The warmer weather is coming…and so is Easter! There are lots of local events happening with opportunities to see the Easter bunny and participate in egg hunts with your little one’s. But who has the time and patience? I hate waiting in long lines and surfing through crowds of people – especially with my 21 month old twins and 4 year old big boy in tow. That’s why it’s best to bring the fun right to you and plan a neighborhood Egg Hunt!
I can’t take total credit for this idea since one of my neighbors thought this up and implemented it all within a few days notice. We had so much fun that I thought I would pass it along. It’s a great opportunity to see/meet neighbors (especially since we’ve all been hidden inside all winter due to the massive amounts of snow) and let your little one’s run loose with some new friends. Here’s what you need to do.
Spread the word: Last year a mass text went out to all neighbors saying that an egg hunt would take place at a specific date and time. It was determined that we would all meet in the front of my house. To be a bit more organized you might want to send out an email or evite with detailed information. Just make sure that you include everyone. No one wants to look out their window and know they are missing out on a great time. This is also a great opportunity to knock on a new neighbors door to introduce yourself and your children.
Set some rules/guidelines: For our egg hunt each child who would be participating needed to provide 20 eggs filled with goodies. We also had 1 “golden” egg for each child with a random amount of money hidden inside (it makes it a little bit more fun for the older ones!). Our neighborhood kids ranged in ages from 9 months to 13+years old, and each child was able to find 20 eggs plus one “golden” egg.
Gather your materials: All you need is some plastic eggs filled with small jelly beans, candies or toys. I can’t wait to try making these awesome Ninja Turtle eggs that a friend reccomended to me (my big boy is obsessed). For our “golden” egg last year I decorated a regular sized egg with stickers, and some neighbors actually had larger eggs to differentiate. Also make sure your child brings a basket or bag to stash all the eggs during the hunt. I love these cute baskets from Pottery Barn Kids.
Hide the eggs: About a half hour before the egg hunt began many of the dads met outside to hide the eggs. We decided to hide the eggs in 4 different neighbor’s backyards (each child would find 5 eggs per yard). Some of the eggs were left in plain site for the little one’s to spot. Where other’s where hidden higher up in trees or behind toys for the bigger kids. Some spots were so good that we continued to find eggs a few weeks after in one of the gutters and in a flower pot.
Hunt: You might want to give the little one’s a head start so they don’t get trampled in all the excitement. Encourage your older children to help a younger friend find some eggs. Parents can also hang back to talk with both new and old friends. We allowed about 10-15 minutes of “hunting” in each of the 4 neighbor’s yards. It was fun to have different locations so the enjoyment could last a little bit longer.
Eat, play and celebrate: Once all of the eggs had been found in the last yard the kids were able to play together! Bagels and coffee were available for the adults. It was so fun to watch all the kids play and gobble up the treats hidden inside the eggs, as well as have a few grownup conversations!
I can’t wait to start planning this year’s neighborhood egg hunt! Since there is a slight chance that all the snow might not be completely gone, don’t be discouraged. Our backup plan is to use our elementary school’s parking lot (luckily it’s right around the corner). Just be creative…any spot will do! Happy Hunting!