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April 20, 2014

Eggs fly at park

RICHMOND — Easter has probably never been so “eggstravagant” in Richmond as it was Saturday during the annual Eggstravaganza in Irvine-McDowell Park.

For the first time, thousands of eggs were dropped, appropriately by an “eggbeater”-type helicopter, in addition to thousands of eggs already scattered on the grass below. Together, they numbered about 10,000, according to Erin Moore, Richmond Parks and Recreation director.

This year, candy collection was done a bit differently. Instead of picking up eggs stuffed with candy or candy scattered on the ground, children collected plastic eggs that could be redeemed for one bag filled with a cupful of candy.

This assured that all children, regardless of age or speed, would be able to take home the same amount of treats, Moore said. The children were divided into two age groups, 5 and under, and 6 to 10.

Despite the large number of eggs, each hunt -- more like a mad dash -- lasted no more than three minutes. Both times the field was picked clean as hundreds of children rushed to pick them up.

“The weather was so nice that I think everyone wanted to come out to shake their cabin fever,” Moore said.

In addition to collecting eggs, a lot of other attractions were set up for the children. They could go down a large inflatable slide or bounce in an inflatable castle. They could pet small farm animals, such as sheep, goats, llamas and a miniature horse, ride ponies or play games.

A long line of children and parents formed for children to sit on the Easter bunny’s lap. He, or is it she, welcomed visitors at the Irvinton House front door.

Several community groups set up informational booths and conducted activities for the children. Among them were the Eastside Community Church, which sponsored the helicopter egg drop, and students in Eastern Kentucky University’s Parks and Recreation administration class.

The Richmond Fire Department brought a fire truck, and the Madison County Public Library brought its bookmobile, both always big attractions.

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