NJ County Parks Rock – Over 100 Cheap and Free Things to do at New Jersey County Parks

Posted on: April 1st, 2021 by

Our New Jersey county parks rock!

Have you ever looked at your local county parks program guide or their calendar of events? Have you looked at them for the New Jersey county parks near you?

If you haven’t you are missing out on some great free and cheap activities to do with kids. Looking at each of the New Jersey county parks websites and calendars is something we do a lot. We’re always on the hunt for free and low cost NJ activities to add to our calendar of events.

I’m always amazed at what activities our NJ county parks are offering. I see so many events I wish I could attend. Zombie archery, geocaching for ghosts, owl walks, maple sugaring those are just some of the latest activities we’ve taken advantage of at New Jersey county parks.

teenager excited to shoot zombies and ghosts with arrows at Monmouth County Parks.

Besides park activities being free or almost free, you don’t even have to live in that county to take advantage of a county park’s events. There may be a higher fee for nonresidents, but most will still let you attend. For example, we’ve driven from Atlantic County to Monmouth County to take advantage of archery against zombies, lessons in geocaching, and to rent kayaks.

Here’s just a brief look at some of the free and cheap activities available at New Jersey County Parks.

100 Cheap and Free Things to do at New Jersey County Parks

If you’re not sure which NJ County Parks offer the programs below check with yours or others using our directory just below our listing of county park activities.

This list is by no means comprehensive! Park directors and their teams are super creative. They are always coming up with new ideas and activities for kids, teens, and families. Again, if you don’t see something here check our calendar, their websites, or their Facebook pages. (All listed below.)

Nature is Awesome!

  1. Birding
  2. Wildlife Rehabilitation
  3. Monarch Butterfly Tagging
  4. Moon walks, beach walks, and nature walks
  5. Astronomy & Stargazing
  6. Animals
  7. Boat Tours
  8. Wildlife Watch
  9. Solstice Celebrations
  10. Plants & Flowers
  11. The Edible Forest
a butterfly garden in New Jersey

Outdoor Skills and Ways to Have Fun

  1. Kayaking
  2. Canoeing
  3. Traditional Fishing
  4. Ice Fishing
  5. Hiking
  6. Orienteering
  7. Seining
  8. Paddleboarding
  9. Ziplining
  10. Rock Climbing
  11. Crosscountry Skiing
  12. Maple Sugaring
Blackwater Paddle & Pedal Adventures kayak

Sports Kids Always Wanted to Try

  1. Archery
  2. Horseback Riding
  3. Dancing
  4. Mountain Biking
  5. Tennis
  6. Baseball
  7. Flag Football
  8. Basketball
  9. Hockey
  10. Martial Arts
  11. Foot Golf
  12. Golf
  13. Boxing
  14. Soccer
  15. Lacrosse
  16. Pickleball
Archery at Monmouth County Park

Not Your Typical Arts and Crafts Programs

  1. Ceramics
  2. Pottery
  3. Watercolor Painting
  4. Drawing
  5. Oil Painting
  6. Knitting
  7. Basket Making
  8. Mosaic
  9. Jewelry Making
  10. Sand Casting
  11. Weaving
some county parks offer jewelry making classes

Music Appreciation

  1. Keyboarding
  2. Concerts in the Park
A collection of band instruments for a summer concert in the park

The Way Things Used to Be

  1. Historic building tours
  2. Demonstrations
  3. Reenactments
  4. Intro to County History
  5. Folklife
  6. Sheep sheering
a civil war reenactment takes place in a park

Skills for School

  1. College and SAT Prep
  2. Reading Comprehension
  3. Storytelling
Get tutoring at a New Jersey County Park

Skills for Life

  1. Meditation
  2. How to ride a bike
  3. Swimming
  4. Geocaching
  5. CPR Certification
  6. Babysitting & Childcare
  7. Caring for Pets
  8. Resume writing
  9. Public Speaking
  10. Stress Management
  11. Suicide Prevention & Awareness
  12. Conservation and Recycling
learn to swim at NJ county parks

A New Hobby

  1. Sewing
  2. Cooking
  3. Baking
  4. Yoga
  5. Zumba
  6. Photography
  7. Boating
  8. Genealogy
  9. Gardening
  10. Belly Dancing
  11. Singing
  12. Square Dancing
  13. Ballroom Dancing
  14. Roller Skating
  15. Chess
Kids do yoga in the park with New Jersey county parks

