50 Things to Do in February in NJ

From LeAnn Rimes to Gladys Knight, "The Jungle Book" to "Chicago," film festivals to an orchid show—if you’re looking for fun in February, our list of things to do has it all.

“Kay Kenny: A Poetic Tribute to the Rural Night” showcases the artist’s outdoor photography and celebrates the rural night landscape. Courtesy of Hunterdon Art Museum

Art

Trailside Nature & Science Center
Thru Feb 12
Artist Nikolina Kovalenko visited the Brazilian rainforests in 2017 to document the results of the logging process. While there, she spoke with environmentalists and created graphite rubbings of harvested trees, which she calls fingerprints. “Reclamation” is a series of graphite rubbings captioned with activists’ explanations of rainforest preservation.
Mon-Wed and Fri, 10 am–5 pm; Thurs, 10 am–8 pm; Sat-Sun, 11 am–4 pm.
Watchung Reservation.
908-273-9121.

Morris Museum
Thru Feb 24 Composer John Morton has spent his life immersed in sound. Simple things like bird songs masked by a passing truck, a creaky floor or the slamming of a hot dog cart lid are among his inspirations. His exhibit, “Sound Garden,” consists of two interactive, sound-immersive installations, “Fever Songs” and “The Voyage Out,” in collaboration with Jacqueline Shatz.
Tues-Sat, 11 am-5 pm; Sun, noon-5 pm; $7-$10.
Morristown

Hunterdon Art Museum
Thru April 28 Photographer Kay Kenny’s passion for the arts began in a class at the Hunterdon Art Museum. Kenny returns there for her solo exhibition, “Kay Kenny: A Poetic Tribute to the Rural Night.” The exhibit showcases her outdoor photography and celebrates the rural night landscape. Kenny’s long exposures—some for up to one hour—capture the activity of the night sky.
Tues-Sun, 11 am-5 pm; $5-$7.
Clinton.
908-735-8415. 

Liberty Science Center
Thru May 27 The new “International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes” takes you inside Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s books. See props from Sherlock Holmes movie sets, follow the clues to find missing items, and learn about modern forensic practices.
Not included in general admission; $24.75-$33.75.
Tues-Fri, 9 am-4 pm; Sat & Sun, 9 am-5:30 pm; closed Monday.
Fourth floor, LSC, Jersey City.

Montclair Art Museum
Feb 9-June 16 The exhibit “New Directions in Fiber Art is a juried show consisting of works created in the array of traditional and contemporary fibrous materials and methods. Wed-Sun, noon-5 pm, closed Monday and Tuesday; $10-$12.

Feb 7: At 14, LeAnn Rimes won two Grammys for her song Blue. She’s also known for “One Way Ticket” and “How Do I Live?” Last year, she released her 16th studio album, Remnants. See Rimes when she stops in Newton. 

See country singer LeAnn Rimes in Newton. Courtesy of Newton Theatre

Music

Tim McGraw
Feb 1-2 The Grammy-winning vocalist and his wife, fellow country singer Faith Hill, were on the road together for much of the past two years, selling out shows around the world. Now McGraw is going out on his own for a tour that kicks off with these dates in Atlantic City. 8 pm; $75-$250. Etess Arena, Hard Rock Casino.

LeAnn Rimes
Feb 7 At 14, Rimes won two Grammys for her song Blue. She’s also known for “One Way Ticket” and “How Do I Live?” Last year, she released her 16th studio album, Remnants. See Rimes when she stops in Newton.
8 pm; $69-$89.
Newton Theatre. 

Toni Braxton
Feb 8-9 The “Unbreak My Heart” singer—already the possessor of seven Grammys—is nominated for three more for her latest album, Sex & Cigarettes. We’ll find out February 10 if she adds to her collection when CBS broadcasts the Grammy Awards. Before that, you can see her perform on Feb 8 at the Prudential Center in Newark (8 pm; $64-$334) or Feb 9 at the Borgata Event Center in Atlantic City (8 pm; $49-$79).

Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons
Feb 8-9 New Jersey native Frankie Valli is working his way back to the Garden State for a two-night stint in Atlantic City. Thanks to the Tony-winning musical Jersey Boys, which chronicles the life of Valli and his legendary group, songs such as “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” “Walk Like a Man,” “Rag Doll” and “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” still resound with contemporary audiences.
8 pm; $40-$95.
Etess Arena, Hard Rock Casino.

Gladys Knight
Feb 15 The “Midnight Train to Georgia” soul singer has seven Grammy wins. She’s also a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, along with the Pips, the family band that launched her career.
8 pm; $49-$129.
Bergen PAC, Englewood. 

