In Philadelphia, however, officials took a hands-off approach.
"I'm not in charge of Halloween," Mayor Nutter said. "It's October 31st; it's Halloween. Go put on a costume, have a good time."
In South Jersey, one family of four in Cinnaminson had a trick up its sleeves for the executive order. About 6 p.m., they bucked the trend by making their way down an otherwise-deserted Church Road, the kids decked out in costumes.
"I didn't have the heart to tell him it wasn't Halloween," said Kristy Dymond, 33, as her 4-year-old son, A.J., skipped around her ecstatically, peeking through his mask and grinning.
"He's been asking, 'How much longer till Halloween?' " she said.
So, despite a message on their answering machine from the township telling them not to take the kids out trick-or-treating, Kristy and Andrew Dymond dressed A.J. as Batman and their 1-year-old daughter, Natalie, as Snow White, and hit the streets.
"The storm's over. It's just like every other night," said Andrew Dymond, 33. "Are they gonna cancel Christmas because of a snowstorm?"
The Dymonds said that they were surprised to see no one else out trick-or-treating. Neighbors in most houses where they knocked, they said, were prepared with treats and glad to see the kids dressed up and enjoying the holiday.
"The government should not tell people when they can or can't go out," Andrew Dymond said. "We can't be the only people that think it's ridiculous the government is telling people's kids they can't go out on Halloween."
- Staff writer Andrew Eiser
contributed to this report.
Contact Morgan Zalot at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-854-5928. Follow her on Twitter @morganzalot. Read her blog at PhillyConfidential.com.