

DuSable Museum (740 E 56th Place) 

DuSable Museum, the nation’s oldest African American history museum will be open until 10 PM this Friday for their DuSummer outdoor entertainment series. The DuSummer series features Plaza performances from Jazz, House, Rhythm Latin and African, and Stepping Day through June and July. The museum officially opens on June 19th to celebrate Juneteeth Day and the 60th anniversary of the DuSable Museum.

Museum of Science and Industry (5700 S Lake Shore Drive) 

The Museum of Science and Industry is home to over 2,000 exhibits, displayed in 75 major halls making it one of the largest science museums in the world.  MSI will remain open until 10 PM so guests can visit their iconic new exhibit, Marvel: Universe of Heroes, the largest exhibition celebrating the Marvel Universe.

National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture (3015 W Division Street) 

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National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture is the only national museum focused on Puerto Rican arts and culture. The museum currently has an exhibit on Samuel Lind’s Portales, which brings together several avenues of exploration within Samuel Lind’s 50-year career, some of which have not been exhibited together before. NMPRAC will be open until 10 PM on Friday.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff