37 FREE Things To Do In August


Can you believe that it’s August already? The good news is summer isn’t over just yet, and there is still plenty of time to fill that summer bucket list with lots of free things to do with the fam. Visit with sheep, cows, and pigs at the Atlantic County 4-H Fair in Egg Harbor City, catch a Family Movie Under The Stars on the beach at Sea Isle City in or take a free boat ride at the Canal Day Music & Craft Festival in Wharton. Scroll down to find lots of fun to make this month fly by (and did we mention it’s all free?). And if you are looking for more free events before the summer’s over, be sure to check out these outdoor movies and our fireworks guide.

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37 FREE things to do in NJ in August

(Note: Since COVID-19 rules and regulations are continually changing, it is best to check ahead for in-person events)

Mercer County 4-H Fair & Wheat Threshing at Howell Living History Farm
August 1 from 10 AM-4 PM

Bring your whole crew out for music, food, hayrides, magic shows, storytelling, homemade ice cream, and a children’s pedal tractor pull. You’ll also get the chance to participate in Wheat Threshing on Saturday, with demonstrations that allow kids to help with the process. Please bring a non-perishable food donation for Rutgers Against Hunger.
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Free Canoes and Kayaks at Scotland Run Park
August 1, 7, 8, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28, and 29 from 9 AM-3 PM

Spend the day on the water—-the whole family can paddle a canoe or hop in a kayak this weekend for free. First come, first serve, and all children 14 or younger must be accompanied by an adult. They provide life jackets and paddles, but you must print out a waiver and fill it out before your visit.
980 E. Academy St., Clayton, NJ 08312
(856) 251-6710

Big Joe Jersey Talent Show 2021 at Jenkinson’s
August 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 at 7 PM-8 PM

Every Sunday night through August 29, you can live out your America’s Got Talent dreams, show off your skills on stage, or observe others showcasing their talents. The Talent Show champion will be crowned on September 5, 2021. You can enter the Talent Show here.
On the beach, by Jenkinson’s Aquarium, 300 Ocean Ave., Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742
(732) 295-4334

Free Family Family Fun Night in Sea Isle City
August 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 from 7:30 PM-9 PM

Get the family together and have a family fun night at the shore. This event will be weekly through August.
Excursion Park JFK Blvd. and Pleasure Ave., Sea Isle City, NJ 08243
(609) 263-8687

Magic Show at Renault Winery
August 3 from 6 PM-8 PM
Face painting, balloon animals, and a magic show too. Parents can enjoy the evening while their kiddos enjoy a performance by Dovetail Presentations. Reservation required.
72 N Bremen Ave., Egg Harbor City, NJ 08215
(609) 965-2111

Fishing 101 – A Beginner’s Guide to Fishing
August 3, 10, 17, and 24 from 10 AM-2 PM
Cast, rig, bait, and maybe even catch your first fish with this beginner’s guide to fishing at Manasquan Reservoir. This event is open to all ages, under 14, with an adult, and bait and tackle will be provided. A fishing license is required for ages 16-69. Register at the Manasquan Reservoir Bait Shop.
311 Windeler Road, Howell, NJ 07731
(732) 919-0996

Family Fun Days Crafts & Collectibles Show at the Cape May Lighthouse
August 4, 7, 11, 14, 18 from 9 AM-2 PM
Crafts and collectibles featuring vendors and crafters from the northeast will fill Cape May in July and August.
Cape May Lighthouse, 215 Lighthouse Ave., Cape May, NJ 08204
(609) 224-6066

Wacky Wednesday in Ocean City
August 4, 11, 18, 25 from 10:30 AM-11:30 AM
Try something new every Wednesday in Ocean City. Start with a That’s How the Cookie Crumbles on August 4, a Hawaiian Luau on August 11, Prince and Princess Party on August 18, and finish the month with Taffy Sculpting on August 25. These events are open to all ages, but capacity is limited.
Music Pier, Moorlyn Terrace and Boardwalk, Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 339-6111

The 20th Annual Art of Surfing
August 5 from 5 PM-10 PM

See original art from surfing’s biggest names. There will also be live music and a chance to meet artists from across the country.
Ocean City Music Pier – 852 Boardwalk, Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 399-1412

58th Annual Boardwalk Art Show in Ocean City
August 6, 7, and 8 from 10 AM-8 PM and Sunday 10 AM-6 PM

It’s that time of year again to find beautiful art. Original works of art will be for purchase, as well as hand-made jewelry, oil/acrylics, watercolors, drawings, and hand-pulled prints, and photography. This is a great way to support local artists and find a unique gift for someone.
8th-13th Street, Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 399-7628

