How to Plan an Amazing Easter Egg Hunt

By Frank Smith on February 23rd, 2022
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Let’s face it, your kids are mostly in it for the chocolate. But as a parent you think about bigger things at Eastertime, like the meaning of the holiday, celebrating spring, building a community, and of course getting good pictures—plus chocolate bunnies, baskets of treats, kids in adorable outfits, and all those other Easter essentials.

If you’re up for doing just a pinch of planning, a group Easter egg hunt with your child’s friends, church mates, or neighbours can deliver all those things and more. Don’t worry, we’ve made it easy on you. Read on for a basketful of tips that will get those little bunnies hopping!

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Name the time and place

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Pick a date around Easter—the nearest weekend, maybe—and consider scheduling your hunt so it won’t conflict with Sunday morning services. Since spring weather is unpredictable, designate a rain date or have an indoor back-up plan.

Depending on the number of people you’re inviting, the backyard can be a perfect location for your Easter Egg Hunt. You might also consider reserving a picnic shelter at a local park.

In your invitation, be sure to let the other parents know:

  • The time of the hunt and any specific activities, like age-specific hunts, games or snacks
  • Whether guests should bring their own baskets, eggs and/or treats
  • Your needs for volunteers to help wrangle kids, read stories, hide eggs, etc.
  • The dress code—Easter finest, casual and comfortable, toddler bunny chic or something else?

Pro tip: Set boundaries

Whether you’re in a fenced-in yard or a park, let folks know where to look—and call out the no-go zones or spaces. You can use streamers, balloons or signs for visual reminders or just post adults or teens to keep the egg-hunters in check.


Gather your supplies

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It’s easy to go down a deep Pinterest rabbit hole as you plan your day. But there’s no shame in keeping things simple and classic.


Real eggs are great for small hunts. That said, the risk of one going unclaimed and stinking up a corner of the patio is high. But if you love getting your dip-dye on and can’t resist using real eggs, just be sure to do a count right before hiding and after the hunt to make sure all have been found. This will help you avoid a smelly situation down the road.

Plastic eggs, on the other hand, are inexpensive and just made for larger Easter egg hunts. There’s no messy markers or dyes, and the bright colours stand out in just about any environment. Plus, you can save and reuse them year after year if you want to.

When you’re figuring out numbers, start with a dozen per kid and go up or down. The tiniest hunters may be perfectly well-occupied playing with a single empty egg all morning. Older kids may be more quantity driven, but you can solve all sorts of problems by setting limits on how many eggs each hunter can find.

Pro tip: Colour-code the eggs

Use different colours of plastic eggs—or add stickers—to keep things fair or signal special eggs for hunters with food allergies or specific needs:

  • For large hunts, colour-code—and hide—the eggs by age group. Eggs for littles can go in plain sight, with the challenge level going up with each group.
  • For smaller or family hunts, assign each kiddo or family a different colour.
  • If you’re putting treats inside the eggs, borrow a tip from trick-or-treating: Teal or blue signals an egg that contains trinkets or sensory toys instead of candy. (Find some of our favourite candy alternatives here.)

You can fill plastic eggs with just about any small treats. Pro-tip: Seal them with a tiny bit of clear tape.

  • Candy, from classic jelly beans and chocolate eggs to malt balls and gummies. No need to fill eggs to capacity—a few pieces in each egg is plenty.
  • Tiny toys and trinkets. Consider hiding little stuffed animals, stickers, jewelry, school or craft items.
  • Messages. Write or print jokes and riddles, drawings, Bible verses or cartoons on little slips of paper.
  • Money. Make the eggs jingle with a few coins—or raise the stakes with higher value eggs for older kids.
  • Special prizes: Make a special prize egg—maybe it’s gold or bigger than the rest—with more valuable treasure or a voucher to exchange for a bigger prize, like an Easter storybook, stuffed animal or a cute set of bunny ears.

Even if you’ve specified BYO Basket, it’s a good idea to keep a few extra baskets, bags or buckets on hand for those who forget, or for last-minute guests.

Set the scene with a fun banner and some simple Easter decorations. Check out our Easter decoration ideas here.

Pro tip: Name your eggs

For small and family egg hunts, create special “name egg” for each hunter. Then encourage everyone to find their own name egg. If you see someone else's name egg, give them a hint or a “hot or cold” tip—but only if they ask for it.

