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Children scour field for plastic Easter eggs

April 01, 2007|By DON AINES

There was a mad scramble for prize-packed plastic Easter Eggs on Saturday as hundreds of children from toddlers to 12-year-olds scoured the field at the Washington County Agricultural Education Center.

The 3,000 eggs were scooped up by the 485 children that registered for the event, which was co-sponsored by the Washington County Rural Heritage Museum and the Washington County Recreation Department, said Leslie Hendrickson, the museum's administrator. The eggs were filled with candy, stickers and certificates for free recreation department classes, she said.

There also were 10 grand prizes of Easter baskets for 10 children who found the special eggs hidden on the grounds, Hendrickson said. The Easter Bunny also was on hand to hand out traditional holiday treats.

Eggs long were used as a symbol of the rebirth of the earth in spring festivals that predate Christian Easter traditions. While the eggs gathered by the children on Saturday were plastic, those visiting the museum today will have the chance to experience what it was like to dye real eggs the way it was before PAAS Easter egg dye kits were created more than 125 years ago.

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As part of the Rural Heritage Museum's open house, Hendrickson said children that come to the center from 1 to 4 p.m. will be able to use dyes made from red cabbage, onion skins and blueberries to color real eggs. Children also can make construction paper Easter baskets, she said.

On Saturdays and Sundays through April 22, the museum also is hosting 101 works of art by students in Washington County Public Schools. Kaity Eaton of Bester Elementary School, Paige Dayhoff of Smithsburg Middle School and Vanessa Diz of South Hagerstown High School won first prize and $50 each in their categories, Hendrickson said.

"Sweet and Sour Tastes of Spring" will be featured April 7 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the museum. The program will demonstrate how early settlers relied on honey, sorghum, maple syrup, dandelions, winter cress, wild mustard and other natural ingredients to brighten their diets.

If you go



What: Washington County Rural Heritage Museum spring open house

When: Today, 1 to 4 p.m.

Where: Washington County Rural Heritage Museum, Agricultural Education Center and Museum, 7313 Sharpsburg Pike, seven miles south of Hagerstown

Today's activities will include egg coloring and dyeing for children.

For information, call 240-313-2839.

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