Things to Do on a Budget in Monmouth & Ocean Counties this December 2019

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  With so many joyful and festive events happening this month, it’s definitely going to be hard to choose which ones to attend. Enjoy this special time of year with your family and friends – check out the many free or inexpensive activities happening this December in a town near you.  Happy Holidays from all of us at First Financial, and wishing you a prosperous 2020!

December 1:

Asbury Park Holiday Bazaar at Convention Hall from 11am-6pm. There will be handcrafted and vintage goods, photos with Santa, live holiday music, food, a fireplace lounge and hot drinks bar, 30 foot Christmas tree, kids art and holiday workshops, and a photo booth. Don’t miss this fun holiday event for the whole family! Learn more here.

Long Branch Tree Lighting in Pier Village from 4-6pm. The Pier Village ice skating rink will be open, there will be mini train rides, a meet & greet with Santa, a live band, characters in costume, dancers, carousel rides, and more. Find out more information here.

Bradley Beach Tree Lighting from 4-7pm at Riley Park (615 Main Street). There will be live music, dancers, carriage rides around the park, and free hot chocolate and cookies. Plus, Santa will be arriving to help light the tree by firetruck! Attendees are asked to donate a pair of new socks to benefit the Jersey Shore Rescue Mission in Asbury Park. See more details here.

December 6: Spring Lake’s Christmas Train Village at Duggan Hall (313 Washington Avenue). Open seven days a week from 12pm-5pm until January 6, 2020. Come check out this spectacular holiday display with numerous running trains, animated attractions and much more. The display is free of charge to visit, but donations will be accepted from those who wish to do so. Donations will be given to the Common Ground Grief Center. Learn more here.

December 7:

Free Santa Photos at all First Financial Locations (Toms River, Neptune, Howell/Freehold). Sit with Santa from 10am-1pm! Each participating child will receive a free 4×6 photo in the mail, as well as the original image file will be sent to each parent/guardian. Register at your nearest branch here, or call 732-312-1500.

Santa Ferry Ride leaves from the NY Waterway Belford Terminal in Middletown from 8:30am-2:30pm. This fun yuletide ride will feature Santa and friends, Christmas carols, goodie bags, and a beautiful scenic view of the Statue of Liberty. Tickets must be purchased in advance, and are $17 for residents and $21 for non-residents. Kids under 1 are $5. Learn more here.

Horse Drawn Carriage Rides through Historic Allentown from 12pm-3pm at Pete Sensi Park. Come see Allentown decked out for the holidays by carriage ride, while also listening to historic tales. Tickets purchased the day of are $15 per person at Borough Hall, however advanced registration is recommended due to popularity of this event. Refreshments will also be available for purchase at Pete Sensi Park or enjoy any of Allentown’s historic restaurants after your 20 minute carriage ride. Find out more here.

Holiday Festival at Casino Pier (Seaside Heights) from 1pm-3pm. Entry fee is a new or gently used coat for a local coat drive and a non-expired canned good. Come dressed in your holiday best (or wear your favorite ugly Christmas sweater)! There will be prizes, holiday crafts, games, and a visit from Santa. See more information here.

December 8:

Breakfast with Santa at iPlay America (Freehold) from 9:30am-1pm.  Enjoy a delicious breakfast while Santa walks around, along with live holiday performances where the whole family can sing and dance along. There will also be an opportunity for photos with Santa, and decorating of Christmas cookies and reindeer treats to prepare for Christmas Eve! Learn more and register here.

Winter on Broad Street (Red Bank) from 11am-5pm. There will be lots of fun on the streets of Red Bank including ice skating, a life sized snow globe, a scavenger hunt, food,  a holiday bazaar and plenty of holiday spirit! Learn more about the event here.

December 13: Free Movie Friday at the Paramount Theater in Asbury Park from 7pm-10pm. Come see the classic holiday movie A Christmas Story at the Paramount Theater with the whole family, for free!  See more details here.

December 14: Winter Solstice Celebration at Cattus Island County Park’s Cooper Environmental Center (Toms River) from 11am-3pm. There will be games, crafts, live animals, horse drawn carriage rides, campfire storytime, food, a candy cane nature walk, and a visit from Santa! The event is free to attend. Learn more here.

