Harbaugh Village in Mullica Hill had an amazing first holiday season, and now they are ready for an exciting Summer program with Roller Skating, Games, Food, Shopping, Carousel, Comedy Shows and more!
This is a full post with great photos (scroll down) as well as a video interview with founder Steve Harbaugh, while we do a walking tour! Video link is at the bottom of this post!
We cover the history, the Holiday season success, Harbaugh House Charities… and what to expect from the Summer program and beyond!
Tickets for admission, attractions and special events are available online. Look for “General Admission” in the page and click. Additional commentary at the bottom of this article.
Mark visited with founder Steve Harbaugh this week and got the full tour of this amazing facility.
Steve is a dynamic and personable guy who knows how to get things done… and seems just as comfortable presenting the story and vision, as much as he is in making the dream become reality.
So I completely understand why he is successful in his day-job as a developer and home builder!
The village has grown from the initial goal of simply putting up a whimsical pop-culture lighting display on his home! It’s amazing to see what it has become today!
Harbaugh Village is a 126 Bridgeton Pike in Mullica Hill NJ.
The entrance is a little further from the park location, using the same entrance as Ella Harris Park which is the traffic light by the McDonald’s.
Harbaugh Village features a large parking lot including paved handicap spots, a variety of entertainment options, shopping, food and more!
The food and shopping vendors are all locally based!
Helping the Community in a Fun Way
Honestly.. you can’t help but be impressed by Steve and what is team has put together.
Absolutely the Village wasn’t his plan from the beginning, but he saw how the holiday lights captivated thousands… and he developed a plan to turn it into something even more special… that helps those in need!
At times we all get caught up in a bit of calling out what is wrong in the world without ever really lifting a finger to make changes happen… and I love stories like Steve’s and the Harbaugh Village where someone steps outside of their comfort zone and improves lives of others.
Keep reading for more on the charitable efforts of Harbaugh House!
From Holiday Lights to Harbaugh Village
Harbaugh Village opened in Mid-December 2021 as a Christmas Village experience featuring ice skating, shops, food, entertainment and more.
A core feature of the project was an on-site constructed home which was used to present a holiday display.
It’s very surprising to realize that Harbaugh Village today started out as simply The Harbaugh’s desire for a whimsical and fun home lighting display centered around… The Griswold’s Christmas lights from the movie, National Lampoon’s Vacation.
Quickly Steve added in an RV styled from the movie, and character figures…to truly lock in the Griswold experience.
A charity element soon evolved, with them asking visitors to bring toy donations!
What started out as 4,000 toys, grew to be 8,000 the next year and then 12,000.
If you are reading between the lines, this means the visitor count went through the roof also!
Soon thousands were visiting their quiet cul-de-sac to see the holiday lights, and large regional news coverage followed.
Steve realized that while the success of the family’s light display was awesome.. it was truly overwhelming the entire neighborhood and town.
We’d go out to dinner before the holidays and get stuck in our own 2 mile backup getting back to our house!Steve Harbaugh – Harbaugh Village
And from the simple beginnings of hanging that first set out lights… Harbaugh Village Mullica Hill and the Harbaugh House charity was born.
Harbaugh Village Summer Saturdays
After an amazing first Winter Holiday Season, Steve and the team have moved on to Phase II… the Summer Saturday program.
More on the Winter success in a minute… let’s first jump into some Summertime fun!
Roller Skating Rink
If you didn’t get a chance to visit for the Winter program, they have taken that initial Village foundation which was so successful over the winter, and added more to it… further enhancing what worked so well.
So one of the key features of the Village for the summer is the roller skating rink!
For the winter programs the Ice Skating rink was incredibly popular and the team wanted to carry that fun into the summertime.
So concrete was poured and an innovative decking system was installed… to turn this into a full summertime roller skating rink!
And yes… they have hundreds of pairs of roller skates to rent!
And don’t worry, the upgrades to the rink were done in a way that for the cooler months, ice skating will return!
Harbaugh Village also has its own permanent Carousel!
For the summer season (and going forward) it is fully operational… offering a classic fun feature for kids of all ages!
Main Street Games
A variety of carnival/boardwalk style games will bring fun to those of all ages!
