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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Riverfront Park Easter egg hunt returns

Children hunted for eggs in Riverfront Park in 2012, the 32nd annual event. It was canceled the next year, but will return in 2016 sponsored by iHeartMedia and One Heart Spokane. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)
Children hunted for eggs in Riverfront Park in 2012, the 32nd annual event. It was canceled the next year, but will return in 2016 sponsored by iHeartMedia and One Heart Spokane. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

The big Riverfront Park Easter egg hunt will be back this year after a three-year hiatus.

IHeartMedia, a national radio and digital broadcasting company that owns a handful of stations in Spokane, is offering the egg hunt Saturday along with main sponsor One Heart Spokane, the community outreach arm of Real Life Ministries.

The two organizations began talking about restarting the popular event just a month and a half ago, said Brad Miller, senior vice president of iHeartMedia in Spokane.

Miller didn’t live in Spokane until after the annual egg hunt was canceled in 2013 following a 32-year run. Clear Channel Communications, iHeartMedia’s company name at the time, decided to end its involvement and no other sponsor stepped forward.

When he ran across some promotional materials for the egg hunt, Miller said, it “stood out to me as something that was an awesome concept, something great for the community.”

The radio company approached One Heart Spokane, said Michael Kotsala, outreach coordinator, and “we said, ‘What would it take for us to do it? We’ll make it happen.’”

Kotsala noted that the egg hunt, though sponsored by an arm of Real Life Ministries, won’t have a religious message.

“As a church we love Spokane and want to help any way we can,” he said.

Other companies will sponsor specific age groups.

There will be separate egg hunts for children ages 0 to 2; 3 to 5; 6 and 7; and 8 to 10 years old, with more than 13,000 eggs hidden in the downtown Spokane park. The sponsors expect between 4,000 to 5,000 participants, who will hunt plastic eggs filled with candy and age-appropriate trinkets, Kotsala said.

He said children and volunteers will be the only people allowed in the grassy areas where the eggs are hidden.

An Easter egg hunt in Coeur d’Alene in 2007 turned into a melee with adults pushing children to get to the eggs, according to previous stories.

This year’s Riverfront Park Easter egg hunt will begin at noon.

There are a number of other Easter egg hunts offered in the area; a full list is online here.

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