29 FREE Things To Do In July


It’s July, mamas, and to get ready to fill your summer with excitement, we’ve got lots of free things to do with the fam. Celebrate Fourth of July with rides, games, and fireworks at the 74th Annual Fourth of July Celebration in Summit, learn how to fish at Fishing 101 in Howell, get crazy and try a new challenge every Wacky Wednesday in Ocean City, or experience the taste of ice cream from the 19th century with the Edible History Series at Historic Walnford in Upper Freehold. Scroll down to find lots of fun to make this month fly by (and did we mention it’s all free?). And be sure to check out fireworks this 4th of July and find awesome family things to do on our NJMOM Summer Bucket List.

Featured Photo Credit: Istock/OcusFocus

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Here are 29 FREE things to do in NJ in July

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

Seining Along Sandy Hook Bay at Bayshore Waterfront Park
July 2, 5, 7, 9, 12, 14, 16, 19, 21, 23 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.
719 Port Monmouth Road, Port Monmouth, NJ 07758
(732) 787-3033

The Wildwoods Boardwalk Friday Night Fireworks
July 2 at 10 PM. Raindate is Sunday at 10 PM
Bring a blanket and beach chairs to take in spectacular fireworks launched from Pine Avenue and the Beach and visible from anywhere along the boardwalk and beach. A music score will be played with the fireworks and simulcasted on 98.7 The Coast.
Wildwoods Boardwalk – Pine Ave. Wildwood, NJ 08260
(609) 523-1602
Patriotic Bicycle Parade in Lavallette 
July 3 from 9 AM-10 AM

Get that red, white, and blue ready—join a longstanding Lavallette tradition and decorate your bicycle for a Fourth of July bike parade. Open to all ages.
President Avenue Beach, Lavalette, NJ 08735
(844) 365-6952
Ice Cream Party at the Howell Living History Museum
July 3 from 10 AM-4 PM
Try freshly made ice cream churned by Farmer Jim and his crew. A “hit or miss” engine will churn gallons of ice cream while the Jugtown Mountain String Band will perform. And don’t miss the kids’ games and farmhouse tours —plus crafts, surrey rides, and ice cream are available for a small fee.
Howell Living History Museum – 70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Historic Battery Lewis Tours
July 3, 10, 17, 24 from 10 AM-4 PM and July 4, 11, 18, 25 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

Independence Day Celebration at Longstreet Farms
July 4 from 12 PM-4 PM
Bring the 1890s into the 2000s at Longstreet Farm. Music, games, and contests will be available at this Independence Day celebration.
Historic Longstreet Farm – 44 Longstreet Road, Holmdel, NJ 07733
(732) 946-3758
Summit’s 74th Annual Fourth of July Celebration
July 4 at 12 PM

Celebrate an annual celebration with a children’s decorated bike parade and fireworks display. Food trucks, live music, and carnival rides will also be available.
Soldier’s Memorial Field – 5 Myrtle Ave., Summit, NJ 07901
(908) 277-2932
Fun on the Fourth in Collingswood
July 4 at 2 PM
Water games, raft races, and more during the day and watch the sky light up with fireworks at night. Gates open at 6:30 PM for the 4th of July fireworks in New Jersey, and there is a live music performance at 8 PM. And good to know—there is no parking in Knight Park on the 4th.
401 Knight Park House, Oaklyn, NJ 08107
(856) 854-0720
Declaration of Independence Reading and Musket Firing
July 4 at 2 PM

Observe a dramatic reading of the Declaration of Independence followed by a musket firing. This event is for all ages and meets at Sullivan’s Grove next to the Visitor’s Center.
Washington Crossing State Park – 355 Washington Crossing -Pennington Road, Titusville, NJ 08560
(609) 737-0623
Jersey City’s 50 Star Fire Show
July 4 at 9:30 PM

Celebrate our nation’s freedom with a gorgeous fireworks display on Jersey City’s waterfront that rounds out a huge free family event with Fireworks by Grucci. Grucci, also known as the Guinness World Record holder for the “Largest Fireworks Display” ever recorded, will transform the night sky on the 4th. Stay tuned for a map of locations.
Exchange Place at Montgomery and Hudson, Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 547-6921

Free Family Family Fun Night in Sea Isle City
July 5, 12, 19, and 26 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, 08243
(609) 263-8687

