Organizers Angry After Large Easter Egg Hunt Is Ruined by Aggressive Parents' 'Absolutely Unacceptable Behavior'
A children’s event dissolved into a free-for-all Saturday, leading an outdoor mall to announce that its Second Annual Easter Egg Hunt was its last.
The Greene Town Center in Beavercreek, Ohio, posted a statement Monday in a Facebook post — which has since been taken down — about an egg hunt that quickly went awry when parents evidently began behaving badly.
“Everyone was very upset with the outcome of the Egg Hunt,” the post said, according to WHIO-TV in Dayton.
“Adults were not permitted to pick up eggs,” it said, “yet we saw so many doing so, which resulted in some children leaving empty-handed.
“We saw grown adults pushing children out of the way, and people getting knocked over.”
The mall management team’s message explained that it had spent a great deal of time planning the event, which involved hiding 2,000 eggs.
According to the Facebook post, the organizers spent 90 minutes “instructing participants on how the event would work,” WKEF-TV reported.
But the second annual community Easter egg hunt “did not turn out as we had hoped and planned for, due to several factors,” the post said.
“From the get go, we had an extremely difficult time with crowd control and keeping people away from the center court area,” it said. “We asked repeatedly that participants move.
“1 & 2 year olds get to start first in a designated area (the concrete area by the fountains), where they had eggs laid out specifically for them, then 3 & 4 year olds would get 60 seconds with a parent to get a head start, and following that, the hunt would begin for everyone else.”
An outdoor mall in Ohio prepared long and hard for an Easter egg hunt and it didn’t go as planned at all, pretty much from the start. In fact, the situation sounds ugly.https://t.co/52n7Qvzeng
— CBS4Local (@CBS4Local) April 4, 2023
“This is absolutely unacceptable behavior,” the post said, “and we apologize to anyone that was affected by these actions.”
“[E]veryone was very upset with the outcome of the Egg Hunt, and the way they were treated by community members at the conclusion of the event.”
“This is not at all how we had planned for the event to go, and we are so upset with the outcome and the reactions from participants.
“We understand fully that you are all upset, but please believe that we are too.”
The Dayton Daily News reported mall management thanked prize donors and event volunteers and apologized “for the way the community has spoken to them.”
Jessica Baer, assistant manager of the Greene Town Center, said the outdoor mall doesn’t plan to hold any more Easter egg hunts.
“Unfortunately, we had plenty of staff and the parents still didn’t follow our instruction,” she said.
“There will be no plans to hunt eggs again.”
Instead, Baer said, it is planning to hold a prize raffle.
“We feel the community will be better without the hunt,” she said.
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