PR Win: Governor Christie Officially Postpones Halloween

In case you didn’t notice, this has been a tough week for New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, he of the quick wit, sharp temper and big ambitions.

His state was hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy, and we’d say it’s safe to assume he hasn’t gotten much sleep over the past three or four days: You may have watched him berate the mayor of Atlantic City for encouraging residents to stay at city shelters despite an earlier evacuation order; you may have heard him uncharacteristically praise President Obama’s storm response as “outstanding”; you may have seen footage of him together with the President this afternoon as the two surveyed the storm’s damage by helicopter.

This was all well and good, but today marks a far greater achievement for the Governor: he was won the week’s “best PR stunt posing as a government order” contest by officially postponing Halloween.

What does this mean, exactly? Let’s read the end of the official release, complete with charmingly arcane language:

“WHEREAS, in accordance with the N.J.S.A. App. A:9-34 and – 51, I reserved the right to utilize and employ all available resources of the State government to protect against the emergency created by Hurricane Sandy;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRIS CHRISTIE, Governor of the State of New Jersey, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and by the Statutes of this State, do hereby ORDER and DIRECT:

1. Celebrations of Halloween scheduled for October 31, 2012 in all parts of New Jersey shall be held on Monday, November 5, 2012.”

In a follow-up statement, Christie explained that he changed the date on all publicly sponsored Halloween events in order to “minimize additional risks to lives and the public safety as we begin the process of rebuilding and recovering from Hurricane Sandy”. While many communities delayed related events until Saturday, Christie felt like that just wasn’t good enough.

Monday it is, then–and bravo to Chris Christie. The headline reads a little ridiculous, but his decision actually makes a lot of sense!

One question, though: how will this announcement affect our previously scheduled events?

@PatrickCoffee Patrick Coffee is a senior editor for Adweek.
Publish date: October 31, 2012 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT