Best Central Jersey Christmas Events
2023 Edition

Central Jersey Christmas Events

Your Guide to the top 2023 Central Jersey Christmas Events
Including Tree Lighting Celebrations, Festivals, Parades, and more

Experience Holiday and Christmas events and attractions in New Jersey, whether it's jingle bells, Christmas tree lighting, carol singing, or just reenactments of past New Jersey Christmas events, The attractions during the Christmas season in NJ are always festive. Many of these events begin the day after Thanksgiving with the traditional start of the Christmas Holiday season

Note: Sometimes conditions require cancellations or changes of dates, times and location which are not reflected in the original schedule. Before planning a trip to visit one of the listed events, it is suggested that you call the event sponsor to confirm the event schedule or for additional information on the event.

Stay tuned --- we will be updating this list as the event sponsors confirm this year's events. 

Multi-date 2023 Central Jersey Christmas Events

Magic of Lights at PNC Bank Arts Center
November. 17th - December. 30th, 2023; Sun – Thur: 5:00 -10:00pm & Fri - Sat: 5:00 -11:00pm
PNC Bank Arts Center
Exit 116
Garden State Parkway
Holmdel, NJ
Cost: $20 +
The Magic of Lights is a dazzling, drive-through holiday lights experience featuring favorite holiday scenes and characters of the season using the latest LED technology and digital animations. Experience Magic of Lights from the comfort and safety of your own car as you wind through the sparkling path of New Jersey's favorite holiday tradition. One carload, one price.

Asbury Park Holiday Bazaar
Black Friday, November 24th & Every Sat & Sun, November 25 - December 17, 2023; 12-5 pm
Grand Arcade of Convention Hall
1300 Ocean Ave
Asbury Park, NJ
Cost: Free
This event features a holiday shop, stroll and entertainment day on the Asbury Park Boardwalk. Celebrate the holidays with friends and family at the Asbury Park Holiday Bazaar in the Grand Arcade of Convention Hall. Enjoy shopping, food, libations, beautiful decor & entertainment at Asbury Oyster Bar & Seahorse.

Old Fashioned Christmas on the Farm & Walk through Light Show!
November 24th - December 23rd, 2023; Every Thursday - Sunday 4-8 pm, Santa 5-7 pm
Allaire Community Farm
1923 Baileys Corner Rd
Wall Township, NJ
Admission: (Pay at Door, No Advance Tickets) $6 Children 18 & under $10 Adults Children under 1 are free
This event features a magical lifesize Christmas village, with indoor and outdoor petting zoos, photos with Santa in the museum, relax & watch classic holiday movies and holiday displays in the pavilion, a Model Train House, and an historic 100-year-old Barn that has been converted into a farmer's market.
With the purchase of a Yuletide Wagon ride and or Polar Express tickets, you'll take a magical ride to visit the two tunnels of lights.

Six Flags Great Adventure Holiday in the Park

Select Days from November 24, 2023 - January 1, 2024
1 Six Flags Blvd.
Jackson, NJ 08527
Experience the magic of Holiday in the Park! Make merry memories with millions of luminous lights, festive foods, and your favorite thrilling coasters. From coasters to cocoa it's a holiday spectacular for the whole family!

Polar Express
Trips run November. 24,25,26, December. 1,2,3,8,9,10,15,16,17, 2023
Lehigh Junction
99 Elizabeth St.
Phillipsburg, NJ 08865
Cost: Child $38.00 ( ages 2 to 12), Adult $48.00
Train Ride departs from Lehigh Junction located in the Historic Main Street area of Phillipsburg. Set to the sounds of the motion picture soundtrack, passengers will relive the magic of the classic story as they are whisked away on for a magical hour and a half trip to meet Santa. Once on board, your car hosts will work their way through the coach and punch your golden ticket before hot chocolate and delicious cookies are served by dancing chefs. Passengers listen to the classic children's book, The Polar Express, by Chris Van Allsburg. Santa and his helpers greet passengers and each guest is given the first gift of Christmas – a silver sleigh bell. During the trip there is plenty of entertainment from our magical juggling chefs to our singing hobos! Each guest will take home a keepsake sleigh bell in addition to the wonderful memories made on this magical trip.

The Winter Wonderlights Spectacular Drive-Thru
November 24, 2023 - December 31, 2023
Middlesex County Fairgrounds
655 Cranbury Road
East Brunswick, NJ
Cost: :$30 per car (tickets sold on-line)
This drive-thru Christmas event features over 1.5 million lights animated to some of your favorite holiday tunes. They have 30' Christmas trees, 4 magical tunnels, a tribute to our first responders & US Armed Forces and tons of other stunning, larger-than-life holiday themed displays for the entire family – all synchronized to the music playing in your car!
This family holiday tradition takes you on a journey celebrating the season's wonderful holidays (Christmas, Hanukkah, Diwali and Kwanzaa).
Park is a 1/2 mile long drive and open 7 days a week.

