Courtesy of New Jersey Renaissance Faire Facebook page

 

There’s never a better time than the weekend to grab the kids and head to activities and events in and around the state. Looking to celebrate MDW? We’ve rounded up celebratory events, plus all the best parades in NJ.  

If you’re looking for more fun, there are also plenty of free things to do, places to take your preschoolers and STEM events going on this May, and loads of fairs and festivals.

Thursday-Friday, May 24-25

Tot Walks

Where: Echo Hill, Flemington
Price: Free/adults, $3/kids
Deets: Leave the stroller behind and venture outside for a peek at local flora and fauna. There’ll be a story and a craft, plus take a walk focused on salamanders with Senior Park Naturalist Laura Bush.

Friday, May 25

New Jersey Jackals First Home Game

Where: Yogi Berra Stadium, Little Falls
Price: Varies
Deets: Hey, batta batta! Swing over with your lil’ shortstop for the Jackals’ first home game versus the Quebec Capitals.

Friday-Saturday, May 25-26

Discovery Saturdays

Where: Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit
Price: Free/members, $5/non-member kids
Deets: Discover a new plant, animal or environmental topic each week through experiments, stories, games and crafts. 

New Jersey Jackals Memorial Day Weekend

Where: Yogi Berra Stadium, Little Falls
Price: Varies
Deets: The first 900 fans to arrive will receive an American flag, and that’s not the only incentive. Be sure to bring an empty stomach for the Jackals’ Beer & Burger Fest and stick around for post-game fireworks.

Friday-Sunday, May 25-27

Wildwoods International Kite Festival

Where: The Wildwoods Convention Center, Wildwood
Price: Free
Deets: Fly high this weekend with kites of all kinds: inflatables, illuminated and sport. There’ll be a silent auction, family games and a World Indoor Kite competition.

Tropical Butterflies Alive in the Winter

Where: American Museum of Natural History, NYC
Price: Free with admission
Deets: Marvel at 500 iridescent butterflies. The 80-degree conservatory house’s lush vegetation and blooming tropical flowers will wow your kids.

Folk Project Spring Festival

Where: YMCA Camp Bernie, Port Murray
Price: Free/ages 5 and under, $25/ages 5-12, $40-64/ages 12 and up
Deets: More than 150 music makers gather for concerts, 40 workshops and jam sessions with nationally-touring performers.

Saturday, May 26

Learn About Henna

Where: Bridgewater Library, Bridgewater
Price: Free
Deets: Catch a small flower henna demo by professional artist Maliha Merchant, plus receive your own henna for practice.

The Official 2018 Pork Roll Festival

Where: 100 S. Broad St., Trenton
Price: $5/ages 11 and up, free/age 10 and under
Deets: New Jerseyans, rejoice! Whether you’re a supporter of Taylor ham or pork roll, this is the place to chow down. There’ll be vendors, round-the-clock music, contests, children’s activities and of course, the 2018 Pork Roll Queen Pageant and Crowning.

STEAM Ahead

Where: Morris County Library, Whippany
Price: Free
Deets: Grades 1 and up can dive into a STEAM-inspired activity.

Saturday-Sunday, May 26-27

Boardwalk Craft Show

Where: Wildwood Boardwalk, Wildwood
Price: Free
Deets: Get a jumpstart on summer with a stroll down the boardwalk, which will be filled with handmade products for you to shop. Whether there’s rain or shine, it’s time to get crafty!

Fleet Week

Where: Various locations, NYC
Price: Free
Deets: Check out ships from the US Navy, Coast Guard and more around the five boroughs. Take a tour of the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum, plus tour ships docked in the harbors. Watch demonstrations and meet servicemen in person.

Memorial Day Weekend

Where: National Constitution Center, Philadelphia, PA
Price: Included with admission
Deets: Learn flag etiquette (including folding), make postcards for veterans, watch interactive shows and more activities that honor fallen military heroes.

Fit and Fun at the Carnival Family Festival

Where: Camden Children’s Garden, Camden
Price: Free with admission
Deets: Hula hoop, jump rope and hopscotch your way to the tattoo booth, then jump on the carousel or train for a ride. Stop by the guessing booth and spend some time inside the Butterfly House. Kids who come dressed as either their favorite sports hero or as a circus clown get $1 off admission.

Bradley Beach Memorial Day Parade and Fair

Where: Ocean Ave., Bradley Beach
Price: Beach admission
Deets: Relish the feeling of sand between your toes at this parade and fest. There’ll be food, craft vendors and activities for the whole fam.

