When & where: Sunday, July 31 at Monmouth Park in Oceanport. Gates open at 10 a.m., the first race takes place at noon and the $1 million Haskell is the 12th race on the card.
Why you should go: The biggest horse race of the summer is right in out own backyard. The 44th Annual Haskell Invitational is expected to be a rematch between Preakness winner Shackleford and .
What does it cost: Tickets range from $12.90 to $21.60
When & where: Thursday, July 28 and Friday, July 29 from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.; Saturday, July 30 and Sunday, July 31 from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. at the East Freehold Showgrounds, 1500 Kozloski Road.
Why you should go: The annual county fair has everything you could possibly expect from the area’s largest agricultural event: rides, food, pig races, a pie-eating contest, animal exhibits, a watermelon seed-spitting contest, and much more.
What does it cost: Admission is $7, children 12 and under are free.
When & where: Saturday, July 30 at Lake Topanemus Park (rain date is Sunday July 31).
Why you should go: This revival of an event that first started 35 years ago will feature live music, a fishing derby, a treasure hunt, and a mini-triathlon, to name a few of the many activities on the schedule.
What does it cost: Free
When & where: Saturday, July 30 at 7 p.m. at St. John Vianney Regional High School in Holmdel.
Why you should go: Minor League Football franchise the New Jersey Lions will face off against the Central Penn Piranha. Come watch the Lions in their fourth season of professional football.
What does it cost: Call 800-405-1433 for ticket information.
When & where: Thursday, July 28 through Sunday, Aug. 7 at JCC of Greater Monmouth County, 100 Grant Ave., Deal.
Why you should go: The five-old Jersey Shore Film Festival features entertaining and thought-provoking movies by independent filmmakers from around the world.
What does it cost: $10 per film