Experience the Northeast
JB MDL, located in south central New Jersey, is perfectly situated for experiencing the northeast. In less than two hours one can gamble at the casinos of Atlantic City, relive the birth of America in Philadelphia, watch the latest Broadway musical in New York or catch some rays on the Jersey Shore.
Day trip opportunities are all around. Nature fans can hike the Appalachian Trail in the picturesque Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area or view the amazing beauty of Valley Forge National Historical Park. History buffs can visit the battlefields at Gettysburg National Battleground, the museums on the National Mall in Washington D.C. or Fort McHenry in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor.
For the adventurous sportsman, the Pennsylvania Pocono Mountains offer biking, rafting and skiing. For those that want to take it a little easier Cape May offers Victorian homes and a historic lighthouse while Lancaster offers Amish craftsmanship. The off-duty opportunities are endless.
New Jersey: The Garden State
While many newcomers arrive expecting New Jersey to be one bustling metropolitan area, they find two thirds of its land is still forest or farmland. The joint base lies amidst rural New Jersey agricultural lands. It’s a short drive from the city, but far enough to provide the luxuries of small-town living.
Settled more than 300 years ago, New Jersey has more historic sites than any other state. Among other events woven into the state’s history, the American Revolution has left lasting reminders tucked away in every corner. Washington Crossing State Park, where General Washington crossed the Delaware River and surprised the Hessian troops outside of Trenton, is only an hour’s drive from the joint base.
Atlantic City, features a four-mile boardwalk and white sandy beaches for plenty of sunning, surfing, sailing, crabbing and surf fishing — and of course, the casinos.
Six Flags Great Adventure Theme Park, just north of the base, is home to the world’s tallest roller coaster, Kingda Ka. The park features thrilling rides, a 450-acre drive-through safari, and a 10,000-seat open-air arena for live musical entertainment.
A little farther north in Secaucus is the Meadowlands Sports Complex — the largest sports and entertainment facility in the East.
For a taste of the old west, just south of the joint base is the Cowtown Rodeo in rural Salem County, N.J. For more than 50 years Cowtown has been a highlight in the professional rodeo circuit. Performances are held every Saturday night at 7:30 p.m., Memorial Day weekend through the last Saturday in September.
For those who love the outdoors, New Jersey boasts 40 state parks, more than 100 rivers and 800 lakes and ponds. Allaire State Park, the Brigantine National Wildlife Refuge and Batsto State Park in the heart of the Pine Barrens is just a quick-trip from JB MDL.
New York City: The Big Apple
Drive north of the base and you’ll hit New York City — the center of the financial world, art world, media world and fashion world.
In every one of the five boroughs making up New York City, there are attractions few cities can match. Attractions include the Rockefeller Center, Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, United Nations, Central Park, Wall Street, Bronx Zoo, Times Square and Broadway.
The 87th Force Support Squadron regularly sponsors trips to the city for sightseeing, shopping and enjoyment of the arts. The opportunity to see popular Broadway productions like “Wicked,” “West Side Story” and “Jersey Boys” is undoubtedly a unique opportunity for service members and their families stationed at JBMDL.
Philadelphia: The City of Brotherly Love
Philadelphia is home to some of America’s richest history. The city is home to Independence National Historical Park, which includes two of America’s most treasured monuments, Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. The park also offers another dozen sites of historic importance such as Carpenter’s Hall, Old City Hall, Congress Hall and the original site of
Benjamin Franklin’s home.
The city also offers world-class performances, five-star restaurants and a magnificent opera house. Other attractions include Penn’s Landing, the Betsy Ross House, the Afro-American Historical and Cultural Museum, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Franklin Institute Science Museum and Fairmount Park.
Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst extends into two different counties, Burlington and Ocean Counties.
Burlington County covers 819 square miles of land and is the largest county in the state.
Ocean County covers 916 square miles of land and features many popular beaches such as Point Pleasant Beach, Seaside Heights, Ship Bottom and Surf City.
The principal towns in the immediate vicinity of Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst are:
Wrightstown is located between the Dix and McGuire Welcome Centers, the town features a small business district, public elementary and regional high schools, park, neighborhood shopping center and several recreational facilities.
Cookstown is located approximately one mile from the McGuire Welcome Center and is located in North Hanover Township.
Cookstown provides another small town atmosphere offering two neighborhood shopping
centers, a public elementary school and a regional high school.
Pemberton Township, seven miles from the Dix Welcome Center, encompasses Pemberton Borough and Browns Mills. This area features three neighborhood shopping centers, two high schools and Burlington County Community College. Browns Mills is also home to Deborah Heart and Lung Center.
New Egypt, in Plumsted Township, is located approximately three miles from the McGuire Welcome Center. The recreational areas in New Egypt offer hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities.
Mount Holly is approximately located 12 miles from the Dix Welcome Center. The town has three public elementary schools, a public junior high school, a public regional high school and a private elementary school. The recreational facilities in Mount Holly include a community center and an amateur Regional Center for the Performing Arts.
Bordentown is approximately located 11 miles from the Dix Welcome Center. The town has five parks, two yacht clubs, three sports fields and a number of other recreational areas. The town has one public elementary school, one public junior high school and a regional high school, as well as a private elementary school.
Hamilton, located in Mercer County, is situated just east of Trenton, the capital of New Jersey. The township is approximately 30 minutes from the Dix Welcome Center. Hamilton is home to Veteran’s Park, the Sayen House & Gardens, several shopping centers and recreational facilities.
Toms River, located east of the joint base, is approximately 20 minutes from the
Lakehurst Welcome Center. The township is home to Ocean County Mall, a Community Medical Center, The Waterhouse Museum and several beaches. Toms River Regional Schools is the local public school district that includes the nearby boroughs of Beachwood, Pine Beach and South Toms River.
Manchester Township is home to several shopping centers and recreational facilities. The Manchester Township School District has five schools that accepts students from the township and neighboring Lakehurst Borough.
Jackson, located 10 miles north of the Lakehurst Welcome Center, houses Six Flags Great Adventure theme park as well as several wildlife and game refuges.