U.S. Virtual Road Trip- Day 30- New Jersey

Yesterday we where in New Hampshire with author Tricia Drammeh, you can check it out here

Today we are in New Jersey with Melissa @ Melissa's Eclectic book shelf. This see what awaits us in New Jersey.

I am so thrilled that Megan chose me to represent my home state of New Jersey for the Virtual US Road Trip!! Read on to learn a little bit about The Garden State!

Photo by MPD01605 - https://www.flickr.com/photos/mpd01605/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

Places to visit in New Jersey

Ellis Island & The Statue of Liberty

Ellis Island is an island that is located in Upper New York Bay in the Port of New York and New Jersey, United States. It was the gateway for millions of immigrants to the United States as the nation's busiest immigrant inspection station from 1892 until 1954. The island was greatly expanded with land reclamation between 1892 and 1934. Before that, the much smaller original island was the site of Fort Gibson and later a naval magazine. The island was made part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument in 1965, and has hosted a museum of immigration since 1990.

The Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World) is a colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor in New York City, in the United States. The copper statue, designed by Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, a French sculptor, was built by Gustave Eiffel and dedicated on October 28, 1886. It was a gift to the United States from the people of France.

Atlantic City & the Boardwalk

Photo by OnMyWayTo - https://www.flickr.com/photos/onmywayto/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

Atlantic City is a resort city in Atlantic County, New Jersey, known for its casinos, boardwalk and beach. It is the home of the Miss America Pageant.

Princeton University

Princeton University is a private Ivy League research university in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. Founded in 1746 as the College of New Jersey, Princeton was the fourth chartered institution of higher education in the Thirteen Colonies and thus one of the nine Colonial Colleges established before the American Revolution.

Six Flags Great Adventure

Photo by Shawn Wainwright - https://www.flickr.com/photos/shawn_wainwright/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

Great Adventure is the largest theme park in the world at 510 acres! Known for its world-class thrill rides and one-of-a-kind Safari Off Road Adventure, the Jackson, NJ theme park boasts 12 roller coasters including three of the world's best—El Toro, Nitro and Kingda Ka. Kingda Ka (a steel accelerator roller coaster) is the world's tallest roller coaster (456 ft) , has the world's longest drop (418 ft) & is the world's second fastest roller coaster (128 mph). And I can tell you from personal experience...that it is just plain awesome!!

Quirky/Fun Facts about NJ

  • New Jersey is a peninsula. It is completely surrounded by water except for about 40 miles along the NY border.
  • Highlands, New Jersey has the highest elevation along the entire eastern seaboard, from Maine to Florida.
  • New Jersey has 50+ resort cities & towns; some of the nation's most famous: Asbury Park, Wildwood, Atlantic City, Seaside Heights, Long Branch, Cape May.
  • Picturesque Cape May holds the distinction of being the oldest seashore resort in the United States and one of the most unique.
  • Atlantic City has the longest boardwalk in the world, which was the first one built in the world in 1870.
  • The game Monopoly, played all over the world, named the streets on its playing board after actual streets in Atlantic City.
  • The first saltwater taffy in the world was produced at the Jersey shore in the 1870s.
  • New Jersey has the most stringent testing along our coastline for water quality control than any other seaboard state in the entire country.
  • Jersey tomatoes are known the world over as being the best you can buy.
  • New Jersey is the world leader in blueberry and cranberry production.
  • The first national historic park in America was established in 1933 in Morristown.
  • New Jersey has more race horses than Kentucky.
  • New Jersey has the densest system of highways and railroads in the US.
  • New Jersey has the most diners in the world and is sometimes referred to as the "Diner Capital of the World."
  • North Jersey has the most shopping malls in one area in the world, with seven major shopping malls in a 25 square mile radius.
  • New Jersey is a major seaport state with the largest seaport in the US, located in Elizabeth. Nearly 80 percent of what our nation imports comes through Elizabeth Seaport first.
  • The first recorded, official baseball game was played on June 19, 1846 in Hoboken.
  • The first intercollegiate football game was played in New Brunswick, in 1869. Rutgers College played Princeton. Rutgers won.
  • The light bulb, phonograph and motion picture projector were all invented by Thomas Edison in Menlo Park.
  • NJ built the first tunnel under a river, the Holland Tunnel under the Hudson River.
  • The first robot to replace a human worker was used by General Motors in Ewing Township in 1961.
  • The first steam locomotive to actually pull a train on a track was built by John Stevens of Hoboken in 1824.
  • Modern paleontology, the science of studying dinosaur fossils, began in 1858 with the discovery of the first nearly complete skeleton of a dinosaur in Haddonfield, New Jersey. The Hadrosaurus is the official New Jersey state dinosaur.
  • NJ's Pulaski Skyway, from Jersey City to Newark, was the first skyway ever built.
  • The first drive-in movie theater was opened in Camden in 1933.
  • Oregon and New Jersey are the only states without self-serve gas stations. Attendants must pump your gas according to state law.
  • New Jersey's Ethnic Roots: Italian 17.9%, Irish 15.9%, African 13.6%, German 12.6%, Polish 6.9%
  • Religion in New Jersey: 64% Christian (37% Catholic, 27% Protestant), 15% No Religion, 4% Jewish, 1% LDS, 1% Jehovah's Witness, 1% Muslim
Famous NJ Natives


