The Easter Bunny goofed Saturday morning when he hid just 4,500 brightly dyed eggs for more than 5,000 children at Wheeler Historic Farm.
And that silly rabbit also flubbed when it came to having enough little bags of peanuts and candy to hand out after the second annual Easter egg hunt had ended.All 3,000 of the bags were gone by 9:35 a.m., leaving a long line of disappointed children, whose parents were resigned to stopping at the store for holiday treats on the way home to fill the many empty Easter baskets.
Leaders of the Union Lions Club, which co-sponsored the event with the Salt Lake County Recreation and Parks Division and Wheeler Farm Friends Inc., said they expected only about 3,000 children.
They had spent $1,500 to buy eggs, dye and candy for what would have been twice as many children as participated in last year's egg hunt at the historic county park. But as soon as the hunt started at 9 a.m., it was obvious there wouldn't be enough goodies to go around.
"When we cut them loose and they ran out there, you couldn't see the hayfield for all the people," said Joe Anderson, an officer in the Union Lions Club.
"The eggs were gone in five seconds," said Kay Ashton, who was carrying his 6-year-old daughter, Emily, and her empty Easter basket. "We're going to the store to get some."
Other children fared better in the hunt. Geoffrey Bennett, 5, found four eggs hidden in the grassy fields and ate three of them. His sister, LeAnn, nearly 2, had one egg but was more interested in eating chocolate candy.
Even if they didn't have any eggs or candy to show for the morning, most families appeared to be enjoying the farm setting. Some lounged in the grass while others explored the old buildings and waited for a sheep-shearing demonstration to begin.
A few children tried to share their bounty with the ducks and geese that live on the farm, but the animals had little use for purple jelly beans and other candy. They seemed more concerned with keeping the eggs in their nests from ending up in the brightly colored baskets.
Other egg hunts were held in the Salt Lake area, including one sponsored by the Children's Service Society of Utah held on the grounds of the Terracor mansion on South Temple.
The egg hunt, for families who have participated in the society's infant and special needs adoption programs, is traditionally held at the Governor's Mansion. It was moved this year because of work being done on the mansion's basement.