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Sue Gallagher’s 16 Fun and Affordable Things to Do Around Ocean County

Sue Gallaghers 16 Fun and Affordable Things to Do Around Ocean County

If you’re Harrogate Community Life Services Director Sue Gallagher, you often get asked about interesting things to do, including when there’s a blog to be written about affordable senior-friendly activities in Lakewood, Toms River, and the surrounding Ocean County. Fortunately, Sue always has a long list of ideas. Here are her 16 suggestions:


  1. Strand Theater
    See live theater, enjoy a musical act or attend an educational talk at this historic Vaudeville-era theater in downtown Lakewood, New Jersey.
  2. Ocean County Park (Rockefeller Estate)
    This 323-acre park offers a wide variety of free activities, including tennis, pickleball, fishing, and even a driving range. There are also miles of biking and walking trails.
  3. Lakewood BlueClaws
    Watch the Phillies’ future stars at a BlueClaws minor league game. Seniors who are Silver Sluggers eat free on Thursdays, and the grandkids can run the bases after every Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday home game.

Toms River

  1. Jay and Linda Grunin Center at Ocean County Community College
    Featuring acts from around the globe, venerated artists, hometown musicians and unique entertainers.
  2. Robert J. Novins Planetarium
    One of the largest and most active planetariums in New Jersey, they offer shows about the night sky, solar system and universe for audiences of all ages.
  3. Academy for Lifelong Learning
    Retired seniors receive a FREE membership to the Academy for Lifelong Learning, and enjoy discounts on campus activities as well as reduced course tuition.
  4. Ocean County Historical Society
    Focused on keeping the rich, proud history of Ocean County alive, it’s a great place to research your genealogy or review their wide range of local artifacts.
  5. River Lady
    Enjoy lunch or dinner on an 85-foot paddle wheel riverboat while cruising the Toms River and Barnegat Bay.
  6. Double Trouble Park
    Tour Double Trouble Village – a preserved company town, sawmill and cranberry sorting and packing house – built in the Pine Barrens.
  7. Farmers Market
    February – May: During the winter and early spring, the market is held indoors at The Downtown Shops @ 53 Main on the first Wednesday of every month. June – November: The Farmers Market moves outdoors and is held every Wednesday. See their website for specific dates and times.
  8. Cruisin’ Downtown – Second Wednesday June through September.
    Bring your pre-1993 car or motorcycle to show off, or check out the area’s vintage rides.

Downtown Festivals

Toms River, New Jersey, hosts a variety of festivals featuring local musicians, artists, food vendors, and activities and rides for the grandkids.

  1. Chili and Salsa Cook-Off – Third Saturday in May
  2. Summer in the Streets – Third Saturday in July
  3. Wooden Boat Festival – Third Saturday in July
  4. Harvest Arts Festival – Third Saturday in October
  5. Christmas Tree Lighting – First Friday in December

At Harrogate, socializing is a big part of Living the 8 – our program that brings together eight dimensions of wellness to help residents live happier, more balanced lives.

To see some of the interesting activities we have going on, check out our upcoming events.

Want more ideas on things to do with your whole family around the area? Look here:
Ocean County
Monmouth County