BEST Summer Festivals in New Jersey

  • Music Festivals

You’ll find no shortage of ways to celebrate summer, from enjoying New Jersey’s beaches to exploring the boardwalks, but perhaps the most fun way to enjoy the season is to experience the large-scale events around the state. We’ve rounded up just a few of our favorites—some of the biggest and best—but explore the events calendar for even more upcoming things to do.

State Fair Meadowlands
June 21 – July 8, 2018
East Rutherford
Prepare to be surprised, entertained and dazzled at this annual summer fair, featuring an incredible lineup of free shows, from live concerts to racing pigs to aerial trapeze acts. When you're not watching one of the many shows, take a spin on classic carnival rides and fill up on iconic carnival fair (from corn dogs to funnel cake) from more than 50 vendors. 

Bradley Beach Lobsterfest
June 23 – 24, 2018
Bradley Beach
Sprawling along the oceanfront, this annual foodie festival boasts numerous vendors selling seafood specialties (think: lobster rolls, crab cakes and more), as well as a massive beer garden, live music, kids games, crafts vendors and more. 

July 4, 2018
Long Branch
Bring the whole family to this annual oceanfront festival, where activities and attractions will excite all ages. Listen to live music throughout the day, watch balloon artists and magicians amaze the little ones, and stay until dark to watch the spectacular fireworks display to celebrate Independence Day. 

NJ State Barbeque Championship and Blues Festival
July 13 – 15, 2018
North Wildwood
Bring your appetite to this celebration of all-things-barbecue. Watch live cooking demonstrations, fill up on saucy, smoky meats, and watch blues performers light up the stage.

XPonential Music Festival
July 27 – 29, 2018
Featuring a roundup of big name music stars—such as The War on Drugs, Josh Ritter & The Royal City Band, Preservation Hall Jazz Band and many more—this annual music festival is an incredible festival experience with waterfront views.

QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning
July 27 – 29, 2018
As the largest summertime hot air balloon festival in North America, you’ll see more than 100 hot air balloons as they fill the sky with dazzling colors.

Warren County Farmers Fair and Balloonfest
July 28 – August 4, 2018
Head over to the Warren County Fairgrounds for a family-friendly event with more than 35 hot air balloons, as well as demolition derbies, tractor pulls, 4-H animal exhibits and more.

Atlantic City Airshow – “Thunder Over the Boardwalk”
August 22, 2018
Atlantic City
Watch with excitement as the U.S. Airforce Thunderbirds roar above Atlantic City’s beaches and boardwalks during this annual airshow. This family-friendly event will also include performances by the U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team, the GEICO Skytypers and more. Enjoy Atlantic City’s FREE beach too.