By Betty Gandee
Eggs, the Easter Bunny, and prizes galore could be found at Maysel Park this past weekend.
It’s always a good time to be had by dozens of children throughout the county as they participated in this year’s egg hunt. Organizer Ashley Truman works hard throughout the year planning, gathering donations, and partnering up with business to make it a grand event each spring since the flood of 2016. It was a way to bring the community together after such tragedy, and it ended up being such a popular event that is has continued year after year.
Last year the Truman family suffered the loss of a young family member in a horrific accident. They knew Easter would be hard on the family, because the young girl loved Easter. With the holiday drawing near, Ashley decided to go ahead with the hunt and started working on ways to pull off the event. Through generous donations, hot dog sales, and an online auction, everything came together in less than a month. Lots of businesses donated candy, plastic eggs, bikes, movie passes, kid zone passes, and much more to give as prizes. Again, it was a huge success with over 5,000 eggs. This event has turned into something the kids of Clay County look forward to each year and is now an annual event.
Last year the event ran shorter than anticipated, but thanks to Trey Corwell stepping up in prayer and teaching the children that sharing is caring, those kids that were eggless soon found the generosity of others is an amazing thing. Empty buckets became full and there wasn’t a dry eye in the circle. Children shared their eggs with the others and was a beautiful sight to behold.
This year’s hunt is in honor of the four babies that were tragically taken in the house fire earlier this year. Ashley wants the families and their foster parents, Katie and Trevor Neff, to know that they have the support of the community, and that the fire touched everyone in the town. So many people have decided to become foster parents since that day and open their homes to children in need. It takes a special person to open their hearts and homes to foster children, and for that, Clay County is grateful for your selflessness and loving hearts. With that being said, it was decided to now call this annual event the Tiny Halo’s Egg Hunt in honor of the children lost in recent years.
Ashley says, “This is the third annual egg hunt, and without the community it wouldn’t be possible.” There were over 10,000 filled eggs, six bikes (two donated by Clay County Mud Runners), four scooters (two donated by the 2019 Chocolate Festival Queen, Abby Withrow), buckets, toys, and a special area for children with special needs so they were included in all the fun.
Ashley would like to personally thank Billie Koch, Josh Shamblin, Kris Gray, all county first responders, anyone that won items for the auction, everyone that bought hotdogs, Clay County Mud Runners, and lastly, her mother, Ruth Truman. She says without her giving heart she would not be the person she is today.