3 Great Ways to Spend a Spring Day in Essex County NJ

Posted on: April 21st, 2014 by


This spring make sure you get out there and have fun with one of these 3 Great Ways to Spend a Spring Day in Essex County.


3 Great Ways to Spend a Spring Day in Essex County New Jersey


Essex County Environmental Center (ECEC) in Roseland

The Essex Environmental Center was created to increase a greater awareness of the environment with Essex county residents. Originally established in the early 1970’s it was closed due to poor funding but thankfully has re-opened it’s doors in 2005. It is a part of the West Essex Park on wooded wetlands that border the Passaic River. With over 1,300 acres there is plenty to explore. They have partnered with various non-profit agencies that augments the diversity of their programs. In addition to trails, they host various workshops on photography, hiking, and gardening to name a few. They have workshops for the very young to the not-so-young (but young at heart). In the summer, they host a butterfly tent where visitors, with a nominal fee, can feed and learn about butterflies.

The reason that the ECEC is listed in this article is because of their huge celebration in honor of Earth Day. On April 26, the ECEC will be sponsoring the Essex County PSE&G Earth Day Celebration with music, eco-vendors, nature crafts, outdoor activities, bird walks, and an animal show by the Turtle Back Zoo. There will be more features to this FREE event for the whole family.  Read about the event on our calendar.

Earth Day Celebration

So many interesting and fun activities at the Essex County Environmental Center Earth Day Celebration.

Presby Memorial Iris Gardens/May in Montclair

It is difficult to select one item that stands out about Montclair, however it  is the location for one of the largest (if not the largest) collection of Iris flowers. Located at the base of Mountainside Park on Upper Mountain Avenue, is the Presby Memorial Iris Garden. The gardens contain over 14,000 flowers with over 3,000 varieties. That is a lot of flowers. The 2014 bloom season is anticipated to run from May 9-June 6. Donations are requested but not required. However, if you are looking to boost your own garden, mystery bulbs can be purchased at the location. As well, there will be events on May 11 to celebrate Mother’s Day and on May 17 there will be Family Garden Party.


The Presby Memorial Iris Garden is part of a larger celebration that takes place called May in Montclair. Since 1979, this month long celebration has taken place every year. As you drive through the town of Montclair you will be greeted with thousands of tulips paid for by various individual donors. Film festivals, plant sales, walking tours, health festivals, to multiple concerts, and more. We will be adding events to our Essex County Calendar so make sure to check in with us.

Presby Memorial Iris Garden

The serene setting for the Iris Gardens inspires the budding photographer but also makes a great location for a picnic.


Free Friday Flicks at Kip’s Castle

The often overlooked highlight of spring is the invitation to be active at night outside. Kip’s Castle located at 22 Crestmont Avenue in Verona opens it’s gates on Friday nights during the month of June for family oriented films. Families can begin to put their seats down at 7 PM on the lawn, but the featured film will begin at dusk.  If it is raining, the next Saturday is an automatic rain date.  Your family can enjoy free films under the stars.

The lineup for 2014 includes:

  • June 6: Rio
  • June 13: Pitch Perfect
  • June 20: Teen Beach Movie
  • June 27: Hunger Games: Catching Fire



We hope you’ve enjoyed these great ways to spend a spring day in Essex County.

Click on over for more great ways to spend a spring day in New Jersey.


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