YMCA Egg Hunt a Spectacular Success

Three- and four-year- old children were the first to hunt for eggs at Simon Meadow.

(Editor’s note: After CTN reporter Chaz Plager and photographer Rich Schmitt were kicked out of the Rec Center Egg Hunt by Director Jasmine Dowlatshahi before the event started. Plager reported “we weren’t kicked out of this one.” Schmitt added, “YMCA Director Jim Kirtley was so nice, he even saved me a parking place.” CTN reported the earlier incident to Rec and Parks General Manager Jimmy Kim. He responded in an April 4 email that “I apologize for the experience that was had by Mr. Schmitt and Mr. Plager.  I am adding Assistant General Manager of Recreational Services Branch Chinyere Stoneham to investigate with appropriate staff.” )


“Look I found an egg!”

Delayed due to rain, the annual YMCA Easter Egg Hunt was held Saturday, April 6 at Simon Meadow, at the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Temescal Canyon Road.

Though titled the “Hunt,” there were actually three hunts for three age groups: 10  to 10:30 a.m. for ages 3-4; 10:45 to 11:15 a.m. for ages 5-6; and 11:30 to noon for ages 7-12.

Nine Palisades Charter High School Ambassadors came to help the YMCA set things up. (The Ambassador program started in 2010 at the high school to support the local community and to act as role models at the school. It is a highly competitive program to enter.)

“We started setting up around 8:30 a.m.,” said one ambassador. “We hid over a thousand eggs. Tough work.”

PaliHi Ambassadors helped hide a thousand eggs.

In an unexpected twist, these eggs do not contain candy. The reasoning behind this is fairly simple: no one wants to corral hundreds of kids hopped up on sugar.

Instead, the eggs contained small toys and raffle tickets. The tickets made you eligible to win one of many gift baskets stuffed full of various kinds of toys, sweets and coupons (for the lucky parents of the lucky child).

“I’d like to give a big thank you to Gelson’s and the Palisades Garden Cafe,” said Palisades YMCA executive Jim Kirtley. “They donated some items toward our raffle gift baskets and we’re truly grateful for that.”

There were also special Golden Eggs with 20 tickets, just to make sure kids really put some elbow grease into the searching.

The Easter Bunny attended the hunt.

The Easter Bunny hopped into the meadow, much to the delight of the kids. Students from Paul Revere Middle School took charge of making cotton candy, that was a free treat for everyone hunting.

Kirtley estimated that there were about 100 families and at least 150 kids showed up.

Surprisingly, the rainstorm delay did not lower turnout compared to previous years.

When this reporter arrived, the 5-6 year olds’ hunt was just ending, and they were announcing the raffle winners.

Six-year-old Valentine was one of the lucky winners of the raffle, receiving a basket with a backyard water slide and several types of candy. When asked how she felt about her big win, she replied “Cotton candy! Yay.”

Rave reviews, folks— just goes to show that no matter how heavy the rain, the sun always comes to play.

Paul Revere Middle School students were in charge of making the cotton candy.

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2 Responses to YMCA Egg Hunt a Spectacular Success

  1. Mary deKernion says:

    By your reporting on the inident at the park and the employee reacting in a negative manner, it might just be that the employee was overwhelmed or,to give the benefit of the doubt, perhaps was suffering from some sort of personal crisis. Either way, it seems the kind response would be to stop reporting about this incident and whatever the outcome keep the resolution to yourself. No one was hurt and this is a personal personnel matter.We do not need an update on actions taken.

  2. Sue says:


    The press is allowed in a public space and at a public event, to deny that is against the law, which is why park officials are taking it so seriously. Interestingly after it was reported on CTN at least four other residents reported that they have had similar experiences. If a tax-paid city official is having trouble coping because of issues in her life, maybe take some personal time. Residents should not be the “butt” of city worker’s anger.

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