40 FREE Things To Do In August 2023


It’s August—though the last stretch of summer is looming, there are still plenty of things to do with the fam before September. Oh, and did we mention they’re all FREE? Enjoy a spectacular display of exploding fireworks set to a musical score played along the Boardwalk at Friday Night Fireworks in Wildwood, watch live music, dance performances, and more at the New Brunswick Heart Festival in New Brunswick, or paddle a kayak and take a boat ride down the Morris Canal during the Canal Day Music and Crafts Festival in Warren. And for more ways to fill your bucket list this season, check out our guide to summer must-dos. (Featured Photo Credit: istock/Aneese)

(Note: It’s always best to check ahead for in-person events)

MarketFair Kids Club presents Summer Stem
August 1 at 10 AM
Join in on free Summer STEM activities for children ages 6-12. Your kids will enjoy lots of fun themes like “Slime Time” and “Detective Science” as they explore and discover.
MarketFair, 3535 U.S. 1 Princeton, NJ 08540

Junior Master Gardeners
August 2 at 2 PM
Help your kids become Junior Master Gardeners. Join the Noyes Arts Garage of Stockton University and Rutgers Cooperative Extension as they merge creative hands-on activities and horticulture. This is a family program geared towards children. A parent or guardian must be with their child during the entire program.
The Noyes Arts Garage of Stockton University, 2200 Fairmount Avenue, Atlantic City, NJ 08401

Family Movie Night: Encanto
August 2 at 8:30 PM
Grab a lawn chair and a blanket and watch a movie outside with the family. This event features selected films sure to bring a smile to family members of all ages ranging from great new movies to all-time classics.
Hall of Records Freehold NJ, 1E Main Street Freehold, NJ 07728

28th Annual Clam Fest
August 4-5
What could be better than fresh seafood at the shore? Check out the live entertainment, contests, unique vendors, crafters, children’s activities, and fresh seafood.
Huddy Park, 329 Bay Ave #325, Highlands, NJ 07732

Music in the Park at Rotary Park Bandstand
August 4 at 7 PM
Bring a beach chair or blanket to comfortably enjoy music in the park at Cape May Rotary Park. This year’s lineup has something for every musical taste and introduces a new, modern flair to the town.
Cape May Rotary Park, 400-498 Lafayette St, Cape May, NJ 08204

Olde Freehold Day
August 5 at 12 PM
Come together to enjoy food, games, paddle boats, contests, Kidz Zone, music, and more. 
Lake Topanemus, Pond Rd, Freehold, NJ 07728

Free Family Sunday
August 6 at 11 AM
Enjoy a free family day at Morris Museum highlighting mentorship and the exhibition Each One Teach One. This event features sidewalk chalk drawing, artist-led family tours, and special Spark! Lab updates, and more.
Morris Museum, 6 Normandy Heights, Morristown, NJ 0796

233rd National Lighthouse Day
August 7 at 10 AM
It’s National Lighthouse Day on August 7, which marks the 234th anniversary of the signing of the 1789 Lighthouse Act. There will be games and surprises for all children.
Cost: Admission is free, and donations are accepted
Hereford Inlet Lighthouse, 111 North Central Avenue, North Wildwood, NJ 08260

Tidal Tuesdays – Seining at Fisherman’s Cove
August 8 at 11 AM
Stop by Fisherman’s Cove Conservation Area, Manasquan, and join a Park System Naturalist for this free seining program. Discover a variety of fish, crabs, and other sea creatures that may be found along the cove.
383 Third Avenue, Manasquan, NJ 08736

Movie Under the Stars – How To Train Your Dragon
August 10 at 8:30 PM
Enjoy a movie under the stars at Atlantic Street Park. This event will feature the film, “How to Train Your Dragon.”
Atlantic Street Park, 102 State Street Hackensack, NJ 07601

Crest Food Truck Nights
July 5 – August 16 at 4 PM
On select Wednesday nights this summer, check out live entertainment while stopping by the food trucks for a quick bite.
Centennial Park, E Fern Rd, Wildwood Crest, NJ 08260

Multicultural Summer Celebration
August 12 at 10 AM
Join NAMI New Jersey’s Multicultural Summer Celebration this summer. This event takes place at Thompson Park and has food and fun throughout the day.
Thompson Park, Lakeview Avenue, Monroe Township, NJ 08831

2023 Corn, Tomato, and Beer Festival
August 12 at 12 PM
Bring the family to a farm-to-festival celebration of local Jersey tomatoes, sweet corn, and craft beer. This sweet summer event brings local farmers, boutique restaurants, craft breweries, live bands, artisans, and kids activities together to celebrate everything sweet and NJ.
Stangl Road Flemington, NJ 08822

