WESTFIELD, NJ — It’s not your average Halloween and so it will also not be your average Halloween costume contest.

Downtown Westfield Corporation announced that families with children ages 14 and under are invited to participate in the “Downtown Westfield Virtual Halloween Costume Contest” — an event modified from its annual tradition due to COVID-19.

The DWC is asking parents to submit a 30-second video of their child or family in a Halloween costume, the DWC announcement said. Organizers knew early on that they wanted to take the annual tradition virtual, Bob Zuckerman, executive director of the DWC, said.

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“We toyed around with different machinations of it,” Zuckerman said in an interview. “Eventually, what we came to is we would ask participants and their parents to submit 30-second videos so that we just saw not just the costumes, but you could actually see the personality behind the costumes.”

Parents with multiple children may submit a video for each child, officials said. Contest judges will choose the top two semifinalists in each of 12 categories, organizers said. The winners and runners up will be invited participate in a live-streamed Zoom event to be held 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. on Halloween, Oct. 31.

The categories are the following:

  • Best Family Group Costume
  • Best Superhero Costume
  • Best Princess Costume
  • Best Addams Family Character Costume
  • Scariest Costume
  • Funniest Costume
  • Best Athletic Costume
  • Best Pet Costume
  • Most Creative Costume
  • Most Unique Costume
  • Best Baby Costume
  • Best Homemade Costume

Runners up and winners will receive a medal and a gift card to a downtown Westfield business, organizers said.

Zuckerman is encouraging participants to keep the videos simple. “They just shoot it on their phone — it doesn’t have to be professional,” he said.

All videos will be screened to meet the spirit of a family-friendly event, then shared virtually with contest judges, organizers said.

Participants are asked to include in the submission email: adult’s name, mailing address, email, phone number and first name of child.

By emailing the DWC a 30-second video, participants grant permission to Downtown Westfield Corporation to use their name, the video(s) submitted, and the names of those pictured in the video(s) in publications, news releases, online and in other communications related to the mission of Downtown Westfield Corporation.

The deadline to submit family friendly videos is Oct. 27. Only the first 200 submissions will be accepted, the DWC said. Email videos to halloween@westfieldtoday.com.

Email Matt Kadosh at mkadosh@tapinto.net | Twitter: @MattKadosh

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