Looking for things to do in NJ this weekend with your kids? You don’t need to leave planet Earth to follow the adventures of Luke, Leia and Han Solo at Star Wars: Return of the Jedi in Concert, with shows in New Brunswick, Newark and Red Bank. Other weekend performances include DRUM TAO at NJPAC in Newark, a show filled with power percussionists inspired by traditional Japanese drumming, and Mystery and History of Magic at the Morris Museum, chock-full of magic tricks and illusions. If you don’t want to sit for a show, get outside and take the kids to Touch a Tractor in Oldwick. Get in the holiday spirit with Valentines for Your Tweet-Heart at the State Museum in Trenton, or visit the Asbury Park Valentine’s Bazaar to find the perfect gift, get brunch, sip champagne and more.
If you want to stay inside, take a look at our favorite indoor activities. To experience the great outdoors, we found some awesome activities the kids will love. Got a bunch of younger kids to entertain? We’ve got activities that cater just to them, plus free events for the whole fam. Check out our calendar for events near you, or browse things to do in NJ this weekend by county below.
Alice in Wonderland
This sensory-friendly performance at Wilkins Theatre heads down the rabbit hole with a new twist: Alice doesn’t fall into a garden, but a library full of pop-up books. Within each book is a door to a new adventure!
Wine and Fudge Weekend
Join Alstede Farms and Tomasello Winery for a combination of fresh, homemade fudge and a variety of wines that’ll put you in the Valentine’s Day state of mind.
Star Wars: Return of the Jedi in Concert
New Brunswick, Newark and Red Bank
Head back to a galaxy far, far away with Luke Skywalker and the Rebel Alliance at the Count Basie Center on Friday, NJPAC on Saturday or State Theatre on Sunday. The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra will play the film’s score live while you watch Darth Vader unleash the second Death Star upon the rebels while Princess Leia, R2-D2- C-3P0 and Luke fight to free Han Solo from Jabba the Hutt.
Touch a Tractor
All ages are welcome to climb on Melick’s working antique farm tractors. Then, try a scavenger hunt and roast some marshmallows, too.
Wine and Chocolate Wine Trail Weekend
Bring your partner to Terhune Orchards for a weekend of vino and chocolate. Taste Terhune’s wines (and baked goods) paired with locally-made chocolates before getting cozy by the firepit and making s’mores.
SATURDAY (FEBRUARY 8)
Mystery and History of Magic
Ages 3-9 can learn about famous magical tricks and the illusionists who performed them at the Morris Museum, plus see live magic.
Victorian Pressed Flower Valentine Workshop
Spend an afternoon at the Morven Museum & Garden to learn about the love language of flowers. Create a pressed flower to frame using one from Morven’s historic gardens.
Chocolate Family Fun Day
Step into the Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum for Touch the Music with Claudia Lemmerz and a semisweet adventure with chocolate-inspired activities.
Included with admission
Valentines for Your Tweet-Heart
Get crafty at the New Jersey State Museum with bird-themed handmade valentines. In the middle ages, people thought birds mated in mid-February, and they’ve been associated with the holiday ever since.
Lunar New Year Celebration
Hit the Princeton University Art Museum to celebrate the Year of the Rat with activities, dance, music and traditional Chinese dishes.
Asbury Park Valentine’s Bazaar
It’s not too early in the season to hit the Asbury boardwalk, where you can browse craft vendors’ wares for the perfect V-Day gift, plus listen to live music, hit the kissing photo booth, dig into food and drinks and more.
Follow the Drinking Gourd
Ages 6-12 can learn the history behind the song “Follow the Drinking Gourd,” which slaves sang while traveling on foot to freedom from Alabama to Canada. Kids will discover the Big Dipper and follow a family trying to escape oppression.
Head to NJPAC with your aspiring musicians for DRUM TAO, a show filled with power percussionists, flutists and harpists who combine art and athletics to add contemporary flair to ancient Japanese drumming.
SUNDAY (FEBRUARY 9)
Lightwire Theater: Dino-Light
Head to the Jay and Linda Grunin Center for the Arts for a glow-in-the-dark show that mixes puppets and tech. Take in this story about a famous scientist that uses magic to bring a dinosaur to life. When he leaves home, the dino discovers other creatures that’ll teach him about love as they light up the dark.
Tu BiShvat Hikes
Grab your family and head to the Cora Hartshorn Arboretum & Bird Sanctuary for a guided hike through the woods. Celebrate the Jewish New Year of the Trees by learning all about trees.
Sweet and Spicy Pomanders
Before you take a tour of the 18th-century farmhouse, the Miller-Cory House Museum will be ripe with citrus and cloves. Learn about pomander balls, aka studded fruits used to freshen the air and linen. Kids can make their own pomander balls by studding fruits with white cloves and learn about its history, dating back to medieval times.
$5/ages 13 and up, $3/ages 3-12, free/ages 3 and under
The Joy of Backyard Bird Feeding
Learn how to use bird foods, feeders, water and shelters to attract a variety of winter birds at Reeves-Reed Arboretum. You’ll also learn how to identify the common and not-so-common visitors your backyard might have. Registration required.
FIND MORE THINGS TO DO IN NJ THIS WEEKEND
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