The Great Lawn of the Pequot Library resembled a giant egg salad Saturday after dozens of children, joined by a few adults, finished pushing dozens of decorated hard-boiled eggs across the expanse with large wooden spoons at the library's 8th annual Egg Roll.
At least one person was going for a Caesar salad instead. Their egg was raw when it cracked and spilled its contents on the grass -- and that wasn't the only mishap.
The library's new resident bunny, Blossom, presiding over her first Egg Roll, was so excited to see hundreds of visitors all at once that as she frolicked around in her make-shift cage in the auditorium she twice landed in her water bowl and tipped it over.
And then there were the puddles of colored dyes on the tables as children dipped their eggs into one and then another to create their Easter masterpieces.
Emma Fekete, 9, and her sister Julia Fekete, 6, of Fairfield, colored their eggs and then added stickers to make them resemble faces. Emma said she liked the games as well, and Blossom "because she's so cute." Both girls did their best to look like bunnies. While many kids wore bunny ears to the Egg Roll, Emma and Julia also wore bunny tails.
"We go to a lot of town events but this is our first Egg Roll," said Susan Fekete, the girls' mother, who also wore bunny ears. Dad Steven was content to attend in completely human form.
"This is great for the kids. It's awesome. It starts at eight o'clock in the morning getting the eggs ready, boiling the eggs," said Dan O'Callaghan of Fairfield, father of Lila O'Callaghan, 4. "She helps," he said, and while many of the children brought a dozen hard-boiled eggs to decorate, O'Callaghan said his daughter brings only three each year. She decorates all three, then uses one in the Egg Roll race, brings one home and brings the third one to school Monday to share with a friend who does not attend the Pequot event.
The parents seemed to have as much fun as the children. About 15 of them entered the last heat of the roll races, which were divided into several age categories. Children's Librarian Susan Ei said it was the most number of adults who entered the race compared to past years.
Racing across the Great Lawn was only one of the physical activities that made up the Egg Roll. Inside the auditorium children tossed plastic inflatable rings onto the bunny ears of young volunteers and engaged in other games. Claire Ponomarenko, 5, of Fairfield was the first to jump on stage and do the Bunny Hop. She was quickly joined by Shay Todd, 2, also of Fairfield, and that was enough to get other children to join in.
"It's so fun to be involved in the community, and we love this library and we want to support it," said Marybeth Pirrie of Fairfield, who came to the event with her son and husband, both named Graeme.
"It's a great set-up with all the activities," said Kim Lynch of Fairfield, who brought her children Cierra, 2, and Hudson, 6.
Dabney Bowen, of Fairfield and Portland, Oregon, said the family always returns to Fairfield this time of year and daughter Wesley, 6, asks if they can go to the Egg Roll.
The event attracted a number of children from out of state who were in town to spend the Easter holiday with relatives, among them Mila Goncalves, 2½, who needed coaxing before she finally gave the Easter Bunny a big hug, and sisters Merritt Willcox, 8, and Marine Willcox, 4, of Falmouth, Mass., who wore matching bunny shirts and bunny ears.