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BBQ and Craft Beer Festival at Monmouth Park this Labor Day Weekend

by Peter Candia
smoked brisket sandwich at BBQ & NJ Craft Beer Festival this Labor Day

If you love to eat (and drink) and are in need of some plans this Labor Day weekend, look no further than the BBQ and NJ Craft Beer Festival being held at Monmouth Park Racetrack. Starting September 3 and going through September 5, the three-day festival will be a compilation of some of Jersey’s best bites, renowned craft brews, races, live music and more. Each day, the festival runs from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 

General admission tickets are for sale at $5 in advance or $6 day-of (cash only if purchasing at the track). A GA ticket will score you with live music each of the three days. The performances go as follows:

Saturday, September 3 — After the Reign

The six-piece country group, headlined by Willie Kelly, is set to perform. The sextet formed in 2006 and splits their playing time between New Jersey and Nashville, TN. Their inventive instrumentation and profound vocals bring a taste of classic, American country to the Garden State.

Sunday, September 4— Chris Morrisy

Chris Morrisy is a singer and songwriter from Atlantic Highlands, NJ. His rich vocals, backed up by the lush instrumentation of his band, creates an energetic live performance that will have festival goers singing at the top of their lungs. 

Monday, September 5— Jessica Rose

This pop country singer based out of New Jersey knows how to put on a show. Her single “Whiskey Knows” which came out earlier this year combines country vocals with a classic rock backdrop and punk influence. The music is catchy, and perfect for the vibe of a barbecue festival. This is a performance you will want to see.

A GA ticket also gets you access to the star of the weekend; the food. Participating vendors include Joe Smoke BBQ, Kutz Q BBQ, Cold Stone Creamery, El Lechon de Negron, Ma & Pa’s Tex Mex BBQ, Shore Good Eats N Treats and more. Come hungry, because both the quantity and quality of the fare is through the roof. Food Trucks like Joe Smoke BBQ will be serving award-winning ribs while vendors like Cold Stone offer sweets and treats. The variety of food available is admirably diverse. The menu can be viewed here

The NJ Craft Beer Garden at the track will feature over 40 craft beers to sip and choose from. For just $13, guests can obtain a craft beer voucher which awards them with 10 2-oz samples throughout the day. This is in addition to the general admission ticket. 

Participating breweries include, but are not limited to Kane Brewing, Asbury Park Brewery, Jersey Girl Brewing and Ross Brewing. It is the perfect opportunity to enjoy craft brews in a setting that illustrates how far beer culture has come in New Jersey. Just a decade ago, craft beer was scarce in our state, but today, the availability of great brews is vast.

A can of Kane Head High beer

Kane Head High | Photo from @kanebrewing

Gates open at 9 a.m. and the first race is at 12:15 p.m. each day. Children under 12 are free-to-enter and the long list of free, family friendly activities makes this a festival that is appropriate for all ages. 

The BBQ and Craft Beer Festival at Monmouth Park Race Track is inexpensive and the perfect way to celebrate the long weekend. As always at the track, parking is free. What are you waiting for? Tickets are available for pre-purchase now

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