[In the player above, watch FOX 8’s Kenny Crumpton help make Easter treats at Fantasy Candies in Lyndhurst.]
BEAVERCREEK, Ohio (NEXSTAR) — The organizers of an Easter egg hunt in Ohio have said there will not be another after the parents of some participants allegedly exhibited “absolutely unacceptable behavior” during the event.
The management of The Greene, an open-air shopping center and residential space in the Dayton suburb of Beavercreek, explained in a Facebook post on Monday that staffers had instructed guests on how the hunt would work: Children would be hunting for 2,000-plus hidden eggs in three waves, with the youngest kids (ages 1 and 2) going first. But some of the adults completely ignored the instructions and instead became aggressive, the organizers said.
“When we began to gather the 1 & 2 year olds to head to their designated hunting area, parents rushed to the grassy area and began picking up eggs from other areas, which prompted all other participants to rush out and begin hunting,” the organizers wrote in a now-unavailable Facebook post, versions of which have since been archived online.
“This is not at all how we had planned for the event to go, and we are so upset with the outcome and the reactions from participants,” the post continued.
In a later passage, the organizers claimed to have seen “grown adults pushing children out of the way, and people getting knocked over,” calling it “absolutely unacceptable behavior.”
They also apologized to those who were affected by the behavior of the offending participants, and especially to the children who allegedly left the event “empty-handed.”
Some parents who claimed to be at the hunt, meanwhile, have said on Facebook that the atmosphere was indeed chaotic, but have disputed portions of The Greene’s account.
Two dads who said they were in attendance claimed that the 1 and 2-year-olds were permitted to start earlier than scheduled, which contributed to some confusion among participants. One also said staffers and organizers failed to convey the instructions via any megaphone or speaker system, and were instead “just trying to talk over a crowd.”
“The organizers then yelled for everyone to go and obviously just gave up,” he wrote, sharing his remarks in the comments section under a Facebook post reporting on the event.
“Yes some parents were being rude and inappropriate but there was so much disorganization and lack of planning,” another woman, who identified herself as an attendee, agreed.
A representative for The Greene declined to provide further comment when contacted by Nexstar.
Jessica Baer, identified as an assistant manager of The Greene, did however tell the Dayton Daily News that The Greene had decided not to stage any future egg hunts, but may instead hold some sort of Easter-themed raffle.
“There will be no plans to hunt eggs again,” Baer told the outlet.