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Best NJ Places to Take Preschoolers in July

Top things to do with your 5-and-under cutie pies this month.


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Whether you love the great outdoors or beat the heat indoors, we’ve the deets on events perfect for you and your preschooler. Celebrate the Fourth of July at the State Fair Meadowlands’ Fairtriotism, meet real mermaids at Breakwater Beach or learn about sharks a shark-themed Magic Show.

Don’t forget to check out local fairs and festivals going on this month, either.

Tuesday-Wednesday, July 3-4

Fairtriotism

Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford
Price: Prices vary
Deets: Start your Fourth off right with a patriotic celebration at the State Fair Meadowlands. After live performances and more than 35 acres of food, vendors and activities, stick around for a 600-firework spectacular. Fireworks show included with admission price. Want more 4th of July fun? Check out our list of Celebrations and Festivals in NJ.

Thursday-Saturday, July 5-7

Rockaway Boro Fire Department Festival

Where: Rockaway Borough Fire Department, Rockaway
Price: Free
Deets: Support your hometown heroes with a weekend of games, rides, raffles and live music by Street Hassle. Unlimited ride wristbands are available for purchase.

Friday, July 6

Mermaid Day at Breakwater Beach

Where: Breakwater Beach Waterpark, Seaside Heights
Price: Included with admission
Deets: If your kids watch The Little Mermaid on loop, bring them to Mermaid Day at Breakwater Beach, where a real siren will be visiting and ready for photo ops.

Karaoke and Pizza

Where: Warren County Library, Hackettstown
Price: Free
Deets: For all the girlies who jam in the shower to Frozen, join the library for an afternoon of singing and snacking. Registration required.

Monday, July 9

Propbox Players Present: Three Pigs

Where: Bound Brook Library, Bound Brook
Price: Free
Deets: You’ve heard the story of the three little pigs a thousand times, but stop by for a live retelling of this old time favorite.

Wednesday, July 11

Sharks Rock with Magic

Where: Waldwick Public Library, Waldwick
Price: Free
Deets: Fish are friends, not food! Join magician Steve Woyce for an afternoon of shark-themed magic. Play a quick game of pass the shark and become an expert on the sea predators.

Barnegat Bay Day

Where: Long Beach Island Foundation of the Arts and Sciences, Long Beach Twp.
Price: Free
Deets: Join The Long Beach Island Foundation of the Arts and Sciences and Alliance for a Living Ocean for day at Barnegat Bay. Learn about the Watershed and explore hands-on activities for the whole family.

Wednesday, July 18

Maplewood Movies in the Park

Where: Dehart Park, Maplewood
Price: Free
Deets: Have a super night at this outdoor viewing of The Incredibles. Participate in activities and games in the park, then grab your blanket for a 7:45 pm viewing of the movie. Itching for more outdoor flicks (and not just from the mosquito bites)? Check our list of free outdoor movies in NJ.

Storybooks in Space

Where: Planetarium at RVCC, Branchburg
Price: $8
Deets: If your preschooler loves all things outer space, take her to see planets up close at the planetarium. Enjoy storytime in the planetarium and learn about space from local scientists.

Friday, July 20

Puppet Theater

Where: Morris County Library, Whippany
Price: Free
Deets: Put your kiddo’s creativity to the test at this this library activity, where kids can use puppets to tell their own story. Registration required.

Saturday, July 21

Christmas in July

Where: Waterloo Village Historic Site, Stanhope
Price: Free
Deets: It’s the most wonderful time of the year! (Well, kind of) This fundraiser for the Peter D. Smith house is Christmas themed, which means staff are dressed in period clothing and visitors can snap pics with Santa. Furry friends welcome!

Wednesday, July 25

Bright Star Touring Theatre’s Chicken Little

Where: Wilkins Theatre, Union
Price: $15
Deets: The sky is falling! Find out what happens when a chicken causes an uproar on the farm at this live production. Tickets are available for purchase online.

Ongoing

Day Out with Thomas

Where: Delaware River Railroad Excursions, Phillipsburg
Price: $21/ages 2 and up
Deets: If your little ones love all things trains, suit up for a day of Thomas and Friends crafts, photo ops, stories, videos and music.

A Year With Frog and Toad

Where: The Summit Playhouse, Summit
Price: $18/adults $15/ages 18 and under
Deets: Follow these two amphibians on forest adventures through all four seasons. Performances on July 6-8 and 13-15. Tickets available for purchase online.

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