As Owen Schmitt poured his M&M candies onto the short brick wall in front of him, his mother looked into his basket full of Easter goodies and told him he wasn't allowed to collect any more treats.
"He's already gorged on candy today," said Sheila Bittner Schmitt, who had taken her 3-year-old to the neighborhood Easter egg hunt in Bolton Hill's Rutter Mill Park yesterday.
Following his mother's orders, Owen went to speak with Henry Fleming 3rd, and the two 3-year-olds compared notes about their loot.
"I got a big egg," Henry said, before almost stepping on another candy egg lying in the grass behind him.
Henry and Owen were in one of three age groups of children who dressed in their holiday best to hunt for the Easter eggs and candy that their parents had taken to the city park.
Claudia Sennett, who has organized the event for the past eight years, was worried that the 4- to 6-year-old group might stampede the daffodils and asked them to retrieve their candy "just on the edges of the flowers."
But some of the candy was hidden so high up it seemed that only parents could reach it. One of 5-year-old Kimberly Ruppert's prize catches was in a tree. "I had to get it," admitted her father, John Ruppert.
Before Sennett began the Rutter Mill Park egg hunt after the birth of her son, now 8, neighbors went to other hunts in the area, she said.
Egg-hunting was not part of the festivities at the Baltimore Zoo in Druid Hill Park yesterday because of a fear that the eggs might harm the animals if they ate them. Instead, the zoo and Baltimore radio station WMIX hosted other Easter activities.
The Easter Bunny himself led what zoo marketing coordinator Theresa Jones called "Baltimore's largest bunny hop." Wally Woodchuck, Alvin the Chipmunk and the Toy Soldier also hopped with the children.
Misty Wagner and her mother, Michele Wagner, who live in Baltimore, waited in line for an hour to have balloons painted on Misty's face by zoo marketing assistant Krista Jones.
At other tables, parents helped their children make bunny masks, and zoo volunteers gave gifts to children such as candy, posters and comic books.
"You got a comic book, too. Isn't that neat, guys?" said Mark McCabe of Woodbine to his sons Brandon, 4, and Nathan, 3.
But Brandon and Nathan were puzzled by the disappearance of one of their furry friends.
"We're still looking for the Easter Bunny," their father said. "Maybe they put him in a cage?"