Home & Garden

Black Friday Things to do That Don't Involve Shopping

b84fffe8740f2aa6b225_Black_Friday.jpg
b84fffe8740f2aa6b225_Black_Friday.jpg

NEW JERSEY - Yes, the Garden State is known for its malls. The state actually has more than 50 with some larger than others. However, New Jersey doesn't hold the honor of opening the first indoor mall, Minnesota has that. New Jersey opened the second. The Cherry Hill Mall first unlocked its doors in 1961.

Black Friday sales have been all over the television for weeks. Today's Thanksgiving paper was stocked full of retail ciculars. Sure, Black Friday is a day off from school and work, but there is nothing that says that it has to be spent shopping. Here are some fabulous ways to spend the day after Thanksgiving that don't involve a mall or a department store.

  • Catch a ride on the New Hope & Ivy Land Railroad. Okay, this is technically located in New Hope, Pennsylvania, but it is right across the bridge from Lambertville, New Jersey. Walk across the Delaware River along the bridge that connects the two towns. The railroad offers hourly excursions along its scenic railroad. The kids can see and chat with the big guy in red, sing holiday carols and have hot chocolate and cookies. Adults will enjoy the picturesque scenery of beautiful Bucks County outside the window of an old-fashioned train car. Great thing to do with relatives or for a romantic date.
  • Experience the Delaware & Raritan Canal Trail. This trail is 77-miles long and stretches between New Brunswick and Trenton. It is ideal to walk, bike or jog. Dogs are welcome, but need to be leashed. Pack a lunch and head out. Princeton, Lambertville and Griggstown are picture perfect spots to pick up a section of the trail.
  • Lace up the skates. Lakes don't freeze very often in New Jersey to support ice skating and especially not in November. However, there are some great indoor rinks throughout the state that are a fun way to spend an afternoon for families and couples. ProSkate in Monmouth Junction, the Armory in Red Bank and the Old Bridge Ice Arena are all ideal spots. The rink in Old Bridge is an indoor/outdoor one. All are open on Black Friday and offer public skates.
  • Climb a lighthouse. The Gateway National Recreation Area in the Highlands is crazy in the summer, but ideal in November. Climb the country's oldest working lighthouse, the Sandy Hook Lighthouse. Then, walk or bike around the seven-mile trail. Enjoy a stroll along one of the many beaches. It's free too! The Twin Lights, another NJ lighhouse, is a right across the highway. They just opened a newly renovated museum to go along with the lighthouse.
  • Enjoy a museum or aquarium. While the malls are packed, New Jersey's many museums and aquariums will be open. Head to the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City or down the shore to the Jenkinson's Aquarium in Point Pleasant. Jenkinson's is just the right size for young kids and the beach is just steps away. The Zimmerli Art Museum on the campus of Rutgers University and the Princeton University Art Museum are two fun places for art lovers.
  • Get a jump on the holiday decorating. Yes, it feels a little abnormal to have 60 degree temperatures in November in New Jersey. However, putting up the outside decorations in 60 degrees is a lot more comfortable than 30 and 40. Take advantage.

The Thanksgiving weekend forecast in the Garden State is gorgeous. Why spend it trapped inside a mall or department store with endless lines and cranky sales clerks and customers? Get out, enjoy the weather and the wonderful activities New Jersey has to offer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

West Orange

Local Children Invited to Register for Essex County Summer Camps

February 19, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ – Children of all ages are invited to participate in spring and summer camp opportunities at the Essex County Turtle Back Zoo, Essex County Codey Arena and the Essex County Environmental Center.

The zoo has several weeklong camp adventures that will introduce children to the extraordinary world of animals, nature and science. Campers and their parents/guardians are ...

Game of Thrones: A Definitive Ranking of Seasons 1-7

Groundhog Day. The day a tiny mammal’s shadow tells us when winter will come to an end. Me? I prefer my weather forecast in the form of a white raven (the telltale changing of seasons in Westeros).

For a few days, rumors spread that Game of Thrones will not return for its final season until April 2019, and while it was clarified that the April return date was likely a false rumor, HBO ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_ebeb90e00b2da8ed5088_capture

Thu, February 22, 12:00 PM

Marriot Courtyard, West Orange

BIZ 2.0 WORKSHOPS - Lunch & Learn | Presented by ...

Business & Finance Food & Drink

Carousel_image_cdac97f295f2ca00649e_screen_shot_2018-02-21_at_5.03.14_pm

Thu, February 22, 7:00 PM

Roosevelt Middle School, West Orange

Marley Dias... Gets It Done | Book Signing and Q&A

Community Calendar Education

Carousel_image_f1e8b21af9d26c31d2e7_unnamed__8_

Sun, February 25, 10:00 AM

West Orange High School (Tarnoff Cafeteria), West Orange

44th Annual Orange West Orange UNICO Sports ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Celebrate Your Health this Nutrition Month

February 21, 2018

Dear Editor,

This year, we learned that the number of Americans at risk for heart attack and stroke just got a lot higher.  An estimated 103 million adults have high blood pressure, according to new statistics from the American Heart Association, and about 39.7 percent of Americans have high cholesterol.  With March being National Nutrition Month, it’s a great time to ...

Free Cardiac and Concussion Screenings for Young Athletes

February 22, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ — The Matthew J. Morahan III Health Assessment Center for Athletes (MJM) at RWJBarnabas Health will provide free cardiac and concussion baseline screenings to young athletes on Saturday, March 3, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at South Mountain Recreation Complex, Codey Arena, 560 Northfield Avenue, West Orange, NJ.

When preliminary testing to identify serious cardiac ...

Shouts of Racial Slurs During "Black Panther" Bring Police to Sparta Theatre

February 21, 2018

SPARTA, NJ – Sparta police were called to the New Vision Sparta Theater on Sunday night because of a woman shouting slurs in a screening of Black Panther.

Former New Jersey Assembly candidate Michael Grace was in the theater when two people started yelling racial slurs including “look at these ‘n-word’” and “can you believe these ...

Let the Games Begin

I am truly awed by the Olympics.  Watching these superb young athletes on TV inspires me to renew my membership to the gym and pursue my lifelong dream of taking home the gold.  

 

The problem is that in my deluded head, I can see actually see myself standing atop the podium.  I am wrapped in a puffy designer ski coat with a huge piece of bling slung around my neck ...

'What Stays' exposes family secrets and lies

‘What Stays’ exposes family secrets, resentment and lies

By Liz Keill

SUMMIT, NJ – In an original play by Laura Ekstrand and Jason Szamreta, the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre has provided an enlightening, funny and heart-felt view of family foibles.

Ekstrand has said that the germ of the play came from conversations with the ensemble members of the troupe, based on ...