There was a mad dash for the perfect egg. Candy-filled canisters of springtime delight hid in the grass for a hasty hand to grab. Participants raced to add the next prize to their hunt’s colorful bounty.
Such descriptions are common for seasonal Easter egg hunts that children around the region enjoy each year, but in Rainier, the festivities were also enjoyed by the young at heart.
The community group We Love Rainier WA held its annual eggstravaganza for the area’s youth on Saturday at Wilkowski Park, though this year some of the 5,000 eggs up for grabs were (bunny) earmarked specifically for adults.
“It was super eggciting — it made me feel like a kid again,” said Rainier resident Heather Ford of the adult hunt. “Adults don’t usually get to have fun like the kids do. It was a mad scramble. No holds barred. You know, I went between someone’s legs to snatch an egg.”
Rainier resident Darik Decremer said he brought his kids to the event “to check out some cool Easter egg hunting,” but was pleasantly surprised to find out that he would be able to relive his childhood joy in the hunt’s adult installment.
“This is my first time, so it’s actually a pretty good experience,” Decremer said. “It gives everyone in town a chance to have a lot of fun from all age groups.”
For both the kids and adults, some of the eggs had tickets that could be exchanged for prizes.
“I brought my kids, too, and they had a blast,” Decremer said. “My son is almost three, and he got one of the tickets, so he got a prize. He picked out a box of three electronic toys. It was a helicopter, a police car and a fire truck. It’s really cool.”
We Love Rainier WA member Tiffany Crop was the one who conceived of the idea to include the adults as she was filling thousands of eggs with candy and prizes for the kids last week, and knew she had to make a last-minute addendum to the festival’s offerings.
“I was stuffing all the kids’ Easter eggs and I was thinking, ‘Why don’t the adults ever get to have any fun?’” Crop told The Chronicle. “Like, in these things, why don’t we have something to showcase all of our businesses and at the same time offer something fun for all of the adults, too?”
So Crop made the rounds to local businesses in Rainier and Yelm and asked if they would provide donations to the event for prizes adults might want.
“I said, ‘Hey, what is the interest? Would you be interested in donating something for an adult Easter egg hunt?’” Crop said of her donation solicitations. “And it was just overwhelming, the response I got. So I know next year it will be much bigger and better than what I was able to put together in just a week.”
For Crop’s part, she was able to secure over $1,000 worth of prizes for the adults, she said.
Prizes included $200 cash from Ranier’s Cadillac Meats, a $50 barbecue basket from Vail View Farms and four yards of landscaping material from Old Town Bark.
“It was overwhelming,” Crop said. “From businesses to entrepreneurs, it was incredible.”
Dawn Kenney said the adult hunt was fun due to the number of eggs that she and other others were able to vie for, yet her experience didn’t reap the bounty that some of the others experienced.
“There were a lot of people doing it, so I didn’t find many eggs,” Kenney said. “You had to be fast, had to be quick, and I’m not. I ended up with candy – a couple Reeses, a York and a Lindor.”
The event as a whole was co-sponsored by We Love Rainier WA and the Rainier senior center and saw four separate hunts for the kids, divided among different age groups.
In addition to the egg hunts, the event included a bounce house, face painting, ice cream sales, a bake sale, a 50/50 raffle and selfies with the Easter Bunny.
The event opened at 12:30 p.m. and ran through 3:30 p.m., with the egg hunts beginning at 2 p.m.
We Love Rainier is a non-profit community enrichment organization providing old-fashioned, hometown events for the residents of the City of Rainier and surrounding Thurston County.