Second Saturday in Collingswood
August 12 at 5 PM
The Second Saturday event began when a collection of store owners came together to promote the arts in Collingswood. Once a month, visitors can plan a night on the town to experience arts, music, shopping, and dining in Collingswood. Don’t miss the local artists and musicians on each block.
Haddon Ave., Collingswood, NJ 08108

Somerset County 4-H Fair
August 9-11
It’s the 75th anniversary, and the Fair will be charged with more energy than ever with a ton of hands-on activities, great food and live music, and wonderful exhibits for the whole family. Free parking and free admission. 
North Branch Park, 355 Milltown Road Bridgewater, NJ 08807

Ocean Township Italian-American Festival
August 9-13

The annual Ocean Township Italian-American Festival celebrates all things Italian heritage and culture. Enjoy yummy authentic Italian food and check out the carnival rides (for an additional fee), raffles, food-eating contests, and more. This is the 46th anniversary of this beloved festival.
Joe Palaia Park, 200 Whalepond Rd., Oakhurst, NJ 07755

New Brunswick Heart Festival
August 12 at 3 PM
It’s the fourth annual New Brunswick Heart Festival, which celebrates the vibrant arts and history that New Brunswick and the County of Middlesex offer. There will be live music and dance performances, a visual Arts Market, craft and food vendors, interactive activities and games, fun giveaways, a Health & Wellness tent with Garden of Healing, and readings of famous love letters by actors from Thinkery & Verse.
Downtown New Brunswick in front of the theaters at Monument Square at 2 Livingston Ave, New Brunswick, NJ 08901

Historic Battery Lewis Tours
August 12 -13 – 4 at 10:30 AM
Come and tour the newly restored Historic Battery Lewis in the Rocky Point section of Hartshorne Wood Park. Learn all about the history of this former coastal defense site. 
1402 Portland Road, Highlands, NJ 07732

Concert in the Park: Summer Jams with Secret Sound
Friday, August 18 at 7 PM
Take in the summer weather and enjoy Jersey Shore-based, upbeat, funky jam rock during this concert at Thompson Park, Lincroft. Bring your lawn chairs or blankets, food, and soft drinks. The show is outdoors at the Theatre Barn.
805 Newman Springs Road, Lincroft, NJ 07738

Beachfest II Arts & Crafts Festival
August 19 at 9 AM
Artists, makers, and food will be at the seaside town of Beach Haven. Get ready to shop by the shore.
Veteran’s Bicentennial Park, 100 Engelside Avenue, Beach Haven, NJ 08008

Canal Day Music & Craft Festival
August 19 at 10 AM

Teach the fam some history at this summer festival in NJ—take a guided walking tour of the Morris Canal, travel down the waterway on a free boat ride, or prove your prowess by paddling a kayak. Enjoy listening to some of New Jersey’s best musical performers and watch the gorgeous fireworks display over the water.
Hugh Force Canal Park, 180 West Central Avenue, Wharton, NJ 07885

Fiesta in America in American Dream NJ, a Filipino American celebration
August 19 at 10 AM
Head to the largest annual indoor Filipino event on the U.S. East Coast, showcasing the vibrant Filipino American culture, music, and products and providing networking opportunities. 
American Dream, 1 American Dream Way East Rutherford, NJ 07073

Family Fun Saturdays
August 19 at 11 AM
Come for an afternoon of games, activities, and bonding with your loved ones at Family Fun Saturdays. Enjoy a variety of activities that are perfect for the whole family. From exciting games to delicious food, there’s something for everyone.
Harriet Tubman Square, 501-551 Broad Street Newark, NJ 07102

Summer 2023 Main Street Pops Artisan Market
August 20 at 11 AM
This market attracts diverse artists and makers offering handmade creations such as art, photography, jewelry, fashion, home and lifestyle accessories, artisanal food, and more. This event features live music and a variety of vendors.
Under 14th Street Viaduct, 1401 Adam’s street Hoboken, NJ 07030

Hunterdon County 4H and Agricultural Fair Fireworks
August 23-27

This family-friendly event celebrates Hunterdon County’s rich agricultural landscape. You and your crew can check out the 4-H county fair farm activities, live music, fun games, thrilling carnival rides, and delicious food.
Cost: Free, parking $15
Hunterdon County Fairgrounds, 1207 Route 179, Lambertville, NJ 08530

Farm Festival
August 17 at 5:30 PM

The City Green Farm Eco-Center in Clifton will have a free, fun evening for families. Enjoy live music, shop the Farm Stand, and visit the goats and chickens in the Learning Farm.
171 Grove Street Clifton, NJ 07013

