Celebrating National Estuaries Week

"Wade In" to some fun Barnegat Bay activities during National Estuaries Week -- September 17th to September 24th.
Image at least a dozen people stand-up paddle boarding near the shore in Toms River.

National Estuaries Week is an annual celebration of our amazing estuaries, including Barnegat Bay! This year’s National Estuaries Week is September 17th-24th, and the theme is Wade In. With cooler temperatures, it’s the perfect time to get outside and explore all Barnegat Bay has to offer. Check out our Events Calendar to view the many fun activities available that week. Try something new, and maybe get a little wet or muddy in the process!

Saturday, September 17th

Do you like to paddle board? The week kicks off with SUP the River, a stand-up paddle board race on the Toms River from 9 a.m. to noon. You can register for a 3-mile or 6-mile race, sprint race, or fun kid-friendly short paddle.

Photo courtesy of ReClam the Bay.

Enjoy a free ReClam the Bay program, See, Touch & Learn from Baby Shellfish, at one of their many upwellers, where volunteers raise juvenile clams and oysters. Learn about Barnegat Bay and the creatures who live in it. See and touch tiny baby clams and oysters while you talk to the ReClam the Bay volunteers who are helping to improve the bay. There are multiple programs throughout the week at different locations in Ocean County and at different times of the day.  Visit ReClam the Bay’s Calendar of Events to find one near you.

Tour the Rutgers Marine Field Station (RUMFS) and Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve (JC NERR) at an Open House event from 10:00 am-3:00 pm (all outdoors, rain or shine). Meet Rutgers and JC NERR researchers and scientists and explore their exciting research with interactive booths, touch tank, and children’s activities. Entry to RUMFS will only be available by pre-registered time slots (limited quantity available). Visit this website to register. No tickets are required for the JC NERR; visit anytime from 10 to 3.

Photo courtesy of Rutgers Marine Field Station

Monday, September 19th

It’s been ten years since Superstorm Sandy devastated coastal areas in New Jersey. Learn from the experts in a new Rutgers webinar series about how our state has become more resilient to environmental impacts, with an emphasis on storms and extreme weather. The first webinar in the series, Extreme Weather Events, will be presented by Dr. David Robinson, NJ State Climatologist, at 6:30 p.m. on September 19th. Register for this webinar and any of the others in the series at https://go.rutgers.edu/Sandy.

Tuesday, September 20th

Join us for a relaxing Barnegat Bay Boat Cruise along the shores of Cattus Island. Chris Claus, a naturalist with Ocean County Parks & Recreation, will be on board the park system’s Bay Cruiser II to answer questions and interpret the sights and sounds of the bay. Registration is required. Reserve your seat early — space is limited.

Saturday, September 24th

Experience bay culture and traditions at the Old Time Barnegat Bay Decoy & Gunning Show from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. This Ocean County Parks & Recreation two-day event has over 300 exhibitors and contests, food vendors, and music. Contests at the show include Skeet Shooting, Duck Calling, Retrieving, and Decoy Carving. Admission is free, and there’s a free shuttle service from parking areas to the two show locations – Tip Seaman County Park and Tuckerton Seaport. For more information, visit the event webpage or call (609) 971-3085.

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