Jersey Shore Food Truck Festival

Where: Monmouth Park Racetrack, Oceanport
Price: $5/ages 12 and up; $5/parking
Deets: Get your foodie fix with 45 food trucks serving everything from lobster rolls to Belgian waffles to empanadas.

St. Anthony’s Greek Festival

Where: St. Anthony Greek Orthodox Church, Vineland
Price: Free admission
Deets: Get your fill of Greek food, music, dancing, artifacts and more. There’ll be rides for the kids, raffles for the adults and plenty of activities for all ages.

Sunday, May 27

Wildwood Crest Summer Kickoff Concert

Where: Centennial Park, Wildwood Crest
Price: Free
Deets: Break out your beach chairs and blankets, it’s time for the first beach concert of the season. Get ready to welcome summer with open arms.

Fancy Nancy Tea for Two

Where: Just Bead Yourself, Westfield
Price: $38/pair
Deets: Ages 3-7 can bring mom (or a friend) to a tea party inspired by Jane O’Connor’s story Fancy Nancy: Tea for Two. Make bracelets and dine on real tea sets and scrumptious cookies.

Ongoing

New Jersey Renaissance Faire

Where: Liberty Lake, Bordentown
Price: $20/adults, $12/ages 5-12
Deets: On Saturday and Sunday, hit the Faire for sword fighting, fire breathing, aerialists, comedy, music (plus beer an wine) and more, all behind the castle gates. Ends June 3.

Dinosaurs at Dusk

Where: New Jersey State Museum Planetarium, Trenton
Price: $7/adults, $5/ages 12 and under
Deets: Join Lucy, her father and pterosaurs who’ll study dinosaurs and their modern-day relations to discover the origin of flight. Plus, stick around for the dinosaurs’ “last day” on Earth. Every Saturday and Sunday, ends September 2.

Symbiotic Spheres: The Interlocking Worlds of Glass, Science and Art

Where: Wheaton Arts & Cultural Center, Millville
Price: $10
Deets: Got lil’ STEM lovers at home? Head to this curated exhibit, which features more than 20 contemporary artists whose work was inspired by science. You’ll want to check out the glass pieces the magnify, distort and illuminate, creating different perceptions of the world. Ends December 30.

The Friday Night unWINEd

Where: Shady Brook Farm, Yardley, PA
Price: $5
Deets: Spend your Friday nights sipping local craft beer, signature cocktails and wine while listening to live music, playing lawn games and watching the kiddos have fun with jumping pillows, a playground and go carts. Ends August 31.

Park Bench

Where: Montclair Art Museum, Montclair
Price: $18/family
Deets: On the second Wednesday of every month, take your pre-K kiddos on a guided tour, create a themed art project and go criss-cross-applesauce in the gallery for some quality storytelling. Ends June 13.

Unseen Oceans

Where: American Museum of Natural History, NYC
Price: $28/adults, $16.50/kids
Deets: Check out the interactive media installations, watch 3D animations of great white sharks swim by, try the magnetic sand table and visit live marine animals. This experience is all about the ocean and the tech used to explore its unknown depths. Exhibit ends January 2019.

Teen Marine Science Institute

Where: Adventure Aquarium, Camden
Price: $100
Deets: High schoolers can gain hands-on experience, including learning about marine science and biology-related careers. Program ends in June.

MAM Family Art Adventure

Where: Montclair Art Museum, Montclair
Price: Free with admission
Deets: Discuss artwork and engage in a fun hands-on project in the studio. Calling all little Picassos ages 6-12. Program ends in August.

Hearth and Home

Where: New Jersey State Museum, Trenton
Price: Free with admission
Deets: Visitors can explore the homes of Native Americans in the Eastern Woodlands and other environments across North America. Learn how they adapted to the climate and surroundings. Program ends in September.

Family Sundays at Rubin Museum

Where: Rubin Museum of Art, NYC
Price: Free with admission
Deets: Bring your little ones all year long to participate in a new art activity each month at this city staple.

Drop in Studio Every Sunday

Where: Montclair Art Museum, Montclair
Price: Free with admission
Deets: Visitors of all ages are invited to explore a new activity each week with a Montclair Art Museum instructor and leave with their masterpieces.

Radical Rocketeers

Where: Warren County Library, Hackettstown
Price: Free
Deets: On the first Saturday of every month, all ages are welcome to try their hand at rocket building. Basic supplies will be provided, but you can also bring your own. Registration required.

Embattled Emblems

Where: New Jersey State Museum, Trenton
Price: Free with admission
Deets: Timed to commemorate the 100th anniversary of America’s intervention in World War I, this exhibition showcases posters, flags and propaganda used to create patriotism and garner support for the war. Head here for a lesson in American history. Program ends in August.

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