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Annual hunt features 4,500 eggs

When it comes to Easter, Young’s Jersey Dairy does it by the numbers: 4,500 eggs used, 31 years of its annual hunt and 15 hours to color the eggs.

“We have a lot of fun with this thing. I was just thinking this morning that this year alone we’re using about 12 chicken years worth of eggs,” said Dan Young, CEO of the dairy.

This is the dairy’s 31st year using real eggs for its traditional Easter egg hunt on the putting green. The Golden Jersey Inn’s large kitchen is ground zero for the egg-dyeing operation. To prepare the eggs, employees load them into stainless steel trays and into a professional steamer to be hard-boiled. Then each one is individually plunked into colorful vats of dye, which are also mixed up by hand. The process is broken into two days.

Employee Brandi Isenbarger said she enjoys watching the eggs take on the vibrant hues, like hot pink and royal blue.

“Once you get started, you get into a routine,” she said. “You put one batch in the color and put another in the steamer, and by the time they’re done dyeing, the other ones are ready to come out of the steamer.”

The final product will be hidden along the lawn not long before the children arrive. The first age group will begin the hunt at 2 p.m. Sunday. It only takes about 15 seconds for kids to scoop the colorful treasures into baskets, so parents should get there early, Young said.

It may take only minutes for the eggs to disappear, but Isenbarger said she knows her hard work is worth it when she sees how happy it makes the children.

“You see all kinds of kids lined up, and they all run out there at one time. It’s pretty awesome to me,” she said.

The event will be held rain or shine. Young’s Jersey Dairy is located at 6880 Springfield Xenia Rd., Yellow Springs. For more information, call (937) 325-0629.

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