Who’s excited for the weekend? We sure are! If you’re looking for some family-friendly fun in and around town, you’re in the right place! Check out some of these activities.
Prudential Center (24 Lafayette Street, Newark) will present Disney on Ice through Sunday. Chart a course through the night sky to Disney On Ice — where every story starts with a wish! Journey through the timeless stories of Cinderella, Aladdin, and Toy Story, and today’s favorites, including Encanto, Frozen 2, and Moana, brought to life in new ways. Create enchanted memories with the Disney Princesses and celebrate Raya’s on-ice debut. You can reach the stars if you just believe at Disney On Ice. Performances are Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m., 3 p.m., and 7 p.m. Tickets start at $20.
The Frelinghuysen Arboretum (353 East Hanover Avenue, Morris Twp) continues to host the Family Photo Scavenger Hunt. Held daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., bring your camera or phone for this month’s hunt. The theme for November is Leaf Me Alone. Leaves are falling and waiting to be found. Look for the sizes, shapes, and colors. What can you find throughout the gardens? The cost is $10 per family or group of 6 or fewer. Preregistration is required.
Are you ready to show off your soccer skills? The Montclair African-American Heritage Foundation’s (MAAHF) Scholarship Committee will host a fun soccer penalty kick fundraiser called “So, You Think You Can Score?” on Saturday, November 4, from noon to 4 p.m. Head on over to the Albert E. Pelham Sports Complex located in Glenfield Park at 55 Maple Avenue in Montclair, and join in on the fun!
Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center (247 Southern Boulevard, Chatham Township) will host Bird Nerds on Saturday from 8:30–9:30 a.m. Kids can join this fun new series and meet other birding kids! Each month, we’ll cover some birding basics and head out on the trails to look for our feathered friends. Learn to use field guides, binoculars, and birding apps to hone your skills. Binoculars provided. The cost is $7 per child. Pre-registration is required.
Glen Ridge Public Library (240 Ridgewood Avenue, Glen Ridge) will host Play Group on Saturday from 9–11 a.m. This drop-in playgroup encourages socialization among children up to 4 years old. The library will provide age-appropriate toys and books to play with while here. Caregivers are required to stay with their children while participating in the group. No registration is required. Open to everyone.
Macculloch Hall Historical Museum (45 Macculloch Avenue, Morristown) will host Scouts BSA – We the People on Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon. What makes a good citizen? Scouts discuss this, review the functions of the federal government, and discuss America’s historical documents, including the Preamble to the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights in the home of former U.S. Senator Jacob Miller (1800-1862). Activities include a focus on the life and work of political cartoonist Thomas Nast (1840-1902), whose home is on the National Register of Historic Places. This activity meets the requirements for the Citizenship in the Nation Merit Badge. Pre-registration is required. The cost is $25 per Scout and $10 per adult.
Newark Museum of Art (49 Washington Street, Newark) will host Family First Saturday on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Enjoy a day of fun activities for the whole family at The Newark Museum of Art. The day will include a MakerSPACE, Family Paint & Pop, planetarium shows, Creative Play: Solar System Story Blocks, Science Drop-In: Owl Pellet Dissection, and Family Drop-In: Mask Making – Materials Exploration. This activity is included with general admission. Visit the website for a full schedule.
Reeves-Reed Arboretum (165 Hobart Avenue, Summit) brings back Discovery Weekends on Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Explore the Arboretum’s gardens and grounds as autumn brings amazing changes! Drop by the Stackhouse Education Center on Saturdays and Sundays for this self-guided program for families and children 3 and older. Borrow a magnifying glass (please remember to return it once you’re done), grab an interactive activity guide, and head out to see what wonders big and small await. There may be a surprise, a clue to follow, a mystery to solve, a chance to create, and always an engaging nature activity. Each weekend is a new discovery!
Reeves-Reed Arboretum will host Let’s Get Growing: Scavenger Hunt on Saturday from 9:30–11:30 a.m. Head out on a scavenger hunt to spy out what things we can find in the fall garden. Take a nature hike on the grounds, play games, listen to stories, and enjoy a special autumnal treat. The cost is $15 for members and $25 for non-members.
Fosterfields Living Historical Farm (73 Kahdena Road, Morristown) will host Civil War Weekend on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Civil War Weekend is back at Fosterfields! Join NJ’s 2nd brigade as they host a reenactment weekend. Witness the historic skirmishes, camp set-ups, and more enacted during this family-friendly event. The cost is $10 per person. Children 2 and under are free. Pre-registration is required.
