ELKHART — Sunny skies and mild temperatures made for perfect Easter egg hunting weather Saturday morning.
Churches and other groups across Elkhart County held events for children and families to celebrate the holiday a day early, including Winding Waters Church at 421 C.R. 4 W.
Organizer Joy Thompson said around 115 children attended the church's 34th annual Easter egg hunt and family fun fair.
The morning began in the church's sanctuary with several songs and a video about the meaning of the Easter holiday.
The children followed the Easter bunny as he led them out to the playground behind the church, where he had hidden 1,900 candy-stuffed plastic eggs earlier that morning.
On Thompson's signal, the crowd of children raced forward, screaming and laughing, to grab the brightly colored eggs scattered on the lawn.
After the chaos subsided, the Haugen children, 9-year-old Mariska, 6-year-old Arianna and 5-year-old Dominek, sat in the grass cracking open their eggs.
"I got three!" exclaimed Arianna, as she opened a large yellow egg and three pieces of chocolate fell out.
The children couldn't say how they were going to celebrate Easter on Sunday.
"It's a surprise," said their grandmother, Pam Smith.
After the egg hunt, the crowd went inside to the church's gymnasium for the family fun fair.
The Easter Bunny sat in one corner for pictures while the crowd of children visited the game and craft stations spread throughout the room.
This year, they added balloon animals, professional face painting and Lowe's donated craft kits.
"This is just a fun outreach we do for the community," Thompson said, looking around the crowded gym.