The dragon wins first place in the “most creative” category on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)

The Annual Essex County Strut Your Mutt Canine Costume Parade and Contest was held Saturday, Oct. 23, at the Essex County Brookdale Dog Park, which is in Bloomfield and Montclair.

“Our dog parks have become popular places for dog owners to bring their pets, and our Canine Halloween Costume Parades are another opportunity for the public to enjoy our historic Park System,” Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr. said. 

“I am always amazed and impressed with the creativity of the costumes. Congratulations to the winners,” he added.

The Osborne family from Montclair and their dog Willow, dressed as a scuba diver and dive team, won third place in the Cutest Costume Category at the Essex County Brookdale Dog Park Contest. (COURTESY ESSEX COUNTY)

Dog owners were invited to display their creativity and dress their canine pets in costumes. The parade was free and prizes were awarded to the winners in each category.

Award winners at the Essex County Brookdale Dog Park Contest are as follows:

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Best in Show: Gabriella and Yvet Crocco, Jessica, Franklin and Troy Tapia and from Little Falls and their dogs Layla, Luigi and Lily, who were dressed as characters from the “Despicable Me” movies.

Cutest Costume: First place: Maggy Tung from Bloomfield and her dog Remi, who were dressed as bees and beekeepers. Second place: Cristina Ofrancia from Bloomfield and her dog Frisky, who was dressed as Chuckie. Third place: The Osborne family from Montclair and their dog Willow, who were dressed as a scuba diver and dive team.

Most Creative Costume: First place: Lauren Zodel from Montclair and her dog Frankie, who was dressed as a dragon. Second place: Lisa and Tom Schmidberger from Bedminster and their dog Jack, who were dressed as characters from “Pinocchio.” Third place: Lynn Consovoy and Blake Tramel from Paramus and their dog Avery Finn, who were dressed as the Orient Express.

Group costume: First place: Kristen Graham from Hawthorne and her dogs Sadie, Ollie, Benji and Rinny were dressed as Super Mario Brothers characters. Second place: The Francisco family from Somerset and their dog Rocket, who was dressed as characters from “Loki.” Third place: The Colombo family from Carlstadt and their dog Scrubby, who were dressed as spotted lanternflies.

A group of desserts strolls down the runway on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
From left, Franklin, Troy, Lily and Jessica Tapia, on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Ghostbusters from left, Kristi Molinarion, Jessy Gonzzales, Kloe in arms, and Layla as the slime. Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Eevie, the flamingo, awaits the start of the annual Strut Your Mutt Halloween costume contest in Brookdale Park on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Rosie Sheehan and Nicole Erins are the pots of gold at the end of their double rainbows, Sophie and Twyla, on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
A fluffy canine lion walks down the runway on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Magician, his assistant, and their rabbit walk by the judges on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Daniel Salvante, director of Essex County Parks, and Debbie Ortiz-Santos, one of the judges, introduce the contestants on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Frankenstein takes his turn on the runway on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Lifegurads have a handle on their shark on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
A ghostbuster leads the slime down the runway on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Contestants enjoy the wagon on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
A cool race car driver and her canine passenger exit the runway on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
A spootted lanterfly, Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
From left, Francesca, Sam, Annette, and Nicole Colombo are the third place winners in the “best group” category with their dog Scruffy, the spotted lanterfly, Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Conductors from left, Blake Tramel and Nicole Colombo with their express train win third place in the “most creative” category on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)
Bee keepers Marcus and Maggy Tung take home first prize in the “cutest” category with their bees Remi and baby Josie on Oct. 22, 2021. (KATE ALBRIGHT / FOR MONTCLAIR LOCAL)