Sarah Dipity


11 Central NJ Splash Pads & Spray Parks

As a central NJ mother of four I’ve spent plenty of time researching things to do & places to visit to keep my children active & busy during the summer months while New Jersey schools are on summer break. My kids love the water but sometimes a trip to the beach is just too much to deal with so finding the ways to cool over on those hot days are a must. Here are 9 Central NJ spray parks & splash pads you should check out over the summer!

Aurther Lewis Park – Greenbrook

The Spray Park includes 28 water features that run in a ten-minute, hand activated cycle in an enclosed, fenced-in setting with concrete flooring (water shoes a must!). In order to use the Spray Park, you will need a reservation at link above. There are a few tables within the fenced-in area (first come first serve for spray park registrants, but there are many additional tables surrounding the spray park).
On the reservation application you will be able to reserve a 50-minute time slot for water play and you will receive an email and/or text confirmation that you will need to present at the gate (printed or digital). You will need to acknowledge the Spray Park Rules prior to submitting a reservation request.

Cross Farm Park – Holmdel

The playground and splash pad at Cross Farm Park has a small, baseball-themed water feature with a water-spewing baseball diamond sporting five in-ground water sprays. Hit the playground adjacent to the spray area for even more outdoor fun.

Veterans Park Sprayground and Playground – Monroe

The generously sized sprayground at this park is fenced in, and there are many different water features, including water cannons, buckets that dump from above, rings to run through, and an oversized mushroom shower. The large, clean park offers playground equipment for children of various ages and a rock wall to keep your kids busy, but not a ton of shade. Parents often set up towels along the inside of the splash pad while the kids cool off. Pack a picnic and use one of the many picnic tables.

Dorbrook Recreation Area Sprayground – Colts Neck

This large, popular sprayground has a soft surface and a great water filtration system to keep things clean. There are also water troughs for the kids to play with and cool “raining leaves” offering a cascading mist of water. The splash pad is open every day from mid-May through early September, depending on the weather. There are tons of water features, from sprayers and sprinklers to water tables and more; it feels more like a mini water park. The size of this sprayground is what makes it so much fun for the kids. Pack beach toys for the sand area! There are some picnic tables nearby, so you can bring lunch, but you can’t take food into the splash pad area itself. Reservations are required, but admission is

Michael Lepp Park – Somerville

The spray park at Michael Lepp Park is a great place to bring young children on a hot summer day. This free spray park offers a variety of water features, including dueling canons and buckets. It’s adjacent to basketball courts and a regular playground, so kids have plenty of options to keep them entertained (and parents can easily keep their eye on several kids at once). There are some nice shady spots where parents can relax and enjoy the action, so be sure to bring towels and chairs. The water playground is located near a street, so be prepared to keep an eye on very young children. 

Manalapan Recreation – Manalapan

Located at their recreation complex, this sports-themed splash pad is great for the little ones, with gentle misters, small water canons, and mild sprayers. There is a covered pavilion with picnic tables and restrooms nearby, and the large recreation complex features trails, playgrounds, and basketball courts. The sprinklers here work off a motion sensor, so if your kids are the first ones to hit the splash zone, have them wave their hands in front of the sensor to get the water flowing.

Ponderosa Park – Scotch Plains

Modest park featuring playgrounds & a sprinkler area, plus open green spaces & restrooms.

Colonial Park – Somerset

Colonial Park’s spray park has 21 fun water features. It also features parking for patrons and a gazebo for guests to hide out under when the sun gets too strong. There is also a great playground on the same grounds & even paddle boats & mini golf in the same parking lot open during the summer.

Veteran’s Memorial Park – Aberdeen

This pirate-themed spray park is a favorite of every seashore-loving swashbuckler on the coast and is open daily all summer long. There are ample opportunities for all scallywags–from little ones to tweens–to log some time getting soaked. The pirate ship is stacked with water-spitting canons, and there’s even a shark that surfaces from the sea to spray all the park dwellers. 

Michael J. Tighe Park – Freehold

There’s a spray park and splash pad at this vibrant playground, so be prepared to get wet! Little ones will love the splash pad area with lower-to-the-ground sprinklers, dumping buckets, and in-ground sprays. The adjacent sprayground provides even more opportunities for fun in the water, with tall sprayers and sprinkler rings to run through. After splashing around, dry off at the playground and picnic areas.

YPCC Complex Raritan Rapids -Piscataway  

This large, pirate-themed spray park has two open flume water slides, two spray cannons, a deck geyser and a large super splash bucket connected to a ship’s bow surrounded by hose sprayers and arches. Free for members, rates vary based on resident or non.

Tips for Visiting a Splash Pad in New Jersey with Kids

  • Don’t forget dry towels, sunscreen, and dry clothing. Remember to bring a bag for wet bathing suits and towels. Do yourself a favor and place important items like cell phones in Ziploc baggies.
  • Check ahead to see if a reservation is needed & if there are changing facilities or restrooms available.
  • Some water playgrounds advise swim diapers for the little ones.
  • Figure out what the parking situation is ahead of time if you are traveling by car. Some playgrounds do not offer a parking lot.
  • Hours: The time the water gets turned on and off can vary depending on the crowd, weather, and particular park, but hours usually run from 10am to dusk at most spots, with the water going on as long as it’s hot out, even before Memorial Day in some cases. Daily hours typically start when school lets out; otherwise, it’s weekends only.

Thanks for visiting the blog today & checking out these 11 splash pad or spray parks in Central NJ. Hope you find your favorite spot to cool off this summer! Do’t forget to capture those summer memories as well & when you’re in need of a photographer for your families photos keep me in mind! <3 Sarah

A New Jersey family of 5 having fun in a local park.

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