Monday, March 23, 2015

Walk Down the Aisle in a Park

Thompson Park, Lincroft
Every couple wants their wedding to be the picture of perfection. Gorgeous attire, great weather, happy guests, and of course the perfect wedding location. Did you know that some of the most picturesque wedding ceremony locations can be found right in your Monmouth County parks?

Many of your favorite park sites are available to host your romantic day. Looking for a wedding on the sands of the Jersey Shore? Perhaps surrounded by the serenity of a wooded backdrop? Or would you prefer the backdrop of a beautiful rose garden? There's no shortage of amazing park locations for you to celebrate your very special day. From the sandy shores of Seven Presidents Oceanfront Park to the garden backdrop of Deep Cut Gardens, the Park System wants to be a part of the wedding of your dreams. Already have your wedding location picked out? Park locations are also available to use for your wedding photograph sessions as well. For more information on make the parks part of your perfect day, call 732-842-4000, ext. 4382.

Seven Presidents Oceanfront Park, Long Branch
Are you currently planning your dream wedding? We want to make one couple's dreams come true this year during our "Say 'I Do' in the Parks" Facebook contest. All you have to do is submit a photo of you and your sweetheart within one of our Monmouth County parks and tell us a little about yourselves. Submissions are due by no later that 12 p.m. on Monday, April 13. Starting Tuesday, April 14, we'll let our Facebook followers choose the winner. The winning couple will receive the opportunity to host their wedding ceremony at one of our select county parks.
Last year's "Say 'I Do' in the Parks" winners

Have you enjoyed your wedding ceremony in one of our beautiful parks? Show everyone your perfect park wedding day by posting your photo on our Facebook page.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Final February Night Hike

It was February 27, the final Friday of the month and temperatures were unseasonably cold, in the 20s, with a fresh cover of snow and ice on the ground. Yet, a group of excited participants joined one of our Park System Naturalists for a lantern-lit night hike through the Rocky Point section of Hartshorne Woods Park, Highlands. The sky was clear, making it easy to spot numerous bright stars and planets. We told stories about plants and animals that call this park home. Best of all, the haunting hoot sound of a great horned owl could be heard not far from the group along the Bunker Loop trail. 

Nature walks are always popular with Park System visitors and are offered at different parks throughout the year. Check out some of our upcoming spring nature walk programs:

  • Nature Night Hike on April 3 at Holmdel Park, Holmdel, invites ages 8 and up (under 18 with adult) on a moonlit hike as we look and listen for the nocturnal animals that call the park home.
  • Evening Frog Walk on April 11 at the Manasquan Reservoir, Howell, is fun for all ages as we enjoy a nighttime hike with the sounds of frogs and other nocturnal animals around us.
  • Spring Nature Walk on April 13 at Holmdel Park, Holmdel, explores the beauty of springtime as we enjoy a little fresh air and exercise.
  • Sunset Wetland Walk: Mummichogs and Marsh Critters on April 24 at Bayshore Waterfront Park, Port Monmouth, brings ages 7 and up (under 18 with adult) on a guided adventure in the wetlands near Sandy Hook Bay to check out the marsh fish (mummichogs) and look for the many migrating and resident birds.
  • Half Day Hike and Paddle on April 25 at Huber Woods Park, Middletown. Adults will love this challenging experience that combines hiking and kayaking. We'll first walk a mile through the park to Claypit Creek while discussing the plants and animals that reside in the park. Then we'll use sit-on-top kayaks to paddle the Navesink River and observe birds and other critters that depend on our local waterways.
All of the above named programs required pre-registration, so be sure to reserve your spot soon! For additional upcoming nature programs, please check out our current Spring Program Directory. And be sure not to miss out on one of our excellent (and free!) Roving Park System Naturalist nature walks which bring you to different parks to explore nature. For a list of upcoming Roving Naturalist walks, click here.

For more information about any of the Park System's parks and programs, call us at 732-842-4000, ext. 4312, or send us an email.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Our Camp/Swim Program Directory is Here!

Make the Monmouth County Park System a part of your child's summer excitement! No matter what your child's interests are, there's sure to be a summer camp that will bring them friendship and memories for years to come. Filled to the brim with a wide variety of camps, this special edition Program Directory includes offerings of arts & crafts, equestrian, living history, horticulture, nature, science, odyssey adventures, performing arts and more! Looking to keep your child safe in the water? Be sure to check out our swim lessons which are available for many different age groups and skill levels.

Need to plan your child's summer activities around a busy schedule? Be sure to check out the Camp Calendar Index at the back of the book where you'll see the camps available for each week of the summer as well as which park locations and age groups they are available for. It's never been easier to find the right camps for your family!

Registration begins at 12 p.m. on Sunday, March 8. You may register:
  • Online (24/7)
  • By phone at 732-842-4000, ext. 1; phone registration will be available on March 8 from 12-2 p.m., after that you may register by phone Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
  • In person starting on March 9 at the Thompson Park Headquarters building, Newman Springs Road, Lincroft on Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
  • By mail using the Registration Form at the back of the Program Directory
Please Note: You may register family members ONLY.

Once registered for your selected camps, make sure to fill out the appropriate camp forms which can be found on our website under Activities -> Summer Camp Forms (available after registration begins).

Don't miss your chance to give your child a summer they'll remember for years to come! Check out the Camp/Swim Program Directory today! Want a copy mailed to your home? Be sure to call 732-842-4000, ext. 4312, or email