Winter Festivals in NJ: Holiday Fun All Season Long

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It’s the time of year when going to winter festivals in NJ will get the whole family into the holiday spirit. And with a bunch happening now through January, you’ll be able to check out a different one every weekend (and then some). Take time to be thankful at the Gratitude Fest in Wildwood, lace up your skates for Vinter Wonderland at Renault in Egg Harbor City or pick up local gifts for everyone on your list at the Artist and Maker Happy Holiday Market in Jersey City. Want more to do this season? Check out our guides to the holiday light shows or drive-through Christmas lights.

Featured Photo Credit: The Renault Winery

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

Winter Festivals in NJ: Holiday and Cold Weather Fun

Winterfest
Now-November 28
Head out to Diggerland for the diggers and stay for the Winterfest fun. The whole family can spend the day operating all the fantastic machines while enjoying live music, the famous Parade of Machines, specialty food, hayrides, and fun and games. Of course, you’ll get to celebrate all things winter with Photos with Santa, a Candy Cane Hunt, Fire Truck rides, and more.
Cost: $44.95 per ticket
100 Pinedge Drive, West Berlin, NJ 08091
(856) 768-1110

Holiday in the Park and Drive-Thru Experience at Six Flags Great Adventure
Now-January 9
Take a ride on your favorite Six Flags amusement ride while being surrounded by glittering lights. There will be shows, rides, food, and a marketplace for treats and gifts. Don’t want to get out of the car? The drive-thru experience is full of lots of holiday cheer and includes an appearance by the big guy in red.
Cost: $24.99 and up
1 Six Flags Blvd., Jackson, NJ 08527
(732) 928-2000

2nd Annual Winter Wonderwalk
November 19–into winter 2022
Wrap yourself in the warmth of the holiday season as the grounds of Cape May’s only Victorian House Museum. The Emlen Physick Estate will be lit up and glowing. Join the Winter Wonderwalk to walk the grounds and view these fun and whimsical display of winter’s past. And continue the festivities by walking along the streets of Cape May’s decorated homes.
Cost: Free admission to the grounds
1048 Washington Street, Cape May, NJ 08204

(609) 884-5404

Gratitude Fest
November 20 from 11 AM-4 PM

Get a jump on holiday shopping and take in the sea air at this outdoor festival featuring artists, creatives, and vendors of all kinds.
Cost: Free
6101 New Jersey Avenue, Wildwood, NJ 08260

For more information, visit chrissymariedesigns.com or (609) 780-2761

Surati’s Lights of Diwali-Festival and Holiday Bazaar
November 20 at 12 PM
Bring the whole family in an outdoor heated tent to see live performances, Rangoli, Diva decorating, and more. Don’t miss the Fashion Show,  Story of Diwali, vendors, food, drink, kids corner, henna, and Diwali specials for the whole family.
Cost: Free, but you must register
Exchange Place, Jersey City, NJ
07302
(201) 360-1553

Bergen County Children’s Business Fair
November 20 from 1 PM-4 PM
Come and support young entrepreneurs and experience young minds marketing, selling, counting money, and feeling accomplished. Children develop a brand, create a product or service, build a marketing strategy, and open for business in this one-day marketplace.
Cost $20 to participate
335 Franklin Turnpike, Ho-Ho-Kus, NJ 07423 

29th Annual Town Lighting & Holiday Express Concert in Red Bank
November 26, Santa and Mrs. Clause Parade – 6:45 PM, Holiday Express Concert – 7 PM, Tree Lighting – 8 PM
The most magical day in Red Bank, this 29th annual event is one you won’t want to miss. Start the day shopping on Broad Street, followed by a fun parade from Monmouth to Broad Street, a Holiday Express concert, and the tree lighting. There will be tons of refreshments, photo ops, and so much more.
Cost: Free
Broad Street,
Red Bank, NJ 07701

Avalon’s Festive Friday, Santa Lights at Dune Drive, and Avalon’s Drive-in Movie
November 26 from 11 AM-4 PM, Santa Lights at 4:30 PM, Drive-In Movie at 6:30 PM
Embrace the holiday season with Festive Friday, featuring more than 40-holiday activities for the entire family to enjoy. There will be live music, children’s performances, and head over to Dune Drive at the end of the day for a special appearance by Santa himself during the 2nd annual Santa Lights Dune Drive parade. After the official nod from Santa to start the holiday lights, cozy up for a showing of “Home Alone!” at the drive-in.
Cost: Prices vary
Dune Drive and 80th -8th Street and 29th Street Parking Lot, Avalon, NJ 

