Most adults remember an Easter egg hunt from their childhood. For me it was the egg hunts my parents (aka. the Easter bunny) did at the house on Easter morning. At that time they were real eggs mixed with a few plastic eggs filled with coins. We have continued this tradition with our children and have even added a bit of a Belgian flare to it by including clothing and print items to the egg hunting area.
As a child there were a few public egg hunts but those were not my favorite since they were usually quite competitive and could get nasty. In the last decades the number of public egg hunts sponsored by civic groups, fire departments, towns, villages, etc. have greatly increased. I’m not sure if they have gotten any less competitive but there is a tendency for there to be sufficient supervision, prizes and eggs to please all the participants. The Saturday before Easter Sunday tends to be the day when most egg hunts occur.
To help parents find the many egg hunts that are scheduled in their geographic area sites such as Easter Egg Hunts and Events.org and your local newspaper/TV news or parents/child activity web site will have locations, dates and times. For the Buffalo area Fun 4 Kids has a good listing.
In preparing for a public egg hunt parents should remember the following to make the event more enjoyable:
- Plan to arrive 15 minutes before the scheduled start
- Listen to the instructions
- Bring a bag or basket
- Make sure your camera batteries are charged
- Let your child find the eggs and not you…I’ll admit I found this hard to do when she was a toddler!
- Dress appropriately…here in WNY conditions can range from cold/snow to wet/muddy to hot/dry
- Talk to your children about manners and while getting eggs to help others they may see having difficulty
MamaNYC has a nice blog titled Easter Egg Hunt Etiquette – A Reminder for Parents and Children! that I’d recommend to parents. I especially found this excerpt from the post to be something to convey to our five year-old:
Sit down with your children before the Easter egg hunt and remind them that there will be other children present and everyone deserves a fair shot. Just as they are excited to get onto the egg hunt field, so is another little boy and girl in your community. Be considerate of others and remember kindness goes a long way. Tell your child how proud you will be at the end of the hunt if you notice he is being the bigger person when faced with the argument “whose egg is it?” when another child grabs an egg at the same time.
Younger children won’t grab as many eggs, so remind them there is no room for bragging on the Easter egg hunt. Some children will get more than they will, but others might not wind up with more than a single egg. Be happy with your basket without gloating — and congratulate others on their finds, too!