Atlantic County 4-H Fair
August 6 and 7

It’s not a Fair without a tractor pull, talent show, a pie-eating contest and of course, farm animals. But, there’s even more—there will also be a pet parade, car show, Atlantic County Firefighter Competition, and Community Garden Contest. The event is free, but there is a $4 parking fee.
3210 Route 50, South Egg Harbor City, NJ 08330
(609) 625-0056

Pop-Up Storytime in the Park and Food Truck Friday
August 6 and 13 at 10:30 AM
Your kiddos can enjoy a special pop-up storytime from the Recreation Department and Cherry Hill Public Library. Then stick around for Food Truck Friday at Croft Farm.
Croft Farm – 100 Bortons Mill Road, Cherry Hill, NJ 08034
(856) 488-7868

Honey Harvest at the Howell Living History Farm
August 7 from 10 AM–4 PM
Meet the workers, drones, and the queen herself with the Howell Farm Beekeeper. Help uncap and extract this year’s crop of clover honey directly from the combs. You can also taste the honey and even bring some home.
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Historic Battery Lewis Tours
August 7, 14, 21 from 10 AM-4 PM and August 1, 8, 15, 22 from 1 PM-3 PM
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
(732) 872-0336

Edible History Series at Historic Walnford: Ice Cream Time
August 7 from 2 PM-3 PM
Have you ever tasted ice cream from the 19th century? Now’s your chance to crank ice cream in the shade of the ice house and then enjoy your freshly made treat.
62 Walnford Road, Upper Freehold, NJ 08501
(609) 259-6275

Free Family Movies Under The Stars in Sea Isle City
July 7, 14, 21, and 28 at dusk

Get the family together and enjoy a movie under the stars. This event will be weekly through September.
Excursion Park – JFK Blvd. and Pleasure Ave., Sea Isle City, 08243
(609) 263-8687

Family Ag Days
August 8 and 22, September 12 and 26 from 9 AM-1 PM

The County of Passaic and Hazelman Farms present Family Ag days to connect families with agriculture through activities, music, and programs. Don’t miss the produce for sale and the petting zoo too.
Van Ripper Hopper Museum, 533 Berdan Avenue, Wayne, NJ 07470
(973) 706-6640

Machinery Expo at Historic Longstreet Farm
August 8 from 1 PM-3 PM

Learn about the mechanics of the farm’s horse-drawn implements and household/kitchen equipment at Longstreet Farm. This machinery will be able to be viewed for one day only, so don’t miss it.
44 Longstreet Road, Holmdel, NJ 07733
(732) 946-3758

Fireside Folklore
August 8 at 8 PM

Nestle around a campfire to hear stories of old Pine Barren folklore. Hot chocolate is included, and all ages are invited. This event runs for one hour.
Brendan T. Byrne State Forest – Highway Route 72 East, New Lisbon, NJ 08064
(609) 726-1191

Pinelands Storytime
August 10 at 10:30 AM

All ages can listen to stories of the Pinelands. Pre-registration is required.
Double Trouble Village Cranberry Packing Plant – 581 Pinewald Keswick Road, Bayville, NJ 08721
(732) 341-6662

Passaic County Fair
August 12-15 

The annual Passaic County Fair is a fave stop for families each summer. Details for 2021 are still being arranged. The fair is free, but there is a parking fee.
Mountain Reservation, 8 Mountain Ave., Woodland Park, NJ 07427
(973) 881-4405

Potato Harvest at Howell History Living Farm
August 14 from 10 AM-4 PM
Get ready to help the farmers and follow behind the potato plow as workhorses Bill and Jesse unearth rows of potatoes for picking. Visitors can grab their bushel basket to help collect, clean, and sort the crop to get it ready to deliver to local soup kitchens and pantries. Some potatoes will be saved to make into potato chips too.
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Second Saturday in Collingswood
August 14
The Second Saturday event began when a collection of store owners came together to promote the arts in Collingswood. Once a month, from March to December, 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
(856) 854-0720

Craft Beer, Music, Crab Festival
August 14 and 15

It’s the 9th annual Craft Beer, Music, and Crab Festival in Cape May at the Emlen Physick Estate. There will be two days of craft beers, steamed crabs, music, and kids’ activities at this event.
Emlen Physick Estate, 1048 Washington Street, Cape May, NJ 08204
(609) 884-5404

Hillsborough Rotary Fair
August 17-21, fireworks August 20

The Annual Hillsborough Rotary Fair is back with fun for the whole family. Visit vendors, play games, grab some grub, and stick around for the fireworks on August 20.
Hillsborough Promenade, 315 Route 206, Hillsborough Township, NJ 08844
(908) 334-9304

Twilight Farm Festival
August 19 at 2 PM

The City Green Farm Eco-Center in Clifton will be having a free, fun evening for families. There will be live music, lawn games, and free kids’ activities. Make sure you see the learning garden and visit the animals.
171 Grove Street Clifton, NJ 07013
(973) 869-4086

