The weather is heating up, and so is your social calendar. Street festivals, concerts and food truck meet-ups are back in a big way. While some events may look familiar—making their post-pandemic return—others are making their Garden State debut. Each has its own vibe, whether you’re into jazz music, vegan eats or craft beer. Here’s what festivals and other New Jersey happenings are taking place this summer.
Paramus Food Truck Festival & Fireworks – Paramus, NJ
Already planning your Fourth of July festivities? This one-of-a-kind event will feature over 20 food trucks, craft beer, a sangria and margarita garden, plus axe-throwing. Goers can gather next to the Gennarelli Sports Complex at Westfield Garden State Plaza from 2 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. To end the night, the Paramus 4th of July Committee will be putting on a holiday fireworks display.
Maplewoodstock – Maplewood, NJ
Since 2004, Maplewoodstock has taken place every Saturday and Sunday following Independence Day. This music and arts festival is held annually at Memorial Park and is free to attend. The two-day celebration is accompanied by a beer garden, over a dozen food vendors, clothes and crafts from local artisans and live music from regional and national bands. For more information on Maplewoodstock, check out their website.
Atlantic City Vegan Food Festival – Atlantic City, NJ
In 2021, the Atlantic City Vegan Food Festival held its first in-person event in over a year and a half. For summer 2022, this popular New Jersey food festival is returning yet again to the Showboat Hotel. Here, goers can expect an outdoor celebration of all things vegan and plant-based—from meals by local chefs to fashion and more. Certain vendors will also be catering to the gluten-free crowd. Tickets can be purchased here.
July 22 – July 26
St. Ann’s Festival – Hoboken, NJ
If you’ve been waiting to get your hands on the famous zeppoles from Hoboken’s St. Ann’s Festival, you’re in luck. The iconic “feast” returns to 704 Jefferson St. in just a few weeks. As always, expect attendees to be lining up early for rice balls, pizza, fried calamari, cheesesteaks and entrance to the beer garden.
Craft Beer, Music & Crab Festival – Cape May, NJ
Based on the name alone, what’s not to love about the upcoming Craft Beer, Music & Crab Festival in Cape May? In fact, CBS NY once declared it one of the “5 Best NJ Summer Festivals.” Want to get in on the fun? Head to 1048 Washington Street for hard shell crabs, craft brews, an array of food vendors, live music and more. For additional info on this event, click here.
Sad Summer Festival – Asbury Park, NJ
Calling all emo kids! Your favorite punk bands from the early 2000s (and on) will be taking The Stone Pony Summer Stage on July 29. The lineup includes Mayday Parade, Waterparks, Neck Deep, State Champs and more. Tickets for Sad Summer Festival are $44.50 if purchased in advance, or $50 at the door. The gates will open at 1:30 p.m. and the show will begin at 2:30 p.m. and run through 10:30 p.m.
Italian Festival & Wine Tasting – Oceanport, NJ
Wine tasting meets horse racing at this Italy-themed festival at the Monmouth County Racetrack. The two-day event will feature bites from local restaurants and food trucks, in addition to libations from Opici Wines. The Italian Festival offers the option to purchase wine tasting tickets at a reduced price in advance or on the day of. General admission tickets for both the event and the track are also available.
Highlands Clam Fest – Highlands, NJ
This year marks the 27th anniversary of the Highlands Clam Fest. The event is a South Jersey tradition with tons of fresh seafood, contests, live entertainment, craft vendors and children’s activities. It all kicks off at Huddy Park on Aug. 5. Both admission and parking are free.
Manahopkin Craft Beer & Music Festival – Stafford Township, NJ
Head to Manahawkin Lake Park this summer for the “Best Beer Fest at the Jersey Shore.” Expect great food, live music, and, of course, a ridiculous amount of beer from local breweries. Attendance is free for those who do not wish to participate in any of the two tasting sessions held that day. Tickets and additional information can be found here.
TidalWave Music Festival – Atlantic City, NJ
Thirty country artists will play across two stages at this three-day summer festival on the Atlantic City Beach. From Luke Bryan to Morgan Wallen, this oceanfront concert series is one you won’t want to miss. You can learn more at the TidalWave website.
Hi-Tide Summer Holiday – Asbury Park, NJ
Hi-Tide Summer Holiday—formerly Asbury Park Surf Music Festival—will return to NJ after a two-year hiatus. The event will highlight musical artists from Hi-Tide Recordings, in addition to tropical cocktails, pool parties and more. The Asbury Hotel will play host while concerts will take place at Asbury Lanes.
Jersey Shore Jazz and Blues Festival – Long Branch, NJ
Fans of jazz music or the blues will want to mark their calendars. This annual Jersey Shore event will be held on Aug. 27 at the Great Lawn at the Boardwalk in Long Branch. The Jersey Shore Jazz and Blues Festival will begin at 1 p.m. and conclude at 9 p.m. with a fireworks show.
Downtown Jamboree – Montclair, NJ
The Downtown Jamboree is considered the “grand finale” of the annual Montclair Jazz Festival. This celebration will take place at Lackawanna Plaza on Sept. 10 from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. Think live jazz performances across multiple stages, crafters and artisans, food vendors, family-friendly activities and more. Admission is free for all.
XPoNential Music Festival – Camden, NJ
Lovers of indie music will have the opportunity to rock out at XPoNential Music Festival. Taking place at both the Wiggins Waterfront Park and Freedom Mortgage Pavilion in Camden, the concert lineup will feature performances from more than 30 musical artists, including The War On Drugs, Patti Smith and Her Band, Lucinda Williams and more. Ticking information can be found here.
Morristown Jazz & Blues Festival – Morristown, NJ
Now in its twelfth year, the Morristown Jazz & Blues Festival will welcome music fans of all ages to attend its annual celebration. The festivities will kick off at noon at Morristown Green and run until 10 p.m. This festival is a rain or shine event and entry is free. Goers are encouraged to BYO lawn chairs and blankets.