Eggstravaganza: Stark Co Sheriff's Dept. to host three weekends of egg hunts
Stark County Sheriff's Department aims to bring the community together with free Easter egg hunts for children of all ages in Dickinson, Richardton and Belfield.
STARK COUNTY, N.D. — The Stark County Sheriff’s Office is hopping into Easter fun with a series of free Easter egg hunts for children of all ages in the towns of Dickinson, Belfield and Richardton spanning the next three weekends. Sheriff Corey Lee says his department's vision for community involvement inspired the event.
“Part of our vision at the department ever since I've taken over is community involvement and certainly Easter egg hunts are something that can reach every every demographic of child and family. It's a completely free event,” Sheriff Corey Lee said. “We do see all walks of life at these. Certainly, it's a great event for us to bond and interact with the children and families of our community. But it's also a good event for them to intermingle with each other.”
Each egg hunt will be split into different groups of children aged 1 to 4 years old, 5 to 8 and 9 to 12. The Belfield hunt will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Apr. 1 at Belfield Public School. Dickinson’s will start at 11 a.m. in the Prairie Hills Mall on Apr. 8. The last egg hunt will be held in Richardton on Apr. 16 at 2 p.m. in St. Mary’s Park. Lee encouraged parents to plan on arriving 10-15 minutes early so they don’t miss out on the action.
“It starts on time and ends very quickly,” Lee said, adding that it’s a wild scramble once the hunt is on. “It's called controlled chaos, basically when that whistle or siren goes off and it becomes Thunderdome, about anywhere from three to five minutes.”
Lt. Eldon Mehrer said these egg hunts are only possible thanks to the generosity of the Western Edge community.
“We just encourage everybody to come out. It's a great family event for the littles,” Mehrer said. “We want to thank all the various sponsors that have supported these events countywide. Without those sponsors we couldn't make this happen.”
Prairie Hills Mall General Manager Peggy O’Brien said egg hunts the last two years had overwhelmingly large turnout because most other similar festivities in the area were canceled that weekend due to crippling mid-April snowstorms.
“I don't think we have a storm in the forecast for this year. I am hoping and praying (we don't) because the last two years that's what happened. We had a nice big storm the day before and all the outdoor hunts were called off,” O’Brien said. “But it’s nice that we’re the ones with the indoor Easter egg hunt. So rain, snow, sleet or hail — the Easter egg hunt will go on.”
She explained that preparing the plastic eggs is a big collaborative effort with employees of the Sheriff’s Office and mall store workers filling them with candy and prizes.
“Last year we had just over 22,000 eggs,” she said.