How to properly handle errors in Express?

How to properly handle errors in Express?

I am beginning to work with Express JS and have run into an issue. I can’t seem to figure out the proper way to handle errors.
For example, I have a web services API that serves an object called “event”. I’d like to return a simple string of “cannot find event” when a user submits an event id that isn’t found. Here is how I’m currently structuring my code:
app.get(‘/event/:id’, function(req, res, next) {
if (req.params.id != 1) {
next(new Error(‘cannot find event ‘ + req.params.id));
}

req.send(‘event found!’);
});

When I submit an id other than 1, Node crashes with the following output:
http.js:527
throw new Error(“Can’t set headers after they are sent.”);
^
Error: Can’t set headers after they are sent.
at ServerResponse. (http.js:527:11)
at ServerResponse.setHeader (/usr/local/kayak/node_modules/express/node_modules/connect/lib/patch.js:62:20)
at /usr/local/kayak/node_modules/express/node_modules/connect/lib/middleware/errorHandler.js:72:19
at [object Object]. (fs.js:107:5)
at [object Object].emit (events.js:61:17)
at afterRead (fs.js:878:12)
at wrapper (fs.js:245:17)

From what I can tell by using the node.js debugger, execution of the block of code continues after next() is called, meaning that req.send(‘event found!’) tries to run. I don’t want this to happen.
The only workaround that I’ve found is to simply throw a new Error() instead of “next-ing” it, but this results in a default Express HTML error page being generated. I’d like a little more control than that.
I have taken the time to read over the error handling section of the Express documentation, but I couldn’t make sense of it.

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