Programs & Events

The Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders recognizes that affordable family-friendly events bring people together to explore common interests and share different traditions and views…and within the parks, it all happens in a beautiful natural and historic environment!

LindaHynesIt is quite an understatement to say it’s been an unusual  Spring!  With COVID-19 restrictions in place since mid-March,  we were unable to enjoy our usual activities.  Parks were closed between April 7th and May 2nd and all programs  and events scheduled for April and May were cancelled. 

Knowing how important it is to remain socially active and mentally engaged, our staff quickly converted  planned activities to online programs.  The cupcake baking contest for kids was a big hit and showed us how many talented, creative  bakers we have in the County.  A weekly history trivia night is keeping the history buff on their toes.  Educational programs were posted online to teach us about pollinators and the plants that flower in our Parks in the spring months.  A time lapse video showed the rise and fall of the tides at Amico Island. Instructions were posted on how to make bird feeders from ordinary household items and identify birds in your backyard.  We hope you were able to enjoy some of those offerings.We happily announced the reopening of the County parks on May 2nd. Maintenance staff had the parks beautifully landscaped, park rangers worked diligently to keep everyone safe, and most importantly, you, the park visitors were courteous and followed the guidelines in place, wearing face coverings while maintaining safe distances on the trails.  We thank all of you for your cooperation and hope you continue to enjoy the parks throughout the summer. 

Unfortunately, we enter the summer months with uncertainty about our schedule for programs and events.  For the first time in 25 years, the annual Earth Fair will not be held in June.  The amphitheater season will not go on as planned.  However, as you can see in this program guide, Parks’ staff has planned plenty of activities that will keep you and your families entertained.     We will continue to evaluate our ability to  hold these programs safely.  Some programs may have to be relocated, some may require lower capacity limits, and some may have to be postponed or cancelled.  We will continue to look for ways to present programs online, so keep an eye on our website and Facebook pages.  We look forward to bringing you an exciting schedule of summer events next year! 

Please continue to do your part and stay safe.

linda hynes signature

Linda Hynes, Burlington County Freeholder

ACTIVITIES AND PROGRAMS FROM HOME
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, parks will open on May 2, but programming is still cancelled until further notice.  We hope to resume normal programming as soon as possible.  In the meantime, we invite you to participate in some activities and programs you can do at home!  It's important to stay healthy, active, interactive and to have some fun! 

HISTORY PROGRAMS

The Parks System is currently home to six historic sites where you can learn about the people and events that helped to shape Burlington County. Each offers a wide variety of tours, exhibits, programming and events that make history come alive for its visitors. We offer lectures and programs within our facilities or at your facility! Within Smithville Park, you can take a tour of the Smithville Mansion, the Village, and the Underground Railroad Museum. While in Mount Holly, you can visit the Historic Prison Museum or Lyceum of History and Natural Sciences.

Trivia Tuesdays!

trivia tuesdays

Benjamin Latrobe & Robert Mills

Latrobe

Stolen presented by Dr. Richard Bell

stolen presentation of book

History Goes Virtual!

History virtual program

8 Things Women Invented

women invented

Iron Works Hill

Iron Works

4th of July Traditions

fourth of july

In addition to the programs listed below, there’s a full list of History Programs running through June!  

NATURE PROGRAMS

The Burlington County Parks System offers many educational nature programs. Taking place both indoors and outdoors, a vast array of topics are covered for all age groups throughout the year. Whether you’re enjoying a guided walk in the park, a lecture series, butterfly walk, or canoeing, there’s always something to learn about nature! Our staff also offers nature programs for private groups including schools, scouts, and other organizations. Please contact us for more information. Events and programs are also held at the Rancocas Nature Center.

The Secret World of Plants and Pollinators:

This presentation focuses on the incredible ways in which plants communicate with animals. Flowers are not pretty colors and pleasant smells for us - it’s all about the pollinators. Discover amazing strategies of plants, and the colors that pollinators see. Taking a much closer look at flowers can open up an entire hidden world that is more complex and fascinating than one ever imagined.

Secret World of Plants and Pollinators title slide

The Roles of Beneficial Insects
As spring is underway, more insects will start emerging and people may be likely to kill or spray insects if they do not know what they are.  This presentation is a visual aid to help identify many of our common beneficial insects and understand the crucial roles they play in the environment.
beneficial insects title slide

Burlington County Bird Surveys and More!