Feb 15: For 18 years, Kidz Bop has recorded kidfriendly versions of today’s biggest pop music hits. Hear songs such as “The Middle,” “Whatever It Takes” and “I Like Me Better” when the tour stops in Newark. 

Courtesy of Prudential Center

Kidz Bop
Feb 15 For 18 years, Kidz Bop has recorded kid-friendly versions of today’s biggest pop music hits. Hear songs such as “The Middle,” “Whatever It Takes” and “I Like Me Better” when the tour stops in Newark.
8 pm; $30-$230.
Prudential Center, Newark.

Patti LaBelle
Feb 15-16 This Philadelphia-born entertainer started out as lead singer of Patti LaBelle and the BlueBelles. As a solo artist, she won two Grammys. Hear her soulful vocals on Feb 15 at NJPAC in Newark (8 pm; $59-$149) and on Feb 16 at the Tropicana in Atlantic City (8 pm; $55-$125).

Marc Anthony
Feb 16 The two-time Grammy winner and five-time Latin Grammy honoree is known for his ballads, including “I Need to Know” and “You Sang to Me.”
8 pm; $76-$206.
Prudential Center, Newark.

Chubby Checker
Feb 16
In 1960, Chubby Checker performed “The Twist” on American Bandstand. A year later, he won a Grammy for his second hit, “Let’s Twist Again.” Slip on your dancing shoes for his hip-shaking show in Atlantic City.
8 pm; $35-$55.
Resorts Casino.

Michael Bublé
Feb 23 The Grammy-winning “Haven’t Met You Yet” crooner stops in Newark.
8 pm; $400-$750.
Prudential Center.

John Mellencamp
Feb 23 The rocker and Farm Aid co-founder will sing some of his ’80s “Hurt So Good” classics, plus songs from his new album, Other People’s Stuff. Maybe Jack and Diane will make an appearance.
8 pm, prices vary.
State Theatre of New Jersey, New Brunswick. 

Feb 2-10: Axelrod PAC’s The Jungle Book ballet features choreography by Gabriel Chajnik in collaboration with Sudha Shekhar Devulapalli, a classical Indian dance choreographer. It’s based on Rudyard Kipling’s collection of stories about a boy raised by wolves who fulfills his quest for identity, love and belonging. 

Rudyard Kipling’s collection of stories about a boy raised by wolves comes to life in Axelrod PAC’s “The Jungle Book.” Courtesy of Axelrod PAC

Stage

Newsies
Jan 11-Feb 3 Loosely based on real events, this musical tells the story of Jack Kelly and his ragtag group of New York City newsboys who go on strike.
Times vary; $35.
Broadway Theatre of Pitman.

The Niceties
Jan 11-Feb 10 Zoe, a black student at an Ivy League university, is called into her white professor’s office to discuss her thesis about slavery’s effect on the American Revolution. In this riveting two-person drama, a polite clash in perspectives explodes into an urgent and dangerous contemporary debate.
Times vary; $25-$80.
McCarter Theatre, Princeton.

Tell Them I’m Still Young
Jan 24-Feb 3 Emmy-winning South Orange resident Andre Braugher and Tony winner Michele Pawk star in this world-premiere drama about a couple whose marriage is shaken when their child tragically dies.
Times vary; $35-$39.
SOPAC, South Orange.

Mamma Mia
Jan 24-Feb 9 Set to ABBA tunes, this musical follows Donna, who is preparing for her daughter Sophie’s wedding. Meanwhile, the bride-to-be has secretly invited three men from her mother’s past to the party. She hopes one of them is her birth father. Times and prices vary. Grand Theatre, Williamstown.

Ragtime
Jan 24-Feb 17 Based on the novel by E.L. Doctorow, this musical is set in volatile New York City at the turn of the century. A Jewish immigrant, a Harlem musician and an upper-class mother are united by courage, compassion and a belief in a better tomorrow.
Times vary; $29-$39.
Eagle Theatre, Hammonton.

Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical
Jan 29-Feb 24 This exuberant premiere musical reveals the arc of Nina Simone’s life, from a classical-piano child prodigy to the High Priestess of Soul.
Times and prices vary.
George Street Playhouse, New Brunswick.

Roan @ the Gates
Jan 31-Feb 24 Would you buy a sofa without consulting your partner? Sell your car? Change your job? Could you commit a crime and say nothing? And could you still love your partner if she followed her conscience but kept you in the dark?  A long-time couple confronts questions about their marriage they never thought to ask as their personal relationship collides with national security.
Times vary; $35-$59.
Luna Stage, West Orange.

