Whatever your kids’ ages, make this year’s hunt extra-fun with these fresh ideas.

Bunny Print Hunt

For very young children, cut “bunny prints” out of pink paper and make a trail that leads to a series of treats.

Secret Message Hunt

Print short messages that instruct the kids to do a task, such as quack like a duck or hop like a bunny. Place the messages inside eggs. After finding ten eggs and doing the tasks, they’re allowed to hunt for their basket. Hand them a message containing the clue they need to find it.

Indoor Hunt with Clues

Write out clues that take kids to various locations, where they’ll find the next one. Use at least five clues to lead them to their baskets. This hunt is easy to move indoors if it’s raining.

The Golden Egg Hunt

Add an additional treasure to your regular hunt. Purchase a large gold egg and fill it with something special – a gift for the finder, or a treat for the whole family such as a trip to a favorite restaurant, park or movie tickets.

A Puzzling Hunt

Purchase a blank jigsaw puzzle at a crafts store. Draw a message for your kids, giving them the information they need to find their basket. Place puzzle pieces in plastic eggs and let the fun begin. When the puzzle is assembled, they follow the clue to their Easter goodies.

Team Hunt

Place different colors of plastic egg halves together. Each team has a given amount of time to find as many mismatched eggs as they can, then put the correct colors together. Award all team members a small prize for each color-correct egg. The team with the most eggs earns an additional, larger treat. This idea also works well if you’re hosting a neighborhood egg hunt.

Glow in the Dark Hunt

Save your egg hunt until it’s dark outside – place glow sticks in larger plastic eggs to create an indoor or outdoor nighttime hunt. You may choose to have the kids find a certain number of glowing eggs to “buy” their basket.

Treasure Hunt

Sketch a map of your house or yard and create a treasure map with clues that lead to the locations of eggs or treats.

– Jan Pierce

Tips for a Successful Easter Egg Hunt

Mix It Up: Fill plastic eggs with non-candy treats to add variety and limit sugar, such as coins, erasers, finger puppets and other small toys.

Keep It Fair: Make sure younger members of the family get a fair chance to find the treasures. Older kids can pair up with younger ones to help. Eggs may also be color-coded by age group.

Make It Last: Extend the egg-hunting fun by placing Easter baskets in one location. Children have to bring each egg back to the basket before looking for more.

Be Eco-Friendly: Save plastic eggs to use next year, or check your local crafts store for biodegradable cardboard or compostable plastic eggs.

Dye Those Eggs!

There are many options for coloring eggs! Tablet-based kits have been around since the late 1800s – jazz up your method with these ideas:

Mix your own dyes by combining ½ cup boiling water, 1 teaspoon vinegar and 10 drops food coloring. Dip eggs for 5 minutes or until the desired shade is reached.

Look for natural coloring kits with plant-based dyes. The eco-eggs Egg Coloring Kit contains three dyes and instructions for creating six colors. $12. You can also create vegetable-based dyes at home – visit goodhousekeeping.com for complete directions.

Create patterns with stickers or rubber bands before dipping eggs in dye. Remove after eggs dry.

For less mess and foolproof colorful stripes, try the Eggmazing Egg Decorator. The battery-powered unit spins the egg while kids apply color with markers. Ages 3 and older. $25.99.

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