The main streets of Hunterdon County are dressed for the season and ready to welcome visitors and shoppers.
HunterdonMainStreets.com is an initiative designed to showcase the business districts of Hunterdon’s Main Street and highlight everything that makes it an attractive destination.
In addition to the website, residents and tourists can follow social media and the newsletter to follow restaurants, shops and events in the charming towns of Clinton, Flemington, Frenchtown, Lambertville, High Bridge, Milford and Stockton. .
Quaint and pedestrianized, Hunterdon’s main streets sparkle in December with Victorian decor, embellished storefronts, special events, friendly service, unique giveaways and extended hours for shopping, according to a press release. Once your list is complete, head to a cozy cafe or restaurant to enjoy the local flavor.
âIt’s so exciting to see the holiday events return to the main streets of Hunterdon this year. We invite everyone to enjoy the festivities, decorations, restaurants and cafes and unique shops, âsaid Sue Soloway, Hunterdon County Commissioner. âLocal shopping is fun, easy, and you’ll always find great freebies and friendly service.â
Flemington residents and artist photographers Dave and Ally Norton opened The Corner in early 2021.
Tucked away on the corner of Main and Bloomfield, in the historic Clock Tower building, the home and gift shop are bright and welcoming with artistic displays of unique products.
âFor the holiday season, we carry items from small local manufacturers and artisans. When you visit the Corner, we want to delight you with things you may never have seen before, âsaid Ally Norton.
Popular gift items include hand-crafted New Jersey-shaped ornaments, notebooks and napkins branded “Flemington” or “Hunterdon County,” specialty bar items, and chunky knit throws.
The back of the space houses a photography studio, specializing in family portraits and portraits.
Other Flemington shopping destinations include Attachments & Sage Boutique (newly hosted together at 124 Main), 39 Mine Boutique, Addicted Chic, Saunders Jewelers and Act 2 Books.
The Stangl Farmers’ Market is open year round on Saturdays and hosts additional events throughout the holiday season, including an arts and crafts festival on Sunday, December 12. , cooked meals, homemade sweets, breads and artisanal products. Market hours and special events: stanglfactory.com.
Festivities in Flemington include: Champagne Tram Tours, Saturdays with Santa, a Holiday Shopping Passport Participation Program, and the return of the Hunterdon Holiday Parade on December 5 at 5 p.m. For event information and a full list of shops and restaurants, visit LoveFlemington.com.
Picturesque and historic, Lambertville turns up the charm during the holiday season. Antique shops, art studios, bespoke jewelers, artisan galleries, boutiques and gourmet foods are all found in this charming little town.
A Mano Galleries, located in a historic Five & Dime building, specialize in contemporary American crafts, including jewelry, pottery, and handcrafted furniture. Surprising and creative gift options can be found in the department store, including fancy clocks, handcrafted bar items, colorful knitwear, toys, and kaleidoscopes.
With 50 merchants and artist studios on three floors, The People’s Store Antiques and Design Center is the perfect place to discover antiques and unique treasures. Union Jack offers uniquely British goodies and gifts, and Panoply Books offers rare and out of print second-hand books and vinyl records.
At Sojourner, ‘bohemian chic’ from around the world includes furniture, textiles, beads, jewelry and clothing. For a full list of shops and restaurants, visit lambertvillechamber.com.
The iconic Red Mill and Victorian architecture provide the backdrop for Clinton’s charming vacation traditions, restaurants, cafes, and vacation shopping.
The Karen Dollhouse Shop is an enchanting addition to downtown Clinton.
âWe fell in love with this city, it suits us perfectly. Our customers come from all over and they love to visit Clinton, âsaid Karen Aird, who runs the family business alongside her husband Andrew and daughter Emma. âOur customers are collectors, adults and children, and they all have a big smile when they explore our store – all you can find in real life that you can find in miniature.
During the holiday season, Aird is particularly busy restoring and renovating dollhouses.
“They are family heirlooms, passed down from generation to generation, and people cry when they see their restored dollhouse for their children or grandchildren,” she explained.
Stop to see a Dickensian-themed dollhouse, Christmas dollhouses and miniature log cabins, lighthouses, and castles.
Other unique shops include: Bearpaw Leather, 39 Mine on Main, Dickens Jewelers, Made to Order, Beyond Bijoux, Christine’s Gift and Bath Boutique, and Chameleon Blue. HeartStrings, which celebrates 45 years in Clinton, shines this holiday season with artisan and collectable party decorations, handmade jewelry, children’s clothing and toys.
The annual Clinton Christmas Parade takes place on December 3 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Candlelight night on December 16 illuminates the main street with a magical glow and shops stay open late. Santa’s Workshop, on the terrace of the Hunterdon Art Museum, will be open throughout the season.
The Festival des Arbres, with more than 50 decorated trees, is open on weekends on the grounds of the Moulin Rouge Museum.
For event information and a full list of stores and restaurants, visit ClintonNJ.com.
With the opening of the Art Yard last year, Frenchtown’s reputation as a center of art and culture continues to grow. It’s also the perfect place to find gifts for anyone on your list who will appreciate a gift that’s out of the ordinary. Art galleries, antique shops, and a handful of specialty shops line Bridge and Race streets.
New owners Barbara deWilde and Scott Sheldon reopened Frenchtown Bookstore in August 2021, after a complete renovation of the splendid Victorian building.
âWe opened here because we love Frenchtown, everyone has been so welcoming. We host local writers and community events on topics like art, nature and hiking, âexplained co-owner Barbara deWilde.
The shop offers a selection of books for all ages.
âWe have something for everyone – picture books for children, young adults, fiction, poetry, nature, cookbooks, graphic novels and books on how to make anything. And we have freebies to inspire people to spend time together – puzzles, games and classic holiday books to read aloud, âshe added.
Frenchtown’s Junto Emporium is a “men’s boutique” with vintage clothing, footwear and collections that emphasize local, sustainable or small-batch products. Other unique boutiques in Frenchtown include: Lord Ivy, Sunbeam General Store, Gather Flower Shop, Modern Love, and Gourmand Epicerie.
On Saturdays in December, festive events include horse and buggy rides, a visit from Santa Claus and the Frenchtown bagpiper.
For event information and a full list of shops and restaurants, visit LoveFrenchtown.org.
Stockton Market is a covered community market full of produce, pasture-raised meats, fresh seafood, handmade chocolates, baked goods, small-batch ice cream, and flowers. Market vendors are complemented by handcrafted food offerings including: The Borscht Belt Delicatessen, D’Town Dumpling, and Market Pizza.
Hours vary by vendor, visit stocktonmarket.com.
Little gems of the city
Bridge Street is the cozy center of Milford. Chocolate in the Oven offers small batch baked goods made on site, and Riverside Treasures is an “eclectic gift shop.” Descendants Brewing Company at the Old Ship Inn offers a friendly European pub atmosphere with craft beer and European-inspired home-cooked food using locally sourced ingredients.
At High Bridge, Apothecary Salty Lemon makes botanical soaps, soy candles, and skin care products, and Scouts Mercantile and Coffee Shop serves hot lattes, candy, and a collection of locally made artisanal gifts. Visit Love High Bridge on Facebook for more information.