December 15: Christmas in Manasquan from 12:30pm-3pm at 126 Main Street. Don’t miss the town’s annual tree lighting, plus there will be hayrides, ice sculpting, giveaways, and lots of holiday cheer! Find out more here.

December 20: Free Movie Friday at the Paramount Theater in Asbury Park from 7pm-9pm. Come see another classic holiday movie It’s a Wonderful Life at the Paramount Theater with the whole family, for free!  See more details here.

December 21: Free Classic Horse & Wagon Rides in Red Bank from 1pm-5pm (11 Bridge Ave or 26 Broad St). Take a free horse and carriage ride through beautifully decorated Red Bank for the holiday season! This is the last day of the event, you won’t want to miss it. Find out additional information here.

December 23: Downtown Freehold’s Annual Menorah Lighting at 5:30pm (10 East Main Street). Be sure to check out Freehold’s annual Menorah lighting to kick off Hanukkah this year! Find out more here, along with other Freehold holiday events throughout the month of December.

December 28 & 29: Springsteen Historical Exhibit in his hometown of Freehold (70 Court St) at 11am. This unique exhibit at the Monmouth County Historical Association will feature 150 items about Springsteen including his personal scrapbooks, yearbook photos, his original recorder, music, and more. General admission tickets are $15 per person, and Freehold Borough resident tickets are free of charge. Learn more here and reserve tickets online.

Happy Holidays!

Things to Do on a Budget in Monmouth & Ocean Counties this November 2019

It’s time to kick off the start of the holiday season and there are so many great things to do with family and friends in the upcoming weeks to celebrate this special time of year! Check out our list of free or inexpensive activities happening this month in a town near you. We hope you have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

November 1: Jersey Shore Ghost Tour (Red Bank). Don’t miss the last night of this lantern-lit walking ghost tour through historic Red Bank! Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for children under 12. Ticket sales begin at 8pm and the tour will leave at 8:30pm from Dublin House at 30 Monmouth Street. Learn more and book online here.

November 1 – 3: Stocking Stuffer Craft Show at Allaire Village (Wall). Starting at 10am on both Friday & Saturday and noon on Sunday until 3pm each of the three days, this once a year event features handcrafted items that are perfect for holiday season gifts! You’ll find ornaments, scarves, decorations, a handmade quilt raffle, and more. Get more information here.

November 2:

Fall Fest and Chili Contest at Old Glory (Keyport) from 1-7pm.  Besides the chili making contest, there will also be a DJ, petting zoo, a pumpkin throwing contest, live music, bull riding and more! Find out more details here. You won’t want to miss this fun event for the whole family!

Awesome Autumn Fun at Jakes Branch County Park (Beachwood) from 1-4pm. Take a hayride through nature trails, participate in fall-themed games, get your face painted, there will be a petting zoo, hot apple cider, costumed characters, and more.  Free to attend!  Learn more here.

November 9:

Late Fall Flea Market at Allaire Village (Wall). Hunt for bargains among vintage treasures, books, art work, handmade items, knick knacks and so much more! The event runs from 8am – 3pm and is $2 per person to attend. The Historic Village, Pilsen Gourmet Food Truck, General Store, and Bakery will be open as well. Learn more here.

Fall Craft Show at the Ft. Monmouth Recreation Area (Tinton Falls) from 9am-2pm. Shop for special gifts from over 50 unique craft vendors just in time for the holiday season! You’ll find holiday ornaments and decorations, jewelry, candles, soaps, paintings, baskets, embroidered items and more. Free admission and parking. Learn more by clicking this link.

November 16: Thanks4Giving Turkey Dash 5K and Splash from 10:30am to 3pm at Convention Hall (Asbury Park).  Participate in either the 5K race, cold turkey plunge, or both! The 5K dash goes from Asbury Park to Ocean Grove and Bradley Beach. Cost for the 5K is $35 and the turkey splash is $25 paid in advance (you can also register a team).  All proceeds will go to the Special Olympics of NJ. Register or donate here.

November 17: Annual Granny’s Attic Craft Show (Thompson Middle School, Middletown) from 9am to 4pm. Don’t miss more than 250 craft vendors – perfect for holiday shopping! There will also be food trucks from 11am to 6pm. Admission is $5 per adult, kids ages 3-14 are $2, and under 3 are free. There will be shuttle busses running continuously from Middletown Train Station to Thompson Middle School. There will also be hourly 50/50 raffles and a grand prize raffle at the end of the event. Find out more here.

