CATO — Cameron Blaylock stared at the bag of candy he collected at the community Easter egg hunt in Cato with saucer-like eyes Saturday, as if he had just struck gold.
"I have gum!," he exclaimed in victory as he did a dance and stuck his tongue out.
Cameron and his sisters, Gracie and Brooklyn, were three of scores of children who had rocketed across the Cato-Meridian High School football field for the event. Hundreds of eggs across the color spectrum had been scattered throughout the field. Shouts of "move, move!" and "There's one right there!" could be heard as some children needed adult help gathering the plastic treasures while other adults were simply trying to keep up with their youngsters.
Some eggs contained candy while others had numbers written on the sides that would allow children to receive prizes. Silver eggs earned children a board game for their group, while those who snatched golden eggs got an Easter basket chocked with prizes. Within minutes, every inch of the field had been picked clean of the small bulbs.
After the dust cleared and the junior hunters began tallying their loot, Hudson Maloney, 4, wasted no time unwrapping some candy. He was there with his mother and father, Kim and Andy, and siblings, Camden, Westin and Londyn. Kim talked about why she wanted her family to come out to the event.
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"It's good for the kids, it's a beautiful day," she said.
The event was the first egg hunt held by Girl Scout Troop 40303, which the event supported. It featured chicken dinners that were available for purchase and activities such as face painting. The Easter Bunny walked around the area, giving hugs to interested parties as he went. Christopher Taylor, 4, shouted "He's coming, he's coming!" while jumping up and down and pointing out the holiday icon to friend Liam Bort before the hunt began.
After the hunt, Scout leaders Lacie McGetrick, Erika Meddley and Crystal Ross-Metarko said they wanted to hold the event so Cato could have its own egg search. They had worked on the event for about a month, with the 10 Scout in the troop stuffing candy into the eggs. They estimated they had thousands of pieces of candy ready for the hunt, noting that a lot of the candy was donated by local businesses and community members alike. The leaders said they were grateful for the support.
"It's kind of like a give-and-take," Ross-Metarko said. "We support the community, the community comes out and supports us, which is great, to see that partnership."