Hundreds join annual OCCA egg hunt

       Close to 400 people, mostly children, joined Easter Egg Hunt festivities at Bancroft Park April 8. The start for ages 5-8.
Westside Pioneer photo
       The highlight was the annual hunt, in which youngsters from ages 0 to 4 took off from one side of the park's central concrete area while, at the same time on the other side, equally focused kids ages 5 to 8 jetted forward. Within less than two minutes, every one of the 2,500 plastic eggs on the grass had disappeared into scores of bags and baskets.
       This was all fine with members the Old Colorado City Associates (OCCA) merchants group, which organizes the event as a give-back to the Westside community as well as an amiable promotional for the historic shopping district. The eggs contained candy, toys or notifications of prizes donated from Old Town shopkeepers.
       The ensuing scene, in which various families hunkered down together to find out what treasure each egg contained, delighted local resident Lynda Dunne. “Seeing these families get together that way warms my heart,” she said.
       After two straight years of cold, wet weather, the hunt was blessed this year with clear skies and temperatures in the mid-50s. Preliminary activities - a carousel, face- painter and balloon-twister - were already going strong around 11:30 (an hour beforehand). People continued to arrive as the event time grew closer, so that by the time of the simultaneous hunts there were probably more than 200 kids lined up on the two sides combined.
       Many parents recorded the hunt with cameras, while others helped their offspring locate eggs. One of the most prominent adult helpers was a mother in the 0-4 hunt, who raced forward, eagerly swinging her roughly 1-year-old offspring in front. But the child expressed no concerns - perhaps being naturally well-behaved or... perhaps the natural egg-hunting instincts of its species were already kicking in. LEFT: The hunt begins for the 0-4 age group. RIGHT: The Easter bunny rides the carousel.
Westside Pioneer photos

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