The Origins of Easter and Where to Celebrate This Year

There are many stories about how the family-friendly spring holiday got its start.

 

EACH SPRING, WE stuff our shopping carts with candy and plastic colorful eggs in anticipation of one of the biggest brunch days of the year: Easter. How did a religious holy day celebrating the rebirth of Jesus take on a bunny with colorful eggs as its most prominent mascot? The exact origin is unclear, but the decorating of eggs is said to date back to the 13th century, when pagan custom treated the egg as a symbol of spring, new life and rebirth. Early Christians later began dyeing eggs red to symbolize the blood of Jesus and deemed the hard eggshell a representation of the sealed Tomb of Christ. Others attribute the tradition to Lent, the 40-day period leading up to Easter wherein eggs were a forbidden food: people decorated them to mark the end of the fast before enjoying them on Easter Sunday. The Easter bunny made his first appearance in America during the 1700s, traveling from Germany, where he was known as an egg-laying hare called “Osterhase.” Here we list some local Easter eggs hunts that are perfect for the family.

 

Spring Easter Egg Hunts

No Easter is complete without a colorful hunt or a breakfast with the bunny. Here are some fun traditional Easter celebrations in Marin that can be enjoyed by adults and kids alike.

1. BREAKFAST WITH THE BUNNY

Enjoy a full pancake breakfast, egg hunt and craft day at the Corte Madera Community Center.

$9 per person, 2 and under free. Corte Madera Community Center, April 20, 8–10:00 a.m.

2. FLASHLIGHT EGG HUNT

Grab a flashlight and hunt for goodie-stuffed eggs in the dark. For kids ages 9-plus.

Corte Madera /Larkspur, Piper Park, April 19, 8:30 p.m.

3. SPRING FAIRE AND CANDY HUNT

Get your photo taken with the bunny, play games, make your own basket and join in the candy hunt.

Mill Valley, Strawberry Recreation District, $8 per child. April 20, 10:30 a.m.–noon.

4. ANNUAL SPRING EASTER EGG HUNT

The day starts with a parade, followed by an egg hunt and live music by Tim Cain.

Sausalito, Downtown, April 20, 10 a.m.–noon.

5. NATURALLY DYED EGGS, UC BERKELEY

This hands-on workshop will introduce children to the joy of natural dyes while they make their own patterns on eggs with brilliant plant-based colors. Price includes 4 eggs per participant.

UC Botanical Garden, UC Berkeley, $18, $15 members. April 20, 10 a.m.–11 a.m..

6. GHIRARDELLI SQUARE EASTER JUBILEE

Since Easter is all about the chocolate, why not spend it at Ghirardelli? Meet the Easter Bunny, participate in an egg roll and even a digital hunt.

Ghirardelli Square, San Francisco, April 20 12 – 4 p.m.

 

 

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