(609) 967-3936

Barnegat Light Tree Lighting and Santa’s Viking Christmas Village
November 26 at 6:30 PM and November 27 from 10 AM-4 PM
Santa arrives on the fire truck to light the “Borough Christmas Tree” and will be ready to greet visitors at the First Aid Squad building. Then on November 27, there will be live music, local artists, and crafters. Local shops will be open from 10 AM- 5 PM. Santa will arrive by fire truck at 1 PM and will be available for visits and pictures.
Cost: Free
19th and the Bay, Barnegat Light, NJ 08006

(609) 494-9196

Vinter Wonderland
Starting November 26
Celebrate a successful harvest at Renault Winery by gathering with loved ones, savoring the season, and creating new memories. There’s something for everyone this season, from ice skating to culinary and wine to local artisans and live entertainment. There will also be horse-drawn carriage rides, local vendors, and a community food drive. Don’t miss the fun extras like the fire pit experience, champagne bubble-igloo experience, cabana experience, and the rink-side fire pit experience.
Cost: Prices vary
72 Bremen Ave., Egg Harbor City, NJ 08215

(609) 965-2111

Stone Harbor Holiday Weekend
November 26-27
Watch a pet parade, join in a scavenger hunt, experience family activities, enjoy a merchants’ hospitality night, partake in Small Business Saturday activities, and don’t miss the Christmas Parade too.
Cost: Prices vary
Stone Harbor, NJ 08247

(609) 368-5102

Light Show on the Lake
November 26-December 23
Gather ’round the fire pits at Johnson’s Corner Farm’s Discovery Barnyard to roast marshmallows and watch the lake light up in this breathtaking display. Be sure to hop on the Christmas “Light Show” Hayride to see more of the farm lit up for the holidays.
Cost: $6.95 and up
Johnson’s Corner Farm,
133 Church Rd., Medford, NJ 08055
(609) 654-8643

Creamy Acre Farms Night of Lights
November 26-December 24, select dates

Drive through a dairy farm transformed into a Christmas Wonderland filled with huge light displays, a Musical Dancing Tree light show, and lights everywhere. Bring the family for an old-fashioned hayride while listening to all your favorite Christmas songs or stroll through our Barnyard Walk with lights a glow. There will also be concessions, a country store, and fire pits.
Cost: $30 per vehicle
448 Lincoln Mill Road, Mullica Hill, NJ 08062
(856) 223-1669

The Winter WonderLights
November 26-January 2 
New Jersey’s largest animated holiday light show drive-thru will dazzle your whole family. Over 1.5 million lights will dance to your favorite holiday music. The trees, the 200′ tunnel, and a tribute to first responders are just a sample of what you will see on the half-mile drive.
Cost: $27 per car or $100 season pass per car; guests are encouraged to buy their tickets online.
655 Cranbury Road, East Brunswick, NJ 08816
(800) 951-3770

Holiday Dickens Fest
November 27 at 1 PM and 7 PM and November 28 at 1 PM
The Riddlesbrood Touring Theatre Company will bring the Spirit of Christmas back to Historic Smithville when they return to present their two-day outdoor “Dickens Fest” with interactive singing for all ages. There will also be holiday-themed art, artistry, and collectibles show.  Admission to “Dickens Fest” is free and parking is free.
Cost: Prices vary
Historic Smithville, 615 E. Moss Mill Road, Smithville, NJ 08205

(866) 276-6399

Long Branch Holiday Bazaar
November 27-December 19
There will be food, vendors, and more at this Bazaar, with live music, holiday photo stations, craft workshops, and beautiful holiday décor. The holiday market is inspired by the traditional “Weihnachtsmarkts” held in Germany. While you shop, enjoy delicious food and libations, and craft beers from Whitechapel Projects.
Cost: Free
15 2nd Ave., Long Branch, NJ 07740

Bell Works Fresh Holiday Market
November 27-December 22, Wednesdays, 12PM – 6PM
If the weather outside looks frightful, you can still shop at this indoor market with 80+ local farmers, food purveyors, local artisans, and more. While you browse, kids can be entertained with crafts and live music, plus sample plenty of festive treats and drinks.
Cost: Free
Bell Works, 101 Crawfords Corner Road,
Holmdel, NJ 07733

