October 1: Norwood’s Blue Moon Mexican Café thanks the community for its support with The Norwood Neighborhood Patio Party. The patio party is FREE and will take place from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. there’s fun for all ages with kid’s taco making and adult craft beer samplings. 595 Broadway Avenue, Norwood.
October 1: Start the season off right at Unionville Vineyard’s Fall Harvest Festival. From 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. enjoy wine, food, and music in a sprawling, 89-acre vineyard setting as the cool fall air rolls in. Jersey Bites founder and author of The Jersey Shore Cookbook, Deborah Smith, will be in attendance for a panel discussion and book signing, along with Jeff Cioletti, author of The Year of Drinking Adventurously. Other attractions include winery tours and vineyard walks, live magic performances, hayrides, pumpkin painting, crafts, and some furry friends from Highland Airs Alpaca Farms. Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the gate. Advance tickets can be purchased here until September 29. Tickets for guests under 21 and designated drivers are $10. No pets or outside alcohol is permitted at this event. Coolers, lawn chairs, and blankets are welcome. Unionville Vineyards, 9 Rocktown Road, Ringoes.
October 1: Get right into the groove of Oktoberfest at Ales ’N Tails Oktoberfest, held at and hosted by the Turtle Back Zoo. From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Enjoy traditional music along with dozens of brews made locally and globally. This event benefits the Essex County Parks Foundation. Tickets are $60 for general admission and $15 for designated drivers. Tickets can be purchased here.
October 1 and 2: Harvest season is here at last and will be celebrated in a grand fashion with Garden State Wine Growers Association holding its Jersey Fresh Grand Harvest Wine Festival at Fosterfields Living Historical Farm in Morristown. The festival will start at 11:30 a.m. both days and will have live music, wine (of course!), family-friendly activities and much more. Tickets are $25 before Sept. 29 and $30 after. Free for everyone under 21. More ticket information, and a festival guide can be found here.
October 1 and 2: Long Beach Island’s much loved Chowderfest is back again! Merchants Mart is Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. enjoy blowout bargains from dozens of Southern Ocean County Chambers of Commerce members, rain or shine, with live music, food, beer, and activities for kids. Then Sunday the Chowder Cookoff Classic begins at 11a.m. VIP tickets are $55 and include a t-shirt and early admission. General admission tickets are $25 and kids are $10. Tickets can be purchased here. Taylor Avenue Ballfield, Beach Haven.
October 2: Take part in the first-ever New Jersey VegFest, a which will bring together a varied roster of insightful speakers, more than 60 vegan food and product vendors, live music, and more. The speaker lineup features a highly anticipated, already sold-out keynote from Dr. Joel Fuhrman, author of Eat to Live and The End of Heart Disease; Adam Sobel, chef, author of Street Vegan, proprietor of The Cinnamon Snail food truck, and restaurateur; and many more. Vendors in attendance include Fresh Press Juice Co., Good Karma Café, and Gigi’s Doughnuts. A list of more vendors can be found here. There will also be small breakout panel sessions for activists, educators, and others to connect with attendees with similar interests. The Cinnamon Snail food truck will be parked outside the event and available to the general public. Tickets can be purchased for $25 here. The festival takes place from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Hyatt Regency Morristown, 3 Speedwell Avenue, Morristown.
October 2: The Ocean City Restaurant Association presents the Chili Chowder Festival. The festival is at the covered loggia of the Ocean City Music Pier (on the Ocean City Boardwalk between Eighth Street and Ninth Street). from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. OCRA members will bring their favorite chili and chowder recipes for tasting. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids. Purchase tickets here.
October 4: Make some room! In honor of National Taco Day, Chevys Fresh Mex in Clifton and Linden will launch the No Mas Taco Challenge. Those competing in the challenge must eat a 4-pound taco filled with choice of salsa chicken, picadillo beef, carnitas or veggies topped with pico de gallo, chipotle aioli, lettuce and Jack cheese, all wrapped in a flour tortilla in under 30 minutes for the chance to win free tacos for a year. The first five winners will receive the gift certificate and a t-shirt.
October 5 to 8: Kimchi Smoke Barbecue, at 301 Center Ave in Westwood, hosts a pop-up dinner on Oct 5 and 6 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. The menu will be a collaboration between Chef Tim Culvert, former head chef at Park and Orchard, and Kimchi Smoke’s Robert Austin Cho. Menu will include smoked clam chowder, gumbo with brown rice and cornbread, chipotle marinated chicken with spicy vegetables and cabbage slaw, and Texas Stallion (smoked pork shoulder with sautéed broccoli rabe on toasted hero). Kimchi Smoke Pop Up will be Oct 7 and 8 from 12 p.m to 9 p.m. The menu will include Bad as Texas Brisket, gochu glazed baby back ribs and smoked pork belly.
