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ECHO Center to offer free admission till September

Published: Jul. 17, 2020 at 5:34 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 17, 2020 at 7:40 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Vermont families can beat the heat this weekend by heading to the ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain in Burlington for free.

Starting Saturday admission to the center will be free until September. But there are some new protocols visitors will have to follow including signing up online for a time to visit.

Starting Friday, July 24, ECHO is offering the 10 a.m. to noon time slot as a special member preferred time for visiting the museum.

“I really appreciate what ECHO has done to make this opportunity available. We need activities for our kids right now, we need these enriching educational activities. It’s been such a challenging period -- for them to do it for free is just great,” said Mayor Miro Weinberger, D-Burlington.

The museum’s namesake, Sen. Patrick Leahy is also praising ECHO for opening its doors to the public.

“It is a tremendous service to the community to open for free at this time, when families are looking for places to learn, and play together, and many are facing unfamiliar financial challenges,” Leahy, D-Vermont, said in a statement.

Visitors to ECHO Friday welcomed the center's reopening.

“It was exciting. We thought we were probably going to come anyway, but extra bonus that it was free,” said Emily Tripp of Michigan

“We hadn’t been to ECHO since they reopened and we wanted to check it out -- feel a little sense of normalcy in our lives. I felt very safe. I thought the way Echo was handling it was really appropriate. I felt safe bringing them. We’re excited -- we saw some ideas for the winter exhibits, so it will be nice to come back and see what they have put in place,” said Alicia Watts of Georgia.

Our Darren Perron spoke with ECHO Executive Director Phelan Fretz about the challenges the organization has faced during the COVID closure.

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