Lions, tigers, or bears?
North Bergen kids make choices on Halloween costumes
by Joseph Passantino
Reporter staff writer
Oct 13, 2013 | 6342 views | 0 0 comments | 89 89 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CHOICES, CHOICES – Iliana Castro has to outfit three children, David, 5 months, Yamilette, 5, and Leyla (not pictured), 7, for the upcoming Halloween holiday.
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Superman, a goblin, a skeleton, Cinderella, or Dora the Explorer. What will it be?

That’s what township children have been deciding this month, with Halloween fast approaching.

And add to the equation that many feel this is a “make-up year” – Halloween was barely observed last year because of Hurricane Sandy. All are definitely in the mood to have fun.

Iliana Castro of 77th Street has her hands full when it comes to shopping for the holiday. She has Leyla, 7, Yamilette, 5, and David, 5 months. On Oct. 5, she was hoping to make her purchases in one stop. Leyla was leaning toward movie heroine “Brave,” Yamilette was thinking Rapunzel, and David, well, he wasn’t involved in the decision making so much.

“He’ll probably be a pumpkin,” Castro said. “I like little pumpkins.”

Castro said her two oldest children were really looking forward to celebrating Halloween this year.
“I honestly think she’ll pick Hello Kitty.” – Cindy Nino
“They are a lot, since last year because of the hurricane they didn’t get to go trick or treating,” she said. “And they remember that, and they hope it doesn’t happen again.”

Barbie, ’80s Girl, or hoopster

Mia Sneyers, 8, said she was an 8-year trick-or-treating veteran. She is considering being a mummy, cat, or other possibilities.

“She was a pirate a couple of years,” said mom Stacey. “There’s a lot she’s been.”

“I probably would want to be Barbie or ‘the ‘80s Girl,” Mia said.

Joseph Ephrem, 10, was noncommittal.

“Maybe I’ll be a basketball player,” he said. “I’m not sure.”

Disney characters

Natalie Levi was more decisive. Her Cinderella costume has already been purchased.

“I like all the Disney stuff,” she said. “And because she rides in the pumpkin carriage.”

Brian Groves, 4, has also decided, according to dad, Orlando. And pirate it is.

“We went on a Disney cruise,” the elder Groves said. “They had the ‘Pirate Show’ on the ship and now he wants to be a pirate.”

Getting creative

The Velasquez family of the Lincoln Park Town Homes was in a quandary. With four kids and Halloween drawing near, no definite decisions had been made for Brandon, 11, Sophia, 6, and Juliette, 2, according to parents Damon and Lissette. They weren’t worried about Damon Jr., 12, however.

“I don’t think he’ll be participating. He’s in the seventh grade,” dad said. “He’ll just take all the candy.”

Brandon was probably going to be 1980s video game character PacMan, and Juliette was likely going to be a princess, according to Mrs. Velasquez.

As far as Sophia, mom had had “a very interesting conversation” with her. “She said, ‘something pretty, mom,’ so she’ll be a princess too.”

“We can be very creative; we’ll find things around the house,” to make the costume, Mrs. Velasquez said.

“With four kids, we’ve got to be,” Mr. Velasquez said. “Things can get expensive.”

1st Halloween in New Jersey

Malani Rahman, 4, and her mother Cindy Nino, 34, of West New York, were still at work on the young girl’s costume.

Transplantees from out of state, this will be Malani’s first Halloween in New Jersey, and therefore, an important one.

Nino said her daughter was considering being a Power Ranger or dragon with a sword. In the past, Malani had been a pumpkin, brown-and-white cow, and pea in a pod.

“I honestly think she’ll pick Hello Kitty,” she said. “That’s her big thing right now.

“She’s got it in her room, on her pillows, and she’s wearing it,” Nino said. “I bought her a T-shirt that says, ‘Spooky,’ and has Hello Kitty on it and has Halloween colors.”

Joseph Passantino may be reached at

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