Sunday, March 18, 2012

Find Shelter From Any Storm in Morristown, New Jersey
by Henry Skirbst
In 2011 Morristown was reminded by harsh weather of its past encounters with harsh weather – the Hard Winter of 1779-80, where George Washington and the Continental Army encountered one of the hardest winters on record.

Morristown is no stranger to severe weather.  In 2011 this town received more than its fair share of extreme flooding and snow fall.  In fact, the entire Highlands region in New Jersey was completely paralyzed on more than one occasion.  As harsh as the weather has been, the people living there have proven themselves even more resilient.  Morristown’s Hard Winter of 1779-80 has been described as the place “Where America Survived.”  Today, Morristown could easily be called as the place where America thrives.

Marty Epstein, local businessman and organizer of the weather-dependent Gran Fondo cycling event, did not allow last fall’s flooding to stop him from successfully rescheduling this major event.  It attracted people from over 20 states and foreign countries.  He is quick to point out that Morristown is a model for successful partnerships between local businesses, residents, and tourists alike.  Morristown has great parking and thriving new businesses.  Whether it’s historic reflection, artistic expression, or scenic recreation, Morristown has something for you.

General Washington chose Morristown as his headquarters for strategic reasons.  Only a two-day march from the British army in New York City, but with the protection of the Watchung Mountains and the Great Swamp, Morristown’s location was perfect.  Despite the area looking like a swamp last year, the waters have receded and Morristown’s location is still perfect today.  Touring the many sites and events within the Morristown National Historical Park can become a weekly event of discovery and enjoyment; there is so much to do.  If other historical time periods interest you, consider a visit to the Macculloch Hall Historical Museum for ideas.

To lift spirits during the cold, harsh Christmas of 1779, Washington hired the military band to play music.  Today, despite the cold, your spirits can be easily lifted by attending one of the many performances at the Mayo Performing Arts Center in cozy, warm surroundings.  Vocal performances of The Masterwork Chorus or the Harmonium Choral Society not only provide music to enjoy, but audition opportunities if you have voice talent yourself.  If other art forms tickle your fancy, explore the Arts Council of the Morris Area for more information.

Washington’s army hiked in over two feet of snow to their winter encampment in Jockey Hollow.  Last year, even more snow than that fell across the Highlands!  Today, you can hike along the same routes (free of snow) and relive the past, in relative comfort.  Perhaps you’d rather explore the area on horseback; if so, give Seaton Hackney Stables a call.  If bicycling is more your speed, be sure to stop by Marty’s Reliable Cycle for some tips.  Does maple sugaring, ice skating, Bald Eagle watching, hunting, or spending a day on a working farm sound intriguing to you?  Then contact the Morris County NJ Park Commission to find out how.

Exploring everything Morristown has to offer will undoubtedly give you an appetite.  Unlike Washington’s troops who had to suffer through the worst winter in recorded history with nothing to eat for days, culinary opportunities abound today!  Perhaps you’d like to whet your appetite with an afternoon tea.  The Cosy Cupboard Tea Room should be on your list.  Maybe your taste buds are crying out for a hearty American meal; then reserve a table at George and Martha’s American Grille.  After enjoying a show, stop by the Dublin Pub for authentic Irish coffee and dessert.  With so many cuisines available, try a different one with each visit.

Discover how Morristown is still the perfect destination despite the weather!  Visit the Morris County Tourism Bureau today and plan your next trip.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Highlands Tourism Partnership “Fun-Raiser” – Last Fling Pumpkin Sling – a Smashing Success

The Last Fling Pumpkin Sling, our "fun-raiser" recently won a marketing award. Click on the link to read more about it.

Historical Walking Tour Series

The Morris County Tourism Bureau (MCTB) welcomes you to join them for their perennial walking tour series. Experience the rich history Morris County has to offer with a knowledgeable guide. Through June, July and August tours will be offered Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m. and will last approximately 90 minutes. Tickets are $10 each. Please mail your pre-payment to MCTB, 6 Court Street, Morristown, New Jersey 07960, to hold your reservation. (973) 631-5151

The Tours:
Morristown in Three Centuries
Secrets & Lore of Historic Morristown
Trial of the (19th) Century: Antoine LeBlanc
Historic Churches of Morristown
George Vail’s Willow Hall (New in 2011)
Discover Dover’s Past (New in 2011)

For more details visit

Friday, April 1, 2011

New 2011 Spring Home-School Days at Fosterfields

Homeschoolers and their parents can participate in three new Home-School Days programs this spring on the third Thursdays in April, May, and June at Fosterfields Living Historical Farm. All home-school classes will be held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on the designated dates. On Thursday, April 21 come to Spring Farming to plant seeds and crops. The following month, on Thursday, May 19, learn about Communication while discovering how the Fosters and farm residents communicated long ago. Then on Thursday, June 16 participate in Taking Care of Animals, and have an opportunity to help care for some of the farm’s resident animals. 

For more information or to pre-register, call the Historic Sites School and Youth Coordinator at 973-631-5343. Visit the Fosterfields website.

Eighteenth Century Comes to Life Through Revolutionary Times Weekend: April 15, 16 & 17, 2011

More Than Fifteen Programs in the Greater Morristown Vicinity

On Friday, Saturday and Sunday, April 15, 16 and 17, 2011, historic and cultural sites in the greater Morristown, New Jersey vicinity will present “Revolutionary Times Weekend,” a weekend of American Revolution-related programs. To help promote the importance of Morristown and New Jersey to the American Revolution, all of the special events will be held at sites within the Crossroads of the American Revolution National Heritage Area. Click on the link for more details –

Saturday, March 12, 2011

NJ Audubon May Day – May 7, 2011

There’s something for everyone as we celebrate spring at the Second Annual May Day. This FREE family event features music and entertainment; hands-on nature activities; live animal demonstrations; displays from local organizations – all surrounded by 276 acres of scenic woodland, field and floodplain habitat supporting some 200 species of wildlife ready for you to explore.  Stop by the registration table, pick up an Event Program, and dive into the May Day activities!
Bring the kids for lots of fun nature crafts and games for the little ones – Nature’s Treasure Hunt, face painting, special children’s wildlife radio telemetry and a special visit by Ranger Rick!  Enjoy entertaining and educational indoor nature presentations by specialists. Outdoors enjoy music and visit live animal exhibits! Tour the Young Audubon Art Show and be sure to stop in the Nature Store to shop for Mother’s Day with special May Day Discounts! Admission is FREE and healthy foods and refreshments will be available.  

For further information visit or call (908) 766-5787, visit us on facebook or follow us @njaudubon.

Have fun!

Giulia Iannitelli