15 Things To Do This Weekend in NJ, Dec 30 – Jan 1


Enjoy First Night in Haddonfield, Ocean City, and Morris County, dive into 2017 at New Year’s Eve Splash at Adventure Aquarium in Camden, keep the party going at Food Trucks & Fireworks: Fire & Ice at The Tuckerton Seaport, and more family-friendly events this weekend in New Jersey.

Don’t forget to hashtag #NJMOM and tag @njmomhq and your little cuties could be featured in our next photo round-up.

Here are our top picks for family events in NJ this weekend:

Historic Smithville at the Colonial Inn, Photo via Jonathan Peter Photography

1. Kid Friendly Candlelight Village Tour
Friday, December 30th | 6:00PM – 9:00PM (tour begins every 30 minutes)
See Historic Smithsville Park’s Village like never before, fully lit from head to toe for the holidays. This 30 minute tour also features crafts for children and a special visit from Mrs. Claus.
Visitor Center at Historic Smithville Park Village
803 Smithville Road, Mt Holly, NJ 08060
Cost: Free

2. Holiday Fun Days at Newark Museum
Friday, December 30 – Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 1:00PM, 2:00PM & 3:00PM
Grab your family and join the fun all week long to play, tinker and create as you make connections between the materials and processes in the Museum’s collections and your own creativity.  Each day will focus on a different material found in the galleries, from paper, wood, plastic to clay.
Newark Museum, Education Lobby
49 Washington St, Newark, NJ 07102
Cost: Free with museum admission.

3. Winter Wonderland at Van Saun Park
Friday, December 30, 2016 – Sunday, January 1, 2017
Attractions include: Open Air Ice Skating, Kids’ Beginner Synthetic Rink, Additional Kids’ Activities, Bergen Express Train Ride, Santa’s North Pole Workshop, Unlimited Carousel Rides, Zoo Entry and Programming, Indoor/Outdoor Beer Garden, Callahan’s Food Truck, Waffle de Lys Food Truck, and more.
Van Saun Park
216 Forest Ave, Paramus, NJ 07652
Cost: $14 Adults, $10 Seniors, Children 5 and under are free.

Photo via firstnighthaddonfield.org


4. First Night Haddonfield
Saturday, December 31, 2016
This celebration is alcohol free, family friendly, and features music, magic, comedy, fireworks, and more. Little ones 9 and under can have fun at the special Kids Zone at Haddonfield’s Central/Middle School Gym and All-Purpose room from 6:00PM – 8:30PM. Over 15 spectacular venues will host a full evening of entertainment.
First Night Haddonfield
Cost: $15 per person, Family Four Pack $40
Click here to purchase your buttons.

5. New Year’s Eve Dance Party for Kids
Saturday, December 31st | 11:30AM
Let’s party – kids style! “Countdown to noon” and ring in the new year with an apple juice toast together with library friends. Celebrate with dancing, games, and a craft.
Maple Shade Township Library
200 Stiles Ave, Maple Shade Township, NJ 08052
Cost: Free

6. Seaside Heights First Night
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 12:00PM – 5:00PM
Mark your calendar for New Year’s Eve and a family celebration with local businesses along the Boardwalk. Fun and games for the entire family! Kids will have a blast with the balloonists, face painters, crafts, magic show, jugglers, caricature portraits, Jenkinson’s Aquarium show, and much more. Don’t miss the fireworks show at 5:00PM on the boardwalk!
Seaside Heights Boardwalk
Cost: $5

Photo via mooziesplaycafe.com

7. New Year’s Eve at Moozie’s
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 3:00PM – 5:00PM
Ring in the New Year at Moozie’s Play Cafe. Come celebrate with a little bit of open play, a craft and lots of fun in an intimate Moozie’s setting. Watch the Moozie’s “ball” drop at 4:00 pm – party hats, noise-makers and a sparkling cider toast will be provided.
Moozie’s Play Cafe
7 Shopper’s Lane, Unit #9, Turnersville, NJ 08012
Cost: $20, Advanced registration required

8. Ocean City First Night
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 4:00PM – 1:00AM
There is something for everybody at Ocean City First Night! Magic shows, horse play game show, an Ice Rink, inflatables, Japanese drummers, Let’s Rock theatrical rock and roll, swimming at Aquatic & Fitness Center, skateboard park, planetarium, and much more can all be found during this family New Year’s event. All activities support local charities. The evening culminates with a fabulous fireworks show at midnight.
Ocean City, NJ
Cost: $15. Click here to purchase your button.