Canal Day Music & Craft Festival
August 21, 10 AM-5 PM, fireworks at dusk

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. Learn about local wildlife, experience the art of blacksmithing, visit a civil war encampment, or lay back and enjoy listening to some of New Jersey’s best musical performers, and then watch the gorgeous fireworks display over the water.
Hugh Force Canal Park, 180 West Central Avenue, Wharton, NJ 07885
(973) 361-8444

Hunterdon County 4H and Agricultural Fair Fireworks
August 25-29

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 along with live music, fun games, thrilling carnival rides, delicious food, and the always popular fireworks extravaganza on Friday night. The fair is free, but there is a parking fee.
Hunterdon County Fairgrounds, 1207 Route 179, Lambertville, NJ 08530
(908) 782-6809

Dolphins: Facts & Tales
August 26 from 7 PM-8 PM
Dolphins can be found swimming along the shores of Monmouth County, and you can join a Park System Naturalist to find out the ecology associated with these marine mammals. Learn all about the dolphins found in area waters and the importance of dolphins to the local marine ecosystem, the factors affecting their survival, and ways you can help.
Bayshore Waterfront Park Activity Center, 719 Port Monmouth Road, Port Monmouth, NJ 07758
(732) 787-3033

Fiddlin’ Day at the Howell Living History Farm
August 28 from 10 AM-4 PM

Musicians from all over the state will choose a barnyard stage and play outdoors throughout the day. Fiddlers, guitarists, and even mandolinists will be playing traditional folk and bluegrass music for all to enjoy. The public can join in and sing along, or they can “jam” with the band on acoustic, stringed instruments.
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Seining Along Sandy Hook Bay at Bayshore Waterfront Park
Mondays, Wednesdays, and Friday until August 28 from 11 AM-12 PM
Get ready for a hands-on nature program in Port Monmouth. Discover fish, crabs, and other sea creatures while pulling a long seine net along the edge of Sandy Hook Bay. Parents and guardians must supervise their children, and closed-toe shoes are required. Meet on the beach near the parking lot. Groups can also reserve a date.
719 Port Monmouth Road, Port Monmouth, NJ 07758
(732) 787-3033

Kiddie Shows on the Beach at Jenkinson’s
Beginning Jun 28-August 30 at 7 PM

Starting in June, enjoy the first Kidde show from the ride park train station. Experience circus, comedy, and magic shows all summer long.
300 Ocean Avenue, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742
(732) 295-4334

Jenkinson’s Fireworks
Every Thursday at dark

Enjoy the sparkle, pop, and boom of the fireworks at Jenks. You can view them all along the Point Pleasant Beach Boardwalk.
300 Ocean Avenue, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742
(732) 295-4334

Makers + Shakers Pop Up Market
Every Thursday-Sunday from 11 AM – 6 PM through September 5

Kick-off the summer at this lively market where you can check out various local makers, artists, and designers selling handcrafted goods, clothing, jewelry & accessories, beauty products, art, photography, home goods, and so much more. The kids can also enjoy rides on the Carousel, and don’t forget to visit the beach, restaurants, shops, and the boardwalk.
52 Centennial Drive, Long Branch, NJ 07740
(732) 923-0100

Somerville Summer Stage
Every Saturday, May 29 until October 2 from 6 PM-9 PM

Bring chairs to this concert series, with a new performance every Saturday. Bob Lanza will play on July 3, Nick Ryan and The Mess on July 10, John Busse on July 17 on July 24, The Bryan Hansen Band will perform, and The Broadcasters will perform on July 31.
Division Street, Somerville, NJ 08876
(908) 524-0104

RWJBarnabas Health: Cooking Classes for Kids
Dates and times vary depending on the program
Kids of all ages will love cooking up healthy treats in these virtual hands-on cooking classes (adult supervision required during class): Try Healthy Kids in Hannah’s Kitchen for kids 8-12, where they’ll learn to use a recipe, cook with nutritious ingredients, and utilize kitchen basics or try Taste Testers in Hannah’s Kitchen, a Mommy and Me style class for 2-4-year-olds.
RWJBarnabas, Virtual
(973) 926-7371

Barnes and Noble Virtual Saturday Story Time
Throughout August
Click on the link every Saturday to hear a featured picture book read aloud.

What are you planning to do this August? We would love to hear about your summer fun!

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About Author

Melanie Bodner has always had a love for writing, but now she has a new love…being a mom. Before having her kids, Melanie was no stranger to writing or working with children. She wrote for a local newspaper as a reporter and taught English and Dance in a public school. Now Melanie enjoys spending time with her kids, doing yoga, writing and decorating her home. Check out her Instagram @burlapbythebeach.