November 22: Pizza and Penguins at Jenkinson’s Aquarium (Pt. Pleasant) from 6 to 7:30pm. Your favorite flightless bird will make a special dinnertime appearance while you enjoy pizza and drinks! Learn all about them, ask their keepers questions, and meet Perky the Penguin.  Pre-registration is required. Call 732-899-1659 or visit Jenkinson’s website for event details.  Event cost is $20 for adults and $15 for children.

November 23 & 24: Wine and Chocolate Weekend at 4JG’s Vineyard (Colts Neck) from 12-5pm. Sip award winning wines, sample delicious locally hand-crafted chocolates and relax. The fire pit will be going (weather permitting), come join the fun! Admission is $15 per adult (ages 21+ only). Learn more here.

November 29: Santa Express and Parade (Red Bank) from 6:45-8pm. Santa rides the NJ Transit train into Red Bank for the annual town lighting and holiday express concert. Join Santa on the train in Little Silver or meet him at the Red Bank train station when he arrives. There’ll be festivities before and after the train arrives with holiday dancers and the Pipes and Drums of the Atlantic Watch. Once in Red Bank, Santa will board a firetruck and lead the parade to Broad Street for the Holiday Express Concert and Town Tree Lighting. This event is free for all ages! Find out more information here.

November 30:

Asbury Park Holiday Bazaar at Convention Hall from 11am-10pm. Check out local and regional artists, vendors, and shops selling handmade art, jewelry, home goods, food, and more. The event will feature live music and special performances, photos with Santa, holiday photo booth pictures, a 30 foot Christmas tree, fireplace lounge, and beautiful holiday decor. While you shop, enjoy a seasonally-inspired menu and holiday drinks at the Anchors Bend and Asbury Oyster Bar. There will alos be kids art classes and holiday craft workshops. Get additional details here.

Seashell Festival (Ship Bottom, LBI) from 10am-3pm. Don’t miss seashells, seaglass, and holiday fun in the 2nd annual LBI Seashell Festival at Things A Drift on Long Beach Blvd. Bring your beach finds and compete in the best shell contest, enjoy some homemade cookies, and support local businesses for Small Business Weekend. There will be vendors with handmade nautical jewelry, art, home decor, holiday gifts and more!  Free admission.  Learn more at https://thingsadrift.com/

Things to Do on a Budget in Monmouth & Ocean Counties this October 2019

It’s officially fall – and October is one of the best and most beautiful weather months in New Jersey. Get the family ready for an action-packed month filled with fun fall and Halloween activities. Check out these free or inexpensive events happening in a town near you!

October 5:

Holmdel Harvest Fest from 12-9pm at Bayonet Farm. Join the 7th Annual Harvest Fest on Middletown Road, which includes food vendors, crafters, beer/wine in the Red Barn, wagon rides, pony rides, inflatables, a Ferris Wheel, carousel, touch-a-truck, live music and more! Parking is $10 per car. Find out more here.

Matawan Day and Fall Festival from 12-5pm on Main Street. Don’t miss this annual event in which thousands of people make their way down Main Street in Matawan to visit over 120 booths and tables of crafters/artisans, retailers, food vendors, local restaurants,  professionals, and non-profit organizations who are ready to showcase their products and services. Learn more here.

Asbury Park Zombie Walk from 4-8pm at Convention Hall. You won’t want to miss the world’s largest gathering of zombies! There will be music and festivities along the boardwalk and a “blood red” fireworks show along the ocean front. Get the details here.

October 6:

Sunflower Festival at Holland Ridge Farm (Cream Ridge) from 9am-6pm. Wander through towering rows of sunflowers, stroll through the barns, visit the animals, and check out the museum and Holland Shop. Same day adult tickets are $12 each, $10 for seniors, $8 for children 3-12, and kids under 3 are free. Discounted tickets are available for purchase online in advance. See more information here.

