Perhaps the most anticipated holiday of the summer, the Fourth of July carried along with it an entire weekend and #NJ certainly did not fall short of celebration this year. What’s a better way to start off a new month than with an entire weekend of festivities? Here’s just some of what went down in the #GardenState in honor of the nation’s birthday.
Friday, July 1st
Despite some inclement weather around the state and the main holiday falling on a Monday, some neighborhoods still managed to kick off the weekend with a traditional firework show rather than finish it off with one. Booms could be heard in towns such as Lambertville and Carteret. Battleship New Jersey Museum & Memorial in Camden also put on a show that attendees could view straight from the USS New Jersey itself.
Saturday, July 2nd
The Randolph Township Freedom Festival returned to the County College of Morris for a day filled with food trucks, live bands, attractions and more. Saturday was the final day of the three day event. The day closed with what is described as the best fireworks show in Morris County.
The PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel Township was certainly the place to be on Saturday night if you were looking to spend the holiday jamming to some live music. Rock bands Panic! at the Disco and Weezer lit up the amphitheatre as part of their summer tour. Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness also made an appearance as a supporting act.
Sunday, July 3rd
The Heroes & Villains Fan Fest hit Secaucus at the Meadowlands Expo Center on Sunday for the second day of the two day event. The superhero convention included appearances from cast members of several popular television shows including “Arrow” and “Gotham.”
Six Flags Great Adventure and Hurricane Harbor celebrated big with its July 4th Fest. Park goers enjoyed nights full of entertainment and fireworks after a day of thrill rides and water park fun. Presented by Coca-Cola, people also had the opportunity to earn an exclusive early ride time an hour before the parks opening between 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. if they brought with them a Coke can along with their ticket.
Monday, July 4th
The annual Ridgewood Fourth of July parade returned for the 106th year. With a theme that celebrated the nation’s national parks, marching bands, flag bearers, floats, and more made their way through the village’s main roads. The parade is perhaps most characterized by the amount of chairs that many residents put out along the streets in advance. Some put chairs out up to two weeks in advance and make it a personal goal to have the same spot each year. Some even claim to have been watching the parade from the same spot for up to 31 years.
Long Branch Beach’s 26th annual Oceanfest took place Monday and attracted thousands of tourists, as is the case every year. This is what makes it both the largest July 4th celebration along the Jersey Shore and in the state. For 12 hours, non-stop entertainment was available for people of all ages and the day was capped with nothing other than a fireworks spectacular.
In the midst of all the traditional celebration along the shore, Wildwood went out on a limb and hosted a Tim McGraw concert on the town’s local beaches. Despite some questionable weather that delayed his appearance, beach goers stopped at nothing as they waited for the outdoor concert to begin on the beach for up to six hours.