Ring Toss and Ball toss are back!
Axe Throwing and Gel Blaster also add challenging fun to the day! But don’t worry… axe throwing is developed for kid fun! No sharp objects!
Main Street Ice Cream
The Main Street Village Store Sweet Shoppe now features ICE CREAM!
Ice cream is provided by a local ice cream shop, and it promises delicious and refreshing flavors!
Steve pointed out that it was never his intent to compete with local small businesses, so all of the vendor and food trucks are from locally owned businesses.
The Lounge Stage
An outdoor stage is part of the entertainment at Harbaugh Village!
A relaxing area to sit and take a break… and also to catch one of the awesome performances.
Some events require a separate purchase and take place after the Village winds down for the day. Check the event calendar for details.
On the event calendar are the 2nd Saturday Comedy show (Starting tonight)
A Father’s Day festival is on the docket for next weekend, featuring a buffet-style BBQ dinner in the Barn and other Dad’s Day targeted fun!
A summer concert series is on the calendar, with Mystery Machine, Epic Soul, Legacy and 80s Revolution scheduled.
A mud run and then a pet festival are also scheduled.
The front portion of the Harbaugh Village includes the shopping area, with Igloo buildings featuring area vendors. Everyone is a local small business!
Food trucks will be on scene to quench your thirst and hunger.
Steve mentioned a few to us including Washington Township’s Bistro Society and Atco’s Traveling Tomato selling pizzas.
Harbaugh Village Holiday Recap
We also heard from Steve a recap on their first holiday season… much more detail is on the video.
Obviously there is a limited window each year for Holiday season events, and a challenge for the Harbaugh team that first year was a later start in getting everything signed and approved… it really shortened the development time.
In little more than 2 months they turned an empty field into a full village, including a paved Main Street and buildings, ice rink, and a full home!
Consider they needed electricity, lighting.. all of the Igloo vendor buildings.
It’s a massive project be tackled in weeks!
They did open a little later than expected but were still able to pack the Village with happy people.. raising a lot of money for charity, tens of thousands of toys, and an almost overwhelming amount of toys!
Harbaugh House Charity
From small seeds come big things.. and what was originally a home lighting display “how about everyone brings a toy” has turned into a full 501(c)(3) charity based in the house on property called The Harbaugh House.
The Harbaugh House website explains perfectly their mission.. so no sense in 42Freeway trying to rewrite it!
Putting smiles on children’s faces and having fun while doing it is at the heart and soul of our initiative, which is why we established the Harbaugh House: a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to collecting and distributing toys to children during the holidays and throughout the year. In addition to the year-round toy drive, The Harbaugh House also assists displaced families by providing transitional housing to help them get back on their feetHarbaugh House Charity
Steve tells us they’ve also partnered with Family Promise of Southwest NJ which helps deserving families move into their own homes.
It’s an innovative program that not only help find and rehab homes, they also work with the new residents in managing their finances so that the residents can enjoy the comforts of their own home… forever!
Harbaugh House Future – Fall Fest
Steve tells 42Freeway that they are already working on plans for their Fall program featuring an innovative pumpkin sculpture walk.. and all of the wonderful things we love to do as the weather turns colder.
We chat about it in the video, but mostly we’ll hold off on details until after the summer!
Mark spent Thursday chatting with Steve, Chad who heads up Corporate Relations, and Travis who leads the day-to-day effort in the Village.
The video below is Steve and Mark walking the Village, discussing the history of the Harbaugh Village, development, first Winter season, charities, and plans for the summer and future!
The YouTube description block has marked out chapters if you want to jump to specific sections.
View below or click this link to load into a new browser.
Admission and Tickets
For the latest on admission and tickets please check the Harbaugh Village website.
Predominantly they are running on Saturdays, and have a General Admission ticket price.
Some activities such as the Roller Rink are an additional charge.
There are special events also, typically later in the day and into the evening. Check the site for admission details.
The website has an updated calendar of daily activities, integrated with the specific events for that day.
Click through the calendar’s available admission days and you’ll get the list of ticket options for that day!
Links and Location
126 Bridgeton Pike
Mullica Hill, NJ