Compiled by Kevin Coughlin
For one weekend every year, Morristown is the center of the bicycling universe. That weekend is here.
If you’re not riding in this year’s Gran Fondo, come out and cheer for 2,000 cyclists who are. Small fry can get into the act, too, with their own mini pedal-pageant, the Kids Fondo.
Greater Morristown offers plenty of other diversions, too, from barbecues and Black Jack to canine art and caboose rides.
On a more solemn note, Morris County will commemorate residents lost on 9/11.
For more activities, don’t forget to check our calendar.
THURSDAY, SEPT. 4, 2014
Dog lovers should love the new exhibit at the Morris Museum, which features more than 100 works by British and American artists depicting our canine companions from the 19th century to the present. The show runs until Dec. 14, 2014. The museum is at 6 Normandy Heights Road in Morris Township. Call (973) 971-3700 or visit the museum’s website for hours and admission prices.
FRIDAY, SEPT. 5
Itching to try your hand at performing? Maybe you want to try the ukulele you bought at last weekend’s Uke New Jersey festival? Scratch that itch! The Minstrel’s monthly open stage starts at 8 pm at the Morristown Unitarian Fellowship in Morris Township. Note: Because of scheduling conflicts, this is The Minstrel’s last open stage until December. Call 973-335-9489 for details on how to secure a performance slot.
Did he really sing “there’s a bathroom on the right”? Hear for yourself when John Fogerty of Creedence Clearwater Revival fame visits the Mayo Performing Arts Center at 8 pm. Bad Moon Rising is sure to appear on the set list, along with such hits as Proud Mary, Down on the Bayou, Fortunate Son and many others. Tickets are $85-$150. MPAC is at 100 South St., Morristown. Call 973-539-8008 for more.
SATURDAY, SEPT. 6
Need a health screening? Check out the 19th annual Community Health Day at Headquarters Plaza in Morristown. It runs from 9 am to 1 pm and features local exhibitors, kids games and free screenings. Call 1-800-247-9580 for more information.
The fourth annual Gran Fondo NJ gets an early start with its Kids Fondo, at 10 am at the Vail Mansion on South Street in Morristown. Kids can ride in a bike parade, decorate their machines, and celebrate pedal power. Free.
Enjoy one last summer splash, at the annual End of Season Swim Pool Picnic & BBQ at Morris Township’s Ginty Pool. The party runs from 1 pm to 6 pm. Cloud 9 DJs will keep the music flowing, and the contemporary country band Due South will play live from 3 pm to 5 pm. Kids games and inflatables, arts and crafts projects, and swimming are on the menu–along with hamburgers, hot dogs, salads, Jersey sweet corn, desserts lemonade and ice tea. The fun is open to all Township residents and their guests, and all non-resident swim pool members. Admission is $10. The rain date is Sunday, Sept. 7. If For more details, call the park rec department at 973-326-7371 on weekdays between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm.
Why drive to Atlantic City to enjoy Craps, Roulette, Texas Hold ’Em Poker and Black Jack– when you can play them all at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown? Casino Royale Night starts at 6:30 pm. The admission price includes catered refreshments, two tickets for the drinks of your choice, four silent auction tickets and $50 in play money. Proceeds will go towards maintenance of this historic church and its Outreach Ministry, which helps local and global charities. Tickets are $35, and $25 for seniors. Tickets can be purchased at the door, and online at email@example.com or by calling 973-538-0555.
Blues guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd brings his band to the Mayo Performing Arts Center at 8 pm. Tickets are $39-$69. At 100 South St., Morristown. Call 973-539-8008 for more.
SUNDAY, SEPT. 7
Some 2,000 cyclists are expected to descend on Morristown for the fourth annual Gran Fondo NJ, which starts at 7 am in front of Headquarters Plaza and will roll through the north Jersey countryside with rides of 18-, 42-, 62- and 107 miles. Registration is $215 and includes food and music after the ride. A portion of proceeds benefits area charities. Mountain biking legend Gary Fisher will be on hand for the festivities.
The Morristown Farmers Market is back for its 24th season, courtesy of the Morristown Partnership and its sponsors. From 8:30 am to 2 pm, you can find produce from North Jersey farms, baked goods, and more, in municipal parking lot 10, behind the post office. Lots of entertainment and wellness events will be sprinkled throughout the year. The Farmers Market is open on Sundays through the end of November.
A bagpipe parade will precede the 10 am worship service at the Presbyterian Church in Morristown, where the annual “Rally Day” will introduce newcomers to the church’s programs.
How did the famed muckraking illustrator Thomas Nast perceive the Civil War? A new exhibit at the Macculloch Hall Historical Museum in Morristown will display examples of Nast’s wartime art and propaganda. The show will continue into 2015, the final year of the Civil War sesquicentennial. Open from 1 pm to 4 pm. Admission: Adults $8; seniors and students $6; children 6 – 12, $4. Members and children under 5 are free. At 45 Macculloch Ave. Call (973) 538-2404 ext. 10 for more.
Puppetry, crafts, tours and games will mark the Chinese Mid-Autumn Moon Festival, starting at 1 pm at the Frelinghuysen Arboretum in Morris Township. Children should enjoy Tiger Tales, a puppet show by Chinese Theater Works, a nonprofit from Long Island. Admission: Adults $5, children (ages 3-16) $3; children under 2 are admitted free. At 353 E. Hanover Ave. Call 973-326-7600 for more.
Why not spend Grandparents’ Day at the Whippany Railway Museum, riding the rails for fun? Relax in lovingly restored cabooses on leisurely 45-minute sojourns, departing on the hour between 1 pm and 4 pm. Our trains feature a unique collection of restored, vintage cabooses from Historic NJ rail lines of the past. Call 973-887-8177 or visit the museum website for more details and to purchase tickets.
The Morris County Freeholders will observe the 13th anniversary of 9/11 with a candlelight vigil at 7 pm at the September 11th Memorial West Hanover Avenue in Parsippany-Troy Hills, across from Morris View Healthcare Center. Names of the 64 Morris County victims will be read aloud, and remarks will be delivered by Christopher Rodriguez, the new director of the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness and a 1995 graduate of the Delbarton School. The public is encouraged to bring lawn chairs, because seating is limited. Parking will be available at the Morris County Department of Human Services building at 340 West Hanover Ave., in Morris Township. Shuttle buses will be available. A procession of fire and rescue vehicles from across the county will precede the vigil.