Long Branch Tree Lighting at Pier Village
November 28, 4 PM-6 PM
You can kick off the holiday season this year at this festive holiday tree lighting at Pier Village with fun activities, including ice skating, a performance by the Long Branch High School Marching Band and Dance Team, and a special visit from Santa Claus. After the tree is lit, enjoy shopping while you look at the window displays and take in the festive cheer.
Cost: Free
Pier Village,
Long Branch, NJ 07740

Avenel’s Very Merry Holiday Lighting
November 28, 4 PM-6 PM
Come to the Avenel Fire House to watch the tree light up. Before the Christmas tree lighting, get in the holiday spirit with a photo with Santa, holiday caroling, horse and carriage rides, marshmallow toasting fire pits, and so much more. Bring a new, unopened toy to donate to the Bristol Myers Children’s Hospital.
Cost: Free
Avenel Fire House (346 Avenel Street),
Avenel, NJ 07001

Asbury Park Holiday Bazaar 2021
November 28-December 19
Peruse the aisles at the Asbury Hotel for the best local and regional artists, vendors, and shops selling art, jewelry, home goods, food gifts, and more. After, catch holiday entertainment, holiday photo stations, and enjoy seasonally inspired food and drink. Littles can take part in a festive holiday craft workshop while you shop for gifts.
Cost: Free
The Asbury Hotel, 210 5th Avenue,
Asbury Park, NJ 07712

Tuckerton Seaport’s 12 Days of Christmas
December 1-12

The Tuckerton Seaport is hosting its first-ever 12 Days of Christmas with events every day ranging from a holiday boat tour to a reindeer scavenger hunt to a pop-up holiday gift shop. Enjoy 12 days of fun and holiday cheer at the seaport.
Cost: Costs vary per event
The Tuckerton Seaport, 120 West Main Street Ste. 1, Tuckerton, NJ 08087

Menorah Lighting and Parade of Lights
December 2 and 3
On December 2, be a part of a Menorah Lighting and Chanukah Celebration at the Lumberyard Garden and enjoy an evening of fun for the whole family with music, latkes, donuts, dreidels, and choco-gelt. The next day, the annual Parade of Lights will kick off with fire trucks and floats strung in glittering lights to usher in the holiday season.
Cost: Free
Menorah Lighting – Collings and North Atlantic Avenues, Collingswood, NJ 08108
Parade of Lights – Best viewing spot, Park Avenue, Collingswood, NJ  08108

2021 Weihnachtsmarkt German Christmas Market of New Jersey
December 3-5 
Who says you need to fly to Germany to experience an authentic Weihnachtsmärkt? Sussex County Fairgrounds is home to the largest annual Christmas market in the state and the only German Christmas Market in the US, complete with a biergarten, food market, folk dancers, and live music. Your littles will have a ball in the petting zoo and enjoy a special visit from St. Nicholas. 100% of all proceeds are donated to the local Sussex County charities.
Cost: Free
Sussex County Fairgrounds, 37 Plains Road, Augusta, NJ 07822

Westwood Home For The Holidays
December 4, Parade begins at 6 PM
Get ready for the holiday season with the return of Westwood’s beloved Home For The Holidays celebration, which features a tree lighting, library storytime, live music, ice sculpting, and more. The parade will begin at 6:00 PM and will include a visit from the big guy in red.
Cost: Free
Downtown Westwood

Pitman Winter Village
December 4
Treat yourself to the charm of a Victorian Holiday at this village, where you can shop for unique, handmade gifts from 30+ special vendors. Your little ones can visit Santa or make a craft and play games. After, grab a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants on the street.
Cost: Free
Ballard Ave., Pitman, NJ 08071

Ocean Grove Holiday Festival and Christmas in Ocean Grove
December 4
During the day, you can see crafters, artisans, and live music. Then as it gets later you listen to the choir, see a live nativity, a tree lighting with carols, Santa will arrive, and the night will end with a Christmas Celebration Concert.
Cost: Free
Crafters, artisans, and live music- Main Ave., Ocean Grove, NJ 07756
Choir, nativity, tree lighting, and Santa- Auditorium Square, Ocean Grove, NJ 07756
(732) 774-1391

Atlantic City Holiday Bazaar
December 4-5
Holiday shopping, food and libations, handcrafted and vintage goods, and more. Local art and photography will also be available for purchase. There will be photos with Santa too.
Cost: Free
The Noyes Arts Garage of Stockton University 2200 Fairmount Avenue, Atlantic City, NJ 08401

