New Jersey is ready to dazzle you this holiday season! There are lots of great tree lighting and light displays powering up even before Thanksgiving — so here's a roundup around the state.

Put off any 'Clark Griswold' moments at home and enjoy a community kick-off for the season of Christmas, Hanukkah and other winter holidays.

Chevy Chase, better known around this time of year as Clark Griswold. (AP Photo/Evan Agostini, File)

As always, if you know of a merry and bright event, you can tweet me @ProudJersey and at @NJ1015!


South Jersey festivities

Atlantic City Annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony
Monday, Nov. 21 at 1pm
Santa Claus and Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian will be among VIPS as the traditional 35-foot holiday tree is is turned on, with a free Holiday Musical Light Show in The Quarter at Tropicana Casino & Resort.

Christmas Light Show Hay Ride
(Friday, Nov. 25 through Dec.  30)
Johnson's Corner Farm, Medford
This event features thousands of Twinkling lights attached to the wagons so that you are surrounded with at computerized light show set to the music of Christmas. The market is transformed into a wonderland with gifts, cookies, Christmas trees, wreaths and fun family activities. Visit with Santa and his Reindeer. There's also a bonfire for roasting marshmallows and s'mores. Costs for activities vary.

Mullica Hill Lights on Main
Saturday, Nov. 26
Old Town Hall, Mullica Hill
"Christmas will begin" when the 60-foot tree is lit. Carriage rides along Main Street, refreshments and drinks. Activities for kids, Christmas carols and a visit from Santa.

Swedesboro Christmas Parade & Tree Lighting
Saturday, Nov. 26
Swedesboro Borough Hall
Swedesboro celebrates the start of the holiday season with its annual Christmas Parade at 1pm. The parade will take place on Kings Highway at Walter Hill School, through the downtown to Church Street. The Parade will conclude with an appearance by Santa. Santa and Mrs. Claus will visit with children in the Woolwich Fire House until 4pm. The day will wrap up at 6:30pm, with a Christmas tree lighting ceremony and caroling.

Historic Smithville Holiday Light Show
(Thanksgiving, Nov. 27, on long weekends through Jan. 6, 2017)
Watch in awe as over 100 Christmas Trees, magically floating on Lake Meone, light up to the music around you. It is an orchestrated show of lights and music is played out across the lake. Admission: Free

Downtown Toms River Tree Lighting
Friday, Dec. 2
Town Hall Courtyard, Toms River
It's the annual tree lighting and arrival of Santa Claus! The fun runs 6 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.


Central Jersey festivities

Red Bank 23rd Holiday Express Concert, Town Lighting & Santa Express
Fri, Nov. 25
It's the annual Holiday Express concert & town lighting. The Red Bank Fire Department will be on hand with free hot chocolate. Festivities at Red Bank Train Station start at 5:30pm. The concert starts at 7 p.m.

Palmer Square Princeton Christmas Tree Lighting
Friday, Nov. 25
In downtown Princeton, Santa will help 'flip the switch' on a 65-foot Norwegian Spruce with over 32,000 lights. Festivities start at 5 p.m.

Asbury Park Boardwalk  Holiday Tree Lighting
Saturday, Nov. 26
The annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony is back at the Asbury Park Boardwalk. A three-story tree is the seasonal centerpiece at the Grand Arcade at Convention Hall. Doors open at 6 p.m. and festivities begin shortly after.

Cranbury Christmas Spectacular on Main Street
Starting Nov. 26, various nights through New Year’s Eve
Come and see the 100,000 lights dance! The shows are about 45 minutes long, followed by all the lights on the last 15 minutes. Shows run every night through Dec. 31. On 20 nights, except Christmas Eve, you can watch the lights choreographed to music.

Bradley Beach Tree Lighting Ceremony
Sunday, Nov. 27
Bradley Beach kicks off the season, with Santa's arrival by fire truck. Festivities in Riley Park start at 4 p.m., with Santa's ETA at 5 p.m.(Rain Date: Sun. Dec .4)

Tree Lighting at the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial
Saturday, Dec. 3
NJ Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial in Holmdel (on the grounds of the PNC Bank Arts Center)
The ceremony includes the lighting of a Christmas tree and Menorah and a reading about Kwanzaa. It will run from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

Hamilton Township Winter Wonderland
Friday, Dec. 2 & Saturday, Dec. 3
Kuser Farm Park
This annual Mercer County event is free to attend and includes photo ops with Santa. In addition to the Kuser Mansion Christmas tree lighting ceremony, there's also a "Holiday Express Train," petting zoo and other decorations around Kuser Farm Park. Festivities run from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. both nights.

Christmas Light Show in Wall Township
Dec. 10, 11, and 17 
(Parking at North Wall Little League Field)
This Christmas Light Show (set to music and with pyrotechnics) is a tradition at the Jersey Shore. The event is free, but raises money for local charities (suggested donations are $25 for a family of 4 and $10 for adults/couples). Visitors are advised to arrive 40 minutes early, to allow time to park and walk to the venue. Dress warm and bring a flashlight. On each night, the show runs at 6:30 and 8:30 p.m.


North Jersey festivities

'Jul Dans' Scandinavian Christmas Festival in Budd Lake
Saturday, Nov. 26
Reservations are required for this ticketed event, which features 'all night dancing around the Christmas tree' with Scandinavian music, plus a visit from Santa. Fresh ham dinner, Swedish meatballs and other traditional Scandinavian specialties. Candle-lit ceremony and pageant of Sankta Lucia.

Elizabeth Holiday Tree Lighting
Tuesday, Nov. 29
Santa and friends will join Mayor Bollwage, City Council-for the annual Elizabeth Avenue Tree Lighting, with caroling and refreshments at Union Square Plaza starting at 6 p.m. It's the first of five different tree lightings around the Union County city.

Ridgewood Tree Lighting Celebration
Friday, Dec. 2
Ridgewood kicks off its holiday season downtown with a tree lighting celebration and live music. The festivities start at 5:30 p.m., and are followed by 'Santa in the Park' from 8 p.m. until 9 p.m. Santa also will be stopping by the park on E. Ridgewood Ave for a few hours each Saturday until Christmas Eve.

Union Township Holiday Tree Lighting
Sunday, Dec. 4
Union township will kick off the holiday season, in front of Town Hall at 5 p.m. There will be "pre-tree lighting entertainment & activities" from 2:30 p.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Parsippany Tree Lighting 
Sunday, Dec. 4
Santa's arrival and the annual tree lighting will begin in Parsippany around 5 p.m.

Millburn Snowflake Parade 
Sunday, Dec. 4
The parade will be held on Millburn Avenue, between Holmes and Spring Streets. There will be professional bands, clowns, costumed characters and refreshments, from 1:30 p.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Hoboken Christmas Tree lighting
Tuesday, Dec. 6
Local school children & performers will sing Christmas songs along with other performances. front of City Hall, starting at 5 p.m. There will also be appearances by 'Elvis the Elf' and Santa Claus.

Proud Jersey Girl Erin Vogt’s first reporting gig involved her Fisher Price tape recorder. As a wife and momma of two kiddies, she firmly believes that life’s too short to drink bad coffee.  A fan of the beach, Dave Grohl and karma, in no particular order.

Follow her on Twitter and on Facebook as ProudJersey.