Archives Sleepover FAQ

Where will the program take place?
The program will take place in various areas of the National Archives Museum throughout the evening. All participants should plan to come in the Constitution Avenue Special Events entrance to check in. Check-in starts at 6:30 PM; please plan to arrive between 6:30 and 7:10 PM. This gives you time to get checked in, put down your gear, and make it to orientation. Orientation begins at 7:15 PM, and is mandatory – how else will you find out all the fun things planned for the night?!

How old do my children have to be to attend the sleepover?
The activities offered are for children ages 8-12. We require at least 1 adult (age 21+) for every 4 children.

What is the price per person for the sleepover?
The general price per person (per adult, per child) is $125. National Archives Foundation members receive a discounted price of $100 per person. Foundation membership starts at $60.

I am an adult; can I attend alone?
All adults must be accompanied by a child. If you are interested in special after-hours events at the National Archives, consider becoming a member of our Young Founders Society.

Can I buy a ticket at the door?
No, all tickets must be purchased in advance.

Is the Archives wheelchair accessible?
Yes, the Museum is fully ADA compliant.

How do I get to the Archives?
The Archives is centrally located in downtown Washington, DC, on Constitution Avenue between 7th and 9th Streets, NW. The closest Metro stop is Archives/Navy Memorial, on the green and yellow lines. There are also several parking lots, garages, and on-street parking available in the area. Click here to learn more.

Will I have to go through security?
Yes, since the Archives is a government building, all visitors need to go through security when they enter the Museum. Please leave any oversized items at home, as everything you bring needs to fit through security’s machines (like you use at the airport).

What time is the program?
Check-in will be from 6:30 to 7:10 PM on Saturday. No one will be admitted after 8:00 PM. The program will end at 9:00 AM on Sunday.

What if I have to leave early?
Security guards will be available to escort those who need to leave before 8:00 AM to the Constitution Avenue exit. You will not be able to reenter the building once you leave.

Will we have access to the Museum on Sunday?
Exhibit spaces will not be open on Sunday morning.  All participants must depart by 9:00 AM so that staff can clean prior to opening for the public that day.  You may reenter the museum after 10:00 when it is open to the public if you would like.

Where will we sleep?
You will sleep in the Rotunda, which is kept rather cool to help preserve the documents, so make sure to bundle up. Also, the marble floors are rather hard – so bring a camping pad!

What time is bedtime and wake-up?
Lights out will be at 11:00 PM. We strictly enforce that when lights go out no personal electronic devices can be used except in cases of emergency. Wake-up is 7:00 AM, with breakfast beginning at 7:15 AM.

What should we bring?
You should bring a camping pad, sleeping bag, pillow, personal items (toothbrush, hairbrush, etc.), comfortable clothes and shoes, and your sense of adventure! It can get cold in the Museum overnight, so we suggest you dress in layers. Not all areas of the Museum get completely dark—so if you are sensitive to low light you may consider bringing a sleeping mask.

What can’t we bring?
We ask that you do not bring air mattresses, outside food or drink, electronic games or devices, cameras, weapons, or tents.  Please leave your valuables at home.

May I take pictures during the event?
Only in the dress-up area. Otherwise, photography is strictly prohibited throughout the Museum to protect the documents on display. However, staff photographers will be on hand for commemorative photos throughout the evening, which will be uploaded to Flickr the week after the event.

I want to share my experience – is there a hashtag for the event?
Yes! We’ll be using #ArchivesSleepover, and encourage you use it to share your excitement about this fun experience as well.

Will we have access to electricity in the sleeping area?
No, the sleeping area does not have readily accessible outlets. We encourage you to fully charge your cell phone prior to arrival. If you do need access to 24-hour electricity (i.e. for medical reasons), please contact sleepover@archivesfoundation.org to discuss accommodations.

Will meals be served?
We will not serve dinner on Saturday night, so please eat prior to arriving. We will provide an evening snack (e.g. crackers, fruit, and juice) and a pancake breakfast on Sunday morning. If you or your child has food allergies please email us to discuss bringing your own food at sleepover@archivesfoundation.org.

Can I bring my personal medications to the event?
Yes, but please be aware that the Museum cannot refrigerate medications nor assist in the administration of medicines.  Personal medications should be placed in a safe and secure location within your personal belongings throughout the event.

Will the Archives shop be open during the event?
Yes! The National Archives Store will be open Sunday morning, and all participants will receive 10% off.

Will the children be with the adults or separate throughout the event?
Adults are required to stay with the child(ren) they are supervising throughout the night.

What is the reservation process for the sleepover?
Reservations must be made online. The program fee is non-refundable. A space cannot be reserved without full payment.

Can I get a refund if I do not attend the event?
No refunds will be issued for the event.

Is there a plan for snow?
The National Archives is a federal government agency, and as such, follows the government’s opening/closing policies. If the federal government determines that the weather is bad enough to close operations in DC, we will notify all participants, and the sleepover will be rescheduled for the following weekend.

If we did not answer all of your questions, please feel free to email us at sleepover@archivesfoundation.org.