Looking for things to do in NJ this weekend with your kids? January’s cold weather doesn’t mean you can’t venture outdoors. This weekend, celebrate Frozen Fun Night at the Cora Hartshorn Arboretum & Bird Sanctuary in Short Hills by building a snowman out of ice cream with the Queen of Arendelle herself. Or, head to the Watchung Library to solve a scavenger hunt for fairy families blown from their Fairy Village. Don’t forget to mark your calendar for Warren’s Winter Festival, Fireworks and Bonfire, which will feature a petting zoo, carnival rides, ice carvings and horse-drawn carriage rides.
If you want to stay inside, take a look at our favorite indoor activities. 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.
Vernon Lights Festival
Head to Glenwood Lake Art Park, where your kids can marvel at lantern displays, splurge on food truck fare, listen to holiday music, watch performances and visit the creativity pavilion.
$19.99/adults, $14.99/ages 3-12, free/ages 3 and under
Scavenger Hunt and Marshmallow Roasting
Bring your kiddos ages 4-10 to Melick’s Town Farm for a free scavenger hunt and marshmallow roasting. The farm also offers apples, donuts and cider treats, plus hard cider for adults.
One Man Star Wars Trilogy
You and your lil’ Resistance rebels can head to a galaxy far, far away at the Avenel Performing Arts Center at a one-man show without costumes, props or sets. Charles Ross will recreate the ships, battles, music and story of the original trilogy in a way you’ve never seen before.
FRIDAY (JANUARY 10)
Full Moon Hike
Bring your kiddos ages 4 and up to the Reeves-Reed Arboretum for a moonlight walk along woody trails to learn about how our senses work at night. Then, cuddle up with a cup of hot chocolate.
Take your kids on a scavenger hunt around the Watchung Library to find fairy families that have been blown from their fairy village. Come back on Wednesday, January 22 to put the village together.
SATURDAY (JANUARY 11)
Frozen Fun Night
Did your kids love Frozen 2? They can build their own snowman out of ice cream and meet the Queen of Arendelle herself at the Cora Hartshorn Arboretum & Bird Sanctuary. Kids will learn all about snow and animal hibernation.
Teddy Bear Tea
Grab your lil’ ones ages 3-8 and hit the Morris Museum’s Bickford Theatre for a show and delicious treats. Kids will leave with a memory of the day, plus you can snap a winter-themed photo of the family.
Winter Festival, Fireworks and Bonfire
Park it at the Municipal Complex Baseball Field for live music, a petting zoo, horse-drawn carriage rides, carnival rides, ice carvings, marshmallow roastings and free hot chocolate. There’ll also be food trucks like Angry Archies and The Empanada Guy in case the kids get hungry.
The RVCC Planetarium has you covered with a variety of shows that’ll keep the lil’ ones entertained. Ages 5-12 are invited to Magic Tree House: Space Mission to learn secrets about the Milky Way and space travel. Then, stick around for First and Farthest (ages 10+) to learn about the Space Race. If your little one’s not into science, take him to Kids Jam Laser Concert (ages 6-12), where they can listen to a mix of songs like “YMCA” by The Village People and “Waka Waka” by Shakira. If they’re still itching for more music, head to Laser Beatles (ages 10+) for an animated laser show with songs like “Twist and Shout” and “Revolution.”
SUNDAY (JANUARY 12)
Seasonal Scavenger Hunt
Bundle up and head to the Tenafly Nature Center with your family to complete a scavenger hunt full of nature-themed riddles.
$5/non-members, free/member and ages 2 and under
Family Nature Club: Wonders of Winter
Your kids will learn about hibernation and the changes that happen during the winter at Echo Hill Park, plus sip hot chocolate around the campfire. Listen to a local naturalist, work on nature activities and more. Registration required.
$3, free/accompanying adults
The Wonderful World of Snow Globes
Visit the Miller-Cory House Museum and check out these miniature winter wonderlands with your kiddos. Learn about snow globes, first introduced in Paris in the 1800s, before working on a craft.
$5/ages 13 and up, free/ages 3-12
Visit Liberty Science Center
Take your little ones to see the Angry Birds Universe Exhibit, where they can shoot at life-size Angry Birds with massive slingshots ($30-35). After, ages 2-8 can climb aboard the Dinosaur Train and head back to the Mesozoic period, where your tot can check out steam engines, excavate fossils, learn about dino diets and chill in a dinosaur nest (included with museum admission). Dinosaur Train exhibit ends January 20 and Angry Birds exhibit ends April 19.
Mega Model Trains
Through February 29, head to the Morris Museum where you and the kids can learn the importance of railroads through hands-on activities.
Included with admission
Through March 15, view an exhibition at the Morris Museum centered around graffiti and street art from 12 established artists whose work is displayed directly on the museum walls.
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