Weekend Family Fun: Dinosaurs, Holiday Lights, Art, and More

Happy new year! Get January off to a fun start with these family friendly activities everyone can enjoy!

New Jersey Convention and Expo Center (97 Sunfield Avenue, Edison) will host Jurassic Quest this weekend from 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM on Saturday and 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM on Sunday. Jurassic Quest is North America’s largest and most realistic Dinosaur event. Guests walk through the Cretaceous, Jurassic and Triassic Periods and experience for themselves what it was like to be among dinosaurs of all kinds. Jurassic Quest is the only interactive dinosaur event that has over 100 true to life-size animatronic dinosaurs in each of its indoor touring shows from the very small to the gigantic. In collaboration with leading paleontologists, each dinosaur has been painstakingly replicated in every detail. Whether their prehistoric counterpart had skin that was scaly, had feathers or fur, Jurassic Quest has spared no expense in bringing the dinosaurs to life. Jurassic Quest exhibits also allow future paleontologists to dig up fossils, ride their favorite life-sized dinosaur, enjoy walking dinosaur and baby dinosaur shows, and enjoy a dinosaur themed play land in addition to face painting, crafts and much more. You must purchase tickets online for a timed entry slot. Tickets start at $19.

This is the final weekend of the Bergen County Winter Wonderland 2021 at Van Saun County Park (216 Forest Avenue, Paramus). Bergen County’s Winter Wonderland at Van Saun Park is northern New Jersey’s premier winter event featuring open air ice skating, a kid’s zone ice rink, hospitality tent, children’s games and activities, carousel rides, food trucks an indoor/outdoor beer garden and the Bergen County Express Train Ride! All activities (including skate rentals) are included with admission. Tickets are $15 and children 3 and under are free. Visit the website for a full schedule of activities.

Also at Van Saun County Park (216 Forest Avenue, Paramus), Friends of the Bergen County Zoo will host Let It Glow – A Holiday Lantern Spectacular from 4:00 PM to 9:00 PM on both Saturday and Sunday. Let it Glow is a symphony of vivid glowing colors to tease your eyes and dazzle the mind. Enjoy an enchanting stroll throughout the zoo. With over 30 scenes, these hand-made artistic wonders are more breath-taking than the last! The last night for this event is January 30th. Tickets can be purchased at the door but buying online is recommended as the event may sell out. Tickets are $15 for adults and $7.50 for children 3 and older. Children 2 and under are free.

The Frelinghuysen Arboretum (353 East Hanover Avenue, Morris Twp) continues to host the Family Photo Scavenger Hunt. Held daily from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, bring your camera or phone for this month’s hunt. There’s a new theme every month and the current theme is “Black & White.” There’s a lot of beauty to be seen in Frelinghuysen Arboretum’s winter garden just waiting for you to go look for it! You might even see some hints that spring is really only two and a half months away. Get outside and explore the gardens with this contact-less family photo scavenger hunt. The cost is $10 per family or group of 4 or less. Preregistration is required.

Montclair Art Museum (3 South Mountain Avenue, Montclair) will host Sunday Studio on Sunday from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. This week’s session is entitled Monochromatic Monoprints with Anna Muñiz. Inspired by the exhibition Color Riot! and the weaving Tó Éí ĺíńá / Water Is Life, by Marilou Schultz, families will learn about monochromatic color schemes and printmaking techniques while creating their own unique monoprint. This program is geared toward families with children ages 5–12, but all are welcome. This event is free with MAM admission. Registration is required.

Big Apple Circus will present shows each weekend through January 30th at Lincoln Center (10 Lincoln Center Plaza, NYC). The performance puts a modern twist on a beloved classic and performing throughout the holidays and into the New Year. This all-new production will feature Guinness world record holder, daredevil, Nik Wallenda and his fearless family of highwire walkers. Joining the Wallendas is an international cast of gold-medal-award-winning, world-class circus artists in this Reenergized, Reimagined, and Reinvigorated production of circus artistry. See these performers, previously on America’s Got Talent, The X-Factor, or YouTube, “live” in this up-close and immersive event. Tickets start at $35 and there are performances on Saturday at 3:30 PM and 7:30 PM and Sunday at 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM.

Finally, these holiday light shows are continuing this weekend.

Magic of Lights New Jersey at PNC Bank Arts Center (116 Garden State Parkway, Holmdel) is open for its final weekend through Sunday. Magic of Lights is a unique and dazzling drive-through holiday lights experience to celebrate the season. Pile everyone into the car and experience Magic of Lights from the safety and comfort of your own car as you wind through the sparkling path. At every turn, the magical route is overflowing with spectacular light displays that bring to life your favorite holiday scenes and characters of the season using the latest LED technology and animations. Magic of Lights is a great family entertainment value! Tickets start at $25, and you’ll need one ticket per carload.

Six Flags Holiday in the Park Drive-Thru Experience (1 Six Flags Blvd, Jackson Township) is open all weekend. Enjoy Holiday in the Park from the comfort of your car with the Drive-Thru Experience. Drive under the glittering lights as the sounds of the season fill your heart with holiday joy. Visit your favorite characters like The Peppermint Princess in Gingerbread Junction and The Evergreen Queen in Holiday Memories while you drive through 10 themed areas filled with millions of holiday lights. After, stop in the new Merry Market Place Walk-Thru Experience to see Santa, watch a musically coordinated light show, and have food of snacks. Tickets and reservations are required. Visit the website for details.

Holidig at Diggerland (100 Pinedge Drive, West Berlin) will be open for its final weekend, from 5:30 PM to 9:30 PM. 2021 marks the second holiday light show and you won’t want to miss this! Experience a light show like no other. Drive a course through America’s only construction theme and water park to witness lights, holiday displays, tunnels, and a radio station to fill your car with holiday spirit. After, grab some tasty treats at the Fork Lift Café! Cost is $32.95 per vehicle. Purchase your ticket online to guarantee entry.

Winter WonderLights Spectacular at Middlesex County Fair Grounds (655 Cranbury Road, East Brunswick) will be open for its final weekend, from 5:30 PM to 10:00 PM. What started as a display at home for friends and neighbors has grown into this unforgettable experience at Middlesex County Fair Grounds. Winter WonderLights drive thru now has over 1.5 million lights animated to some of your favorite holiday tunes. There are twelve 20’ trees, the 200’ tunnel of lights, a tribute to our first responders and tons of other stunning, larger-than-life holiday themed displays for the entire family – all synchronized to the music playing your in car! Cost is $28 per car. Tickets can be purchased online and may be used any night.

Christmas Light Show & Village at Skylands Stadium (94 Championship Place, Augusta) will be open for its final weekend with time slots throughout each evening. Enjoy a one-mile-long drive-thru with over 2 million lights on the field at Skylands Stadium. You can also visit the Christmas Village where you can ride the Ferris wheel and carousel, skate the rink, take a photo with Santa, and stop by the Winter Beer Garden. Also, roast s’mores on a fire pit, sip hot cocoa or coffee, and enjoy ice cream and delicious holiday treats from the vendors. Tickets for the light show are $29 per carload and must be purchased in advance. Christmas Village is free, but rides, games, food, and Santa photos are additional costs.

Dasher’s Lightshow: A Christmas Drive Thru is open at Newark Moonlight Cinema (220 Orange Street, Newark) through Sunday. Experience the magic of the drive through light tunnels and fabulous displays across acres of land. Enjoy the holiday music through your car’s radio. Ticket prices vary depending on the date and time of your visit.

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