Pierfest Annual Fall Festival (Long Branch) from 12-5pm. There will be face painting, inflatables, a photo booth, fun bus, vendors, crafters, live music, and great food & drinks from surrounding restaurants. Rain date will be October 13th. Find out more at http://www.pierfest.com/

October 11: Haunted Theater at Brookdale Community College (Lincroft) from 7-10:30pm. Celebrating 17 years of scares, Brookdale Performing Arts Center’s Haunted Theater is locally regarded as one of the scariest Halloween attractions in Monmouth County. This indoor, self-guided walk through haunted house maze – features pitch black zones and special effects, all contained within the walls of the Performing Arts Center. Find out additional details at http://brookdalehauntedtheater.com/

October 12: Fall Afternoon Tea at 600 Main Bed and Breakfast (Toms River) from 12-4pm. Welcome the fall season with a five course afternoon tea and tours of the Victorian Historic Mathis House. Cost per person is $37 and includes soup, salad, scones, tea sandwiches, desserts, and favorite fall gourmet teas (pumpkin spice, harvest glow, and cinnabon). Register here.

October 12 & 13:

Jersey Shore Cake and Cookie Convention from 10-4pm at Convention Hall (Asbury Park). A place where professionals and hobbyists can shop hard to find supplies, learn new techniques, meet face to face with cake and cookie idols, all while having fun and meeting new sweet friends. Hosted by Shore Cake Supply, this event will be bustling with nationwide supply vendors, live free demonstrations, competitions, hands on classes and so much more! Find out more information here.

Allentown Fall Festival from 10am-5pm. There will be crafters, a civil war re-enactment, classic car show, live entertainment, a petting zoo, contests, kids’ activities, and great food! A shuttle bus will be available leaving from Allentown High School. Learn more here.

October 14: Pumpkin Fest at Delicious Orchards in Colts Neck from 11am-4pm. Come spend your Columbus Day off at a fun-filled family event featuring crafts, games, live music, local food samples, and an antique tractor display. Get more information here.

October 15 & 16: Flavor of Freehold from 5:30-8pm on Main Street in Downtown Freehold. Don’t miss this unique tour of Downtown Freehold’s restaurants, bars, and shops. Walk from place to place with your event passport, and receive signature samples from some of Freehold’s most well-loved establishments. The cost to attend is $20 per person. Learn more and purchase your tickets here.

October 18 & 19: Haunted Allaire from 6-9:30pm at Allaire Village (Wall). Don’t miss the haunted village and hayride tour of Allaire State Park. This year features a new route along with 20 different scary scenes, plus visit the grounds and see scary storytelling, stop into the bakery and check out the haunted food truck. Advanced ticket purchase is required – adults are $15 each, children 12 and under are $10 each. Learn more and reserve your spot today!

October 19: Fall Movie Series at Pier Village (Long Branch) from 6-8:30pm. Don’t miss this showing of the Goonies in the outdoor cinema on Festival Plaza! Bring your favorite beach chair and blanket and relax under the stars. Find out more here.

October 19 & 20: Boo at the Boardwalk (Pt. Pleasant) from 12-4pm. There will be trick or treating, crafts, games, a pumpkin patch, a beach maze, pumpkin carving, rides, and more! Find out the details here or call 732.892.0600

October 20: Thompson Park Day (Lincroft) from 11am-5pm. You won’t want to miss this family-friendly autumn event! There will be a costume contest for dogs, pumpkin painting, wagon rides, entertainment, races, food vendors, ceramics, pottery, archery, canoeing, climbing wall, games, contests and more! Free admission and free parking. Learn more here.

October 25: Mad Science Halloween at the Monmouth Museum (Lincroft) from 6-7pm. This presentation will have you gasping and laughing at the Mad Scientist’s peculiar and chilling science experiments. Through a mixture of science and magic, children will see a paper spider turn into a real spider. Watch as the wicked witch melts right before your eyes! Find out how an eyeball floats in the air, then make bubbling potions and fearsome fog, experience melting witches and even edible spider webs (cotton candy)! All will have an evening of gruesome goodness and fun. Find out more here.

October 26: Halloween PJ Party at Robert J. Novins Planetarium (Ocean County College, Toms River) from 12-1:30pm. Come in your favorite Halloween costume or Halloween PJs for a not-super-spooky good time! Learn about the planets, moon, and stars in October’s night sky. Listen to stories of monsters, heroes, and princesses in the stars. Sing along to Halloween themed laser songs, and make a special Halloween themed craft before the show. Cost is $10 for all ticket levels ages 3 and up. Find out more here.

