Bank of America's Museums on Us: Your Guide to the Best Free Exhibits in South Florida

October was a stressful month for those suffering from a chronic case of FOMO (fear of missing out). With events like Octoberfest, The Color Run, and the Zombie Crawl, it seemed like every weekend of October had something going on. Now that Halloween is over, it's time to get back to your mundane weekend routine.

Before you decide to substitute fun with substance abuse, fear not. This upcoming weekend is the first in November, and Bank of America's Museums on Us promotion is once again giving the gift of self-culturing for free. This Saturday and Sunday, Bank of America/Merrill Lynch cardholders can obtain free admission to 18 participating Florida museums, eight of which are right here in South Florida.

We took the liberty of spoiling you with an updated museum guide to bring you the latest happenings and exhibits at each museum participating in the program. With all the money you'll be saving, all you have to worry about is where to brunch.

Bass Museum of Art
When it comes to a year-round calendar of exhibits, Bass consistently delivers. Right now you can catch "Unnatural" before it ends this Sunday, November 4. The collaborative art exhibition features works by 27 international artists and explores the subject of humankind's manipulating nature in the modern world. The standout piece is a massive video piece that lends the illusion of an actual sperm whale swimming in a glass aquarium.

This Friday, "Temporary Contemporary" is launching with an ongoing public art project filling the busy streets and boardwalks of Miami Beach with outdoor works of art. Current artists on view include: Susan Philipsz, Cristina Lei Rodriguez, Stefan Brüggemann, Michael Linares and Ken Gonzales-Day.

The Bargain: The museum's $10 admission is free this weekend for cardholders.
2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-673-7530, bassmuseum.org

IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame
If fishing aficionado is your name, then IGFA is your game. At IGFA you can appreciate the local marine art scene. New in the art gallery is Akihiro Shiroza's 17-piece art exhibit titled, "Glorification of the Dead" where taxonomy meets art. Using scientifically collected larval samples Shiroza "glorifies" them through cleaning rituals, chemical processes, and digital techniques. Shiroza has identified about 200,000 larval fish over the last three years, before magnifying the super-macro photographs up to 200 times to the size of their mature bodies to complete the final product.

The Bargain: You'll save yourself from paying the regular $10 admission price.
300 Gulf Stream Way, Dania, 954-922-4212, igfa.org

Miami Art Museum
Now on exhibit through November, 4 is New York-based artist Rashid Johnson's first major solo museum exhibition, "Rashid Johnson: Message to Our Folks." By incorporating everyday objects from his childhood in a process he describes as "hijacking the domestic," Johnson transforms materials such as wood, mirrors, tiles, rugs, CB radios, shea butter, and plants into conceptually loaded and visually compelling works. The artwork explores the complexities and contradictions of black identity in a practice that is rooted in his own personal experiences.

The Bargain: You won't have to pay the $8 admission price.
101 West Flagler St., Miami, 305-375-3000, miamiartmuseum.org

Miami Children's Museum
Some kids may find The Wizard of Oz scary. With flying monkeys, wicked witches, and tornadoes, who can blame them? But MCM is bringing the fun and educational side out of the tale with a traveling exhibition that lets kiddos and adults alike experience a real life Munchkinland, the Emerald City, and the yellow brick road all in the museum's "The Wizard of Oz Children's Educational Exhibition." On exhibit through January 6, this interactive walk-through exhibition features a replica of Dorothy's Ruby Slippers as well as authentic photos from the film. Mosey over to the Gale Farm for the simulated petting zoo, where guests can experience the feel of various farm animals sans the germs. There's also the Emerald City where you can use a kaleidoscope-like device to change the hue of the horse of a different color.

The Bargain: Regular admission costs $15, or $12 if you can prove you're a Florida resident. If you bring a whole family of Bank of America cardholders this weekend, you can save some serious cash all without having to click the heels of your ruby slippers.
980 MacArthur Causeway, Miami, 305-373-5437, miamichildrensmuseum.org

Miami Museum of Science
Whether or not climate change is real has been made more obvious with Hurricane Sandy's recent sweep through the Northeast. With MiSci's latest exhibit, "Water, Wind, and Weather: Miami in a Changing Climate," you can get an interactive look at the Earth's climate and the consequences of human activity on global climate. This high-tech, completely digital exhibit uses animations of hurricanes spinning, planes flying, populations growing, and sea currents flowing. The best part? You get to control it.

The Bargain: Regular prices for Dade County Adults, $14.95; Dade County kids and seniors, $10.95; Non-Dade County Adults, $12.70; Non-Dade County kids and seniors, $9.30. Yeah, a day at MiSci doesn't come cheap, but thanks to Bank of America/Merril Lynch you can take your brood for burgers and shakes at nearby Shake Shack after.
3280 S Miami Ave., 305-646-4236, miamisci.org

Museum of Art | Ft. Lauderdale
The Museum of Art in Fort Lauderdale is closer than you think, and when you learn of all it has to offer, you're going to regret not having gone sooner. The current original exhibition, "Shark," is practically dedicated to diehard Shark Week fans. The shark exhibit is guest curated by acclaimed wildlife artist, author and environmentalist Richard Ellis and contains drawings of all the known varieties of sharks in the world, photographs, sculptures, and video as well as a section devoted to the sensational impact of the 1975 Steven Spielberg film Jaws, because how can anything shark related ever ignore such a cinematic masterpiece.

The Bargain: Regular admission costs a whopping $18, so getting in for free makes the drive to Fort Lauderdale worthwhile.
1 East Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, 954-525-5500, moafl.org

Museum of Contemporary Art
"Pablo Cano: The Toy Box Revival" is having its last show this Saturday, November 3. The musical marionette production is based on Claude Debussy's 1913 children's ballet La Boite a Joujoux, a solo piano piece that was intended for marionettes, but never realized during the French composer's lifetime. The performance features marionettes created from found objects by Miami performance artist Pablo Cano, choreography by Katherine Kramer and music performed by pianist Karen Schwartz.

The Bargain: You'll only be saving $5 in admission costs by attending this weekend, but that's also $5 more in your pocket.
770 NE 125th St., 305-893-6211, mocanomi.org

Museum of Discovery Science
The museum will be closed on Saturday for a private event, so you'll only have the option of a Sunday visit. If you plan on trekking over to South Florida's second city, it's wise to leave a day of rest beforehand, anyway. As usual, MODS has tons of interactive and educational science related exhibits like the newly expanded 34,000 square-foot EcoDiscovery Center, featuring five new exhibit areas. Geckos: Tail to Toepads is currently on display through January 6 shining the spotlight on some of Florida's most underrated lizards.

The Bargain: It's difficult to believe that an IMAX film is more interesting than geckos, but this weekend, you can see a film for what normally costs $18 for free.
401 SW Second Ave., Fort Lauderdale, 954-467-6637, mods.org

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