DOBSON — Five thousand eggs. Hundreds of children. Squeals of laughter and fun.
The stage is set for what has become a rite of spring, the 13th Annual Surry County Parks and Recreation Easter Egg Hunt.
The event is set to run from 10 a.m., until 2 p.m. on Saturday, with the Easter Egg hunt itself getting under way promptly at noon, according to Parks and Recreation Director Daniel White. Once again, it will be held on the three ball fields at Fisher River Park.
While the hunt is free and open to the public, White said attendees are encouraged to bring a canned food item to donate. All food collected will be distributed to area food banks.
White said the annual egg hunt has become a community favorite.
“This is a great way for the community to get out and enjoy the spring,” he said. “We will have all kinds of vendors on hand, from the health department to the Department of Fish and Wildlife, so there should be something for everyone. It’s just a good community gathering that’s a real grassroots type of activity, and the kids have a lot of fun.”
In addition to vendors and the Easter Egg hunt, the event will feature face painting, games, crafts and activity centers for the kids.
“There may even be a special appearance by the Easter Bunny,” White hinted with a smile.
This year’s hunt will be divided into three age groups, with categories for children aged birth to 3, 4 to 6 and 7 and up, White said.
“That’s key, that we break them down by age groups,” he said. “Different age groups have different abilities, and the youngest group will be allowed to be helped by their parents. That’s the only group where parents will be allowed on the field with their kids.”
Photos with the Easter Bunny will be free, but White said parents should bring their own camera.
In the event of rain, White said the event will be more of a “drive-through” proposition.
“If it’s a rain-0ut, it will still be held,” he said. “We’ll have tents set up where there will still be things like face painting and pictures with the Easter Bunny.”
“When the fire truck horn goes off at noon for the egg hunt, you have about 10 minutes to get your eggs,” he said. “Last year it was packed, so be on time. At noon, the fire engine horn sounds and the hunt is on.”
Keith Strange can be reached at 336-719-1929 or via Twitter @strangereporter.com