Field Station: Dinosaurs continues at Overpeck Park (3 Overpeck Driveway, Leonia). The attraction is open Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through November 12. Field Station: Dinosaurs is a world-class family attraction that combines cutting-edge science with the creative minds of great artists to create a one-of-a-kind experience that’s thrilling, educational, and fun. Explore scenic trails featuring over 30 moving and roaring life-size animatronic dinosaurs! Discover the story and science of Dinosaurs with live shows, games, and activities every day. Laugh with the fearless dinosaur wranglers and come face to face with The Mighty T-Rex.
Dough (168 Passaic Avenue, Fairfield) will host a Grand Opening Fall Fest on Saturday from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM. The event will feature live music and children’s activities, including a pumpkin patch and painting, face painting, a bounce house, a giant air slide, and giveaways. Admission is free.
Cora Hartshorn Arboretum & Bird Sanctuary (324 Forest Drive South, Short Hills) will host Winter Birding and Feeder Watch on Saturday at 11 a.m. Learn from local bird enthusiasts about the joys of winter birding from indoors and the basics of how to get started or improve your skills. This event is family-friendly but recommended for children 8 and up. The cost is $5 for Arboretum members and $8 for non-members.
Museum of Early Trades & Crafts (23 Main Street, Madison) will host Makerspace Saturday on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Whether you are looking for a kid-friendly project or for something creative to do after spending time at our Museum, drop by Makerspace for hands-on activities in our new collaborative workspace geared towards kids ages 5 to 12! Kids will build with Legos, paint, make jewelry, experiment with engineering and coding robots, and more! Children must be accompanied by guardians at all times. Registration is not required. This activity is free.
Morris Museum (6 Normandy Heights Road, Morristown) will host Spark!Lab on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. Spark!Lab offers any child ages 5-12 (and accompanied by an adult) a new informal approach to hands-on learning. Created by the Smithsonian, Spark!Lab ignites kids’ ingenuity with fun, hands-on challenges. Instead of following instructions, kids tap into their natural creativity to tackle engineering and design challenges in Spark!Lab’s projects stations. Specially designed for our youngest inventors (Ages 1-4), Spark!Lab’s new Young Inventor Space features a train and an exploration table filled with unique tools to spark creativity and learning.
Liberty Hall (1003 Morris Avenue, Union) will host Girl Scout Day: Juliette Gordon Low’s Birthday Celebration on Saturday from 1–2:30 p.m. Liberty Hall is the perfect place to celebrate Juliette Gordon Low’s birthday! Discover Liberty Hall’s collection of inventions, ideas, and icons that all happened from innovators in New Jersey! An Edison Phonograph, a Singer Sewing Machine, a unique set of Lenox China, and so much more! Discover what it takes to become an inventor and tinker with your own unique design! Enjoy some light birthday refreshments and learn about the other Girl Scout opportunities offered at Liberty Hall Museum. This program fulfills the requirements for several Maker badges. Reservations are required. The cost is $10 per Girl Scout and $6 per leader/adult.
Turtle Back Zoo (560 Northfield Avenue, West Orange) will host Wonders of the Wild on Saturday from 1:–3 p.m. Turtle Back Zoo is an amazing classroom! The Wonders of the Wild program offers students an opportunity to participate in supplementary science and nature-themed programs and projects that facilitate scientific literacy and life-long environmental stewardship. This week’s theme is Under the Sea. This activity is for children ages 6-12. The cost is $30 per person.
Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center (247 Southern Boulevard, Chatham Township) will host Apple Cidering Demonstrations on Saturday and Sunday at 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM. Find out why you’ve been looking at apples upside down your whole life and help make fresh apple cider by hand with an old-fashioned cider press. Taste homemade cider at the end! Pre-registration is required. The cost is $5 per person. This activity is for children ages 6 and up with an adult.
NJPAC (1 Center Street, Newark) will present WBGO Kids Jazz Concert Series: Elio Villafranca Quintet Presents “Standing by the Crossroads” on Saturday at 3 p.m. The WBGO Kids Jazz Concert Series brings world-renowned jazz musicians to concert halls and venues throughout New York and New Jersey. These concerts give young listeners the chance to discover the enjoyment of jazz, improvisation, and musical collaboration. At this concert, GRAMMY® nominated Cuban jazz pianist Elio Villafranca performs “Standing by the Crossroads” with his quartet. This piece speaks about his life, growing up in the small town of San Luis, Pinar del Rio, surrounded by Congolese drums, educated in Russian classical music while falling in love with jazz. With a relaxed, kid-friendly atmosphere, it’s the perfect way to introduce your child (or your whole family) to the art of jazz. RSVP online. This event is free.
