Easter In The Park Draws Huge Crowd

Daniel Valzychuk, 3, enjoyed meeting the animals at the petting zoo. (Photo by Stephanie Faughnan)

  HOWELL – The fields at Oak Glen Park were alive with a different kind of excitement than a normal sporting event. Instead of rallying behind competing teams, hundreds of families were there to celebrate Easter in the Park.

  This year marked the 21st time that Howell Township hosted its annual festivities with an Easter egg hunt at the forefront. And even though spring hadn’t officially sprung yet, the sun radiated as brightly as the excitement on children’s faces ready for the day of fun.

  According to Steven Fecher, Director of Community Relations, over 10,000 multi-colored plastic eggs awaited discovery across the fields. Fecher credited the assistance of his staff and student volunteers in making the event a success.

  Many of the roughly 25 volunteers were high school students, in search of earning service credits that could help them qualify for membership into the National Honor Society.

  “If you see a child with an empty basket that needs some help,” Fecher told the student volunteers. “You may want to point them in the direction of one of the eggs, so they don’t feel left out.”

Charlotte Franzblau, 4 with bunny ears, poses next to a sweet floppy eared rabbit. (Photo by Stephanie Faughnan)

  Eager anticipation filled the air as some little ones and even adults donned playful bunny ears. Those 5 and under were the first group to grab hold of their parents and race out to the fields to fill their baskets. Following them were kids ages 6 and 7, and finally, kids ages 8-10.

  Adding to the festive spirit, a small petting zoo offered children the chance to meet some furry friends. Even the farmyard animals wore some form of Easter finery. Frills and spring colors adorned the goats, complete with their own bunny ears. A charming real grey bunny with long floppy ears had some fun as the center of numerous photo opps.

  Oak Glen’s regular playground saw little activity as children immediately gravitated to an assortment of inflatable bouncy castles to enjoy the thrill of jumping around.

Those aged 5 and under were the first to race to the fields to fill up their Easter baskets. (Photo by Stephanie Faughnan)

  A demonstration by Art Beins Karate gave students a chance to showcase their skills and received resounding applause from the crowd. The park buzzed with a joyous energy as the Easter Bunny himself made a grand entrance. Music filled the air, fostering a strong sense of community spirit as children ran towards familiar friends and made new ones. 

  As the day came to an end, there’s no doubt, everyone was eager to open their hard-earned eggs to discover the treasures hidden within them.

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Stephanie A. Faughnan is an award-winning journalist associated with Micromedia Publications/Jersey Shore Online and the director of Writefully Inspired. Recognized with two Excellence in Journalism awards by the New Jersey Society of Professional Journalists, Stephanie's passion lies in using the power of words to effect positive change. Her achievements include a first-place award in the Best News Series Print category for the impactful piece, "The Plight Of Residents Displaced By Government Land Purchase," and a second-place honor for the Best Arts and Entertainment Coverage category, specifically for "Albert Music Hall Delivers Exciting Line-Up For 25th Anniversary Show." Stephanie can be contacted by email at stephanienjreporter@gmail.com.