October 26 & 27: Not So Haunted Wine Fest at 4JG’s Vineyard (Colts Neck) from 12-5pm. The spells are friendly and the brews are delicious! Must be age 21+ in order to drink alcoholic beverages. Learn more about the wine walk weekend here.

October 27: Bullock Farms Fall Fest (Cream Ridge) from 10am-6pm. There will be hay rides, live music, food, pumpkin picking, a corn maze, flower walk, barnyard animals, facepainting, a balloon artist, farm yard lawn games, a straw bale slide mountain, tractor tire jungle, and more!  Kids under 2 are free. Find out more information here.

 

Things to Do on a Budget in Monmouth & Ocean Counties this September 2019

Summer is officially winding down and the kids are heading back to school for another year, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of great inexpensive events happening near you. Check out the list of activities that are kicking off your local summer and the start of fall. Enjoy!

September 4: Fall Concert Series (Downtown Freehold) from 7:30-9:30pm at the Hall of Records. Come out and see The Nerds and enjoy an evening outside filled with upbeat, entertaining music! This event is free to attend. Learn more here.

September 6-8: Asbury Park Oysterfest across from Convention Hall. Admission is $3 on Saturday and Sunday, kids under 6 are free. Friday has free admission and event hours are 5-10pm. Saturday hours are 11am-10pm and Sunday is 11am-6pm. Traditional festival fare, seafood and oysters will be available from dozens of local food vendors. There will also be craft vendors, music, activities for kids, and this event is dog friendly. Learn more here.

September 7:

Ocean Grove’s Giant Fall Flea Market from 9am-4pm by the Great Auditorium. Admission is free, the event will be held rain or shine, and there will be over 300 vendors! Get more details by calling 732.774.1391 or clicking here.

Brielle Day Craft Show from 9am-4pm at Brielle Park (644 Union Lane). Brielle Day is a town wide celebration featuring a craft show, fire truck rides, beer garden, entertainment, kids activities and food vendors. The event will be held rain or shine. Get more information here.

Chocolate, Wine, and More from 12-4pm at iPlay America in Freehold. This event will feature representatives from chocolatiers, bakeries and specialty food markets. With your ticket, you will get a chance to sample it all, as well as purchase. In addition to chocolates and wine, there will also be a variety of vendors for some shopping opportunities. Tickets are $10 for adults 21+, $5 for ages 13-20, kids under 12 are free. Learn more and buy tickets online here.

September 7-8: Apple Fest at Delicious Orchards in Colts Neck from 11am-4pm. Don’t miss the ultimate summer sendoff and fall kickoff all at once! There will be games, prizes, live music, local food vendors, an antique car show and lots of things apple! Find out additional details here.

September 8: Ice Cream Social Picnic and Fall Festival (Havens Homestead Museum in Brick) from 12-4pm. Bring a picnic lunch and purchase made to order ice cream treats and soft drinks, enjoy the beauty of the museum property, and there will be autumn themed games for children. Admission is free. Reserve a spot by calling 732.458.6266 or visit http://www.bricktownshiphistoricalsociety.com/

September 14:

Late Summer Flea Market at Allaire Village (Wall) from 8am-3pm. Hunt for bargains among vintage treasures, books, artwork, handmade items and more! Admission is $2 for adults and kids under 12 are free. Learn more here or call 732.919.3500.

Food Trucktemberfest at Monmouth Park Racetrack (Oceanport) from 11am-5pm. There will be over 24 food trucks, you won’t want to miss this event! Live music will be available from 12-4pm. Parking is $5, admission is $5, and kids under 12 are free. See the food truck line-up here.

September 15: Red Bank Food and Wine Walk from 2-5pm. Tickets are $40 each (this event is for those 21+). Your ticket includes tastings at over 15 Red Bank eateries, as well as wine samples, and a self guided tour. The event is held rain or shine. Learn more here.

