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“Really glad it free...” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Historic Cold Spring Village

Historic Cold Spring Village
Ranked #12 of 59 things to do in Cape May
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Historic Cold Spring Village (HCSV) is a open air living history museum that invites all visitors to find meaning, pleasure, relevance, and inspiration in the exploration of southern New Jersey's past. It is a nonprofit, educational museum that is open during the spring-summer season. The centerpiece of the museum is a re-created rural Southern New Jersey town of the "home spun era" set on more than 30 acres.
Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
253 reviews
66 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 169 helpful votes
“Really glad it free...”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 30, 2010

Memorial day Week-end is free for anybody, and the family ventured there to see if it had gotten any better. It actually got worse and why a family of four would spend $28.00 is beyond me. The parking lot is overgrown with grass and weeds, upon entering the place looked more like a ghost town than a historic town, grass around the place had not been cut in weeks, bushes were overgrown and needed trimming, half the buildings were boarded up and the ones that were open for interpretation, the workers were having private conversations while people looked at them. The place must need visitors and numerous people brought their dogs and were walking around the property, a dog fight broke out between two dogs, not how it was in the 1800's from the books I read. The whole place is just falling apart and in desperate need of a paint job on numerous buildings and major grounds work. My kids were bored in five minutes, my money would be better spent at the Wildwood boardwalk.

Helpful?
10 Thank edpeck
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
annesalvatore, Executive Director at Historic Cold Spring Village, responded to this review, December 15, 2010
Our disappointment at reading Mr. Peck's review on May 30, 2010 was palpable among our small staff. The winter was devastating and until a few days before Memorial Day Weekend, we weren't sure that we would open. The winter snows brought down over 120 trees, followed by spring flooding that left lakes all over the 30 acre site. The Village is a non-profit museum, and we have a very limited budget which doesn't have funds available for emergency management. All the grounds work is done by a team of three. Volunteers staffed the buildings for two of the three days over the Memorial Weekend, for which we were very grateful. The event was advertised as a free admission "open house" with limited buildings open to the public. Nothing was "boarded up," only closed until the actual season began, which was not until Father's Day Weekend. By the end of June, building issues had been addressed. We are only sorry that you didn't return to see how glorious the Village looked during the 2010 season!
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220 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Westchester County, NY
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“A "mini-Sturbridge," wonderfully active on-season”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 14, 2009

The only way I can account for the negative reviews is that some come from off-season visitors. Don't go off-season. The place blooms, in many ways, during the summer, and is truly a wonderful alternative to conventional seashore-y pursuits. We found the guides to be excellent and the architectural "collection" unparalleled. While this won't satisfy those who aren't used to historical travel (or don't value it - it is, after all, not an amusement park), the traveler who wants their family to truly understand what makes the New Jersey coast unique, varied, and historically relevant will find it here. Case in point: HCSV's interpretation hewes closely to a narrative specific to New Jersey seashore people, which I found to be a refreshing change from living history sites that try to present themselves as representational of ALL early American societies. This was a very smart choice on their part, and shows they have good historians at work.

A couple last things. In my opinion, the guides are excellent because they're NOT in character. They're also not the patronizing kind who start by telling you "there was no TV; there was no internet..." You can engage them on your level and get intellegent answers. Also, the general store is a unique seashore shopping experience, not to be missed (be sure to get a bag of the locally-produced cranberry muffin mix).

Don't miss this place if you're at the South Jersey shore. They value visitors - adults and children alike - and you will leave feeling like you've done and learned something very worthwhile.

Helpful?
3 Thank Historians
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NY
Level Contributor
62 reviews
38 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
“Glad it was free”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 4, 2009

We went during the off season. The first time we attempted to get in, we were completely ignored as a group of school kids (10) took up all the attendants' time. It was like I wasn't even there, so we left. We returned (another free day, off season) and got in. Once in, we were thrilled we did not pay. I don't recall how many bldgs there were, but I saw almost nothing of interest to us. We zipped through in a few minutes. I assume there are events and crowds in season, I'm sure, but our only amusement was the horse. I gave him most of my stale cookie bought at their tiny bakery.

Helpful?
6 Thank Travellotsny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
annesalvatore, Executive Director at Historic Cold Spring Village, responded to this review, December 15, 2010
Historic Cold Spring Village is open to the public from early June until mid-September. During the time of the reviewer's visit, the site was closed except for school visits. Ample signage at both gates described the program and specifically excluded the public from entering the Village during the four weeks that school visits take place. Over 3,000 students visit during the month of May and are introduced to the an Early American open-air musuem and the joys inherent in "living" history. Please return during the summer season when the Village comes to life!
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South Jersey
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Not worth admission”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 2, 2009

Our trip to Historic Cold Spring Village started well enough with knowledgeable employees talking about the historical aspects of the village. About half-way through we began to encounter more surly, unhappy, and down-right moody employees. We listened to employees complain about their work schedules, children's questions, their personal health concerns, and anything else upsetting them that particular day. We were even ignored by a few people. All in all, it would be a great place for parents/teachers to take their kids, but not for adults who enjoy learning about history. For our $8 admission we got to listen to a lot of problems.

Helpful?
10 Thank Proto_Man
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
“Great for school-age kids!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 2, 2005

Historic Cold Spring Village is a living history site near the Cape May County Zoo. Kids can dress up, play with period toys, and practice spinning, weaving and basket making. There are farm animals, crafts and special events. My kids beg to go there every time we're in Cape May - maybe three times a summer. The schoolhouse, with its dunce cap; the stocks, the water pump - it's all simple, but educational and a lot of fun. Mom and Dad favor the potter, blacksmith, printer, and carpenter. The ice cream shop has air conditioning; otherwise, dress for the weather. In fact, with ponchos, it's a great rainy day stop.

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6 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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