Newark Museum of Art (49 Washington Street, Newark) will host November Family Sunday on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Enjoy a fun day of science activities for the whole family, including MakerSPACE and Family Drop-In: Mask Making – Materials Exploration. Visit the website for more details and a schedule. This activity is free with general admission.
Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center (247 Southern Boulevard, Chatham Township) will host Nature’s Crafty Creatures: Chipmunks on Sunday at 10 a.m. Nature is full of spectacular creations! This series will highlight the changing seasons each month with a story and craft. This week, learn about our friendly neighborhood chipmunks and create a craft chipmunk to bring home! Pre-registration is required. The activity is for children ages 3-5 with an adult, and the cost is $10 per child.
Montclair Art Museum (3 South Mountain Avenue, Montclair) will host Sunday Studio: Mixed-media Mandalas with Emily Kenselaar on Sunday at 1 p.m., 2 p.m., and 3 p.m. At noon, there will be a special Sensory Sunday Studio session. Visit the museum each Sunday for a fun family art-making activity inspired by the current exhibitions. Explore materials, learn new techniques, and meet other community members while enjoying creative time with your family. Each week features a different project designed by MAM Teaching Artists to spark the imagination and encourage conversation in response to artworks on view in museum galleries. This week, inspired by the exhibition Siona Benjamin: Lilith in the New World, families will use mixed media materials to create a mandala comprised of brightly colored concentric circles, working in layers and integrating both drawing and painting. This program is aimed at families with children ages 5-12, but all are welcome.
Bergen Town Center (Route 4 East & Forest Avenue, Paramus) will host a Fall Festival on Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Enjoy food trucks, a beer garden, a Football Fan Zone, and entertainment for the whole family. Kids’ activities include a bubble show, face painting, henna, and pumpkin painting. Family tickets are $18 (pre-booked) and $20 at the door and include admission for two adults and up to three children. Individual tickets are $5.
The Cooper Gristmill (66 Route 24, Chester) will host Apples in Autumn on Sunday from 1–3 p.m. Get into the Fall spirit with an afternoon of harvest-themed activities at the Cooper Gristmill. Participants can learn how to use an apple press and try fresh apple cider, take a family portrait backed by seasonal decoration, and create corn husk dolls. This activity is for ages 6-12, and the cost is $8 per person.
Historic Speedwell (333 Speedwell Avenue, Morristown) will host Can If You Can on Sunday from 1–3 p.m. Help with the fall harvest and learn the importance of canning and pickling in 19th-century life. Take home and enjoy your own mason jar of pickles. This activity is for children ages 6-12, and the cost is $8 per person.
The Cooper Gristmill (66 Route 24, Chester) will host Simple Machines: A Makerspace Day on Sunday from 1–3 p.m. Calling young builders and creators! Learn about simple machines, conduct experiments, and build your own creations during this afternoon of hands-on fun. Pre-registration is required. This activity is suitable for children ages 6-12, and the cost is $8 per child.
Montclair Public Library will host Native American Heritage Celebration on Sunday from 1–4 p.m. Together with the Montclair Art Museum, the library has planned a celebration of Native American heritage hosted by the new Judy Weston Garden in Watchung Park. Join us for fun art activities, traditional dancing, and captivating stories that showcase Native American history, art, and culture. In addition, the library’s eTuk mobile lending library will be on hand, serving as a hub for children’s story times highlighting Native American themes. Participating Native American artists are actor/playwright and theater founder Opalanietet Ryan Pierce (Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape tribal nation of New Jersey) and visual artist Renelle White Buffalo (Sičáŋǧu Lakota, an enrolled member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe).
Miller-Cory House Museum (614 Mountain Avenue, Westfield) will host Time for an Apple Bee!: Harvesting Apples on a Colonial Farm on Sunday from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM. Much like the more familiar barn-raising or quilting bee, the apple bee was a yearly fall activity at the Miller-Cory farm, which included an orchard. Experience all things apple, including cider-press demonstrations, an apple-themed story time, a scavenger hunt, and more. String apple rings to dry and enjoy the savory aromas as our docents prepare colonial dishes using apples over the open hearth. The grounds will be open for viewing and docents will be offering tours of the fully furnished c1740 farmhouse. Admission is $5 for ages 13 and older, $4 for ages 3-12, and free for age 2 and younger. No reservations are necessary.