WEST ORANGE, NJ - A Severe Thunderstorm Watch is in effect for Essex County until 10:00 pm on July 3 and a Flash Flood Watch is in effect until noon on July 4.

The inclement weather forced the cancellation of the the July 3 Downtown Music & Food Festival in Colgate Park and the Essex County Brookdale Park Fireworks and Concert with The Infernos and Joe Piscopo in Brookdale Park has been postponed. The new rain date for the Fireworks and Concert is Tuesday, July 15th at 7:30 p.m.

Fourth of July celebrations are being canceled all along the Eastern seaboard, though meterologists are promising a sunny Saturday to make up for Hurricane Arthur's unwelcome appearance.

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Essex County residents can expect severe thunderstorms during the evening of July 3 that will include damaging winds and heavy rain similar to last night's storms. One to three inches of rain are expected, caused by a cold front from the west colliding with tropical moisture from the south. 

For the Fourth of July the forecast appears disappointing during the day with showers and possible thunderstorms. A quarter to a half an inch of additional rain may occur.

Reports for the July 4 evening are mixed, with some meterological sources noting rain will abate by mid-afternoon. The National Weather Services is vaguely noting that rain should end by 8:00 pm.

By all accounts, Saturday's weather is expected to be sunny with a high of 82 degrees.

Closer to home, the Fourth of July activities at West Orange High School, scheduled to begin at 6:30 pm, have not yet been canceled.

"We're moving forward as though we will be having our events," noted West Orange Recreation Director Bill Kehoe. Rescheduling events typically cost the township additional fees and the Rec Department will assess the weather on July 4 to make a determination. If the events are canceled, the Rain Date is Saturday, July 5.

Check with Tap Into West Orange for updated information as they become available or call the Rec Department Weather Hotline at (973) 243-1115.