WEST ORANGE, NJ - October 31... Halloween.  The day that children and adults alike get to dress up, pretend, dream, and, of course, collect all sorts of candy.  It was a Very Special Day in West Orange today, not because it was Halloween, but because it was the first Halloween the community was able to celebrate in two years.

On October 29, 2011, West Orange was slammed with a freaky Halloween surprise in the form of an ice storm that leveled trees, snapped branches and cut power.  On October 29, 2012, Hurricane Sandy struck, and parts of the township were without power for weeks.  Trees and wires were down everywhere, and Halloween was officially canceled.  Schools were not even open on Halloween.

So today, in elementary and middle schools across West Orange, Halloween returned in force, and the excitement of the children - as well as the teachers and parents - was evident.

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We don't know about you, but our neighborhoods were buzzing with princesses, zombies and superheroes all night as well.

We're attaching some photos from the Mt. Pleasant and Redwood Halloween Parades that will give you an idea of what was going on across the school district today, and we hope they bring a smile to your face. 

Feel free to post some of your own photos on the Alternative Press of West Orange Facebook Page.  We'd love to see them.