September 21:

Fall Apple Festival at Allaire Village (Wall) from 11am-4pm. Join the villagers in celebrating the harvest and try your hand at apple cider pressing, an apple pie baking contest, games and hat making for kids, hearth cooking, music, historic demonstrations, strolling villagers, and more! Adults are $8 each, kids 2-12 are $4 each, and kids under 2 are free. No parking fees for this event. Learn more and purchase tickets online here.

42nd Annual Festival of the Sea (Downtown Pt. Pleasant Beach, Arnold and Bay Avenues) from 10am-7pm. Visitors can sample dishes by the area’s finest restaurants – including lobster, clam chowder and more, there will be arts & crafts, pony rides, hundreds of vendors, kids activities, live entertainment, and more. Get additional information at http://www.pointchamber.com/

September 28:

Manasquan Fall Craft Fair from 10am-4pm at Squan Plaza on Miller Preston Way. The annual Manasquan Festival is an outdoor event with a vendors offering quality arts, crafts, and gifts – plus food, fun, entertainment, apple pie and pumpkin pie baking contests, pumpkin painting, and more.  See additional details at https://www.manasquanchamber.org/calendar.html

Spring Lake Italian Festival from 12-5pm in Downtown Spring Lake. Morris Ave from 3rd to 4th Avenues will become an Italian Village featuring live music, Italian food, dancing, wine, kids activities, and more. Get the scoop here.

Middletown Day takes place from 11am-5pm at Cryodon Hall (900 Leonardville Rd.) This fall festival boasts activities for all ages including a business and community showcase, craft fair, live local music, children’s activities, emergency response demonstrations, a petting zoo, hayrides, flea market, food court and more.  The event will be held rain or shine.  Learn more at https://www.middletownnj.org/450/Middletown-Day

Jackson Day takes place from 11am-5:30pm at John F. Johnson Jr. Memorial Park. The day celebrates over 175 years of Jackson history, and there will be vendors, a craft fair, touch a truck, a car show, entertainment, rides, a petting zoo, a game truck, and more! Find out additional details by calling 732.928.1200 x1361 or click here.

September 29: Belmar Kite Festival from 9am-4pm at 5th Avenue Beach. Come see some beautiful kites flying high up in the sky at the Jersey Shore! You won’t want to miss this gorgeous local summer event. Find out more here.

Things to Do on a Budget in Monmouth & Ocean Counties this August 2019

With the summer days breezing by, make use of the sunny weather as long as you can. This is the time to make plans with family and friends, explore the activities waiting for you just outside your door, and make memories that will last a lifetime. Don’t hang your head that summer is coming to a close, make the most of the time and make it your family’s best month yet!

August 1-4: Annual Clamfest (Highlands) from 6pm-10pm at Huddy Park. Love seafood? The Clam Festival features a 120 foot seafood court serving the freshest foods from many famous restaurants that the Highlands has to offer. Admission and parking is free and the event will be held rain or shine. There will be a beer and wine garden, live entertainment, vendors, and fireworks on August 2nd. For more information, click here.

August 3:

Lake Yoga at Lake Lefferts in Matawan from 9-10am. Participate in yoga on the lake every summer Saturday! Bulk class discount is available. For more information or to register call 732-566-3898 ext.130 or click here.

Italian Fest at Monmouth Park Racetrack (Oceanport) from 11am-5:30pm. Pizza, pasta and wine – it’s the most delicious time of year at the Italian Festival! Bring your family and friends to enjoy amazing Italian food, listen to live music, see and shop from Italian crafters, play a game of bocce, and experience a fun day of racing too. For $10, adults 21+ can enjoy 5 two ounce Italian wine samples. Parking is $5, admission is $5 and kids 12 and under are free. Learn more here.

August 3-4: Luau Foodtruck Festival at Laurita Winery (New Egypt). Grab your Hawaiian shirt and enjoy some sangria, live bands, free vineyard wagon rides, 15 food trucks, and fireworks on Saturday night! Admission is $12 on Saturday and $10 on Sunday. Discount tickets are available online at www.lauritawinery.com or call 609-758-8000.

August 5-10: Keyport Fireman’s Fair at Fireman’s Park (West Front Street) from 7pm-11pm. The annual Keyport Fireman’s Fair is back yet again! Have fun at the boardwalk and carnival while enjoying warm weather, food, games, rides, and more. Fireworks will take place on August 10th. For more information visit this link.

