MANITOULIN – Easter egg hunts took place all over Manitoulin Island this past weekend, with events taking place in Assiginack, Gore Bay, Kagawong, Mindemoya, Sheguiandah and Tehkummah.
The hunt at the Centennial Museum of Sheguiandah went off in fine form, with over 3,000 plastic eggs filled with goodies spread across the fields on the museum grounds. Hundreds of children made an appearance carrying a variety of baskets and many wearing themed costumes—plenty of bunny ears in evidence. Following the main event, many children and their parents adjourned to the museum playground for an after party.
In Manitowaning, the 33rd annual Assiginack Library Easter egg hunt got underway in the Fields’ family fields under the watchful eye of organizer Debbie Robinson. There were a couple of new items at the event this year, including the bonnie bunny itself as the Easter Bunny put in an appearance. There were also some tame bunnies, courtesy of Violet and Natalia, who kept the little ones entertained as they waited for the main event to begin.
Ms. Debbie Robinson noted that there were 3,066 eggs containing around $40 in foil wrapped chocolates set out this year, along with 1,300 suckers and juice boxes—the juice boxes were courtesy of the Fields—as prizes for turning in the emptied plastic eggs. There were cash prizes in some of the eggs, with $20 and $10 in the older kids’ field and smaller amounts for the younger.
The Assiginack event has a long and storied past. Delmer Fields could recall setting out to hunt eggs in “Mrs. Mastin’s yard. Back in those days it was real eggs,” he said. “The kids at the school would paint them and then they would be set out in the field.”
“This is a very generational event now,” said Ms. Robinson, the Assiginack librarian who had taken over the Easter egg hunt in 1985. Ms. Robinson said that the library is very grateful to the Fields family for hosting the event on their property.
“Since then, we really only missed one year, when the snow was really late,” recalled Ms. Robinson. “We decided to put it off until the summer. That didn’t go over well.”
These days, kids up to 12 can partake in the event each year. “After you turn 12, you become a hider not a hunter,” laughed Ms. Robinson.