NJ celebrated state’s 350th anniversary with history fair

Windsor Genova – Fourth Estate Cooperative Contributor

Trenton, NJ, United States (4E) – New Jersey celebrated its 350th founding anniversary on May 10 by holding the 10th “Spirit of the Jerseys” State History Fair at Washington Crossing State Park in Hopewell Township.

The fair showcased many contributions the Garden State has made to the country and world since New Jersey’s founding in 1664. A 5k Trail Run and Walk kicked off the event and a free concert by the New Jersey 63rd Army Band at 5:30 p.m. concluded the celebrations.

More than 200 historical, government and nonprofit entities and organizations partnered with the Department of Environmental Protection at the Spirit of the Jerseys Fair. Representatives of the state’s 21 counties as well as exhibitors from Delaware, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and New York were at the fair.

Fairgoers were taken to New Jersey’s past by interacting with exhibitors that provided insights into the state’s long history. An interactive show allowed people to step back in time and invent with Thomas Edison, learn how to pound corn into flour, play historical games and see a historical fashion show. There was a tour at the New Jersey Hall of Fame mobile museum

Other shows were a vintage baseball game, a Revolutionary and Civil War re-enactment, a family tree workshop, a flying flea circus, storytelling, cooking, horse-plowing, 19th-century photography demonstrations, period music, petticoat and wig displays, lectures and poetry readings.

The Spirit of the Jerseys Fair was first held in 2004 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of New Jersey’s State-owned Historic Sites – a system that began in 1903 with the state’s purchase of the Indian King Tavern in Haddonfield. The goal of the fair is to engage the public in discovering the state’s history in a fun and enjoyable manner.

Food were provided by food trucks. About 20 trucks offered a variety of refreshments, snacks and meals – everything from pastries to empanadas. Among them were The Original Soupman soup truck, Cupcake Carnivale, Empanada Guy, Surf and Turf, Morris Grilled Cheese and Mary Queen of Pork.

The Soupman truck parked in front of the ShopRite plaza at 2350 Route 9 South in Old Bridge Township in Middlesex County is owned by Marcus Crawford, the first franchisee of the soup truck in the state. Soupman, Inc. (OTCQX: SOUP), owner and distributor of The Original Soupman brand of soups, is the franchiser.

Crawford also served piping hot staple soups such as chicken vegetable and other varities to attendees of the Six Flags Fast Tracks and Food Trucks Festival in Jackson last week.

The company headquartered in Staten Island, New York has several mobile soup trucks in select states. It launched the soup mobile last year at the 22nd International Franchise Expo in New York.

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