October 6: 2nd Annual Whiskey Festival of New Jersey 75+ Different Whiskies to Sample–plus, craft cocktails, food and live music. 6:30 PM to 10:00 PM Pig & Prince Restaurant – 1 Lackawanna Plaza, Montclair.
October 7 to 9: The annual South Jersey Pumpkin Show marks its 13th year for a celebration of all things pumpkin. Pumpkin-themed festivities include the Pumpkin Fun Food Contest and the NJ Big Pumpkin Weigh-Off, as well as a bounty of pumpkin pies, of course. There’s also amusement rides, live music, a Halloween Costume Contest, hay rides (of the spooky variety), a haunted barn, wine sampling, farmers market, and more. The festival runs from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free. Parking is $5 and good for all three days of the festival. $1 discount on parking for donation of canned pet food. Salem County Fairgrounds, 735 Harding Highway, Woodstown.
October 8: Join Striped Spatula’s Amanda Biddle (also a Jersey Bites contributor) at Bloomingdale’s at The Shops at Riverside in Hackensack for a fall-friendly, breast-cancer-awareness demonstration of her miniature apple-raspberry crumb pies. The demo will run from 1 to 4 p.m. in the store’s Culinary Kitchen (Home Department, 1st floor). Shoppers can drop by to watch the pies being made, ask questions, sample the recipe, and grab a recipe card. Limited seating will be available for those who want to stick around and watch for an extended period.
October 8: Think you’re not a fan of lima beans? You might change your mind after visiting the West Cape May Lima Bean Festival. The oft-overlooked legume takes center stage in soups, tacos, salads, and more. Other attractions include vendors, antique shopping, live entertainment, and crafts. The festival takes place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Rain date scheduled for October 9. Wilbraham Park, Perry Street, West Cape May.
October 8: Cricket Hill Brewery hosts the Central Jersey Beer Festival, bringing together a plethora of breweries for a day of beer tasting in the crisp fall air. Featured breweries include Brooklyn Brewery, Forgotten Boardwalk, Jughandle Brewing Company, Triumph Brewing Company, Victory Brewing Company, and many more. For a full list of breweries and vendors, click here. Live musical performances from Shaun Ruymen, Pat Llewellyn and the Parade, and Moot Davis will take place throughout the day. The festival runs from 12 to 6 p.m. with four hours designated for beer tasting. The festival will take place rain or shine. Tickets are limited and can be purchased here. Proof of ID required for entry and no one under the age of 21 is permitted. Mercer County Park, 1638 Old Trenton Road, Trenton.
October 8 and 9: The Garden State Wine Growers Association (GWSWGA) returns to the NASW Aviation Museum for the Cape May Wine & Food Experience through Columbus Day weekend. Guests will be able to see classic Cape May airport airplanes on display, sample over 150 New Jersey wines and see notable chefs such as Mike Colameco, Diane Henderiks, Erick Weatherspool and Marilyn Schossbach. Advance tickets are on sale here for $25 until October 5, and then tickets will go up to $30. Doors open each day at 11:30 a.m. with wine samples running through 4:30 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. for wine sales.
October 10: Ramen lovers, unite! Here’s your chance to prove just how strong your love is. Ani Ramen House and Sun Noodle present the 1st Annual Slurp. Sip. Repeat. Ramen Eating Contest in honor of National Noodle Day (Oct. 6). The contest takes place at the Ani Ramen House from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Individuals 18 years and older may enter to win a set of Golden Chopsticks good for one year of free ramen! 401 Bloomfield Avenue, Montclair.
October 13: In honor of the fourth Lube-a-versary of its Brick location, Quaker Steak & Lube will donate 10% of its sales on Thursday, October 13, directly to the Visitation Relief Center as a thank you to the local community. Guests will have the chance to win a variety of prizes throughout the day. 1036 Cedar Bridge Avenue, Brick.
October 14: Crystal Springs and The Boy Scouts of America have teamed up to with a clay shooting fundraiser for all ages. There is a continental breakfast and chef Anthony Bucco will prepare an Oktoberfest-themed pig roast for lunch. Individual shooter fee is $350, a team of five is $1,750 and a sponsored team is $2,000. This event is at Clay and Oak Sporting Club at Clove Spring Range in Wantage. To book your spot call 855-949-7722.
