Arts & Entertainment

Maplewood Plans for a Grand 4th of July


MAPLEWOOD, NJ - This 4th of July, there are plenty of activities for you to do in Maplewood. The fun starts early with the 5k run. This event begins at 7:30 AM on Dunnel Road, across from the Civic House. This event requires a separate registration and fee, so register online at and get ready to run.

For those not participating in the race, Ricalton Square will be the site for the opening ceremonies. These will kick off at 8 AM and will consist of a salute to the flag, and a performance of our national anthem.

After the opening ceremony, there will be a parade. It steps off from Ricalton Square at 8:15 AM, and includes public participation. Decorate your bikes, trikes and strollers in Red, White and Blue, and show off your patriotic spirit.

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At 9 AM, the Dashes & Relay Races occur. The location will be at the athletic field south of Oakview Avenue. This event requires a parent or guardian to sign up. There will be a 30-yard dash (for ages 6–8), a 50-yard dash (for ages 9 & up), a Relay Race (with teams organized by age and gender, if possible), and special races for age 5 & under. There will be 1st, 2nd and 3rd place ribbons awarded.

At 10 AM, you can walk across the field to the circles-to-squares art project. Art begun all around town in April will be built, decorated and installed in the Park. This is open to all ages.

Ice cream eating contests will begin at 11 AM in the picnic area next to the playground (for grades K-12 & Adults). 1st, 2nd and 3rd place ribbons will be awarded.

At 11 AM there will be tennis contests at the Civic House tennis courts. There will be fastest serve and most accurate serve categories.

All the  great bakers in town are invited to bring their best and enter the baking contest at Town Hall between 9 and 9:30 AM for the 11:30 AM baking contest (open to all ages). Awards categories include cake, pie, pastry, bread, cookie/bar and presentation contests, and the judging is directed by Janet Crane.

At noon, the pet show begins. This year’s location is in front of town hall. Bring your pets of all types and sizes to show off in the pet awards show presented by the NJ Animal Coalition.

Head back to the athletic field south of Oakview Avenue for adult softball from noon to 3 PM.  Also starting at noon in the same location, is a  kids’ percussion presentation by Jamie Ross and karaoke by New Jersey DJ Services LLC

The Zerbini Family Circus performs shows at 1, 3:30 and 6 PM, under the big top, rain or shine, first come first served. There are no reserved seats and seating is limited, so get there early!

Come to the athletic field south of Oakview Avenue again at 4 PM until fireworks for live music featuring local young and adult bands. Have a picnic and get ready for the fireworks. Ice cream, tasty offerings from Blue Plate Special, hotdogs, soda, etc. will be sold by Maplewood’s Boy Scout Troop 5.

FIREWORKS are at or about 9 p.m., but come early because all times are approximate.

Some things to note are that the $10 Tag REQUIRED for Admission to Fireworks Prime Viewing Area INCLUDES the Full Day’s Activities and CIRCUS.

Also, Fireworks are very loud. Parental discretion is advised for small children and pets; consider viewing from a distance. The rain date is July 5 (Circus and indoor events will be July 4, rain or shine). There will be no parking on nearby streets or Memorial Park.

For full details concerning 4th of July celebrations, head to Maplewood Township’s website at, and have a safe and happy holiday.

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