9. First Night Morris County
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 4:45PM – 1:00AM
Celebrating their 25th anniversary, this family friendly New Years celebration is bigger than ever. Downtown Morristown festivities start at 4:45 and include 80+ performances, 24 venues, free shuttle bus service, and programming for all ages. For kids, you will find face painting, Fun with Legos, a Children’s Fun Festival, Rizzo’s Reptile Discovery, Hoola Hoop Fun, and more. Don’t miss the two fireworks shows when the sun goes down!
Morris County
Cost: $20 Admission, 4 or more tickets for $17.50 each, Children 4 and under are free.
Click here to purchase tickets.

Adventure Aquarium in Camden, NJ, Photo via visitphilly.com

10. New Year’s Eve Splash at Adventure Aquarium
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 6:00PM
Ring in 2017 with family, friends, and fish! This special extended hours event invites your family to visit with your favorite animals during twilight hours, grab a free, festive giveaway, boogey down at our DJ dance party with Aquarium mascot Gill, enjoy a beautiful fireworks display over the Delaware River and be home before bedtime.
Adventure Aquarium
1 Riverside Dr, Camden, NJ 08103
Cost: Activities included in price of admission.

11. Hogmanay Bonfire
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 6:00PM – 8:00PM
This annual event is a low-key way to say “farewell” to 2016 with your family. Celebrate the coming New Year with this Scottish tradition. Toss all of last year’s bad memories into the fire. Free refreshments will be provided for all guests.
Brearley House
100 Meadow Road, Lawrenceville, NJ 08648
Cost: Free

12. Midnight at the Oasis
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 7:30PM – 12:30AM
Splash away at the indoor water park, meet Sahara Sam himself, play in the Foam Party, jam out to the DJ, play games and win giveaways, and get your limbo on! In addition to these fun features, tickets also include delicious appetizers, entrees, and desserts, party goods (noisemakers, hats, etc.), a champagne toast for guests 21 and over, and sparkling cider for the kids.
Sahara Sam’s Oasis Indoor & Outdoor Waterpark
535 NJ-73, West Berlin, NJ 08091
Cost: $59.95 per person. Children 2 and under are free.

13. New Years Eve Party at iPlay America
Saturday, December 31, 2016 | 7:30PM – 1:00AM
Admission to this New Year’s Eve family party of the year includes unlimited rides, $10 in game cards, a DJ light show, party favors, confetti cannons, prizes, and giveaways all night long. Watch the ball drop on iPlay’s huge TV screens while celebrating with family and friends. Adults can enjoy a designated cocktail area. Dining options include food outlets in the park, Sonny’s Boardwalk Bites, and Game Time Bar & Grill.
iPlay America
110 Schanck Rd, Freehold, NJ 07728
Cost: $39.99 Advance, $49.99 Door, Children 2 and under are free. Click here to purchase tickets.

14. New Year’s Day Hike at Wharton State Forest
Sunday, January 1, 2017 | 10:00AM – 2:30PM
Start the New Year with a Hike in New Jersey’s beautiful Pine Barrens. Our lunch spot will have views of the Mullica River. If snow or ice on ground bring walking stick. This hike is at moderate pace at about 6.5 miles. Children over 10 with parents/guardians welcome. Paths are not wheelchair accessible. Bring lunch and beverage.
Meeting Place: Field next to the Atsion Office
744 US-206, Shamong, NJ 08088
Cost: Free

15. Food Trucks & Fireworks: Fire & Ice
Sunday, January 1, 2017 | 12:00PM – 6:00PM
Celebrate the first day of the new year at this family-friendly festival. Enjoy food trucks, family-friendly programs, and fireworks. Explore the Seaport and enjoy complimentary admission for all. Featuring your favorite local food trucks and Pinelands Brewing Company serving Batona Trail Ale.
The Tuckerton Seaport
120 W Main St, Ste 1, Tuckerton, NJ 08087
Cost: Free


Don’t forget to hashtag #NJMOM and tag @njmomhq and your little cuties could be featured in our next photo round-up.


About Author

Chelsea is a freelance writer and photographer based in the kid-friendly community of Asbury Park, and she loves sharing tips and news about this cultural beach town with NJMOM readers. When she's not discovering new bike trails, playing in her handbell choir, or reading on the beach, Chelsea works as a Children's Library Associate at a public library. You can catch her out in Asbury Park watching her husband play drums with talented local artists - be sure to come say hello!