Crafts at Christmas Arts & Craft Show
December 4-5

You’ll find something for everyone on your list at Cape May’s Annual Crafts at Christmas Show, where makers and artists display their handmade and original works. Comb the aisles of the legendary Convention Hall for leather goods, ornaments, watercolors, jewelry and more.
Cost: Free
714 Beach Avenue,
Cape May, NJ 08204

Artist & Maker Market Happy Holiday Market
December 4-5, 11-12

Last minute gifting is inevitable, so why not shop for locally-made jewelry, candles, specialty food items, and handmade gifts all in one convenient spot. It is a unique opportunity to shop directly from emerging new makers and established artists to find one-of-a-kind items and meet the people who made them. The bazaar seeks to support handmade goods as an alternative to mass-produced items and works to cultivate small business and entrepreneurship by providing a thriving place for them to sell.
Cost: Free
Grove Street PATH Plaza and The Ashford Rooftop,
Jersey City, NJ 07302

44th Annual Hope Christmas Craft Market
December 4-5
Bring the whole family to shop, snack on holiday treats, and visit Santa at this market that takes place in 6 buildings filled with holiday cheer. With so many vendors offering handmade goods—think alpaca throws, handmade soaps, wooden signs and homemade jams—you’re sure to pick up a few gifts (and something for yourself). Don’t forget to visit the Sweet Shop for homemade goodies. For your convenience, a shuttle service is provided to hop from building to building.
Cost: $4, proceeds go to the Hope Recreation Program
Various locations townwide, parking available at 407 Hope-Great Meadows Road, Blairstown, NJ 07825

Asbury Fresh Pop Up at Porta
December 5-23, Thursdays and Sundays
Experience a warm and toasty holiday market season in good ol’ Asbury Park. Shop locally curated vendors and enjoy pizza and festive drinks.
Cost: Free
Porta, 911 Kinsley Ave.,
Asbury Park, NJ 07712

Morris County Winter Farmers’ Market – Grow It Green
Sundays, December 5-March 27 (except December 26)
The Morris County Winter Farmers’ Market features more than 20 farmers and local food vendors in hopes to develop a local food system in which patrons will be able to eat locally and seasonally. There will be fresh grown produce, farm-raised beef, pork and poultry and fresh seafood, baked goods, farm eggs, and so much more.
Cost: Free
Convent Train Station, Convent Road, Morris Township, NJ 07960 

Bayshore Holiday Bazaar
December 12
Local and regional artists, vendors, and shops selling vintage, handmade, art, jewelry, home goods, and more. While you shop, enjoy a holiday show with Father Frost (Russian Santa) and a Kids Craft Workshop hosted by the Keyport Library. Don’t miss the holiday photo wall designed by Lauren Michael Events, and enjoy delicious spirits from 3BR Distillery (the only distillery in the world using 100% garden peas to make their spirits).
Cost: Free
7 Main Street, Keyport, NJ 07735

Count Basie Center Holiday Market
December 12
Get ready for holiday shopping, drinks, and more at The Count Basie Center For The Arts. Get into a festive mood at a Winter Market in NJ.
Cost: Free
The Count Basie Center For The Arts, 99 Monmouth Street, Red Bank, NJ 07711

Holiday Market in the Park in Hopatcong
December 12, 11 AM-3 PM, Tree lighting – 6 PM-8 PM
The tree lighting—along with a visit from St. Nick—will be happening in the evening, but come earlier to explore what the holiday market has to offer. Grab a bite to eat from the food trucks—they have kid-approved choices like fudge and pizza—and do some shopping at the craft vendors. They’re selling a range of goods, from fashion accessories to soap to holiday gifts. And, of course, holiday music will be playing throughout the event.
Cost: Free
Modick Park, 28 Hopatchung Road,
Hopatcong, NJ 07843

Virtual Kwanzaa Festival
December 19-31
Take an online class to explore West African dance, stepping, Zumba, drumming, capoeira, Bebop Graffiti Arts or Afrobeats. This year’s virtual festival runs through December 31, featuring online programs inspired by the seven principles of Kwanzaa (unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity and faith). Tune in for a panel discussion about storytelling with the elders, social justice, or Black theater, or stop by the community marketplace for some online shopping.
Cost: Free
Virtual, New Jersey Performing Arts Center
1-888-696-5722

Which Winter Festivals in NJ do you plan on attending?

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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.

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