Frenchtown, NJ, is gearing up for the 15th annual Bastille Day Fete on Saturday, July 13 from noon til night. The celebration will include in-store specials and entertainment for children of all ages.
Visitors will be delighted by the antics of the strolling stilt walker and mime – two Bastille Day favorites – as they listen to live music and stop to take in the work of the plein air artists set up around town. Restaurants also will be featuring French-themed selections on their menu. Children won’t want to miss the Puppet Show presented by River Union Stage in The Book Garden’s backyard and then have “a new face” put on by one of the face painters on Bridge and Race Streets. There also will be special appearances by Marie Antoinette and Madame Defarge.
Musical entertainment will begin at noon and go until 8pm thanks to the celebration overlapping with Second Saturday – yes that means shops will stay open late too! The musical line up is: Skye Van Saun, Mitchell Cheng Jazz Quartet, Sonic Blenders, Bodhi Chicas, Barry Peterson and Ten Foot Tall Trio.
This year’s theme is simply The Eiffel Tower but visitors will be surprised at how this icon will be creatively incorporated into unique window displays and décor. In fact, a replica of the Eiffel Tower that doubles as a fire pit and standing at more than 15 feet tall will be an ideal backdrop for a photo op. This one-of-a-kind piece of art is being auctioned off by its creator, Ron Stortz of Black Brook Designs, and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Frenchtown Business and Professional Association.
The day’s festivities can be topped off with a relaxing dinner at one of the many restaurants – Asian, Mexican, Continental, Italian, Local organic fusions – a taste for everyone can be found within walking distance of the festivities.
“We are looking forward to a day filled with activities and entertainment that will highlight why Frenchtown is such a special place to visit any day,” said Diane Dalrymple, president of the Frenchtown Business & Professional Association. Visitors who come to Frenchtown immediately get our tagline –“Discover Our Secret…It’s Magnetic,” she added.
At 9PM join the local community for a Movie Under the Stars, sponsored by Thistle and River Union Stage. The feature presentation will be the animated favorite “Ratatouille.” Bring seating, a comfortable blanket and enjoy the show.
Visitors can extend their stay with a night at one of the area’s historic hotels, inns or bed-and-breakfasts and visit the Frenchtown Farmer’s Market on Sunday from 10:00am to 2:00pm.
The Bastille Day Fete is hosted by the Frenchtown Business & Professional Association and thanks to its funding sponsors including Left Bank Home, River Union Stage, Thistle, Southern Belle Stonery and Two Buttons. The event will be held on Saturday, July 13th beginning at 12:00 pm. Visit frenchtownnj.org for more information on the event, directions, parking, and local accommodations to start planning your Bastille Day celebration.
Schedule of Events
Entertainment Around Town
Bastille Day wouldn’t be the same without our favorite Mime, Harold Moeller and Stilt Walker, Mary Kelly Rayel, who will be entertaining visitors around town all afternoon.
Plein air artists will be sprinkled throughout the town.
Restaurants around town will be featuring French specials on their menus and refreshments, entertainment, drawings and sales can be found in almost every shop!
Plein Air Artists
“Plein Air” is a French phrase for painting out in nature and receiving inspiration directly from the landscape itself.
The fleeting and beautiful effects of light and shadow as they change, the movement of clouds and sky, are all challenging aspects that the artist deals with in creating a successful plein air work of art.
A few highlights:
- Yellow Dog Pet Supply is offering to have your pets photo taken at the Bastille! From 5 to 7:30pm. Also Bastille Day Dog Bandanas are available exclusively at Yellow Dog Pet Supply!
- Eat Cake will be serenading visitors with song and French Pastry.
- Grouse Studios will feature an array of French themed art and home décor.
- Join Madame DeFarge for a “knitting sit” at The Spinnery and enter a $50 gift card drawing.
- Book Garden Back Yard Puppet Show.
- “The Elves and the Shoemaker” brought to you by River Union Stage.
- Puppet Show Times: 12:30pm and 3:00pm.
- Sunbeam Toys will have a storewide sale of, yes, 14% off.
- Alchemy will feature Celtic Harpist and Singer Nadine who will be entertaining shoppers from 2pm-5pm.
MOVIE UNDER THE STARS – “RATATOUILLE” – 9:00PM @ FRENCHTOWN BOROUGH PARK
Don’t forget to take a photo or two in front of the “Eiffel Tower Fire Catcher” in the lovely front gardens of the Italianate Mansion on Bridge Street. This magnificent piece will need a home after Bastille Day and is being auctioned on eBay – item #221251547233. A portion of proceeds will support the FBPA and another charitable organization of the winning bidder’s choice.
WINDOW DECORATING CONTEST
Stoll along and admire the creatively decorated windows. See who won the categories of, “Best In Theme”, “Best Use of Materials”, “Most Creative”, “Most Whimsical” and
“Most Eye Catching”.
Musical Line Up:
- 12:00-1:30pm Skye Van Saun, Harrison & Bridge St.
- 1:00-3:00pm Strolling Guitarist and French Singer Barry Peterson
- 1:30-3:00pm Mitchell Cheng Jazz Quartet, Book Garden.
- 3:00-4:30pm Sonic Blenders, Harrison & Bridge
- 4:30-6:00pm Bodhi Chicas, Book Garden
- 6:00-8:00pm Ten Foot Tall Trio, Race Street Stage by Paddlecreek
RESTROOMS ARE LOCATED AT:
- Frenchtown Borough Park, Route 12 and Creek Road
- Citgo Gas Station, Route 12 and Race Street
- Coldwell Banker Hearthside, 57 Bridge Street
- The Book Garden, 28 Bridge Street
Second Saturday is in full Swing so most businesses are open until 8PM
Merci to our Funding Sponsors:
- Left Bank Home
- River Union Stage
- Southern Belle Stonery
- Two Buttons
Thank you to our supporting businesses that sponsored activities and donated gift cards and other merchandise:
- BJs, Flemington
- Home Depot, Flemington
- Somerset Patriots
- Trenton Thunder
- The Muller Family
- Peace Out Yoga for Kids at
- Dr. Liebross’ Family Practice
- Marshall’s, Flemington
- Lowes of Flemington
- The Book Garden