Career Exploration

  1. Fashion Design
  2. Dog Obedience
  3. Drama
  4. Criminal Justice and Forensics
NJ County parks offer drama lessons and programs

Team Building and Family Time

  1. Pumpkin Carving
  2. Family Movie Nights
  3. Family Game Night
  4. Comedy Nights
  5. Wagon Rides
  6. Organized Overnight Family Camping Programs
  7. Traditional camping
  8. Scavenger Hunt
  9. Organized Day Trips
  10. Zombie Battles
  11. Splash at a Sprayground
boys pose with ghost after geocaching at Monmouth County Parks
My boys pose with a ghost after geocaching at Monmouth County Parks

Virtually fun activities at New Jersey County Parks

Since capacity is limited at events, county parks are covering a lot of these topics through virtual events. So if you’re not ready to take your kids out, there’s nothing local to you, or an inperson event fills up check to see what virtual programing exists.

What is happening at my New Jersey County Parks

A quick note, since the Jersey Family Fun Calendar of Events primarily focuses on family-friendly events that are free or less than $5 to attend (or $20 for a family), not all NJ county park events will be on our Calendar of Events. It’s best to visit the websites for the county parks closest to you in addition to our Calendar of Events.

Events and Activities at Atlantic County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Atlantic County Parks.

Estell Manor Playground in Estell Manor - Atlantic County Parks & Playgrounds
After a nature program at Estell Manor, part of the Atlantic County parks, check out the playgrounds.

Events and Activities at Bergen County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Bergen County Parks.

Events and Activities at Burlington County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Burlington County Parks.

Events and Activities at Camden County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Camden County Parks.

checkers table at Dudley Grange Park in Camden New Jersey Camden County Parks & Playgrounds
Some NJ county parks have tables painted with a chess and checker board.

Events and Activities at Cape May County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Cape May County Parks.

park pic from Cape May County Park
Enjoying the Cape May County Park & Zoo on a wintery day.

Events and Activities at Cumberland County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Cumberland County Parks.

  • Cumberland County Park events on the Jersey Family Fun Calendar of Events
  • The Cumberland County Park System website.
  • Follow their Facebook page to learn about and participate in virtual programs. (There is currently no Facebook page listed on their website.)

Events and Activities at Essex County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Essex County Parks.

Entrance to Regatta Playground - South Mountain Recreation Complex West Orange Parks & Playgrounds in Essex County Photo Credit Jersey Family Fun
Entrance to Regatta Playground and South Mountain Recreation Complex

Events and Activities at Gloucester County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Gloucester County Parks.

Fasola Park & Splash Pad in Deptford New Jersey Gloucester County Parks & Playgrounds
Lounging in a spider web net at Fasola Park in Deptford.

Events and Activities at Hudson County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Hudson County Parks.

Events and Activities at Hunterdon County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Hunterdon County Parks.

Events and Activities at Mercer County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Mercer County Parks.

Mercer County Park

Events and Activities at Middlesex County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Middlesex County Parks.

Events and Activities at Monmouth County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Monmouth County Parks.

indoor archery with Monmouth County parks
Did you know Monmouth County parks offers INDOOR and outdoor archery programs to the public and small groups?

Events and Activities at Morris County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Morris County Parks.

Events and Activities at Ocean County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Ocean County Parks.

Events and Activities at Passaic County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Passaic County Parks.

Events and Activities at Salem County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Salem County Parks.

Events and Activities at Somerset County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Somerset County Parks.

Events and Activities at Sussex County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Sussex County Parks.

Events and Activities at Union County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Union County Parks.

Events and Activities at Warren County Parks

Here are few links to help you find the most up-to-date information on things to do in Warren County Parks.

Looking for more free and cheap activities in New Jersey?

Visit these blog posts.

Posted in: All, Things to do in Central Jersey, Things to do in New Jersey, Things to do in North Jersey, Things to do in South Jersey

Jennifer Auer is the hyperlocal mom blogger who runs Jersey Family Fun. From New Jersey, this mom of 3 boys just can’t sit still! Her husband likes to say she’s a work-at-home mom who never stays home. Jennifer started traveling as a child and hasn’t stopped since. Instead of letting her husband and boys slow her down, she brings them along! As her boys transition from tweens to teens there’s still so many places she wants to discover with them both across the U.S. and internationally. She has been a Jersey Girl for 35+ years, and a Jersey Mom for 15+ years and a New Jersey mom blogger for 10 years, although she'd much rather be referred to as an influencer or just by name. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a focus on Entrepreneurship from Bryant University in Rhode Island.

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