A few more ideas:

  • Add names with stickers, label-makers or markers.
  • Use bigger plastic eggs and fill them with treats based on each kid’s favourite candy or interests.
  • Draw names and let each child make and fill an egg for someone else in the family or neighbourhood.
  • Instead of names, decorate the eggs to look like the kiddos.
  • Hide little kids’ name eggs in easy-to-find spots; hide big kid or adult name eggs in trickier (or even ornery) places for added fun.

Plan the menu

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Since the Easter Egg hunt will yield plenty of sugary treats, fruit and veggie trays with dips may be a welcome sight. But we’re not going to tell you not to make these adorable Hallmark Easter snacks. And don’t forget the adults: Who doesn’t love a good devilled egg? Try a tasty variation on devilled eggs.


Prepare the Easter egg hunt

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A lesson we’ve learned from experience: If the kids are released into the field before the hunt begins, they will start searching early. So unless you have a separate holding area, consider waiting to hide the eggs until after they’ve arrived.

Waiting for go time
If guests are bringing their own eggs, or if you’re waiting till after they arrive to hide everything, keep the kids busy while a few volunteer bunnies do their work. Potential diversions:

  • Read an Easter story.
  • Sing “Peter Cotton Tail,” “Little Bunny Foo Foo” and other interactive songs.
  • Try an Easter craft, like decorating cupcakes or colouring (download some free colouring pages here).

Hiding the eggs
While kids are pleasantly distracted inside, send a few adults outside to hide the eggs. Obviously, different kids have different searching skills. Some tips on placement:

  • Babies and toddlers: Make it super-obvious—put the eggs on top of the grass or nestle them up against a tree root, but keep them in plain sight.
  • Little kids (3-5 years): Once they hit three, they get good at hunting. Challenge them with eggs hidden just under bushes, under swing sets and in other fun-but-kinda-obvious spots.
  • Elementary school age: This is not their first rodeo. Get creative. Make them work for it.

Pro tip: Make the hunt accessible

Here are some ideas for making sure kids with different abilities can all be part of the fun:

  • Use eggs that beep, chirp or talk for children with visual impairments.
  • Hide eggs a few feet off the ground so they’re in easy reach for kids in wheelchairs—and make sure they’re located near sidewalks or on paved surfaces.
  • Use helium balloons or these DIY Easter Egg Yard Decorations to mark locations where eggs are hidden. Or put small LED lights or light-up toys inside each egg.
  • Schedule a time or create a zone for children with special needs.
  • Get teens to help with the hunt—and make sure they know what kind of help is needed.

Release the hunting party

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Gather everyone for the main event, and let the kids and parents know how things are going to go down. If a free-for-all seems like a recipe for meltdowns, here are some ideas for keeping everyone happy.

Age groups
Young children tend to hunt slowly and the bigger kids eagerly snatch up everything they see. To avoid tears, you can divide them into groups and send the hunters out in waves. To speed things up or keep bigger kids entertained, you might ask the older hunters to “help” younger ones.

To make extra sure the tiniest participants don’t leave empty-handed, keep a stash of eggs for parents to drop in front of their little ones to boost their confidence.

Egg limits
If fairness is your goal, set a limit on the number of eggs each hunter can find before they have to stop. After they’ve hit it, they can always use their expertise to help the amateurs.

Pro tip: Easter egg hunts for adults

Why should kids have all the fun? Here are few ideas for more grown-up Easter egg hunts:

  • Use plastic eggs just big enough to hold fancy chocolates, cosmetic samples or bath supplies, tiny gadgets (think flashlights, multi-tools, bottle openers), silly stuff like stickers and temporary tattoos or little-bitty bottles of adult beverages.
  • Settle on a number of eggs and a dollar amount, draw names and make/decorate/fill eggs for each other. (Don’t forget to color code or put names on them.) Take turns going outside or to another room to hide them. Or…
  • Let the kids hide the eggs while the adults hide their eyes. Encourage them to make it challenging.


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Parents and more grown-up attendees won’t have the spoils of their hunt to feast on. They’ll appreciate their own snacks and candy or a well-earned mimosa. And because we appreciate nothing more than a good photo op, we recommend making it easy for the revellers to commemorate their day. Set up a photo booth with gift-wrap or a pastel sheet as a backdrop—and maybe add some bunny-ear headbands.

No matter the number of eggs found or the amount of chocolate consumed, an Easter egg hunt is a wonderful way to spend time with your favourite people—with the added benefit of creating lifelong memories.