Summer is in full swing, and we know it can be hard finding new things to do with the little ones every weekend. From Father’s Day fun to magic shows, we’ve rounded up the best activities for your 5-and-unders. If you’re looking for fun that’s also budget friendly, check out free things to do in June.
Celebrate Dad on His Special Weekend
Looking for something that’ll make both the little ones AND dad happy? On June 16, hit Nutley’s Annual Fathers Day Street Fair where they can indulge in festival foods like empanadas, zeppoles and cotton candy. Your little ones will enjoy face painting, pony rides, a petting zoo, kiddie rides, a climbing wall and more. Or, head to the Whippany Railway Museum for Father’s Day Train Rides, where the family can climb aboard a vintage caboose for a 10-mile ride along the Whippanong Trail with the kiddos. After your ride, check out the museum’s collection of historic locomotives, operating model trains and farm tractors. If you’re still looking for a way to celebrate Father’s Day, we found a ton of events around the Garden State.
Make Some Magic
If they’ve never seen magic live, this show will wow them. At Steve Woyce’s magic show, he’ll ask for volunteers to help him make moon rocks appear and perform other magical surprises at this comedic, space-themed show. You can catch his show on June 7 at the Rutherford Public Library (4 pm, free), on June 20 at the Oradell Public Library (7 pm, free), June 22 at the Saddle Brook Free Public Library (11 am, free) and June 24 at the Washington Public Library (10 am, free).
Start Your Engines at Monster Jam
Make sure you bring some headphones, but if they love playing with their Tonka trucks, this is sure to impress. On June 8, head to MetLife Stadium to see gigantic monster trucks like Grave Digger, Zombie and El Toro Loco perform tricks and compete against one another for the title of champion. They’ll catch air, spin up dirt and surprise your kids at every turn.
Get Your Berry On
Catch strawberry fever! From May 29-June 2, Monmouth Park Racetrack will host a Strawberry Fair filled with fruity treats. Come for great food, games, animals and rides at this fair that raises money for the local community. On June 1, Helmetta’s Kidztown & Strawberry Festival will celebrate its eighth year, boasting delicious strawberry treats like shortcakes, smoothies and chocolate-dipped goodies. The kids will love KidzTown, which’ll have a playground, bouncy castle, crafts, face painting and games. On June 4, Terhune Orchards in Princeton will put on Read and Pick: Strawberries, where kiddos ages 2-8 can listen to two stories about strawberries, then pick our their own container of the sweet red fruit, plus learn how they grow and should be picked. Registration recommended. On June 8, the 81st Annual Strawberry Festival at Gregory Elementary School is bringing out food, games, rides, crafts and face painting. On weekends from June 1-16, it’s all about digging into homemade strawberry ice cream, shortcakes, lemonade slushies, sundaes, pies and more at the Strawberry Harvest Festival in Chester. For even more strawberry adventures, find a PYO farm near you.
Hit a Fair or Fest
There’s a lot happening on June 1, like Point Pleasant Summerfest, which’ll have a children’s market and inflatables for your lil’ jumpers, plus live music, vendor booths, a beer and wine tent and plenty of fair food for you. Sparta Day is pulling out all the stops: Hit Kid’s Country for inflatables, games and other amusements, plus food and live entertainment. Step onto a working buffalo farm in Flemington for Buffalo Watch 2019, which’ll have two live bands, historical military units, wild west cowboys, farm fresh food, food trucks and farm tours. There’ll also be artists and antique dealers, plus pony rides and a fire truck display for the kiddos. Celebrate Moorestown Day with a petting zoo, face painting and inflatables for the kids, plus they’ll love to watch the pie eating contest. From June 1-2, the Woodbridge Food Truck Festival will bring out an inflatable gaga pit, meet and greets with costume characters and inflatable rides (not to mention a food and beer garden for you). On June 8, head to Leonardo for the 3rd Annual National Marina Day so the family can try kayaking and join the pirate parade—did we mention there’ll be free cake? On June 13, it’s all about the carnival-themed kid zone with a magic show, balloon artist and live animals at Family Fun Night in Summit. There’ll also be live children’s music to entertain your younger crew. And from June 21 through July 7, East Rutherford will once again be home to State Fair Meadowlands, which includes the Paul Bunyan Lumberjack Show (aka axe throwing and chainsaws), magic shows, Jurassic Kingdom (think animatronic dinos and artifacts), a petting zoo, hypnotist and classic rides the chair swings and a drop tower. And you’ll definitely want to mark your calendar with the Garden State’s biggest fairs.