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Opening of the New Jersey Hall of Fame Entertainment & Learning Center at the American Dream
Opening of the New Jersey Hall of Fame Entertainment & Learning Center at the American Dream

Inaugural ceremony of the New Jersey Hall of Fame
On June 18, 2024, the Hall of Fame held the official opening of the New Jersey Hall of Fame Entertainment & Learning Center. (Left to right: Senator Joseph Cryan; Paul Ghermezian (American Dream); Nader Ghermezian (American Dream); Senator Paul Sarlo; Steve Edwards (President of NJHOF), First Lady Tammy Murphy, Governor Phil Murphy, Jon Hanson, Senator Gordon Johnson, Bob Garrett (CEO of Hackensack Meridian Health)) (Courtesy of New Jersey Hall of Fame)

On June 18, the New Jersey Hall of Fame Entertainment and Learning Center was dedicated with a ceremonial ribbon cutting. The $20 million, 10,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility is Jersey’s tribute to the Garden State’s finest.

The center is filled with fun, interactive exhibits honoring the Hall of Fame’s more than 230 members. Montclair is well represented by Yogi Berra, Buzz Aldrin, Bobbi Brown, and most recently Josh Weston.

Wherever you look, inspiration

New Jersey Hall of Fame Center Wall of Fame
The Wall of Fame. (Courtesy of the New Jersey Hall of Fame)

The Wall of Fame is the centerpiece of the New Jersey Hall of Fame Entertainment & Learning Center. It features plaques for each inductee and plays excerpts from their induction speeches. The center’s slogan, “Everyone Needs a Hero,” reflects its mission. In addition, the Everyday Heroes Wall offers visitors the opportunity to celebrate the heroes of their lives and have them featured on the wall’s screen.

    Model T, which Henry Ford gave to Thomas Edison
The Model T that Henry Ford gave to Thomas Edison. (Courtesy of the New Jersey Hall of Fame)

There is plenty of memorabilia throughout the center. You can see Jon Bon Jovi’s denim jacket, his 1970 Chevelle, Thomas Edison’s gramophone, the Ford Model T that Henry Ford gave him in 1916, William Carlos Williams’ typewriter and Les Paul’s guitar.

Parents and children on a simulated space trip called "Fly me to the moon" at the New Jersey Hall of Fame Entertainment and Learning Center
Be like Buzz Aldrin in the simulated space flight called “Fly Me to the Moon.” (Courtesy of the New Jersey Hall of Fame)

Holographic Heroes

You can go on stage and sing karaoke with holograms of music legends like Gloria Gaynor, Wyclef Jean and Frankie Valli. Go to the Late Night Jersey TV studio to interview holograms of stars like Danny DeVito, Connie Chung, Laurie Hernandez and other big names. You can even record your interview as a souvenir!

Even more jersey qualities

A nice touch is the selfie station where you can cast your vote on pressing Jersey questions like “Taylor ham or pork roll?” and “Does Central Jersey exist or is that a lie?” (Spoiler: It’s a lie). And of course, it wouldn’t be Jersey without the coast, so there’s a Boardwalk-themed merch shop.

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New Jersey Hall of Fame logo

The New Jersey Hall of Fame Entertainment & Learning Center opens on June 28.

Location: American Dream, 1 American Dream Way, East Rutherford, NJ
Courtyard G, Level 3. (opposite Nickelodeon Universe)
Permit: In-state (NJ driver’s license or ID required as proof), it costs $20 for adults and $16 for children. If you’re not from Jersey, you’ll have to shell out a little more: $25.

By Seren