Bud Abbott

Joan Bennett

David Copperfield

Lou Costello

Ernie Kovacs

Jerry Lewis

Jack Nicholson

Joe Piscopo

Kevin Spacey

Meryl Streep

Ray Liotta

Bruce Willis

Tom Cruise

John Travolta

Jason Alexander

Zoe Saldana

James Gandolfini

Danny Devito

Anne Hathaway

Brooke Shields

Susan Sarandon

Christopher Reeve

Kitstin Dunst

Mira Sorvino

Ethan Hawke

Jon Stewart


Bruce Springsteen

Whitney Houston

Jon Bon Jovi

Lauryn Hill

Paul Simon

Queen Latifah

My Chemical Romance

Dionne Warwick

Jonas Brothers

Skid Row

Wyclef Jean

Kool & the Gang

The Four Seasons

Frankie Valli

Nancy Sinatra


William Count Basie

Clint Black

Other Famous New Jerseyans

Thomas Edison - inventor

Aaron Burr - Vice President

Grover Cleveland - President

Charles Addams - cartoonist

Edwin (Buzz) Aldrin -astronaut

William J. Brennan - jurist

Aaron Burr - political leader

Lloyd H. Conover - inventor

William Frederick Halsey, Jr. - admiral

Donald Fletcher Holmes - inventor

Alfred C. Kinsey - zoologist

Dorothea Lange - photographer

Eger V. Murphree - inventor

Zebulon Mongomery Pike - explorer, soldier

Edward J. Rosinski - inventor

Antonin Scalia - jurist

Norman Schwarzkopf - army general

Amos Alonzo Stagg - football coach

Alfred Stieglitz - photographer

Dave Thomas - restaurateur

William Henry Vanderbilt - financier

Authors from New Jersey

Judy Blume

James Fenimore Cooper

Stephen Crane

George R.R. Martin

Janet Evanovich

Joyce Carol Oates

William Carlos Williams

Peter Benchley

Harlan Coben

Allen Ginsberg

Junot Díaz

Alfred Joyce Kilmer

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Norman Mailer

Dorothy Parker

Philip Milton Roth

Books Set in New Jersey

  • Drown by Junot Diaz
  • Sloppy Firsts by Megan McAfferty
  • Cheaper by the Dozen by Frank B. Gilbreth and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey
  • Goodbye, Columbus by Philip Roth
  • Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret by Judy Blume
  • One for the Money by Janet Evanovich
  • Creepers by David Morrell
  • Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan
  • Of Poseiden by Anna Banks
  • Jersey Angel by Beth Ann Bauman
  • Plugged by Eoin Colfer
  • Tell No One by Harlan Coben
  • White Cat, Red Glove & Black Heart by Holly Black
Connect with Melissa: Blog / @MyEclecticBooks

Thanks Melissa. I didn't realise there where so many famous people from New Jersey. What do you think of New Jersey?

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  1. Thanks so much for including me Megan! This was fun!

  2. I've heard about the states where you can't pump your own gas. That just seems so weird to me! Although I guess it means that job is always going to be there for someone! Thanks for sharing all this awesome info!

  3. Very informative! Also reminds me I never made it over to Ellis Island the one time I was in the area....

  4. Great post! I have heard all about NJ over the years as I am fan of My Chemical Romance!

    Heather | Random Redheaded Ramblings