Looking for a way to keep the kids occupied this fall? Have them build a boat.
That's just one of the activities available at the Tuckerton Seaport, a 40-acre facility that celebrates southern New Jersey's history of men scratching a living out of the area's bays and the Atlantic Ocean.
"What's really great about the Seaport is that we have something for children of all ages," said Paul Hart, the facility's executive director.
Kids can view exhibits on fish and wildlife that call the area home, dress up like pirates, climb to the top of a replica lighthouse or tour the rest of the complex's 16 buildings (There are two yellow ducks hidden in each building, so make sure to tell the kids to keep there eyes peeled for them.) They can even paint their own "flattie" decoys (the museum has a large collection of classic duck and waterfowl decoys). There are also nature trails for those who want to go hiking.
The museum also now hosts the New Jersey Surf Museum.
"There is so much to do here, we always say you can stay an hour or stay the day," Hart said.
In addition, the seaport staff gives demonstrations on decoy carving, boat building, quilting and basket making. There are even regular boat building classes, which are a popular parent/child activity.
Fall is a great time to visit the seaport, since it has special events and activities planned for weekends throughout September and October, Hart said.
Today and Sunday the Seaport hosts a classic boat show, while next weekend the focus turns to classic cars and trucks. On Sept. 25 and 26, the Seaport will host visitors attending the annual Decoy and Gunning Show at nearby Stanley H. "Tip" Seaman Park.
In October, weekend events include the Oct. 10 "Pickin' on the Porch" jam session, activities related to the annual Lighthouse Challenge event on Oct. 16 and 17, and a "Haunted Seaport" attraction on Oct. 22 and 23.
If you go
Location: 120 W. Main St., Tuckerton
Hours: 10 a.m. to
5 p.m. daily.
Cost: Adults $8, seniors $6, children
6 to 12 $3, children 5 and younger free. Family membership is $35 and allows for unlimited free visits.
What moms want to know: Stroller friendly? Yes. Bathrooms? Yes. Food on site? Yes. Pack a lunch? Yes. Play area? Yes. Coupon? Yes, admission gets you $1 off at the seaport's ScoJo restaurant.