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Department of State

New Jersey State Council on the Arts

The Hon. Tahesha Way, Lt. Governor and Secretary of State

Families First Discovery Pass

Discounts to Cultural Programs for State Assistance Recipients

Families First Discovery Pass

If you receive benefits from the NJ Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Work First New Jersey (WFNJ), the Child Care Assistance Program and/or WIC, you are eligible for free or discounted tickets to cultural programs throughout the state through the Families First Discovery Pass program. If you are unsure of your eligibility within any of the above-mentioned programs, please visit to screen for SNAP and WFNJ or visit to check your eligibility for child care assistance or visit to check your eligibility for WIC.

Families First Discovery Pass visitors use their Families First Card or eWIC card to identify they are eligible. Discounts extend to Families First and eWIC cardholders and their family/household. However, the extent of the discount and the number of people eligible for the discount per card is up to each participating organization. Certain Special performances or exhibits may be exempt from the discount. Organizations may limit the number of spots available to cardholders if there is limited capacity for an event. Any payment due after the discount is applied should be paid with standard payment methods (cash, credit card).

Check out the list of participating organizations for each organizations’ discounts, how to access them, where the organization is located, the class, performance or operating hours and contact information. Most free admission programs don’t require advance reservations or ticket “purchase,” but a few do - so check the details on the list of participating organizations to be sure. If you are not clear on the discount or how to access it, the organizations’ phone numbers are listed, and you can call them and ask how to use the Families First Discovery Pass Discount at their venue.

About the Program

The Families First Discovery Pass program was launched in 2019 as a partnership between the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the New Jersey Historical Commission, and the NJ Departments of Human Services (DHS) and Health (DOH). This program provides families and individuals enrolled in state assistance programs with free or highly discounted admission to arts and history organizations, venues, and programs – both in-person and virtual. The Families First Discovery Pass program offers broad access to cultural experiences for New Jersey residents and helps cultural organizations engage new audiences with the goal of building long-lasting relationships. Residents who receive benefits through SNAP, WFNJ, Child Care Subsidy and/or WIC are eligible for free or steeply discounted cultural programs throughout the State.

View our list of participating organizations


How Organizations Can Participate



Watch an information session about the Families First Discovery Pass program.

Make sure that your organization meets the minimum requirements listed in the guidelines, and then submit your information via this online form.

Registration is rolling, however, materials and the websites are updated according to a series of deadline. For participation in the 2023-2024 program, sign-up by November 9th, January 31st, or May 1st.

If you have any questions about this program, or want to discuss ideas for discounts, program implementation, and front line staff training, please contact: Christopher Benincasa, State Arts Council OR Niquole Primiani, Historical Commission.


Page Last Updated: 04/12/23




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