Flaming leaves, spooky touches, and crisp air can only mean one thing—October is here, and there’s plenty to do with the fam. (Oh, and did we mention it’s free?) Watch kites soar with LBI Fly International Kite Fest, see over 300 artists at the Hoboken Fall Arts and Music Festival in Hoboken, or try everything cranberry at the Chatsworth Cranberry Festival in Chatsworth. And fill your bucket list with our guide to fall activities in NJ. (featured photo credit: istock/Bastiaan Slabbers)
(Note: It’s always best to check ahead for in-person events)
Cranberry Harvest at the Whitesbog Preservation Trust
September 30 and October 1
Take staff-guided hikes to see New Jersey cranberries, learn about cranberry history, and taste cranberry products and there will be a harvest activity too.
120 West Whites Bog Road #34, Browns Mills, NJ 08015
An Olde Time Italian Festival
September 30-October 1
It’s the 16th Annual Olde Time Italian Festival with a Procession of the Saints, Italian food, vendors, games, and live entertainment. A grape stomping contest and Italian Folk dancing will take place as well.
Fox Park at Ocean Ave., Wildwood, NJ 08260
Hamilton Irish Music Festival
September 30-October 2
Enjoy Irish music, a petting zoo, Irish dance, vendors, food, and a kid-friendly area.
2419 Kuser Road, Hamilton Square, NJ 08690
Oktoberfest at Morey’s Piers
September 30-October 2, October 7-9
Get ready for four consecutive weekends of German-themed goodness with “Oktober das Oktopus,” live entertainment, kids’ activities, and more at the lively Oktoberfest on Morey’s Piers.
3501 Boardwalk, Wildwood, NJ 08260
9th Annual Somerville Oktoberfest
live music throughout the day. There will be an annual Stein Holding Contest, a pumpkin painting experience, a custom beer puppeteer setup, and temporary tattoos for the kids.
N. Bridge St., Somerville, NJ 08876
Atlantic Highlands Oktoberfest
See Oompa Bands and dancers, try authentic German food, or be a part of stein holding or costume contests at this Oktoberfest event. The rain date will be October 2.
Veterans Park, 51 Bay Ave., Highlands, NJ 07732
Fairy Day Fest
October 1 at 10 AM
At Deep Cut Gardens, you can build a fairy house for the garden fairies to live in all winter.
Deep Cut Gardens, 152 Red Hill Rd, Middletown, NJ 07748
JC Harvest Fest
October 1 at 10 AM
There will be dance performances, arts and crafts, and food for the whole family. And don’t miss the pumpkin painting station.
Hamilton Park, Jersey City, NJ 07302
New Jersey Botanical Garden Harvest Fest
October 1 at 10 AM
Hayrides and pumpkin painting are just part of the fun at the NJBG. Enjoy games, face painting, applesauce making, booths, exhibits, free activities, food, all-day music and dancing, an autumn Plant Sale, free garden tours, and many photo ops. The rain date is October 2.
Morris Road, Ringwood, NJ 07456
2nd Annual Hunterdon Harvest Fest
October 1 at 11 AM
It’s a farm-to-festival harvest celebration with live music, local foods, craft beer, and games for all ages. Bring your own chair, and the rain date is October 2.
44 Stangl Rd., Flemington, NJ 08822
North Brunswick Heritage Day
October 1 at 3 PM
It’s the 40th Annual North Brunswick Heritage Day at Community Park with vendors, entertainment, and an art contest. There will be fireworks after the evening band performance. The rain date is Sunday, October 2.
Community Park, 2051 Route 130, North Brunswick Township, NJ 08902
Annual Cranberry Fest
It’s the 32nd annual Maker Fest on Farnsworth with over 100 crafters, artists, and vendors. There will be live music and children’s activities on both days.
Farnsworth Avenue, Bordentown City, NJ 08505
Historic Smithville Oktoberfest
Get the whole family ready for a family-friendly Oktoberfest with over 100 juried crafters, live music, kids’ activities, non-profit organizations, and a gourmet food court.
Route 9 and Moss Mill Road, Smithville, NJ 08205
Hoboken Fall Arts and Music Festival
October 2 at 11 AM
Over 300 artists, crafters, makers, local businesses, and food vendors will come together with live entertainment from local musicians on two performance stages.
Washington Street between Observer Highway and 7th Ave., Hoboken, NJ 07030
October 2 at 12 PM
Listen to talented and well-known musicians from the Tri-State Area and beyond. Visit a variety of vendors and enjoy the music.
West Main Street, Freehold, NJ 07728
Newark Arts Fest
October 6-9 10 AM
The Newark Arts Festival (“NAF”) will celebrate “Artful Healing” this Fall NAF to showcase Newark’s dynamic and diverse arts and culture sector. This year, the Newark Arts Festival is partnering with The Newark Museum of Art, which will host an exciting group exhibition, “Artful Healing,” opening with a reception on Thursday, October 6, and closing on October 30.
