Over 200 different families got to pick from over 400 costumes, donated to the town by Walmart with additional donations from Walgreens. Residents also recieved trick-or-treat bags, candy, and baking supplies for residents.
N.B. CARES, a local relief program to assist lower-income families, hosted the event.
“My one daughter is going to be Elsa from [Disney’s] Frozen,” said Amanda, a local parent who did not want to give her last name, as her children looked for their costumes. “My other daughter is going to be Scooby Doo, my son is going to be Joker, and then my other children will be a diamond fairy and a rainbow.”
“I like her!” Amanda's daughter exclaimed, about the Disney character. “She has magic powers!”
Amanda also had some kind words for N.B. CARES Coordinator Aimee Focaraccio. “Aimee is wonderful. My kids love her,” Amanda said.
Tammy Urgiles of North Bergen was waiting outside the center to score a Batgirl costume for her 8-year-old daughter.
“It makes life a lot easier, especially when you have three kids and you're struggling,” Urgiles said, of the giveaway. “It helps out, all the different things [NB CARES] does in the community. It’s a great resource they have, and I'm blessed to live in this town, because it’s all about the kids, and that's the benefit.”
Of her daughter, Urgiles said, “She likes to watch the DC movies and kick butt.” She was also interested in a costume for her 14-year-old son, but “he's a football player, so normally on Halloween, they have football practice.”
“It makes life a lot easier, especially when you have three kids and you're struggling.” – Tammy Urgiles
For the past few years, the local Walmart has given the town its leftover costumes after Halloween, which was an impetus for launching the program.
“Walmart’s been very helpful,” said Focaraccio. “They give really good, in-season costumes, like the Ninja Turtles and Iron-Man.”
Costumes “aren’t really high on the priority list for parents,” Focaraccio added. “But they’re high priority to the child. This is one of my favorite events we hold, just for the fact the kids are so excited and get the costumes they actually want.”
On Oct. 28, N.B. CARES will host their third annual Trunk-or-Treat celebration at the recreation center.
The event will feature around 20-25 vehicles, with designs on their trunks and free candy inside the trunks, for over 1,000 kids. Both private and municipal vehicles will participate. The township provides refill candy. For more information, or to sign up, contact Aimee at 201-392-0229.
Hannington Dia can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org