This statement is in response to some critical comments we have received regarding Saturday’s Easter Egg Hunt at Choate Park.
We would like to reiterate the two-fold purpose of this event: first as a fundraiser to help continue to refurbish this historic Medway park and, second as a “fun-filled” opportunity for families to enjoy the park. To satisfy these goals, we must produce and present the event on a budget while trying to avoid unnecessary restrictions. As an aside, we should mention that our pre-eminent ‘free’ event for families is our Pumpkin Walk each fall.
We are saddened that some children did not receive their allotted eggs. This was not due to a failure on our part however. We supplied not only fifteen eggs for every child but indeed, an additional 1000 eggs beyond that to compensate for any extras needed! This however did require that everyone respect the rules. To that end, we provided explicit written instructions to each family and we hoped and expected that adults would be good role models and admirable citizens.
Each year, we offer extra candy and prizes at our “basket table” for any disappointed children; we have also re-stuffed and re-hidden eggs for kids. As a last resort, we offer a full cash refund to those who request it. Our ability to enforce moral behavior with regard to the number of eggs taken is restricted by the limited number of FoCP members, by the geographical layout of the park, as well as by our desire to maintain a pleasant and respectful tone at our event.
We have tried running the Egg Hunt in several different ways (by age etc.) and found our current method of small timed groups to be the most effective given the number of children involved, the desire to promote safety for our children and the number of volunteers we have. We are creative and we will be evaluating new methods to control the excessive egg procurement exuberance of our attendees. We look forward to an even more successful event next year.
With regard to the quality and type of candy presented, seasonal candy is, in fact, extremely expensive. We did receive generous donations from Necco, The Goddard School and Girl Scout Troop 3376. The rest of the stuffing we purchased with our FoCP funds. If you would like to donate candy/stuffing for future events, please let us know! Easter motif candy would be extremely welcome. We did offer other activities such as games, tattoos and face painting and a total of approximately forty prize baskets. Each child also received a coupon for a free ice cream at McDonald’s. Additional donations were received from W. Podzka Landscaping and Star Market. We are able to offer these extras due to the extraordinary solicitation efforts made by our members at local businesses during the weeks leading up to the event.
The Girl Scouts were a key asset in making this event successful. Each will receive a community service patch from FoCP for the countless hours of time put forth and for the indispensable energy displayed.
Since our inception, the FoCP have striven to coordinate fun family orientated events for Choate Park while at the same time improving the quality of equipment and the overall environment. We are a volunteer group with just ten core members who are responsible for facilitating each event from start to finish. The harsh financial reality is that it will require five Annual Easter Egg Hunts to purchase even one small piece of new equipment for the park. We continue to make improvements in running different events, welcome your input and always need your help!
Thank you, as always, for your support and any donations you would care to make to advance our efforts.
The Friends of Choate Park