My Very Own British Invasion
Jan 31-March 3 The 1960s British music scene comes to life in this musical featuring songs from Herman’s Hermits, the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Petula Clark, the Moody Blues and other bands of the era. My Very Own British Invasion is a fable of young love, loosely based on the experiences of Peter Noone, who was just 15 when he rose to stardom as the lead singer of Herman’s Hermits.
Times and prices vary.
Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn.

Zorro the Musical
Feb 1-3 This premiere performance retells the dramatic tale of Diego de la Vega, the mysterious man behind the mask fighting to restore order in Spanish colonial California. The musical features spectacular sword fighting, flamenco dancing and dazzling magic.
Times vary; $20.
Kelsey Theatre, West Windsor.

Feb 2-3: Colorful costumes, twirling ribbons and dancing dragons— New Jersey’s Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company celebrates Chinese New Year and the Year of the Pig with a contemporary dance performance inspired by the art of Chinese calligraphy. 

New Jersey’s Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company celebrates Chinese New Year and the Year of the Pig with a  contemporary dance performance. Courtesy of Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company

Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company
Feb 2-3
Colorful costumes, twirling ribbons and dancing dragons—New Jersey’s Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company celebrates Chinese New Year and the Year of the Pig with a  contemporary dance performance inspired by the art of Chinese calligraphy.
2 pm both days; $27-$35.
NJPAC, Newark.

The Jungle Book
Feb 2-10 Axelrod PAC’s ballet features choreography by Gabriel Chajnik in collaboration with Sudha Shekhar Devulapalli, a classical Indian dance choreographer. It’s based on Rudyard Kipling’s collection of stories about a boy raised by wolves who fulfills his quest for identity, love and belonging.
Times & prices vary.
Deal Park.

Savion Glover’s All FuNKD’ Up
Feb 7 All Funk’d Up is the new program by Tony-winning tap dancer and Jersey native Savion Glover. The show features a six-piece band and a company of dancers.
8 pm; $25-$55.
State Theatre New Jersey, New Brunswick.

Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella
Feb 8-9 The Tony-winning Broadway musical puts a contemporary spin on the classic tale. This production features an orchestra and all the moments you love: the pumpkin transformation, the glass slipper and more.
Times vary; $59-$99.
Mayo PAC, Morristown

Chicago
Feb 15-17 He had it coming! Inspired by real-life criminals, Chicago, the Broadway musical about female Prohibition-era inmates, satirizes corruption with classic show tunes such as “Cell Block Tango” and “All That Jazz.” 
Times vary; $35-$98.
State Theatre New Jersey, New Brunswick.

4 Weddings and An Elvis
Feb 15-17, 22-24 In this hilarious romantic comedy, three-times-divorced Sandy is the owner of a Las Vegas wedding chapel that is hosting four of the most memorable ceremonies you will ever see.
Times vary; $14-$18.
Kelsey Theatre, West Windsor.

The Sound of Music
Feb 23-24 The hills are alive! This spirited musical about Maria and the von Trapp Family will thrill audiences with its Tony-, Grammy- and Academy Award- winning score, including “My Favorite Things,” “Do-Re-Mi,” “Climb Ev’ry Mountain” and the title song.
2 & 7:30 pm; $45-$79.
Count Basie Center for the Arts, Red Bank.

Last month, comedian Tom Segura returned to Netflix with his third special, Disgraceful. Courtesy of Wellmont Theater

Comedy

Ronny Chieng
Feb 2 Spend the evening laughing out loud with Ronny Chieng, known for his role in the hit film Crazy Rich Asians.
8 pm; $29.50-$39.50.
NJPAC, Newark.

Bill Burr
Feb 8 His hit animated Netflix series, F Is for Family, returned for a third season in November. See the podcaster and stand-up comedian at the Borgata Event Center.
7 pm; $75-$129.
Atlantic City.

Tom Segura
Feb 13 Segura is best known for his stand-up, Netflix specials, and the podcast Your Mom’s House, which he cohosts with his wife, fellow comedian Christina Pazsitzky. Last month, Segura returned to Netflix with his third special, Disgraceful. In the program, Segura shares his blunt musings on porn, parking-lot power struggles, parenthood and more. See him when he stops in Montclair.
8 pm; prices vary.
Wellmont Theater.

Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus
Feb 14 Presented via different vignettes, topics will cover everything from dating to marriage to the bedroom. This hysterical 90-minute show will have couples elbowing each other all evening.
8 pm; $59.
Bergen PAC, Englewood.

Feb 2: The Great Beer Expo is a suds extravaganza showcasing more than 70 breweries. 

