There’s so much fun to be had in NJ to mark the unofficial kickoff to summer. And if the rain keeps you from going outside, no worries; there are plenty of indoor play places to get you through the weekend without a single “I’m bored” from the kids.
In Case It Rains
Rain keeping you inside? Head to one of the following venues instead. Take them to The Aviation Hall of Fame of New Jersey to learn about different kinds of aircrafts (the museum will be closed Monday, but open 10 am-4 pm Sat-Sun). Willing to take a road trip? Hit the LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Philadelphia, PA or Yonkers, NY so your kids can get their STEM on. Little scientist at home? The Liberty Science Center has tons of demos, exhibits and games for your mini to fall in love with. If he’s more into crafts and art, head to Montclair Art Museum (closed on Monday) for a gallery tour and hands-on activities.
When: May 27, 10:30 am race start (rain or shine)
Where: Davenport St. and Main St., Somerville
More than 500 professional and amateur cyclists will be competing in this year’s Tour of Somerville, which is celebrating its 76th anniversary and is the oldest bike race in the country. Races are separated by gender and age. Park yourself, your friends and your family all weekend on the downtown curbs to watch the incredibly fast action, or stroll around enjoying the vendors, live music, kids activities, food stands and entertainment while the races take place around you.
Cost: Free admission for spectators, cyclists registration is $15-60.
When: Daily through October
Where: 1519 State Rte. 903, Jim Thorpe, PA
Bring the whole family for a fun-filled whitewater raft adventure. Paddle a rapid, kick your feet over the edge of the raft or take a swim in the river. Each raft can accommodate 4-6 people. Plus, there’s a free, all-you-can-eat riverside barbecue especially for rafters and your fam can have a photo taken on the river. Get there between 1-3 pm to take an express ride sans-lunch.
Cost: Holiday rate is $59.99 for adults, $49.99 for kids 4-12
When: May 24-27, 7 am-9 pm
Where: 4600 Ocean Ave., Wildwood
Watch hundreds of colorful kites fly across the sky during this beach party! The event begins at noon with the Unlocking of the Beach ceremony. This is followed by many more exciting events throughout the weekend, including kite demos, family games and more.
When: May 25-26, 11 am-6 pm
Where: 1195 Florence Columbus Rd., Bordentown
Come out to New Jersey’s largest ren fair for activities all ages will love, including live jousting, a plethora of medieval and modern food, Shakespeare readings, music, juggling, magicians, acrobats and much more. Also happening May 18-19 and June 1-2.
Cost: $20/adults, $12/ages 5-12
When: May 25-27, 7:30 am
Where: Monmouth Park Racetrack, 175 Oceanport Ave., Oceanport
Whether you’re a self-proclaimed foodie or a real culinary expert, you’ll adore this festival with a lineup of more than 40 gourmet food trucks. The area’s best come to Monmouth Park Racetrack to serve up all kinds of treats from empanadas to lobster rolls to Belgian waffle sundaes.
Cost: $5/ages 13 and up, $5/parking
When: May 21-28
Where: Various locations throughout NYC and in Jersey City’s Liberty State Park
Come through to see the US Navy ships, helicopter landings, ship tours and more. There will also be live concerts, rescue demos, a music festival and family activities. Check the schedule for details.
When: May 27, 11 am-6 pm
Where: 1225 McBride Ave., Woodland Park
This fair will transform McBride Avenue into a giant block party. The kids section will include kiddie rides, face painting, sand art, temporary tattoos, pony rides and a petting zoo! Parents can do some shopping and support local businesses, as well. You can also look forward to live entertainment all day, as well as crowd-favorite bites like hot dogs, ice cream, zeppoles, shish kebab, fresh lemonade, Italian ice, french fries, cheesesteaks and more.
When: May 25, 10 am-6 pm (rain or shine)
Where: Overpeck County Park, 40 Fort Lee Rd., Leonia
Come to the post-winter opening of Field Station: Dinosaurs’ Bergen County home. See massive, animatronic, realistic dinos of all kinds in a zoo-like setting (a few even respond to sound and focus on kids) from a T. rex to NJ’s state dinosaur, the Hadrosaurus. Dig for fossils, see a 3-D movie, visit a paleo lab—and prepare to be surprised!
Cost: $15.75-18.50/online, ages 2 and up; $16.95-19.75/box office, ages 2 and up
When: May 25-27, 11 am-8 pm
Where: 611 Ocean Ave., Bradley Beach
Head to the shore for this beachfront celebration. Make it in time for the parade (10 am), then hang out for face painting, sand art, a water slide, food, more than 180 vendors and waves. There will also be six live bands and a DJ.
When: May 25, 10 am-7 pm
Where: Mill Hill Park, 100 South Broad St., Trenton
New Jerseyeans from around the Garden State gather annually to celebrate this beloved breakfast treat. Tune in to live music, sample fare from food trucks, watch the Pork Roll Queen pageant and more.
Cost: $5/each, $15/four
When: May 24-27
Where: Yogi Berra Stadium, 8 Yogi Berra Dr., Little Falls
What better way to celebrate the US of A than with America’s favorite past time? Watch the Jackals face off against the Aigles in this long weekend series. There’ll be fireworks on the 24th and 25th.
Cost: Call for ticket information
When: May 24-27
Where: Skylands Stadium, 94 Championship Pl., Augusta
Witness explosive fireworks on the night of the 25th, or go see a game against the Ottawa Champions in this four-day series.
Cost: Call for ticket information