The 10-second countdown to the start of Saturday’s Goleta Egg Hunt at Girsh Park helped hike the adrenaline of thousands of children, who had already been staring from behind fences for some time at the green fields with 10,000 colorful eggs.
Kids, separated into six age groups, crowded impatiently in front of gates during the fifth annual event until the frenzied fervor reached “one” at 11 a.m. sharp.
Thirty seconds later, and the hunt was all over.
Some children came out of the good-natured stampede with baskets boasting a few more plastic, goody-filled eggs than others.
Kaleb Siegan, 4, counted aloud to 11 eggs in his orange-wire basket, some filled with bracelets, wash-off tattoos, and silver and gold coins.
“Stickers and candy,” said Kaleb, a Carpinteria resident. “This other kid was trying to get it before me, but I got it first.”
Kaleb proudly told his father, Ben, that he had run really fast and had fun. His dad said they were visiting friends from Goleta and participating in the Girsh Park hunt for the first time.
They were next off to one of the bounce houses at the event, which also included face painting, arts and crafts, egg roll races, and visits with the Girsh Park Bunny.
Richard Temple, program chairman for the Goleta Rotary Club, one of the event sponsors, said the event also included several “magic” eggs that contained certificates to allow children to host a party at the park for free.
“It really brings out the kids and the parents,” Temple said.
The Goleta Egg Hunt was also sponsored by MarBorg Industries, Santa Barbara Bank & Trust, Camino Real Marketplace, Luna’s Jumps, AMS Entertainment, Delta Gamma Sorority of UCSB, Montecito Bank & Trust and Cottage Health System.