Courtesy of Shutterstock

Festivals

West Orange Classic Film Festival
Thru Feb 24  Lovers of cinema can experience their favorite films, such as The Producers on Feb 3 and A Face in the Crowd on Feb 24, on the big screen. Each film is followed by a discussion led by a local film expert.
Times vary; $12.
AMC Theatre in Essex Green Shopping Center, West Orange. 

New Jersey Film Festival Spring 2019
Thru March 1 The biannual event screens more than 50 documentary, experimental, short, animated and student films.
Times and prices vary.
Various locations, Rutgers-New Brunswick campus.

Jersey City Whiskey Festival
Feb 1 Meet whiskey distillers, master blenders and liquor experts while you sip more than 100 styles of spirits.
7:30 pm; $60-$70, general admission; $15, designated driver.
Harborside Plaza Atrium & Hudson Riverfront Walkway.

Glen Ridge Antique Show
Feb 1-2 The73rd Annual Glen Ridge Antiques Show claims to be the longest running show in New Jersey. The show’s clientele returns year after year for its wide selection of antique furniture, art, jewelry, pottery and collectibles. Both the serious collector and casual browser alike appreciate the diverse variety available. New this year is a booth talk series on Fridays at 2pm.
Fri, 10 am-9 pm; Sat, 10 am-4 pm; $7-$9.
Glen Ridge Congregational Church.

Great Beer Expo
Feb 2 This suds extravaganza showcasing more than 70 breweries.
Session 1, 12:30-4 pm; session 2, 5:30-9 pm; $10-$60.
Meadowlands Expo Center, Secaucus.

Deep Cut Orchid Society Show & Sale is this month! Photo from Shutterstock

Deep Cut Orchid Society Show & Sale
Feb  7-10 The four-day event features garden exhibits, guided tours and educational workshops for flower enthusiasts in Dearborn Market’s 11,000-square-foot greenhouse. Orchid judging takes place on Feb 7.
Thurs-Sat, 9 am-6 pm; Sun, 9 am-4:30 pm.
Holmdel.

Super Pet Expo
Feb 8-10 At the largest pet-shopping extravaganza on the East Coast, animal lovers will enjoy the expertise of 200 exhibitors addressing pet adoption, pet health, grooming, food and daycare.  Other activities include a pet talent show, trick workshops, panels, rabbit-jumping demonstrations, Rizzo’s Reptile Discovery and more.
Fri, 3-8 pm; Sat, 10 am–7 pm; Sun, 10 am-5 pm; $8-$20. Some events require additional fees. Pets welcome; leashed pets admitted free.
New Jersey Convention & Exposition Center, Edison.

46th Annual Atlantic City Auction  & Car Show
Feb 8-10 Rev up those engines! More than 400 cars are auctioned off during this three-day event in the 500,000-square-foot Atlantic City Convention Center.
Fri, 11:30 am-6 pm; Sat, 11 am-6 pm; Sun, noon-4 pm; $5-$25.

48th Ocean County Bluegrass Festival
Feb 10 Tap your foot to old-time country music from six bands in the 350-seat Albert Music Hall.
Noon-5 pm; prices vary.
Waretown.

Kicking & Swearing: A Festival of Original One Acts
Feb 15-17 Be entertained during three nights of comedy, tragedy, satire and sci-fi short plays. The Sunday matinee presents all selected plays, followed by a Q&A with the writers, directors and cast.
Fri & Sat, 8 pm; $15 each; Sun, 2 pm, $20.
Union County PAC, Rahway.

New Jersey Home Show
Feb  16-17 Let home-improvement professionals give you their expert advice on renovating.
Sat, 10 am-8 pm; Sun, 10 am-6 pm.
Meadowlands Expo Center, Secaucus.

30th Annual New Jersey Home Show
Feb 22-24 Explore more than 300 exhibits of furniture for inside and outside your home. Meet designers and attend presentations, such as a Q&A session with Laurie Smith, one of the original designers on TLC’s Trading Spaces. There will also be live cooking demonstrations on the JerseyBites.com cooking stage.
Fri, 3-8 pm; Sat, 10 am-7 pm; Sun, 10 am-5 pm; $5-$10.
New Jersey Convention & Exposition Center, Edison.

Lectures

John O. Brennan
Feb 10 As part of the Drew University Forum, this decorated intelligence professional and former Obama administration senior White House official will talk about his decades of national-security experience.
7 pm; $50-$75.
Mayo PAC, Morristown.

Renée Fleming
Feb 26 The celebrated opera star teams with Rutgers neuroscientists to discuss the power of music as it relates to health and the brain.
7 pm.
Rutgers University, New Brunswick.

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