Weekend Family Fun: Festivals, Apples, Story Time, and More

Welcome to the first weekend of Autumn! Whether you’re excited for the change of season or you’re still trying to hang on to summer, we’ve rounded up plenty of things to do!

On Friday afternoon at 4:00 PM, Watchung Booksellers (54 Fairfield Street, Montclair) will host Storytime in the Green (Watchung Plaza). Author Sarah Thomas will read from her new book, Kalamata’s Kitchen. Tomorrow is Kalamata’s first day at a new school, and she’s nervous! What if the kids aren’t friendly? Or worse, what if they don’t like alligators!? If only Kalamata and Al Dente could go to back to the Indian spice market they visited this summer, then maybe she’d remember how to feel brave when new experiences seem scary. Luckily for Kalamata, all the magic required for her journey is right in her own kitchen! As Kalamata and her alligator friend, Al Dente, transport themselves to a magical land filled with tasty ingredients, she realizes being brave is exciting! And most importantly, she learns that when we’re nervous about trying new things, food can comfort us and remind us to stay curious, courageous, and compassionate. Bring a blanket and start autumn right with a story and activity in Watchung Plaza Green. Signed copies will be available for purchase.

On Friday from 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM, Montclair Public Library (50 S. Fullerton Avenue, Montclair) will host a Therapy Dog Visit. Meet and greet with therapy dog, Koko the Shiba Inu on the library plaza. Learn about what therapy dogs do and how they help the community. No registration is required.

Also on Friday, Story Pirates will host Story Creation Zone at 7:00 PM. This virtual event is free and open to the public. Kids everywhere are invited to join Story Pirates podcast co-host Peter McNerney and other Story Pirates for this virtual improv comedy show where kids’ ideas drive the action. Peter will also interact with fans during a live Instagram Q and A. RSVPs are required. This interactive event is best for children ages 5 and up.

Circus Vazquez continues at Westfield Garden State Plaza through September 27. Performances will be Friday at 7:30 PM, and Saturday and Sunday at 2:00 PM, 5:00 PM, and 8:00 PM. Circus Vazquez is returning to Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, NJ with the biggest show ever! The 2021 tour has unforgettable performances with amazing acts from all over the world! Don’t miss it! Tickets start at $25.

Shooting Star Dance Center (403 Broad Street, Bloomfield) will host pop up dance classes on Saturdays at 9:00 AM. Dazzle, twirl, leap and play with one of our instructors as they lead your dancer through a 30-minute dance adventure.  Pop up classes are a great way to check out the studio without committing to more than 30 minutes at a time. All pop up classes are $10. You must register in advance.

On Saturday at City Green Eco-Center (171 Grove Street, Clifton) enjoy All About Apples! Workshop. Make your own apple cider, taste test apple varieties, learn all about the fun history of apples, and much more in this apple-filled programs. Sessions are available from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM and 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM. Register online. Cost is $8.

On Saturday from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM, the Essex County Environmental Center (621 Eagle Rock Avenue, Roseland) will host their 17th Annual Fall Family Festival. Celebrate the autumn equinox at the Environmental Center! There will be fun-filled activities for the entire family to enjoy – hands-on nature games and crafts, canoeing, Native American life, pumpkin patch, petting zoo, food, and more. This event is free though some items may be for sale.

Drop into Craft Saturdays at Dey Mansion (199 Totowa Road, Wayne) for a free parent and child art project. Craft demonstrations start at 11:00 AM and 1:00 PM. The event is open from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM. New projects every week and all materials are included. The event will be held outdoors, weather permitting. RSVP online.

This Saturday is the Montclair Jazz Festival Downtown Jamboree. This is the Grand Finale of the Montclair Jazz Fest featuring a jam-packed exciting day of free inspiring live music. No tickets are required. Suggested donation is $10. Enjoy two headliner main stages, two street stages featuring Jazz House Alumni bands, a food and artisan marketplace, and a Family Discovery Zone in Crane Park. Bloomfield Avenue will be closed to traffic between Grove Street and Midland Avenue. View the map on the website for more location information.

On Saturday, enjoy Fall Farm Fun at Fosterfields Living Historical Farm (73 Kahdena Road, Morristown). Timed entries will be offered at 10:00 AM, 10:30 AM, 1:00 PM, 1:30 PM, and 2:00 PM. Celebrate the fall season at Fosterfields! Navigate the corn maze and pick your own pumpkin in the brand-new pumpkin patch! Take an open-air wagon ride around the farm. Visit the farm and see corn grinding demos, butter churning, and all your favorite farm animals including the pigs, cows, sheep, goats, and chickens. All activities included with admission, which is $15 per person. Pre-registration is required online.

On Saturday, the Museum of Early Trades & Crafts (9 Main Street, Madison) will host Lenape Lifeways. A Meet & Greet will begin at 2:00 PM and the lecture will begin at 2:30 PM. Carla Messinger of Native American Heritage Programs will present Lenape Lifeways at METC, exploring the culture of these peaceful, progressive people and contrasting their social customs, history, religion, family life, agriculture, hunting, healing practices, arts and crafts, past and present contributions with those of the Europeans and Colonial Americans of the time. This program is kid friendly and family-oriented with hands-on, interactive exhibits, and is free with regular admission, which is $5 for adults, $3 for students, children, and adults 62+, free for members and children under 6. There is a family maximum rate of $15. Pre-registration is recommended.

The Frelinghuysen Arboretum (353 East Hanover Avenue, Morris Twp) continues to host the Family Photo Scavenger Hunt. Held daily from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM, bring your camera or phone for this month’s hunt. There’s a new theme every month and this is the final weekend for September’s theme, “Back to School.” Follow the clues to discover all the important things you should know about plants, without going to school! Find all the items and win a prize. The cost is $10 per family or group of 6 or less. Preregistration is required.

Turtle Back Zoo (560 Northfield Avenue, West Orange) will host Wonders of the Wild! On Saturday from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. This program offers students ages 6-12 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 session is Colors. Cost is $30 for this in-person, drop off program.

On Sunday from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Nutley’s Fall Festival in the Park will be held at Memorial Park 1 (corner of Vreeland Avenue and Passaic Avenue). There will be exciting retail vendors, food trucks, activities, and events for the entire family. Children will enjoy inflatables, face painting, and a Reptile Show at noon. Admission to the event is free.

Family Ag Day with Hazelman Farms will visit The Wayne Museum Van Riper Hopper House (533 Berdan Avenue, Wayne) on Sunday from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. Enjoy activities, produce for sale, live music, youth programs, meditation, yoga, museum tours, and friendly meet and greets with critters.

The New York Renaissance Faire (600 NY-17A, Tuxedo Park, NY) continues on Saturday and Sundays from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM through October 3. The Faire is a rollicking romp through Elizabethan England, set within the Majestic Groves of Sterling Forest. Tickets are $29.95 for adults, $13 for children ages 5-12, and free for children under 5. Visit the website to buy tickets and learn more about special events and theme weekends.

 

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