October GoList: The Best Things To Do with NJ Kids This Month

Halloween may be the star of the show this month, but there's plenty of other fun to be had in the days and weeks leading up to the big event. This month is jam-packed with fall fun, including harvest festivals and corn mazes, plus a kite festival and three-day street fair.

There are Halloween happenings aplenty, geared toward everyone from older kids to the littlest trick-or-treaters. Head down the shore for Boo at the Boardwalk, enjoy not-too-spooky fun at Goblins in the Garden in Camden, and don your black hat for Witch's Day Out in Smithville. Throughout the month, you can take the family for a ride on a Halloween train, check out a cool pumpkin display, and enjoy kid-friendly Halloween and fall fun at amusement parks like Diggerland and Storybook Land

Read on for more of the best events this October for NJ kids. For even more ideas, check out our list of 50 Things We Can't Wait To Do with NJ Kids This Fall, and find fun that's just right for little ones in our roundup of the Best Fall Events for NJ Preschoolers. Be sure to check our Event Calendar often for new happenings added daily. 

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Dinosaurs After Dark – Leonia 
Fridays and Saturdays in October 2019
Get into the Halloween spirit as you explore Field Station: Dinosaurs by lantern light and hunt in the darkened woods for an escaped T-Rex!

Diggerfest – West Berlin
Saturdays and Sundays in October 2019
Fall is the season for Diggerland's annual Diggerfest, running every Saturday and Sunday in October and November. A full-day admission ticket gets you access to all of the rides and attractions at Diggerland USA, plus additional fall and Halloween fun.

October Fun at Storybook Land – Egg Harbor Township
Thursday, October 3 – Thursday, October 24, 2019
Climb aboard the Happy Hayride to pick a pumpkin, find your way through Elmer’s Hay-Mazin’ Maze, and ride the attractions. Trick or Treat Weekend is October 25-27.

Asbury Park Zombie Walk – Asbury Park
Saturday, October 5, 2019
Dress in your scariest garb and head to the boardwalk for a zombie takeover. Throughout the walk, the downtown and boardwalk are loaded with spooky festivities, culminating in blood-red fireworks along the oceanfront. FREE


The Glow: A Jack O'Lantern Experience is worth a trip to Philly! Photo courtesy of the event

The Glow: A Jack O'Lantern Experience – Philadelphia
Thursday, October 5 – Sunday, November 3, 2019
If you're in or around Philly this month, this amazing display is worth a visit. Walk a trail decorated with more than 5,000 glowing jack-o'-lanterns, each intricately carved and arranged to create stunning scenes from nature, under the sea, and even a winter wonderland. Staying local? Find more pumpkin displays and carving events in NJ.

Pumpkin PAWlooza – Cherry Hill and Mount Laurel
Saturday, October 5 – Sunday, October 6, 2019
Get a double-dose of fall fun at Pumpkin PAWlooza, a dual-location event at Garden State Discovery Museum and Paws Discovery Farms. Head to the museum for a moon bounce and crafts, then visit the farm for pony rides, hayrides, a petting zoo, pumpkin patch, and more.

LBI Fly International Kite Festival – Ship Bottom and Surf City
Friday, October 11 – Sunday, October 13, 2019
This three-day fest held over Columbus Day weekend features professional kite shows, demos, kite making workshops, competitions, a kids' candy drop, and more. FREE

East Rutherford 3 Day Fall Fest/Street Fair – East Rutherford
Friday, October 12 – Sunday, October 13, 2019
East Rutherford is packing three days of fall fun into this busy festival, featuring music, classic cars, food and a children's village with a pumpkin patch. FREE

South Jersey Pumpkin Show Festival – Woodstown
Friday, October 11 – Sunday, October 13, 2019
Jack Skellington would lose his head over this event. In addition to trick-or-treating, hayrides, and pumpkin tosses, the festival includes trees decorated in Halloween, autumn, and Thanksgiving themes. Other attractions include a Boo Barn, crafts, live music, a food court, costume contests, and the Little Miss & Mister Pumpkin Pageant. 

The Great Pumpkin at Insectropolis – Toms River
Friday, October 18, 2019
The "Bug Museum" is hosting a Peanuts-themed event featuring two showings of the movie and Halloween fun including crafts and other activities. Explore the spooky museum as you walk a treat trail, and meet special guests along the way. Advance tickets are recommended.

Haunted Allaire – Farmingdale
Fridays and Saturdays, October 18–26, 2019
Allaire Village turns on the Halloween fun for two weekends this month. Check out haunted hayrides through 20 different scenes, including the Manager's House with Halloween scenes, Mr. Allaire's House with a haunted theme and the Carriage House with legendary spirits.


Go pumpkin picking in the sand at Boo at the Boardwalk at Point Pleasant Beach. Photo courtesy of the event

Boo at the Boardwalk – Point Pleasant Beach
Saturday and Sunday, October 19-20 & 26-27, 2019
Celebrate Halloween at the beach with two weekends of family fun, including underwater pumpkin carving, trick-or-treating, a pumpkin derby, beach maze, games, crafts, and more.

AddamsFest – Westfield
Saturday and Sunday, October 19-20 & 26-27, 2019
They're creepy and they're kooky. And they're taking over Westfield for Halloween. Charles Addams' hometown is packed with two weekends of Halloween events, like a trunk-or-treat, parade, costume contest and a Monster Mash dance party. FREE

Grand Opening of American Dream – East Rutherford
Friday, October 25, 2019
The dream becomes a reality in October when The Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park and the Rink at American Dream make their long-awaited debut.


Camden Children's Garden's Goblins in the Garden Family Festival is perfect for little ghosts and ghouls.

Goblins in the Garden Family Festival – Camden
Saturday, October 26 – Sunday, October 27, 2019
Dress up in your Halloween best and come to the Camden Children's Garden for some not-too-spooky fun, including a haunted train ride, trick-or-treating, and a costume parade.

Boo at the Zoo – Cape May Court House
Saturday, October 26, 2019
Celebrate Halloween with the residents of the Cape May Zoo, and enjoy games, an inflatable obstacle course, candy, and more FREE fun. For more Halloween happenings at local zoos, check out Zoo Boo at Bergen County Zoo (October 25-26) and Safe Howl-O-Ween at Turtle Back Zoo (October 31).

Witch's Day Out – Smithville 
Sunday, October 27, 2019
Dust off your black hat and broomstick, and head on over to Historic Smithville for the third annual Witch's Day Out. The fun will include contests with prizes and a scavenger hunt. FREE

Halloween – Statewide
Through October 31, 2019
The handful of Halloween-related events included in this list is just a taste of the spooky fun that's happening throughout New Jersey this month. For a more complete look, check out our go-to guide to Halloween, where you can find FREE Halloween events and parades for kids, the best trick-or-treat options for preschoolers, and even what to do with all of that leftover candy (besides eat it yourself.). NOTE: we are busy updating these lists with the very latest information for 2019, so be sure to check back if you find one that's in progress. Happy Halloween!

Photo courtesy of the events/venues.