Park Naturalists and volunteers have been conducting seasonal bird surveys in the Burlington County Parks for over a decade.  The spring bird surveys took place between April 28 and May 8 in the Parks.  Click here for the summary of the two weeks with all 101 species listed. 

WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS LOG

The Wildlife Sightings Log is where we post significant sightings of birds and other animal species that are not seen on a regular basis.  If you see something that is not a regular resident species in one of the Burlington County Parks, please submit it using the form on the wildlife log page. To see which species have been reported in the parks, you can go to the individual park webpage to see a cumulative summary of species.  (For instance for Smithville Park, go to Smithville Park’s webpage and click on the cumulative species list under Quick Links in the right column). To see which birds are present at different times of the year, and their resident vs migratory status, check out the Burlington County Parks cumulative bird checklist

THINGS TO DO IN YOUR BACKYARD:

Spending time gardening?  Garden Guru, public radio host, former Organic Gardening Editor-in-Chief and annual guest speaker at the Burlington County Earth Fair, Mike McGrath has shared ways to tackle all of your toughest garden, lawn and pest problems!  www.youbetyourgarden.org

May Wildflowers: This slideshow depicts some of the trees, shrubs, and wildflowers that are blooming in the month of May in Burlington County.  

May wildflowers  Opens in new window

Backyard Birding - an interactive visual and audio guide to birds you're likely to see right in your backyard!  Listen to their calls and see which ones you recognize!  

Do-it-yourself Bird Feeder Ideas:
Pine Cone Feeder
Plastic Bottle Feeder

Burlington County Parks Crossword Puzzle

Crossword Puzzle Answer Key

NJDEP's Earth Day activities for kids and adults

Coloring Pages from Park Rangers

OUTDOOR FARMERS MARKET

FARMERS MARKET RETURNS MAY 23!

Farmers Market opening day

HEALTH AND FITNESS

WALK WITH US!

VIRTUAL WALK RUN
As we all know, right now, we can’t get together and have an organized walk, but we CAN still walk together!  
Here is your chance to join the Burlington County Parks Virtual Run/Walk Challenge in a safe environment while social distancing.  The challenge is about being healthy, having fun, accomplishing personal goals, and being outside enjoying the parks or a favorite spot, on your time from whatever location you choose. 
Here’s the challenge…. Over the next few weeks, starting May 16th through May 31st, we ask that you keep track of your own miles from your walk, run, bike ride or treadmill experience. At the conclusion of this challenge, you submit the total miles that you ran or walked during that time. We’ll total up the miles to see how many miles we logged as a group. Let’s see how far we can go!  During this challenge, upload pictures or tell us about your experiences in the comments to this post for all to enjoy. Let’s have fun see where this challenge takes us.   
Submit all miles by email to Hscotto@co.burlington.nj.us.  No amount is too little or too much! You set the pace!  Let us know if any family members walked with you!  Enjoy the parks!

Quarterly Program Guide

Quarterly Program Guide includes all programs and events offered by the Burlington County Division of Parks.  Pick up a copy in your local library or parks' facility and at local events.  Call if you would like us to drop one in the mail to you!  609-265-5858. You may also view the online version.  
We hope to have a full, interactive, online version of Summer Programs soon! 

The Spring Program Guide is now available online!

2020 Spring Program Guide Cover

ARTS AND CULTURE

Burlington County is home to many exhibits that feature Fine Arts and Photography from all of over the region. There are galleries and exhibits throughout the year and festivals that celebrate the Arts.

ANNUAL EVENTS AND FESTIVALS

Burlington County hosts several annual events throughout our parks. Large festivals are held each year in Historic Smithville Park, to include Earth Fair, Arts in the Park, and Fall Float Festivals. Events such as the Garden Expo and Farmers Markets are held throughout the season at theBurlington County Agricultural Center. Each year, Burlington County also hosts the Farm Fair, tractor pulls and equestrian events at the County Fairgrounds. We are also excited to offer free, outdoor concerts at the Burlington County Amphitheater!  Earth Fair returns for its 25th anniversary!  

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