Winter Village -- Festival of Trees
November 24th, 25th, and 26th December 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 2023
The Red Mill
56 Main St.
Clinton, NJ
Tickets starting at $12
This Annual Holiday Festival features a beautiful display of decorated trees, wreaths and centerpieces that are available to win through our raffle. Experience over 40 artisan crafters, specialty foods and craft beer set inside the bucolic Red Mill Museum Village made even more special with holiday lights and decor throughout the grounds of the Red Mill Museum Village, amid the historic buildings.

Celebrate the Arrival of Santa!
Saturdays, November 25 through December 23, 2023 ; 11am - 6pm
iPlay America
110 Schanck Rd
Freehold, NJ
Cost: Free
Kick off the holiday season and celebrate the arrival of Santa at iPlay America! This FREE event will include lots of festive FUN and activities: Free Photo Opportunity with Santa!
Santa will be onsite every Saturday, November. 25 thru December 23, from 11 AM-6 PM.

Cook's Christmas Lights Show
Saturday after Thanksgiving, November 25, 2023 and will run nightly through Jan 1. 2024. 6pm-10pm Sunday-Thursday, and 6pm-11pm Friday and Saturday
1 Carlson Ct.
Jackson, NJ
Facebook page
Free event - Donations gratefully accepted. 100% of donations go to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
The show has almost 8,000 pixels, including a 1,008 pixel matrix, 4 singing Christmas trees, snowflakes, multiple small trees and arches plus a 3,200 LED light spiral tree.  All the lights are synchronized to music for a festive, entertaining show.  This years show consists of 6 songs, running approx. 22 minutes on a continuous loop.   When you come to enjoy the show they ask that you please shut off your lights and don't block any driveway

Roxey Ballet's American Holiday Classic Nutcracker
November 25th - December 3rd, 2023
Villa Victoria Theater
376 West Upper Ferry Road
Ewing Township, NJ
Event Cost: Adults (13 and over) $39.95-$59.95, Children (12 and under) $37.95-$57.95, Seniors (60 and over) $37.95-$57.95, Disabled $37.95-$48.95
Roxey Ballet, Lambertville's renowned professional dance company, is proud to present its Annual Holiday Classic "The Nutcracker”.
This production regarded as the "most child-friendly production" features the company of professional dancers, students from the official school of the Roxey Ballet. It's a joyous and magical way to begin the holiday season. This performance provides the perfect introduction to ballet for children of all ages, with timeless classical music, beautiful costumes, special effects, and an accessible story.

Drumthwacket Holiday Open House
December 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 16th, 17th, 19th, 2023 ; Open Houses are 11 am to 2 pm, and Sundays 12 noon to 3 pm.
Drumthwacket Foundation
354 Stockton Street
Princeton, NJ
(973) 204-2860
Website/Registration - Guests must register in advance.
Admission: Free
Drumthwacket serves as the stately home and grounds of the official residence of the Governor of New Jersey. Constructed on land that witnessed the 1777 Princeton battle for American independence, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and one of the most elegant of our nation's executive residences.
Drumthwacket is most festive during the holiiday season. Guests view six first-floor public rooms festively decorated by the Garden Clubs of New Jersey, enjoy holiday piano music in the Music Room and a sweet treat prepared by the Drumthwacket Chef. The format for all Open Houses is self-guided but Docents are available in every room to answer questions.

New Brunswick's Winter Wonderland for the Holidays
December 1 thru December 31, 2023
New Brunswick City Center
Monument Square Park
New Brunswick, NJ
Starting with the annual Tree Lighting at Monument Square Park, and entertainment by the Duprees, on Friday, December 1st, and continuing every day until the New Year, the season will be filled with multiple activities celebrating the holidays creating a Winter Wonderland of festivities. The ending will culminate with a fireworks display on New Years Eve, December 31st @ Various Locations in New Brunswick.

Santa Brunch Cruises
December 3rd, 9th, 16th, 17th, 23rd, 2023; Departing 10:30am
Seastreak Ferry Terminal at Highlands
326 Shore Drive
Highlands, NJ
Cost: $89 adults, $59 kids
This Brunch Cruise through NYC Harbor, features buffet of delicious breakfast favorites and local specialties for both adults and kids. Santa and Mrs. Claus will board from NYC after brunch is served. The entertainers will engage with the kids, spread good cheer, tell stories, and listen to everyone's holiday wishes! While the kids wait for their turn to visit Santa, games, activities, and balloon art will keep them entertained!

