EF Parents seek (and find) community this Easter.
East Falls parents came together in support of a neighborhood Easter egg hunt the Sunday before the holiday (March 25). A simple Facebook post on East Falls Parents Network sparked interest in setting up a parent-initiated egg hunt in McMichael Park. I can’t take credit for the idea — Christina Staurinos, another EF parent, explored the same idea two years ago. This year about 20 families showed up with far more kids with Easter baskets in hand.
My FB post was motivated by the desire to have something local and very walkable. I wanted my kids to attend a small Easter egg hunt where there is no fighting over eggs. It was disheartening to hear about children who did not get a single egg because of the large attendance at other community egg hunts. Instead, I wanted to get together with the parents in our EF community and put on something that was not so overwhelming.
My initial post garnered some interest, so I set up an event and asked parents to donate about ten eggs per child. We managed to collect over 200 eggs from parents. Even though the day was cold, it was such a successful event. I met so many parents and was able to put faces to names. Kids were running around McMichael Park and gathering eggs as far as about 50 meters away. It had to be done in two waves because there were so many kids and we wanted the little ones to have a fair shot at the eggs.
I received so many “thank you’s” from parents who told me that they appreciated it. But, honestly, it was easy because of the support I received from parents who helped me before and during the hunt.
Our local neighborhood businesses generously gave, too! SplashLab Arts and Kids at Play donated a day pass as special prizes in the eggs. The kids who won were so excited when they claimed their gift certificates. It became more than just an Easter egg hunt, too. Krystal Cunillera had a demo class after the hunt for a kids’ singing/dance class called Zumbini that she will be starting April 14th at Vault and Vine (join Krystal’s parents’ FB group, Rutabaga Circle, for updates & networking).
I really hope we can do more of these types of events in the future. In the works is a possible 4th of July kids parade and maybe a 5k run/walk to help raise funds for Thomas Mifflin Elementary. I could not have done this without the overwhelming help of the parents and the families who want to be a part of this community effort. Thank you and I hope to see more people out soon as the weather heats up.
Carla Lewandowski is an active East Falls mom and professor of Law & Justice studies at Rowan University (Glassboro, NJ). All photos here courtesy of Carla!