Life in a Freshwater Pond
August 24 at 11 AM
Explore a freshwater pond at Freneau Woods Park, Aberdeen. Look for basking turtles, hopping frogs, hunting herons, splashing fish, and anything else that catches your eye. Discover the unique life that lies underneath the water in a freshwater pond. Wear closed-toe shoes. Open to all ages, under 18 with adult.
360 Monastery Lane, Aberdeen Township, NJ 07747   

Climb Time at Freneau Woods Park
August 24 at 12 PM
Bring the family to Freneau Woods Park, Aberdeen, and try the Park System’s 25′ portable climbing wall. You must be 42″ or taller to climb. Open to ages 8 and up; under 18 with an adult. 
360 Monastery Lane, Aberdeen Township, NJ 07747  

Manasquan Summerfest Celebration
August 26 at 10 AM
Round up the whole family and head to Manasquan to see unique crafters and artists, sample gourmet food, do kid-friendly activities, and more.
Squan Plaza, Abe Voorhees Dr., Manasquan, NJ 08736

Westfield Street Fair & Craft Show
August 26 at 11 AM
Bring on the family fun at Westfield Street Fair and Craft Show. This event features artists, crafters, vendors, food, rides, live music, and more.
Downtown Westfield, NJ 221 South Ave W. Westfield, NJ 07090

Jersey Shore Jazz and Blues Festival
August 26 at 1 PM
The annual event has moved locations and changed names over the years, but it’s still the same live jazz and blues music. Crafters, vendors, food trucks, and fireworks will also be at 9 PM.
Cooper Avenue, Long Branch, NJ 07740

Hot Halloween at Jenkinson’s
August 22-23
Dust off those costumes and celebrate Hot Halloween at Jenkinson’s Boardwalk. There will be strolling entertainment, crafts & face painting, underwater carving at Jenkinson’s Aquarium, and a Halloween show on the South Beach Stage. There is a charge for entering the aquarium.
300 Ocean Ave., Pt. Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742

Family Fun Days Crafts & Collectibles Show at the Cape May Lighthouse
August 3, 10, 17, 24 from 9 AM-2 PM
Head to Cape May for a crafts and collectibles show featuring vendors and crafters from the northeast in July and August.
Cape May Lighthouse, 215 Lighthouse Ave., Cape May, NJ 08204

Marine Science Program
Every Monday and Friday through August 25, 11 AM -1 PM
Take a break from the sand—Miss Ocean is hosting the Borough of Wildwood Crest’s free marine science program. This is a great educational experience for the entire family.
Wildwood Crest, Rambler Road, and the beach

Jenkinson’s Movies on the Beach
Tuesdays, Now-August 29
Grab your beach towel and chairs and get ready for free movies on the beach at Jenkinson’s. Films include Paw Patrol: The Movie, Encanto, and Cars 3.
300 Ocean Avenue, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742

Friday Night Fireworks in Wildwood
Every Friday at 10 PM

Is there a better way to end a fun-filled week of summer in Wildwood than with free fireworks? Every Friday night, watch a spectacular display exploding to a musical score played along the Boardwalk and simulcast on 98.7 The Coast. Grab a beach chair to relax on the sand, or you can see them from anywhere on the boardwalk. Rain dates are every Sunday at 10 PM.
Wildwood Boardwalk, On the Beach at Pine Avenue, Wildwood, NJ 08260

Wednesday Night Fireworks at Seaside Heights
Every Wednesday at 9:30 PM through August 24

Stop by the boards on Wednesdays and find your favorite spot on the boardwalk to enjoy fireworks at 9:30 PM.
Seaside Heights Boardwalk, Seaside Heights, NJ 08751

Thursday Night Fireworks at Jenkinson’s
Every Thursday at dark until August 25

This dazzling display at Jenkinson’s Boardwalk in Point Pleasant is a local tradition—catch the fireworks show on the beach every Thursday night. Before the show, stop by the aquarium or hit up everything else this fave boardwalk offers, then sit on the sand for the colorful display starting at dark.
Jenkinson’s Boardwalk, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742

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About Author

Venessa is a first-time mom to a baby boy and a writer who loves to document her journey through journaling scrapbooking, and make-shift baby photoshoots. Before writing for NJMOM, she worked passionately as an English language arts teacher for over seven years. At NJMOM, she's searching for the best places to have fun with her family in New Jersey and loves giving other moms the scoop on what's happening in the Garden State. When she’s not writing or reading literary fiction, she enjoys vacationing with her family, jogging, and cooking up new recipes.