Kids, grab your Easter basket and running shoes and get over to Green Valley Park -- it's time for the Big Easter Egg Scramble.
The Payson Parks and Recreation Department is gearing up for the event Saturday, April 19.
Michelle Beach, events and activities coordinator for parks and recreation, along with members of the Payson Elks organization, have spent the last three weeks stuffing plastic eggs full of candy.
"My staff and the Elks have stuffed 5,000 eggs," Beach said. "We are aiming for each kid in each of the four age groups to get 10 eggs."
Besides candy, several of the eggs will have certificates for prizes stuffed inside.
"We bought toys, and if they find a prize certificate inside an egg, they can pick a toy," Beach said.
The scramble begins at 9 a.m. for ages 7-8; 9:15 a.m. for ages 5-6; 9:30 a.m. for ages 3-4; and 9:45 a.m. for ages 0-2. Parents with children in the youngest age range can assist them.
At 10:15 a.m. games, including an egg relay, begin and winners will be able to draw a prize.
Representatives from the Payson Humane Society, will be on hand taking pictures of the kids with the Easter Bunny or a llama, whichever they choose. The photo program is sponsored by the Mazatzal Casino.
The humane society will also be doing face painting and will accept donations for that and the pictures.
"The humane society will also have some of their dogs there that are available for adoption," Beach said.
The Egg Scramble, co-sponsored by the Payson Elks, is free to all children.
"It provides a safe place for kids to go and see the Easter bunny and get some prizes," Beach said.
"Bring the kids out for a fun Easter celebration."
In fact, with spring in the air, families can bring a nice hamper of picnic goodies to Green Valley Park and make a day of it.
For more information on the Easter Egg Scramble, contact the parks and recreation department at 474-5242 x 7.
A little history
The source of the Easter egg hunt stems from a tale published in a German book in 1682, where a bunny laid eggs and hid them in the garden. Edible Easter bunnies, made of pastry and sugar, were first made in Germany during the early 1800s.
Decorating eggs has been widely practiced by many different cultures. Eggs were painted with bright colors to represent spring. The Ukrainian Pysanki eggs were intricately decorated by drizzling beeswax on the eggs and then dipping them into several dyes.
The most famous and valuable Easter eggs are the Fabergé eggs designed in St. Petersburg by Russian goldsmith Peter Carl Fabergé. Created for the Russian royal family the eggs are lavishly enameled and jeweled. Today they are priceless.