Since the founding of East Rochester, family events have been a focus of our community. Many of these have taken place in our village parks and have become yearly traditions.
Beginning in the spring of 1948 the East Rochester Brown-Millard Veterans of Foreign Wars sponsored an Easter Egg Hunt in Edmund Lyon Park on the Saturday of Easter weekend. No matter the weather the event took place.
Children were divided by age into two groups—age 6 and younger and ages 7-12. The younger children searched in the northern portion of the Park, the older children in the southern part. For many years the dividing line was the little road that ran through the park between Park Drive and Main Street. After the road was removed in the 1960s a rope was used to separate the two sections.
Under cover of night, over 600 hard-boiled eggs were hidden by the veterans. Six prize wooden eggs, two gold colored, two silver and two blue, were also placed among the trees—one of each in the two sections of the park. Children finding these were given a bigger prize. Yet, no child left the hunt without receiving something—usually a large or small chocolate rabbit. At the 9 a.m. starting time children rushed into the Park on the search. While hiding the eggs took a while, the hunt was over in minutes.
By 1994 the veterans decided that the hunt was getting to be too much to undertake. And so, there was not Easter Egg Hunt in 1994. Beginning in 1995 the East Rochester Volunteer Fire Department took over sponsorship with Bill Marr in charge. The Firemen continue to manage the event which is still held the Saturday of Easter weekend in Edmund Lyon Park.
Children are divided into two groups. Dozens of hard-boiled colored eggs and plastic eggs, with treats inside, are used. The wooden prize eggs from the veterans are still part of the event. Easter baskets filled with candy are the big prizes. For many years the Easter Bunny has been on hand to help out. As always, putting on the hunt is a team effort with numbers of firemen helping.
And so while some things have changed over the years the spirit of working together for the children of the village continues.