August 7-11: Annual Township of Ocean Italian Festival at Joe Palaia Park from 5-11pm. Celebrate Italian heritage and culture! There will be rides, fireworks, games, raffles, food eating contests, an Italian street band, nightly entertainment and Italian delights. Free admission and fireworks on August 9th. Learn more here.

August 9 and 23: Movies in the Park (Howell) at dusk on the Howell Library Hill, 318 Old Tavern Road. August 9th will feature Mary Poppins Returns and August 23rd will feature Coco. Bring blankets or your favorite lawn chair. The event will feature a collection of non-perishable food items to go to the local food bank. Find out more here.

August 10: Mid-Summer Flea Market at Allaire Village (Wall) from 8am-3pm. Hunt for bargains among vintage treasure, books, artwork, handmade items, knick knacks and more! Cost of admission is $5 per car. The bakery will also be open to make purchases of delicious baked goods. Learn more and buy tickets in advance here.

August 12-13: Kite Festival at Jenkinson’s Beach (Pt. Pleasant) from 11am-4pm. There will be beautiful kites flying high up in the sky, as well as music, games, prizes and live radio broadcasts from several local area radio stations. Find out more by clicking here, or call 732-892-0600.

August 14 and 21: Family Movie Night at the Hall of Records in Freehold (East Main Street) at 8:30pm. Grab a lawn chair or a blanket, pick up a bite to eat downtown and watch a movie outside. August 14th will feature Grease and August 21st will feature The Goonies. Learn more here.

August 17: Bugs, Birds and Beyond at the Monmouth County Agricultural Building on Kozloski Road (Freehold) from 12-4pm. Join the Rutgers Master Gardeners at a free festival for children of all ages! There will also be nature inspired activities, crafts, and educational exhibits. See live – butterflies, ladybugs, rabbits, snakes, bees and more. There will also be Six Flags Adventure animal demonstrations. The event features food, ice cream, fresh produce and other vendors. Learn more here or call 732-303-7614.

August 17-18: Winestock Food Truck Festival at Laurita Winery (New Egypt). Dress like it’s 1969 (tie dye, headbands) at the re-creation of the first Woodstock Festival 50 years ago. There will be 3 live bands daily, 15 food trucks, free vineyard wagon rides, and fireworks on Saturday night. Admission is $12 on Saturday and $10 on Sunday. Discount tickets are available online at www.lauritawinery.com or call 609-758-8000.

August 18: Rolling Iron Antique Auto Show at Allaire Village (Wall) from 8am-3pm. Come out and see 200 antique cars including family cars, firetrucks, motorcycles, and more. To attend, admission is free and parking is $5. If you have a car to display, the pre-registration fee is $18 ($20 the day of) and the car must be older than 1992. Learn more about the event here.

August 22: Belmar Cruise Night (Belmar Plaza Parking Lot, between 8th and 10th Aves.) from 5:30-8:30pm. Free admission! Don’t miss a great night of fantastic cars, oldies music, shopping downtown, and great local dining options. Learn more by calling 732-894-9022 (if you’d like to register a car for the show), or click here.

August 23: Drive In Movie in Seaside Heights from 8:30-11pm. Come see Back to the Future on the bay! Drive into the Sumner Avenue lot right at the entrance of town. Free admission. Learn more by calling 732-830-3700 or visit www.exit82.com

August 26: Movies at Main Beach (Manasquan) at 8:15pm. Free to attend – bring a beach blanket or your favorite beach chair, and come out to see a showing of Jaws on the beach! Get more details here.

August 31: Bradley Beach Lobsterfest from 11am to 8pm on Ocean Avenue. This event features a DJ, 6 bands playing live music, over 180 craft vendors, 25 food vendors, and kids activities (water slide, rides, sand art, facepainting) with an oceanfront view! Find out more here.

We hope you enjoy the last month of summer!

Things to Do on a Budget in Monmouth & Ocean Counties this July 2019

It’s time for some fun in the sun! Enjoy the beautiful weather and all the sights and sounds this summer season brings. Now is the perfect time to gather your family and friends to check out these free or inexpensive events in a town near you.

