Jersey City, Newark Rank Among Nation’s Top 10 for Holiday Cheer

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Jersey City and Newark ranked seventh- and eighth-most festive cities in the U.S. Photo credit: @DowntownNewark.

A new study finds that a pair of New Jersey spots might have enough Christmas charm to turn even the Grinchiest Scrooge into Buddy the Elf.


LawnStarter recently compiled a list of 2021’s Most Festive Cities, taking the 200 biggest cities in the country and ranking them based on a variety of yuletide factors. The study gave weight to locales with holiday events, Euro-style Christmas markets, snowfall, and other fun associated with the holiday season.

The survey broke down the criteria into five categories. The first, frolicking, took into account the average snowfall and the city’s walk score. A merrymaking grouping ranked the number of holiday events, attractions, music venues, and skating rinks in the biggest cities, while an entertaining category considered holiday decorations, Christmas tree sellers, and party supply stores.

The study’s eating classification gave weight to bakeries and candy stores, while shopping criteria considered local holiday markets, gift shops, and department stores in a given city.

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Holiday cheer in Newark. Photo credit: @DowntownNewark.

Jersey City topped the Garden State entries on the list, coming in at number seven nationwide. The highest marks JC earned were eighth in the country for merrymaking, also ranking high for entertaining at 11. Jersey City’s eating and shopping ranks, at 48th and 54th respectively, were less impressive.

Newark, the state’s largest city and home to a Dasher’s Lightshow experience, was just behind at number eight. While Brick City’s eating (109) and shopping (124) scores could probably stand to improve, Newark was determined to have the most holiday events and festivals per 100,000 residents.

New York was deemed the most festive city in the country, earning more than double the points of second-place Chicago. The Big Apple finished tops in all but one category, ranking only 24th in frolicking.

Perennial snowfall favorite Boston came in third on the Most Festive Cities list, followed by Philadelphia and San Francisco. Los Angeles at number six was the only warm-weather city to make the top 10, which was rounded out by ninth-place Denver and Washington D.C.

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