Mississippi’s Younger Know More About the Easter Bunny Than Most People
In the trees, in the grass and in the garden, 4-year-old JB Guidry knows the Easter Bunny’s hiding places.
But of course, he’s never seen the iconic bunny crash the plastic prizes. JB says it’s because the Easter Bunny hops and hides at night when he’s sound asleep.
Sunday morning at Laurel Street Park in Belhaven, JB held up two hands, his 10 fingers outstretched to show how many eggs he had when he went hunting with his YaYa. They were all different colors. But one was special. It was gold.
“Dimes. Fish. Pennies,” his brown eyes light up as he lists what was inside. “He gave some quarters.
JB is a preschooler who lives in another Easter in the grip of the pandemic. Despite another celebration behind masks with socially distant services – adjustments young children still might not understand – the egg bunny has defied all odds. It’s a tradition full of hope and imagination that the youngest from Mississippi explained to the Clarion Ledger on Sunday morning.
Maybe Allie Akin saw the Easter Bunny because she’s a year older than JB. The rabbit is puffed up with white fur with a pink nose and ears. Allie says there is a caveat, while she saw the bunny, she never saw him hiding eggs.
“He’s really sneaky,” Allie, 5, said Sunday after the Easter service at Fondren Church. “He jumps very high.
In her blue smocked Easter dress, Allie leaps through the church assembly area, trying to jump as high as the Easter Bunny. It’s “a bit close,” she says.
Sunday morning, before 11 a.m. of church services, Allie and her 3-year-old brother, Rhett, embarked on their Easter egg hunt. Unicorn themed eggs with matching stickers were Allie’s favorite part, while Rhett was more diplomatic.
Quite frankly, there is the cleaning that comes with the Easter Bunny gifts. Rhett said vacuuming is the big part of Easter egg hunts. And chocolate.
“But you don’t even like chocolate,” Allie laughs.
“Yes, I think so,” replies his brother categorically.
The Akin kids haven’t seen the bunny in question this year, but there were two snakes who tried to have their own Easter egg hunt in their backyard chicken coop. They agreed that Easter egg hunts should be left to the bunny.
JB and the Akin siblings know the Easter Bunny is stealthy. They know it brings the darling candy filled eggs and tingling change. They are pretty sure the famous rabbit is commercial size and carries baskets. But what is largely lost is where the tradition comes from.
It is unclear, according to Time magazine. They claim that German immigrants brought the laying hare they call Osterhase or Oschter Haws in the 1700s. German tradition included children making nests for the hare to lay its colored eggs in, and they left the carrots aside. in case the hare has an appetite. As the custom evolved in the United States, the famous American Easter Bunny would bring chocolate and gifts.
JB did not forget the carrots. He and his mom smile at each other and say they made chocolate chip cookies for the bunny to snack on instead.
It would also make sense for a busy bunny to be hungry, as Allie explained that it’s just a bunny jumping at high speed to drop all of its eggs into hiding places. In high places, Adley Wood, 3 and a half, says she needs her father for her.
“Pink, purple, blue, orange,” the energetic preschooler lists the color of the eggs she found on Sunday. “It’s a pink Easter bunny.”
Adley also says she saw the Easter Bunny. And she could be just as fast, because she calculated her egg-collecting speed to be 5 and a half minutes.
Maybe next year, when there is more hope that the pandemic does not take hold of lore, JB can get a glimpse of the iconic bunny. But for now, he’s coming back with his mother and father to participate in a Sunday service at the park.
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