NAF Headquarters, 33 Washington Street Newark, NJ 07102
LBI Fly International Kite Fest
Soak up the last of the summer fun at this kite festival with colorful artist-designed kites, fun flying giant inflatable kites, and sport kiting all along the beach.
Long Beach Island, NJ
Lima Bean Festival
October 8 at 9 AM
West Cape May will celebrate the area’s farming heritage with the Annual Lima Bean Festival in the Borough’s Backyard Park. Learn about a vast array of recipes and crafts and purchase products.
732 Broadway, West Cape May, NJ 08204
Pine Barrens Jamboree
October 8 at 10 AM
Take a trip to the Pine Barrens for this lively festival featuring Music of the Pines, cultural demonstrations, nature and history programs, food, vendors, and fun for the whole family.
905 Wells Mills Rd. (Rt 532) Waretown, NJ 08758
West Milford Autumn Lights Fest
This is one of North Jersey’s largest street fairs with over 300 vendors, live music, children’s activities, games, and rides.
1490 Union Valley Road, West Milford, NJ 07480
Pack the Park
October 8 at 2 PM
Head to the park for an art show, car show, live music, and beer garden all in one place this October in Gloucester City.
Proprietors Park, 225 S. King Street, Gloucester City, NJ 08030
South Jersey Pumpkin Show Fall Festival
This pumpkin show has it all—artists and craftsman, rides, live entertainment, ponies and hayrides, a pumpkin pageant, and a Fall Home and Garden Show.
Salem County Fairground, 760 Harding Hwy, Woodstown, NJ 08098
Town of Newton 7th Annual Fall Festival and Car Show
October 9 at 11 AM
Check out the cars from the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s while listening to live music, perusing the vendors, and tasting seasonal foods.
Spring Street Spring Street Newton, NJ 07860
Wildwoods Food and Music Festival
October 9 at 11 AM
Formerly known as the Wildwoods Seafood and Music Festival. The Greater Wildwood Chamber of Commerce presents a Food and Music Street Fair with food, music, shopping, a pie-eating contest, and kids’ activities.
Downtown Wildwood starts at Byrne Plaza along Pacific Avenue between Oak and Schellenger Avenues
12 Annual Diwali Mela- Festival of Lights
October 9 at 12 PM
See cultural performances, try Indian cuisine, and see live entertainment. There are activities for the kids too.
Buchmuller Park, 150 Plaza Center Secaucus, NJ 07094
New Brunswick’s 4th Annual Oktoberfest
October 9 at 12 PM
Find some festive German attire for fun and enjoy local and traditional food, music, games, activities, vendors, and drinks for the adults.
Monument Square Park, George St & Livingston Ave New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Chatsworth Cranberry Festival
Bring out the family to peruse a juried craft show, shop from over 150 vendors, taste cranberry foods, and enjoy live music too.
3980 Main Street, Chatsworth, NJ 08019
Thompson Park Day
October 16 at 11 AM
Enjoy everything from pumpkin painting to wagon rides, kids’ races, and entertainment. Don’t miss the corn ghost husks and apple cider demos. Some activities have a fee, but parking and admission are free.
805 Newman Springs Road, Lincroft, NJ 07738
Princeton Fall Fest
October 22 at 10 AM
See over 80+ vendors, and live music, and taste plenty of fall-themed foods.
Princeton Shopping Center, 301 North Harrison Street, Princeton, NJ 08540
Homegrown Harvest Festival
October 23 at 12 PM
It’s a book, crafts, art, and music fair. The rain date is October 30.
Bay Ave., Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742
Downtown Somerville Halloween Spooktacular
October 28 at 3 PM
Trick-or-treat with participating businesses, a costume contest, and pumpkin decorating. There will be an outdoor screening of Hocus Pocus too.
Three locations: Division Street, Somerset County Courthouse, Main Street, Somerville, NJ 08876
Annual Sussex County Harvest, Honey, and Garlic Festival
October 29 at 10 AM
Celebrate the fall harvest at this event, where Garden State Garlic Growers and the Sussex County Beekeepers will have educational displays and materials along with an array of honey and garlic products. There will also be local artisans, crafters, hayrides, pumpkin painting, face painting, and crafts.
Sussex County Fairgrounds, 37 Plains Road, Augusta, NJ, 07822
Haunted Downtown of Metuchen
October 29 at 11 AM
Halloween takes over Metuchen—get ready for spooky fun with attractions, games, and lots of surprises all day.
1 Pearl St 1 Pearl Street Metuchen, NJ 08840
NJ Angels Fall Festival
October 30 at 3 PM
Bring the kids for games, a trick-or-treat costume parade, a carved pumpkin contest, and a gift basket raffle pull. Event admissions, children’s activities, and pumpkin contests are free. Food, beverage, and gift basket raffle have separate charges.
Calgo Gardens, 462 Adelphia Road, Freehold, NJ 07728
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