The upcoming first real weekend of summer here in New Jersey kicks off the season with equal parts of both: classic, very New Jersey events and typical outdoor summer fun.
The New Jersey portion of the weekend is highlighted by the big 25th annual NJ State Fair, starting this Friday at the Meadowlands Fairgrounds. You can expect lots of wild rides, live entertainment, carnival games and even the occasional freakshow exhibit at this year’s gigantic edition.
Also very New Jersey this weekend: an actual “real housewife of New Jersey” will be making an appearance at Exquisite Bride in Millburn on Sunday afternoon, signing autographs and taking pictures with many potential NJ wives and housewives to-be.
Summer is amply covered too this weekend, with the first-ever LGBT Pride Picnic in Maplewood’s Memorial Park this Saturday. There will also be a ton of music concerts, many of them outdoors and free, including Street Hassle in Millburn’s Taylor Park, South Orange’s Downtown After Sundown concert series on both Friday and Saturday evenings, and perennial local fave Tycoon Dog, playing at Turtle Back Zoo on Sunday.
And don’t forget our area’s own ongoing, annual summer tradition of the South Orange, Maplewood and Millburn Pond Tour -- now in its 7th year -- where participants are invited to view the lovely private ponds and gardens of our wonderful neighbors, opened to the public especially for the tour.
Here’s the rest of this fantastic weekend’s full list of activities. Have a great start to your summer!
- : The Cats OK Band, made up mostly of area locals musicians, brings their soulful blend of classic rock, funk, and R&B back to Johnny's with an encore performance on the patio under the tent this coming Saturday. Open to All, Friday, 7:00pm to 11:00pm, Short Hills
Donald Pun lives in Maplewood and posts the event round-up column here each weekend. Previously, he was a regular contributor for the NY Times' Maplewood, South Orange, and Millburn Local blog section.