The bright green lawn at State College Alliance Church was covered with two things on Saturday. Jewel-colored plastic eggs stuffed with treats, and children desperate to get to prizes.
The church’s third annual egg hunt brought out hundreds of parents and children looking for a little holiday fun on a perfect spring day.
The event featured more than just a mad scramble for the sweets tucked around the soccer field and front lawn.
It is the first experience with bunnies and eggs for Ellie Samuhel, 10 months.
She and big sister Lucie, 2, were in their Easter best for a stop at the photo station after Lucie got painted up like a bunny at a different booth.
“We wanted to have some family fun,” said dad Dave Samuhel, of State College.
Joey Minor, 3, had just one priority — eggs. Waiting for the go-ahead to start picking them up was hard for the redhead. He had a personal quota of five he wanted to reach.
His cousins were there, too. Brady Nagy, 8, had his eyes on the egg prize, too, but Dillon, 5, took some time to plant a marigold in a colorful cup while Addison, 6, and Chase, 4, had decorated eggs painted on their cheeks.
“It’s such a nice day, we wanted to spend it with friends and family,” said mom Carrie Nagy.
That’s just what organizer Heather Clark likes to hear.
The egg hunt is her baby, part of Alliance’s community outreach program, which hopes to spread their church’s message through positive interaction with their neighbors.
The event takes about two months to plan, including hours of volunteers stuffing the estimated 10,000 eggs spread across the grass.
Clark said that attendance has grown each year and somehow the sunshine always cooperates.
“We have prayed every year and always had beautiful weather,” she said.
A separate section toward the front of the lawn was staked out just for the littlest scavengers, and that was just fine with Kallie Medich, 2.
She clutched her flowered basket and headed into the field with a mission, quickly collecting all the orange eggs she could find.
Mom Shannon Medich, of York, tried to convince her to try some other colors, but Kallie’s first egg hunt was going to be exactly what she wanted.
Sister Lily, 4, went on her own hunt, with grandmother Ginny Weaver and the older children.
“This is just a really nice thing to do with your family,” Medich said.
With all the eggs collected, children flocked back to their parents to show off their spoils and get a jump on their Easter candy consumption.