Field Trips At Old Sturbridge Village: Frequently Asked Questions

How do I schedule a program?

All school and youth groups must make a reservation at least six weeks in advance. Reserve a field trip, call our education scheduler at 508-347-0274, or email us at [email protected].

When is the best time to visit?

Old Sturbridge Village is open year-round and each season offers its own unique reasons to visit. The busiest days for school groups are Thursday and Friday in May and June. If you are looking for a quieter visit, October, November, March and April are less busy.

What if I need to cancel my field trip or make a change to an existing reservation?

Groups needing to cancel or change the date of a museum program or tour, call 508-347-0274 or email us as soon as possible, but no later than four weeks prior to the program date. This helps us accommodate other groups. Please include your school name and zip code in your message.

How do I pay?

You may pay by credit card, check, or cash, or we will be happy to send an invoice. If paying by check, please use one check for the entire group, including chaperones. This dramatically speeds up the ticketing process. In case of overpayment, refunds will be mailed. If paying in cash, please collect money in advance. Large bills will speed the transaction.

Is funding available?

Your visit may qualify for full or partial funding from public and/or private sources. Assistance with transportation costs may be available through the Massachusetts Cultural Council’s Big Yellow School Bus Program. For more information on this funding opportunity, please visit the linked site directly. In addition, the New York BOCES program, the Connecticut Cultural Council and your local Arts Lottery Council for more information.

The Target Field Trip Grants program is another excellent source of funding for field trips. Registration for the Target Field Trip Grants program opens on August 1.

To learn more about funding opportunities, please contact us at 508-347-0274 or email us.

What is the chaperone and teacher policy?

We require one adult for every 10 children. Teachers and classroom staff are admitted FREE with proper school identification. The chaperone rate is $15. There is no limit to the number of chaperones you may bring at the $15 rate. However, we strongly recommend that you include all chaperone numbers when you register and pay for them all together when you check-in. This will dramatically speed up the process. In addition, we encourage carpooling, as the Museum Education parking area fills up quickly.

Is Old Sturbridge Village accessible to all?

Over half the historical buildings are accessible by wheelchair. For the best experience, leaders of groups with special needs will want to plan their visit with museum staff by calling 508-347-0274 or emailing us. You may also view our Guide to Access for more information.

How do I get to the Village?

All school and youth groups enter through Museum Education Center entrance. It is located separately from the main Visitor Entrance. Click here to view a map.

Where can I park?

Buses are sometimes asked to unload and then leave the Museum Education area and park in the main Village lot. As a result, access to the buses is not always available during the day. Limited free parking is available at Museum Education for chaperone vehicles. Please carpool whenever possible.

What do I wear?

The Village buildings and exhibits are connected by dirt road and spread over a large area. Students, teachers and chaperones should wear comfortable shoes and dress appropriately for the weather.

Is lunch space available?

Limited, non-refrigerated, sheltered lunch storage and eating space is available on a first come first served basis in the Lunch Room by the Museum Education building. Outdoor picnic tables are available on a seasonal basis. Because storage space is limited, please consolidate lunches into boxes or large bags.

Note: For the month of October, indoor eating space is not available. We apologize for the inconvenience. Lunch storage space is available in the Museum Education building along with outdoor picnic tables. You may also bring lunches into the Village. 

Is food available to purchase?

There are several dining options available at our museum. The Bullard Tavern Cafeteria and Village Café offer several seasonal selections. You may pre-order boxed lunches from our food service department by calling 508-347-0395.

Where can I shop?

The Miner Grant Store in the Center Village offers fresh-baked goods and unique gifts in a country store setting. The Museum Store and New England Bookshop located near the Visitor Center, offer the most extensive selection of gifts, crafts, books and educational materials. Groups are welcome at each shop. Please note, the Miner Grant Store is a smaller store that has a holding capacity of about 50 people at once.  The Museum Gift Shop is larger and can accommodate larger groups.

What if it rains or snows?

Old Sturbridge Village rarely closes because of weather. If it is raining, we recommend dressing for the weather with comfortable boots or walking shoes. If school has been cancelled due to weather conditions on the day of your visit, please leave a voice mail message before 8:30 a.m. by calling 508-347-0274.

Is first aid available?

First aid services are available at the Village’s Security Office.

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