Jenkinson's Aquarium Sea of Lights Holiday Festival
December 9th, 16th, 22nd, 23rd, 27th & 28th, 2023; from 4-8pm each night (entertainment 5-8pm)
Jenkinson's Aquarium
300 Ocean Ave.
Point Pleasant, NJ
This annual Holiday festival features the Aquarium done up with the holiday spirit with hundreds festive lights and decorations.
This holiday event incluudes winter wonderland includes treats, crafts, pictures with Santa, games, Diving Santa and Holiday Entertainment! Stay tuned for our entertainment lineup! The Aquarium, Sweet Shop, Aquarium Gift Shop, Pavilion & Pavilion Arcade will be open!

 2023 Central Jersey Christmas Events

Holiday Craft Show @ The Historic Village at Allaire
Saturday, November 11, 2023: 10am - 3pm; Rain date Sunday, Nov 12th
The Historic Village at Allaire State Park
4263 Atlantic Avenue
Farmingdale, NJ
Admission is $5 per person 6 years old and up. All proceeds of the day to benefit the educational programming at the Historic Village at Allaire!
Over 140 crafters, Allaire artisans, floral exhibits, historic demonstrations, and more to kick off the holiday season in style! Join us for our Christmas and Holiday Craft Show and Historic Demonstrations throughout the village. Local artists will be demonstrating their work. Paintings, pottery, textiles, and more! We will have craft demonstrations at the Carpenter, Blacksmith, and Tinsmith shops! General Store, Bakery, Food Truck will be open throughout the day!

Dickens' Days
November 24, 25, 26, 2023
Main St.
Clinton, NJ
This annual family event will transform Clinton into a Victorian Village. Take a trip back in time to Victorian Clinton and celebrate the season with Clinton's festive activities including horse and carriage rides, carolers, and more! There is no better place to experience the magic of the season than downtown Clinton during Dickens Days.

Princeton Tree Lighting Ceremony
Friday, November 24th, 2023; @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
On the Green
Downtown Princeton, NJ
This family event will feature an 11-man vocal harmony group, The Sensational Soul Cruisers! The holiday party kick-off doesn't stop there! The Flying Ivories will be back on their Dueling Pianos playing a mix of traditional and reimagined sing-a-long favorites that the whole family will enjoy. Of course you can expect appearances from our local community partners from McCarter Theatre and the Princeton Highschool Choir. Let's all keep our fingers crossed that a certain jolly, white-bearded fellow flies in to help us light the 32,000 lights atop our giant spruce tree!

Holiday Express Concert, Tree Lighting, & Activities
Friday, November 24th, 2023; beginning @5:30pm
Red Bank, NJ
Kick off the season with the annual Holiday Express Concert & Town Lighting. Holiday Express will be rocking the streets with all of your favorite tunes.
@ 5:30pm Holiday Dance and Music Performance at the Red Bank Train Station
6:45pm. Santa and Mrs. Claus parade down Monmouth to Broad Street
7:00pm Holiday Express Concert begins (stage located on Broad Street near Garmany)
8:00pm Tree lighting

Downtown Somerville Holiday Jubilee
Saturday, November 25, 2023: from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m
Division Street & Main St
Somerville, NJ
There's festive music in the air with this family-friendly celebration highlighted by the spectacular tree lighting, visit from Santa, festive music and entertainment, and delicious holiday treats. The free event kicks off a magical holiday season brimming with unique shopping and dining experiences in award-winning Downtown Somerville.

Bradley Beach Tree Lighting Ceremony
Sunday, November 26, 2023; 4:00pm to 6:00pm
Riley Park
Bradley Beach
Features live music, horse & carriage rides, hot chocolates, cookies, dance performnce, kids games, the arrival by Santa on a fire truck, and the tree lighting.

The Annual Long Branch Tree Lighting in Pier Village
Sunday, November 26th, 2023; 4:30pm-6pm
Festival Plaza
Pier Village
Long Branch, NJ
This family fun event features a host of holiday activities such performances by the Long Branch High School Marching Band and Dance Team, Tim McLoone and the Shirley's and a special appearance from Santa Claus.

Asbury Park Holiday Tree Lighting
Friday, December 1st, 2023; @5:30pm
Firemen's Park
(Sunset Avenue and Main Street)
Asbury Park, NJ
Kick off the holiday season in Asbury Park! Visit with Santa, enjoy holiday music and refreshments and celebrate with your neighbors.

