The National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel Reopens March 1

Museum reopens again with new schedule after year-end spike in area COVID cases

Memphis, TN, Feb. 18, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel announced it will welcome back visitors starting March 1 after area health officials restrictions in December caused the museum to closed to protect guests and staff. The museum is still requiring guests to wear masks and purchase timed tickets online prior to visiting the Museum to maintain social distancing and capacity guidelines provided by health officials. 

Safety Measures

Staff and guests are required to wear face masks while on the Museum campus, especially inside the Museum. Masks are provided for guests who arrive without them. Staff will undergo daily temperature checks. Additional hand sanitizer dispensers and regular disinfection are part of the Museum’s plan to protect everyone’s health. Throughout the Museum, signage and floor markings will help visitors maintain social distancing six feet apart. Water fountains will be disabled. There will be frequent sanitization of high touch areas daily.

Museum Hours and Admission

Initially, Museum hours are adjusted to Monday 9:00am to 5:00pm with Free Period for Tennesse residents from 3:00pm-5:00pm, and Thursday through Sunday 9:00am-5:00pm. The Museum is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Admission pricing remains the same, and tickets can currently be purchased at for March 1 and after.  Timed ticketing is scheduled every 15 minutes to regulate capacity and social distancing. Use of credit or debit cards instead of cash is encouraged in the Museum Store.

Experience Modifications

At least for the first few weeks of reopening, guided tours are limited. Interpretive talks will be staged outdoors in the museum courtyard, weather permitting.  Staff also will be strategically placed within exhibits for gallery tours and to assist visitors.

“Reopening March 1, when it’s safer – and only because it’s safer – is our promise.  Our commitment to providing a safe experience for our staff and guests remains our ultimate goal,” said Faith Morris, the museum’s Chief Marketing and External Affairs Officer. “To be closed during Black History Month was a tough one for us. During February many turn their thoughts and interests to celebrating and learning more about Black achievement and contributions.  The best thing is our guests haven’t missed this opportunity in visiting the museum after Black History Month because our storytelling of Black History transcends February,” Morris said. 

The museum will continue monitoring updates by health officials to ensure the safety of its employees and guests.  Museum in-person events and programs are cancelled or hosted virtually until further notice. For more information, visit


About the National Civil Rights Museum

The NATIONAL CIVIL RIGHTS MUSEUM, located at the historic Lorraine Motel where civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated, gives a comprehensive overview of the American Civil Rights Movement from slavery to the present. Since the Museum opened in 1991, millions of visitors from around the world have come, including more than 90,000 student visits annually. The Museum is steadfast in its mission to chronicle the American civil rights movement and tell the story of the ongoing struggle for human rights.  It educates and serves as a catalyst to inspire action to create positive social change. 

A Smithsonian Affiliate and an internationally acclaimed cultural institution, the Museum is recognized as a 2019 National Medal Award recipient by the Institute of Museums and Library Services (IMLS), the top national honor for museums and libraries.  It is a TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Top 5% U.S. Museum, USA Today's Top 10 Best American Iconic Attractions; Top 10 Best Historical Spots in the U.S. by TLC's Family Travel; Must See by the Age of 15 by Budget Travel and Kids; Top 10, American Treasures by USA Today; and Best Memphis Attraction by The Commercial Appeal and the Memphis Business Journal.