Somewhat truncated annual Easter event goes on at Buellton’s River View Park despite clouds, raindrops

The day before Easter Sunday drew sizable crowds, despite the threat of rainy weather, to Buellton’s River View Park for the 33rd annual Easter Eggstravaganza on March 30.

The leadup to the popular egg hunt was greated with mostly sunny skies, although the event had to be curtailed somewhat with the possibility of the wet weather.

“It looks like the egg hunt will come along just fine,” Recreation Coordinator Kristen Thomsen of Buellton Rec said before the start. “However, we had to cancel a few things that were part of it. No petting, no games and a lot of the vendors canceled out, but we still have the Easter Bunny coming.”

And they’re off! Kids run out to grab some plastic eggs after getting the signal at the Eggstravaganza March 30 at River View Park.

As the time for the hunt came closer, Buellton Recreation Coordinator Allison Firey warmed up the crowd by running along the rope trying to get a good crowd shot with her cellphone camera.

Meanwhile, Fred Lageman of Solvang Recreation was out in the field with a bullhorn, reminding the participants how much time was left before the hunt, and the ground rules for the hunt.

Then, finally, Lageman counted it down and the kids, some with parents in tow, took off to get as many eggs as they could, and many were seen just minutes later with a full basket of the plastic eggs. The eggs had candy inside (of course), but some were “golden eggs” hidden somewhere in the park grounds and redeemable for a bigger prize from the Rec Department.

Of course, the rain did make an appearance, as a quick cloudburst passed over the park as kids and their parents were sorting out the collected eggs.

Jack (left) and Eva Winkles open up their plastic eggs after the hunt at the Eggstravaganza on March 30 at River View Park in Buellton.

James Downing and his family — wife Sydney, and kids Tylee and Sawyer — were among those prepared as he held up an umbrella while the kids were going through their loot.

“It’s a good thing I brought this,” James said referring to the umbrella, “it said on the news the rain would come, but at least it waited until the hunt was over.”

While many of the booths and activities were canceled due to the threat of rain, one group that showed up was the Valley Christian Fellowship where Pastor Jon Firey and Sherri Noble were selling toys and other Easter goodies to raise money for the VCF.

“This has always been a good event, and I just wanted to support Buellton Rec,” said Firey, who is also a professional musician and married to Allison, who works for the rec department. “We were coming here rain or shine.”

Elle Krichevsky (left) and Molly Easterling have their photo taken with the Easter Bunny at the Eggstravaganza on March 30 at River View Park in Buellton.

Also able to make it for the event was the Easter Bunny, who was taking pictures with a long line of event attendees.

Despite the somewhat abbreviated event this year, Thomsen said the event was a success, and now they can look forward to next year’s Eggstravaganza, slated for April 19, 2025.

Feature Image: Kids fill up their bags with plastic eggs during the Eggstravaganza on March 30 at River View Park in Buellton.