Independence Day Fireworks Schedule 2019

July 3:

Freehold, Dusk at Freehold Raceway

Bradley Beach, 9pm Beachfront

Manasquan, Dusk at Main Beach

Ocean Township, Dusk at Mike Cernigliaro Fairgrounds at Joe Palaia Park

Lakewood, Lake Carosaljo at dusk

Jackson, Six Flags at 10pm (nightly July 3 – 6)

July 4:  

Long Branch, 9pm Oceanfront Promenade (The entire day will feature the city’s annual Oceanfest event)

Seaside Heights, 9:30pm on the boardwalk

Asbury Park, Oceanfront at dusk

Pt. Pleasant, Dusk at Jenkinson’s Boardwalk

Brick, Windward Beach Park at 6pm (Summerfest Concert Series)

*For more Monmouth and Ocean County towns with fireworks – click here or here.

July 6: Jackson Township Fireworks, Music and Food Trucks at Johnson Memorial Park from 3-8pm. Fireworks will take place at dusk. Free admission. Get more details here.

July 7: Classic Car Show and Oldies Day at Monmouth Park Racetrack (Oceanport) from 11am-5pm. There will be over 150 antique cars to admire, old school entertainment featuring Big Joe Henry from NJ 101.5 FM, live performances from The Cameos, pony rides, face painting, a bounce house and more.  Admission is $5, parking is $5 and kids under 12 are free. Learn more here.

July 10-14: Ocean County Fair at Robert J. Miller Airpark (Berkeley Township). Wednesday and Thursday hours are 5-11pm, Friday and Saturday hours are 11am-11pm, and Sunday is 11am-5pm. 2019’s Ocean County Fair will be 5 days filled with entertainment, 4H displays, animals, rides, games, music and food. There will be a chainsaw carver, pig races and a hands on butterfly encounter. $8 per person and children under 10 are free. Learn more at http://oceancountyfair.com/ or call 732-914-9466.

July 12: Movies in the Park (Howell) begins at dusk at the Howell Library hill on Old Tavern Road. How to Train Your Dragon is the featured movie of the night. The event is free, just bring your own blankets or lawn chairs. Non-perishable food item donations will be collected for those interested in bringing anything for the local food bank. For more information call 732-938-4500 ext. 2106 or click here.

July 13: Freehold Township Day at Michael J. Tighe Park from 4-11pm. There will be food vendors, merchandise, kids rides, activities for teens, live bands, an antique car show, and fireworks at 9pm. Learn more here.

July 14: Surf and Turf Seafood Festival at Monmouth Park Racetrack (Oceanport). There will be live music, pony rides, facepainting, a bounce house, fresh local seafood, and more. Admission is $5, parking is $5 and kids under 12 are free. Learn more here.

July 17: Belmar Sandcastle Contest from 7am-1pm at 18th Avenue Beach. The competition is free and open to participants of all ages! Bring your shovels and creative flair for a day of sculpting in the sand. Learn more at http://www.visitbelmarnj.com/ or call 732-681-3700 ext. 214.

July 21: Movies on the Beach (Seaside Heights) from 8:30-11pm at Carteret Avenue Beach. This event is free to attend. Bring your own beach chairs and blankets. This showing will feature Lego Movie 2. Get more information at http://www.exit82.com/ or call 732-830-3700.

July 24-25: Christmas in July at Jenkinson’s Boardwalk (Pt. Pleasant) from 2-6pm. Get in the holiday spirit at Jenkinson’s Boardwalk! Enjoy photos with Santa, strolling entertainment and lots for kids to do. For more information, click here or call 732-892-0600.

July 24-28: Monmouth County Fair (Freehold) takes place at the East Freehold Showgrounds on Kozloski Road. There will be plenty of rides, 4H competitions, great food, and lots of entertainment. Wednesday through Friday hours are 5-11pm, Saturday is 11am-11pm, and Sunday is 11am-6pm. Admission is $8, kids 12 and under and seniors 65+ are free. Learn more here or call 732-842-4000 ext. 4312.

July 27: Kites, Crafts and Cones Festival (Ortley Beach) from 12-8pm. The craft show will take place from noon to 7pm, kite flying from 6:15-8:30pm, and all day there will be free face painting, balloon art, and ice cream for sale. For more information call 908-303-9624 or go to http://friendsofortleybeach.org

We hope everyone has an enjoyable summer!