Burlington County residents can dance, cook, garden and even visit the magical world of Harry Potter this spring.
The Burlington County Parks System’s Spring Program Guide is now online, and it has the details on more than a hundred county events, programs and activities scheduled this season at Burlington County parks, museums and galleries.
“Spring is an exciting time to visit Burlington County parks as temperatures warm, flowers bloom and birds and other wildlife reappear following winter hibernation or migrations,” said Burlington County Commissioner Allison Eckel, the liaison to the Department of Resource Conservation and Parks. “From Kentucky Derby teams and Harry Potter adventures to floral arrangement classes and drive-in movie nights, there’s plenty to do and see throughout the season and our Burlington County Parks System has dozens of activities, programs and events planned for all ages and interests.”
The Spring Program Guide can be found on the Burlington County Parks webpage at https://www.co.burlington.nj.us/235/Parks.
Here are some highlights of this season’s programming. When registration is required, a link is provided in the Program Guide.
Burlington County Short Film Festival
Movie lovers can look forward to the return of the Burlington County Short Film Festival on Friday, April 28 at the Lyceum Hall Center for the Arts, 432 High Street, in Burlington City and April 29 at the Burlington County Institute of Technology Westampton Campus, 695 Woodlane Road.
The festival debuted last year with 27 films from numerous genres and this year’s event is expected to be even bigger and better with award-winning animation and narrative films, music videos, documentaries and even films devoted to county parks and the environment.
Burlington County will once again celebrate the spring season and the county’s history during the annual May Faire on Sunday, May 21 at Historic Smithville Park in Eastampton.
May Faire is one of the county’s most popular annual events and promises an afternoon of fun and excitement at one of the county’s most scenic parks and historic sites. Festival goers will experience reenactors from Smithville’s past along with live music, theatrical performances, arts and crafts demonstrations and more.
Burlington County residents can enjoy some of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters and family-friendly films this spring, summer and fall during the parks’ movie nights.
The first showing of the season will be a drive-in screening of Top Gun: Maverick on May 6 at the Burlington County Fairgrounds at the intersection of Route 206 and Jacksonville-Jobstown Road in Springfield. Admission is free and attendees are welcome to bring their own popcorn and snacks. Showtime is 8 p.m.
Kentucky Derby Tea and Mansion tours
Burlington County fans won’t have to travel far to enjoy The Kentucky Derby, America’s longest running sporting event dating back to 1875.
The Friends of Smithville Mansion will hold a special Kentucky Derby Tea at noon on race day, Saturday, May 6, at the mansion. The event will feature some of the race’s traditional splendor and pageantry with tea, refreshments and tours of the Smithville Mansion. The impressive Georgian estate of Hezekiah J. Smith, the industrialist and inventor who purchased the village of Shreveville on the Rancocas Creek and transformed it into the industrial village known as Smithville, is a popular visitor attraction.
Admission to the tea is $30 and reservations and payment are required in advance. For more information or to reserve a seat, go to https://www.smithvillemansion.org.
Starting Thursday, May 4, Smithville Mansion tours will also be offered each week on Thursdays and Sundays at noon, 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults and $8 for seniors or students. Special group rates are available for groups of 10 or more people.
“Whether you love film, arts, history, food or the outdoors, there’s certain to be a Burlington County Parks event or program that will appeal to you,” Eckel said. “The details are found in the online program guide, so we encourage all Burlington County residents to take some time to review it and plan to take a class or visit a County park, museum or gallery soon.”