The popular egg hunt is a victim of the City of Seattle’s 2011-12 Budget, which had severe impacts on the Department of Parks and Recreation’s operations at Green Lake Park. In addition to losing programing space, a total of five staff positions were lost at the Green Lake Community Center and the Green Lake Small Craft Center in January.
The staffing cuts had an effect on the range of class offerings at the Green Lake Community Center, as well as the hours the facility can be open to the public. In addition, special events may be cut this year, beginning with the Spring Egg Scramble, which traditionally takes place the Saturday before Easter and attracts an estimated 300 children.
“I wish I could say it’s reasonable to expect what we’ve always had,” John Cash, president of the Seattle Parks and Recreation Green Lake Advisory Council told us, “but with the recent reductions of staff hours at the Green Lake Community Center, that is not realistic. Due to our Limited Use Status, we are not able to support this event at this time.”
While there will not be a Green Lake egg hunt this year, similar events are available nearby, including at the Laurelhurst Community Center, the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center, the Meadowbrook Community Center, Northgate’s new Hubbard Homestead Park, the Woodland Park Zoo, and the Wallingford Center. A full list of egg hunts to be held at Seattle’s parks can be found here.
What about the popular Pathway of Lights event, which brings thousands of people to Green Lake Park every December? Talks with potential sponsors are in the works, but, as John Cash told us, “we should all pay attention to the future of the Pathway of Lights, as almost all the hundreds of prep hours were done by the staff that was lost.”
Update, March 23 – The Northgate Community Center is hosting a Spring Egg Hunt and Hubbard Homestead Park Grand Opening event on Saturday, April 23, 2011 at 10 a.m. The egg hunt is for ages 0-12. Other festivities include music, face painting, snacks, a ribbon cutting, and speeches by Mayor Mike McGinn, Councilmember Sally Bagshaw and Seattle Parks Department acting Superintendent Christopher Williams. (Thanks for the info, Cara!)
Disclosure Note: Amy Duncan, the author of this post, is a member of the the Seattle Parks and Recreation Green Lake Advisory Council.