San Jose and the Silicon Valley may be best known for the sciences, but the area is also home to an impressive trove of museums focused on art and culture. Luckily for the area’s hard-working population, many Silicon Valley museums offer evening hours and programs, with live music, lectures, hands-on art, and cocktail hours.  Given people’s busy schedules, local museums like the San Jose Museum of Art and Stanford’s Cantor Arts Center found that there was a need for hours that went beyond the standard 9 to 5 on weekdays, so that people who can’t make it in during the day can still experience art. Evening hours add a bit of glam to the gallery experience and provide a great date night that goes beyond drinks and dinner. On Friday nights, the Computer History Museum in Mountain View stays open late with food trucks, music and tours, and the Triton Museum in Santa Clara hosts monthly Triton Free Fridays, which feature live music, dance and theatrical performances. In downtown San Jose, the museums in the SoFA arts district—the Contemporary Art Museum, the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, and MACLA—all stay open late on the first Friday of each month, in conjunction with the South First Fridays art walk, and offer reduced or free admission, live performances, tours and lectures. Guide written by Rita Cameron

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