Mothers should be appreciated every day of the year (of course), but it doesn’t hurt to have one special day to remind everyone just how wonderful you are. Round up your crew for a celebratory outing on Sunday, May 13, with one of these 25 fun activities that are perfect for the entire family.
Whether you want to wine and dine at great brunch spots in northern NJ or down the shore, sip tea with your littles, enjoy a scenic stroll in nature, or go for a free spin on amusement rides, we’ve got you covered with the best NJ Mother’s Day events happening this year. Check them out below and find your Mom Day match!
For even more fun events, visit our Spring Fun Guide and May Go List. Happy Mother’s Day, NJ moms!
It's a family affair with activities for everyone at the Mother's Day 5K Run/Walk at the Summit Area YMCA. Photo courtesy of the YMCA
1. Work up a sweat at the Summit Area YMCA Mother’s Day 5K Run/Walk in support of the LIVESTRONG cancer survivor organization. The family-friendly event also includes a magic show, Zumba, a Tot Trot for kids under 5, and a Kids Zone with games and activities.
2. Fuel up for a full day of fun by dining at one of the best brunch spots in northern NJ or the Jersey Shore, no cooking or clean-up required.
3. Burn off brunch calories with a guided hike through the Cora Hartshorn Arboretum & Bird Sanctuary, and learn about the woodland area’s wildflowers and wildlife.
Family photo-ops are part of the Mother's Day fun at Morey's Piers. Photo courtesy of Morey's Piers
4. Grab your sunscreen and head down to Morey's Piers in Wildwood, where moms ride the Ferris wheel, roller coaster, and other rides free from noon–5pm. Take a spin in the Tea Cup ride's oversized cups, then gather your gang for a family photo-op complete with fun signs and props.
5. Flutter on over to the Camden Children’s Garden’s Butterfly & Birds Family Festival to learn about and celebrate the life cycle of these small, winged friends. Top off your visit with a ride on the garden train and carousel.
6. Take a scenic hayride around Alstede Farm to Harvest Hall, where you can dine on an asparagus-themed brunch. Afterward, visit with Alstede's barnyard animals and enjoy pony rides, a bounce house, and wagon train rides. All moms get a free ice cream cone, too!
7. Score tickets to the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s 20th anniversary performance at NJPAC, which will feature the treasured classic, Revelations, as well several new masterpieces.
Take in the view on the Monet Bridge at Grounds For Sculpture. Photo by David Michael Howarth Photography
8. Discounted tickets are available online for Mother's Day at Grounds For Sculpture, where your family can pose for Insta-worthy pictures with the garden's giant, 25-foot-tall sculptures.
9. Head to Paws Discovery Farm for an enchanting tea party in the butterfly garden. Enjoy hot and cold tea, finger sandwiches, pastries, and craft activities, plus surprise special guests from the farm’s petting zoo.
10. What better way to celebrate Mother’s Day than with a free wine tasting? Mother’s Day Wine Trail Weekend at Terhune Orchards promises an afternoon of vino and tasty treats from the orchard’s bakery; afterward, swing by to visit the barnyard animals and farm store.
11. Bask in the warm weather with a picnic lunch at Presby Iris Gardens. Each boxed lunch comes with a gourmet sandwich (vegetarian options included), lemon square dessert, chips, and a drink. All you need is a blanket so you can kick back, relax, and enjoy the live jazz concert.
12. Enjoy everything Cape May has to offer during its annual spring celebration. In addition to trolley tours, scavenger hunts, and private home tours, the Mother’s Day calendar includes a jazz brunch at the Physick Estate.
13. Lace up your sneakers for a guided walking tour of NJ’s lovely Botanical Gardens and Skylands Manor. Wander over to the sweet-smelling Lilac Garden, where the flowers are in peak bloom this time of year.
14. Toast to another Mother’s Day at Valenzano Winery's annual Mother’s Day Picnic with free wine tastings, food trucks, and craft sale. Tickets also include a souvenir wine glass and a live concert by the Legacy Band.
15. Hop aboard for a relaxing and scenic ride along the Delaware River on the River Train. For a small additional fee, kids can stop by the Gem Stone Mine and search for treasures to take home.
Spend Mother's Day riding on mighty machines. Photo courtesy of Diggerland
16. Enjoy $5 off admission to Diggerland, where you and your truck-obsessed tots can drive, ride, and operate all of the construction theme park’s awesome attractions.
17. Brunch while watching the horse races at Monmouth Park, or raise a glass of bubbly at the champagne bar near the horse paddock and walking ring. All moms gets free admission plus a chance to win two tickets to see Ed Sheeran (swoon!). Kids 12 and under are always free, and there’s a playground right near the track, plus clowns, face painting, pony rides, and a bounce house.
18. Get your groove on as a family with a live concert by Mimic (Brian Cono’s band) while sipping some delicious vino at Sharrott Winery. Bring your own lawn chairs, blanket, and picnic lunch, or purchase food from two food trucks.
19. The lilacs are in bloom at the Willowwood Arboretum. Enjoy staff-led tours of the gardens and the grounds throughout the day, as well as light refreshments. Baby lilacs will be on sale to gift or plant at home.
20. Sip tea and dine on traditional foods such as sandwiches, scones, and delicate desserts at Reeves-Reed Arboretum. Then take a stroll through the gardens and enjoy the spring Sunday.
21. Deep Cut Garden’s celebration of National Public Gardens Day on May 11 culminates on Mother’s Day Sunday with free tours, demonstrations, and drop-in activities for kids.
22. Soak up the sun during a family-friendly wildlife walk at the Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center. The easy trails will be fun to wander for nature lovers of all ages.
23. You can easily spend the entire day at Working Dog Winery, starting with a continental breakfast at 11am. Or come for lunch and dine on delicious BBQ from the Jersey Devil food truck. Bring a chair or blanket to enjoy a live concert from Spoondrift.
24. Sayen Botanical Garden’s 250,000 flowering azaleas, rhododendrons, and dogwoods make a magnificent display of colors for a special Mother’s Day family photo shoot. Craft and food vendors, along with musical entertainment and children's activities, will provide fun for the entire family.
25. And if you still haven't had enough wine, head to Alba Vineyard’s Mother’s Day Festival. In addition to kids' activities, wine tastings, and winery tours, there will be pizza, ice cream, and cupcake vendors on hand to provide snacks while you listen to live music by The VooDUDES. Cheers!