This is one story in a series where we feature one family-friendly day trip idea a day. Read the entire series and find great ideas for things to do with kids in NJ here.

The Monmouth Park race track isn’t just a playground for adults, it's an affordable place that the kids will love.


Every Sunday, Monmouth race track caters to a younger crowd with its Family Fun Days. Between noon and 4:00 p.m., the park transforms into a kid-friendly haven with a multitude of fun activities including pony rides and face painting. Kids can also enjoy jumping around in the inflatable bounce house and interacting with clowns.

On Saturdays and Sundays, at 8 a.m., the park also holds a Dawn Patrol. This free program begins in the Clubhouse Apron and gives guests an in-depth look at the racing world as well as what it’s like to be a racehorse.

Guests are also treated to a tour of various locations in the park, including the jockey’s room and starting gate.

Monmouth Park, in itself, is a great destination for families. The park contains a playground to keep the kids busy, but the real treat lies just beyond the main track in an area known as the “walking ring.” Kids will love getting a close-up view of the horses strolling around the ring prior to a race.

The racetrack offers a few different dining options to choose from, including the Salvator Bar and Grill and the Monmouth Café. Many families prefer to frequent the picnic area, however. The area rests directly beside the main track and provides the perfect spot for guests to throw a couple of hot dogs on the grill as they watch the races.


Monmouth Park holds live races every weekend in July, with an additional racing day on Thursdays beginning August 9. In September, races are held on Saturdays and Sundays only; the park closes for the season on October 7. Gates open at 11:30 a.m., with the first race occurring at 12:45 p.m.

Admission for Monmouth Park’s grandstand is $3, while clubhouse admission is $5. Children 12 and under are free.

Parking is also available for the park; valet parking is $10 and clubhouse preferred parking is $5. Grandstand preferred parking and grandstand general parking are both $3.