Fun, fellowship abound at Emmanuel celebration

Thursday, April 12, 2012
Young Tyson Smith readies two Easter eggs for his basket during the annual hunt

A bright, sunny day welcomed a crowd of hundreds Saturday to the annual Emmanuel Baptist Church Easter Celebration in Piggott. The beautiful weather helped set the stage for one of the most popular and exciting annual events within the Piggott Community.

"It's a privilege for us to be able to do this," Emmanuel pastor Kevin Murray said. "It brings so many people together, and is just a lot of fun for everyone involved."

The day was alive with the sound of laughter and people having fun. A wealth of inflatable rides was in place, allowing children the opportunity to bounce, slide, crawl and climb along a bevy of balloon-style environments. With several stations in place, the lines at each ride were manageable, allowing each child to revisit their favorite attractions throughout the morning.

The event included carnival games, as well. For younger visitors, the duck pond game was popular, allowing children to pick up a floating duck with a corresponding number resulting in a prize. The oversized bowling lane also was popular, with many young bowlers doing their best to knock down all the pins. For older participants, the traditional test of strength hammer swing was the game of choice, with several strong young men and women trying to ring the bell atop the post.

The train and pony rides also were a certified hit with the kids, as many children made lifetime memories through the many fun happenings.

"The kids have had a blast," church member and volunteer Shawn Hearn said. "Everywhere you look there are kids having fun. This is what life in a small community is all about."

Live entertainment also was on display, with the Piggott Christian band 3:16 performing, in addition to happy clowns brightening the day of those they met.

Everything throughout the event, ranging from rides and games to food and drinks, was provided to visitors free of charge.

A highlight for the day was the annual Easter egg hunt. Children of all ages took part in the joyous tradition, with designated areas separated per age group. Organizers hid 8,000 eggs on the church grounds, including special prize eggs.

While the day offered a great deal of fun for all involved, the significance of the Easter holiday was not lost in the celebration.

"We hope that everyone will find a church this Easter to worship Jesus Christ," Murray said. "We're not trying to take anyone from their church. We are surrounded here by wonderful churches, and hope that everyone has found one and will celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ with family and friends."

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