Downtown Toms River Tree Lighting/Winter Village
Friday, December 1, and Saturdays December 2, & 9, 2023;
Town Hall Courtyard
Washington Street
Toms River, NJ
The Tree lighting with live entertainment begins at 5pm on Friday as Santa arrives on the fire truck at 7pm to light the tree. Photos with Santa will follow the tree lighting in Town Hall. Live music and entertainment. Winter Village:
The Winter Village occurs on Saturdays, December 2nd & 9th, with the courtyard transformed into a Winter Wonderland Village. Vendors, kid's activities, hot chocolate station, holiday music and more. Downtown businesses will be open.

Christmas on the Farm
Saturday, December 2nd, 2023; 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Howell Living History Farm
70 Woodens Lane
Lambertville, NJ 08530
Parking & Admission are free.
Santa is coming to Howell Farm…not in a sleigh, but on a steam tractor! Visit Howell Farm this Saturday for Christmas crafts, live music, farm animal visits, and an opportunity to stroll through a decorated historic farmhouse – before meeting Santa when he arrives at 12:30. Stop by the visitor center to hear the Jugtown Mountain String Band play inside the barn...then find a spot around the craft table to recreate a paper Victorian angel ornament ($5 materials fee). Next walk up to the barnyard, where families can take selfies in the 1800s sleigh pulled by the horses on snowy days, and visit the blacksmith working in the farm's forge. The farmhouse will be open for tours, decked out in all its Christmas finery. Stop back at the visitor center for warm drinks, homemade cookies, lunch, and other light refreshments.

Christmas in Ocean Grove
Saturday, December 2nd, 2023; 10 am - 7pm
Bishop Janes Tabernacle
Auditorium Square Park
Ocean Grove, NJ
Free Event
This event features, a christmas concert, a childrens birthday party for Jesus, a Live Nativity, Christmas Tree Lighting & Carols, and The Arrival of Santa.

Christmas Con NJ
December 8, 9, 10, 2023
New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center
97 Sunfield Avenue
Edison, NJ
Cost: $10 - $250
This three day festive annual gathering features more than 30 holiday movie celebtity fan-favorites, with celebrity panels where you will get an autograph and photo with your favorite stars, ugly sweater contests, photo booths, and more.
Santa's "nice" list from across Hallmark, Lifetime and GAC Family movies includes: Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Juliette Lewis, Randy Quaid, and many More!

Belmar Christmas Light Show
December 9th and 16th 2023 Shows at 6 PM
Belmar Plaza
On the Connelly-Campion-Wright Building
704 Belmar Plaza
Belmar, NJ
Cost: The show is free, however they suggest donations of $25 for a family of 4 and $10 for an individual adult
Each show runs for approximately 20 minutes.
This popular Disney-quality show features tens of thousands of lights, color-changing carbon-dioxide cannons and pyrotechnics synchronized to music.
Proceeds from this event will benefit RallyCap Sports (, a nonprofit 501-c-3 charity that sponsors sports programs and builds facilities for children with disabilities.
Parking is located in the Belmar Mall parking lot and surrounding streets. Visitors are advised to arrive 20 to 30 minutes prior to show time, dress warm, and carpool if possible.

Historic Allaire Christmas Lantern Tours
Saturday, December 9th, 2023; 4:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Historic Village at Allaire
Blacksmith Shop
4263 Atlantic Avenue
Wall Township, NJ
Cost: $35 - $45
Spend an evening strolling through the Historic Village at Allaire by candlelit lantern and enjoy the rich history of Christmas in the 1800s! Visit the Bakery, Blacksmith's Shop, Allaire Residence and more as your guided tour brings alive the spirit of Christmas past with traditions and holiday decorations to delight everyone. You will experience music, history & theater, as you create a new holiday tradition of our Christmas Lantern Tours! Its the best way to see the village at night and these are the final village tours of 2023 season.

Christmas at Allaire
Sundays, December 10th and 17th, 2023: from 12 to 4pm
The Historic Village at Allaire
4263 Atlantic Avenue
Wall Township, NJ
Cost: Tickets can be purchased in advance for just $8 per person (children 2 and under admitted for free) or at the door (if available) for $10. Advanced purchase is highly recommended.
This event unfolds as the Village is transformed into an enchanting showcase of holiday cheer. Enjoy the warm glow of open hearths and candle-lit windows as you wander through the Village from the Chapel to Allaire House, amidst the joyful sound of live caroling and the whimsical tunes a harp. Sights, sounds, and activities designed to enchant both young and old for Christmas.

Lighting Up Nature Drive-thru
December 15th -18th, 2023;  6pm-8pm
Jakes Branch County Park Nature Center
1100 Double Trouble Road
Beechwood, NJ 08722
(732) 281-2750
Cost: Free
This evenimg drive tru features a lifghting up nature with holiday lights.

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