Fishing 101 – A Beginner’s Guide to Fishing
July 6, 13, 20 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

Wacky Wednesday in Ocean City
July 7, 14, 21, 28 from 10:30 AM-11:30 AM
Try something new every Wednesday in Ocean City. Start with a pie-eating contest on July 7, a French fry sculpting contest on July 14, celebrate Christmas in July with a craft and Santa on July 21, and finish the month with a mystery bag event on July 28. These events are open to all ages, but capacity is limited.
Music Pier, Moorlyn Terrace and Boardwalk, Ocean City, NJ 08226
(609) 339-6111

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

Pop-Up Storytime in the Park and Food Truck Friday
July 9, 16, 23, 30 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

Wheat Harvest and Threshing Demonstration at Historic Longstreet Farm
July 10 and 11 from 12 PM-2 PM
Do you know how to harvest and thresh? Learn how the wheat crop was cultivated and processed in the days before combines. The wheat will be cut, gathered, and bundled into sheathes using a horse-drawn grain binder on Saturday. The staff will use a 19th century belt-driven Champion thresher on Sunday to separate the wheat grain from the straw and the chaff. 
44 Longstreet Road, Holmdel, NJ 07733
(732) 946-3758

Edible History Series at Historic Walnford: Ice Cream Time
July 10 from 2 PM-3 PM
Have you ever tasted ice cream from the 19th century? Crank ice cream in the shade of the ice house. And the best part, enjoy the freshly made ice cream too.
62 Walnford Road, Upper Freehold, NJ 08501
(609) 259-6275

Blacksmithing at Howell History Living Farm
July 10 from 5 PM-8 PM
Fire up the forge and heat wrought iron with blacksmith Daniel Lapidow. Turn the crank of the forge blower until the iron turns orange to make harness hooks, gate hinges, and other farm hardware. 
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Bradley Beach Summer Concerts
July 10, 17, 24, 31 from 7 PM-9 PM

Get the whole family dancing at one of these weekly free concerts in Riley Park presented by the Bradley Beach Department of Tourism. The Dessert Jellies will play on July 10, The Jay Sweet Trio on July 17, and more. Bands are subject to change.
615 Main Street, Bradley Beach, NJ 07720
(732) 776-2999

Evening Share the Harvest Tours at the Howell Living History Farm
July 17 from 5 PM-8 PM
Take a behind-the-scenes tour through Howell Farm’s “Share the Harvest” program to discover the farm’s 2021 gardens, crop fields, and barnyard. Visitors receive a trivia game board and crossword puzzle with answers posted throughout the farm. Farmers are throughout the barnyard to introduce the animals and answer questions about the program. Receive a bag of freshly ground wheat flour for completing the puzzle.
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Evening Livestock Chores at the Howell Living History Farm
July 24 from 5 PM – 8 PM
Pack up your boots and works gloves and get ready to learn all about what it takes to keep farm animals. So, pick up that pitchfork and get ready to do some evening chores on the farm. Bring the sheep in from the pasture, collect eggs in the henhouse, feed, and water the animals, grind corn in the barn, clear the horse stalls’, and scrub and filled the water tubs.
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Mercer County 4-H and Wheat Threshing
July 31 from 10 AM- 8 PM and August 1 from 10 AM-4 PM

See animal shows and exhibits, sample homemade ice cream, take a hay or pony ride, listen to music, take a farm tour, or watch a magic show. There are plenty of displays to see too. Please bring a non-perishable food donation for Rutgers Against Hunger. The Wheat Threshing demonstration will take place on July 31.
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Twp., NJ 08530
(609) 737-3299

Kiddie Shows on the Beach at Jenkinson’s
Beginning June 28-August 30 at 7 PM
Starting in June, enjoy the first Kiddie 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

Downtown Wildwood Movies in the Plaza-Free Tuesday Night Kick-Off!
Every Tuesday at sunset

Enjoy a free family movie every Tuesday night in the summer. Bring your beach chair and enjoy a night under the stars. The film begins as soon as the sunsets.
Byrne Plaza 3400 Pacific Avenue, Wildwood, NJ 08260
(609) 523-1602 
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 July
Click on the link every Saturday to hear a featured picture book read aloud.

What are you planning to do this July? 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.