The New Jersey State Museum & Planetarium grants residents and visitors a lifelong education in science, history, and the arts through its collections, exhibitions, programs, publications, and scholarship. Founded in 1895 and accredited by the American Association of Museums, the complex holds more than 2.6 million artifacts, specimens, and works of art in its collections. These pieces pique viewer curiosity in themed exhibits, exploring art periods, relationships between Native Americans and European settlers, natural history, and other topics.
The Archaeology & Ethnography Collection highlights textiles, beads, and hide works from Delaware Indians and other North American?natives. The Fine Art Collection assembles works by American modernists and abstract artists. Massive Trenton-made furnishings, Civil War?flags, and maritime artifacts are among the fascinating objects in the Cultural History exhibits, and the Natural History Collection houses prehistoric fossils?many from New Jersey?and insect, animal, and geological specimens. The museum is also home to the 150-seat Planetarium, which dazzles eyes with images of the solar system, faraway stars, and astronaut training during shows. Audiences witness traditional sky projections and laser-created programs comprised of 6,000 stars on the ceiling of the full 360-degree dome.
The Old Barracks was constructed in 1758 to house British soldiers during the French and Indian War. Since then, the barracks have seen many turbulent times, including serving as a military hospital during the American Revolution. Now converted into a museum, patrons can walk through the barracks, read about colonial and American history, and view 18th-century artifacts and weapons. 45-minute guided tours are also offered on the hour from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
Walking into Slocum's Bowling Center is like jumping backwards in time. All around you, bowlers lounge in orange vinyl chairs beneath paneled ceilings or head to the wood-paneled bar for a snack. The 80-year-old bowling alley's retro decor conceals welcome anachronisms, however, such as the Steltronic SuperElex auto scoring and automatic pinsetters that govern 12 gleaming lanes. During Saturday-night laser bowling, the sound system pumps out high-energy tunes as bowlers roll strikes and spares. At Sloc’s Grille, bowlers can lift a variety of handheld fare such as burgers and sandwiches, keeping fingers limber for their next attempt to steal the key to the city out of the mayor's pocket.
Like leaves on a tree, Dragonfly Farms changes color with the seasons. Owners Patrick and Judy Lapide transform their show rooms to highlight new plants and flowers, home furnishings, and gardening supplies, applying vivid coats of paint and themed backdrops to complement their wares. In addition to greenery and home decor, they offer winemaking supplies and equipment—rendering fermented sips more easily than stomping on beaded fruit.
Bouncing Off The Walls is the perfect place for kids to do just that. The interactive entertainment center is home to several play areas where little ones can climb, tumble, slide, and bounce around during open-play sessions. Each child's admission also includes entry for two adults and unlimited imaginary friends, as well as access to Mommy & Me classes with story-time yoga or crafts. In addition to open play, parents can reserve private parties with optional add-ons such as balloon artists and cupcake decorating.
Rooted in New York and New Jersey, Pin Street Bowling Centers have provided family-friendly entertainment for more than 50 years. The spacious lanes are conditioned each day, guaranteeing pristine surfaces for open bowling sessions and leagues, which are divided by season, gender, and age. Competition continues in the snack bar and lounge, where pool tables, hearty burgers, salads, and creative cocktails match up with customers' cravings. Pin Street’s staffers can accommodate groups by opening early or staying late to, and they cater parties with customizable menus that address any dietary restrictions or phobias of flatware.