The Montclair Art Museum throws open its gallery doors and invites guests inside to witness a treasured collection of historic artifacts and culturally relevant exhibits. Rotating displays from a museum collection of more than 4,000 artistic Native-American pieces span centuries of creation, including woven baskets and smartphones. Patrons can analyze 18th and 19th century artwork comprising sculptures, busts, and paintings, then move on to view rotating exhibitions obtained through a weeklong session of no-holds-barred Pictionary. Current exhibitions include The Spectacular of Vernacular that showcases how 25 contemporary artists utilize craft and folklore to explore specific cultural icons, and a display of contemporary and modern art that features the thoughtful work of well-known artists of the past century. After wandering through Montclair Art Museum's hallowed corridors or breezy ventilation ducts, art lovers can meander into the museum store for trinkets and memorabilia.
For more than 100 years, The Newark Museum has enraptured attendees with exhibitions celebrating artistry and science in a facility that currently encompasses 80 galleries. Curious minds delight in national and international artwork, several enthralling science collections, a planetarium boasting a Zeiss ZKP3 star projector, and an enchanting sculpture garden. The new ongoing exhibit Generation Fit: Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle makes use of interactive media and games, such as animated explanations of appetite circuits, video games combined with exercise challenges, and Pilates sessions led by presidentially pardoned turkeys. Partakers can peruse ornaments fashioned between the early 1700s and today at The Glitter & The Gold: Jewelry From the Newark Museum before voyaging into a plethora of permanent galleries. Patron memberships bestow customers with bountiful yearlong benefits, including numerous free admission passes for friends, four planetarium tickets, discounts for shop and café purchase, and reciprocal admission to more than 150 art museums in the country.
The constant tug-of-war between education and fun finds middle ground inside this Central Jersey children’s museum, as entertaining exhibits and engaging staff members embed knowledge in each young visitor. Young guests can play veterinarian at the Pet Vet Center, read the news and see themselves on television at the TV News Room, or shed light on the complexities of the human body inside a replica doctor’s office outfitted with realistic equipment.
A motorcycle, retired fire engine, and a grounded airplane shows visitors the wonders of mechanized travel in the Varoom!!! Vehicle Showroom, which leads to an enchanted castle outfitted with a wooden drawbridge, a faux moat, and a new level 3 train exhibit. Party rooms manned by helpful staffers merge learning and celebration, and the onsite gift shop coaxes homebound brain building with a selection of scientific toys.
The Hoboken Historical Museum celebrates the history, culture, architecture, and overall coolness of the Hoboken area, with 2,000 square feet of photos and artifacts located within the former Bethlehem Steel shipyard. Currently, the main gallery exhibit Surveying the World: Keuffel & Esser + Hoboken, 1870–1968, running until December 23, serves up 500 engineering instruments manufactured by the firm Keuffel & Esser from 1870 to 1968. Visitors to the exhibit can interact with a slide rule or telepathically take apart a transit instrument to discover the goblins turning the gears within. The museum also has an upper gallery, which is a venue for local artists to exhibit work about Hoboken and its environs. Previous artists include popular cityscape artist Frank Hanavan, photographer Virginia Parrott, and the fifth-grade class at Wallace Elementary School. Support the Hoboken Historical Museum with a one-year individual or family membership—both membership packages include benefits such as free admission to the museum, discounts on select museum gift-shop items, a subscription to the museum's quarterly newsletter, and free copies of the museum's Oral History Project chapbooks.
When British Colonel Roger Morris and his wife stumbled upon a piece of unclaimed Manhattan hilltop, they knew it would be the ideal spot for their summer home. Built in 1765, the 8,500-square foot Morris-Jumel Mansion—as it's known today—was the centerpiece of an estate that extends more than 130 acres from the Harlem to the Hudson River. Loyal to the British crown, Morris left America during the Revolution; in the fall of 1776, General George Washington used the home as headquarters during the Battle of Harlem Heights.
Today, the mansion offers guided tours of its historic property. After becoming president, Washington returned on July 10, 1790, to dine with cabinet members that included future presidents John Adams and Thomas Jefferson; you can visit the dining room where they ate together. More than 40 years later, in 1833, Aaron Burr got married to Madame Eliza Jumel—the widow of the mansion's second namesake owner, Stephen Jumel—right in the parlor of this estate.
Besides tours, the mansion now hosts rotating exhibits that display everything from period costumes to the axe Washington used to floss his wooden teeth. There are also events throughout the year, from classical and jazz concerts to wine tastings and, once, a lively debate between Burr and Alexander Hamilton scholars.
Standing at the intersection of contemporary art and design, The Museum of Arts and Design explores the way that artists and designers from around the world translate ideas in masterpieces that range from traditional to bleeding-edge. At its stunning Columbus Circle headquarters, visitors marvel at its glass-and-terracotta exterior before exploring a rotating collection that ranges from jewelry and delicate glass works to ceramics to architectural designs and furniture. This meshing of masterpieces has attracted more than a million visitors to the museum since it opened in 2008. The jewelry collection illustrates the transformation that took place in the world of studio jewelry from post–World War II to today, while woodwork by generations of well-known artists charts the evolution from handcarved pieces to astonishing works of machine-aided art. Other rotating exhibits the museum hosts explore topics such as glassworking, scent, and sculpture.
Unlike more traditional museums, Discovery Times Square does much more than simply display artifacts. The space, located in the building once occupied by the New York Times printing presses, encourages visitors to learn through interactive, sensory exhibits. Past shows have taken guests inside the Titanic’s final wreck site, Da Vinci’s ingenious inventions, and the vast collection of riches and bandages owned by King Tut. The Discovery Times Square shop features games, DVDs, and other Discovery Channel products, as well as sweet treats from the DC Cupcakes Café and Georgetown Cupcake.