October 15: For beer fans everywhere, the month of October means it’s time again for Oktoberfest celebrations. The Harborside Craft Brew Fest in Jersey City brings the German tradition Garden Stateside, featuring more than 15 Garden State craft breweries, including Jersey City’s own Departed Soles and Hoboken’s 902 Brewing. With over 150 craft beers to try, guests are bound to discover their new favorite brew as they meet other beer aficionados and brewery representatives. Guests will also enjoy live music, beautiful views of the New York City skyline, and savor-worthy food from The Cow and The Curd, Mac Truck, Urban Lobster Shack, and more. The event takes place during two four-hour sessions: 12 to 4 p.m. and 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tickets for this event are $60 and can be purchased here (ticket prices will increase in $5 increments two weeks and then one week prior to the event). Price of admission includes unlimited craft beer tastings and a souvenir tasting glass. Harborside Atrium and Waterfront Esplanade, 34 Exchange Place, Jersey City.
Through October 16: On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, experience a Wine Lovers Sunset Cruise aboard the Cape May-Lewes Ferry. Guests will enjoy a five-course meal, live music, and the chance to purchase featured wines. This event is $65 per person. Reservations can be made at 800-643-3779.
Through October 22: Another year another Oktoberfest in Hoboken! Pilsener Haus hosts its 5th Annual Oktoberfest. Come on out to enjoy opening ceremonies, keg-tapping, beer tastings, liederhosen and mug-holding contests and old-school as well as new breed polka bands.
October 22: Following the Continental Driven Hunt at Crystal Springs, Chef Anthony Bucco and Resort Mixologist Carlos Ruiz will host a reception and dinner with wild boar, venison, pheasant, red-leg partridge, and open-pit roasted vegetables in the amphitheater at the Chef’s Garden. Guests will enjoy unique cocktails, homemade tinctures, and syrups. The Continental Driven Hunt Experience is $1,000 per person; $1,450 per couple, staying in the same room with only one shooter; $1,700 per couple/pair, staying in the same room and both shooting; $700 per person, without lodging. More details can be found here.
Through October 23: The first authentic Oktoberfest has hit Asbury Park, by way of the Asbury Festhalle & Biergarten. Guests can enjoy top polka bands, pig roasts, Masskrugstemmen, and a top selection of imported beer.
November 11 and 12: The 10th Annual Housewares Warehouse Sale in New Castle, DE, will be the largest sale of its kind yet with more products and events planned for the two-day general public sale and for the Stock Up for Seniors Event, which takes place the evening before the sale opens to the general public. Stock Up for Seniors is scheduled for Thursday, November 10 from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Visit Meals on Wheels Delaware to purchase tickets. Ticket sales, as well as 5% of the proceeds from the warehouse sale, will benefit Meals On Wheels Delaware.Doors open at 4 p.m. on Friday and 8 a.m. on Saturday. Cash and credit cards will be accepted. For additional information on the sale, please call 302-326-4800. Centerpoint Business Complex Park in New Castle at 802 Centerpoint Blvd. (Follow signs from Route 273 to the warehouse.)
November 14: The Algonquin teams up with the Garden State Wine Growers Association and Whole Foods Market Wall to present Forks, Corks, and Hops: a wine and cheese pairing event. Steve Schirripa, aka Bobby Bacala on The Sopranos, is scheduled to host a Meet & Eat session. Tickets purchased before November 1 cost $75 per person for tasting and $95 for tasting along with wine and cheese pairing. Tickets bought after November 1 cost $85 per person for tasting alone, and $100 for tasting and wine and cheese pairing. Tickets can be purchased here. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. The Mill, 101 Old Mill Rd, Spring Lake Heights.
Tuesdays through Sundays, through December 31: Explore the 100-year history of one of New Jersey’s most iconic traditions at the Morris Museum’s newest exhibit, “Icons of American Culture: The History of New Jersey Diners.” Curated by Jody Marcus, the exhibit retells the story of how the classic, neon-lit, stainless steel diners of the past century captured the hearts of hungry diners everywhere through carefully curated factoid panels, photographs, paintings, and historical artifacts. Much of the information in the exhibit comes from the 2013 book The History of Diners in New Jersey, written by author and Jersey Bites contributor Michael C. Gabriele. (And check out his recent article about the exhibit here!) The exhibit runs through December 31. The museum is closed on Mondays and is open on Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. For more information about hours and admission, click here. The Morris Museum, 6 Normandy Heights Road, Morristown.