Easter weekend is coming up, and there are a lot of events going on. From meeting the Easter Bunny to playing with real rabbits to dyeing eggs with natural dyes, there's something for everyone. Check out this sampling of local activities:
Bunny BonanZOO The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore is hosting this event 10 a.m.-2 p.m. today through Sunday. Entry is free with regular admission of $10-$16. There will be a continuing Easter egg hunt where kids collect plastic eggs and trade them for candy eggs at the Waterfowl Lake Pavilion. Kids can also meet giant Flemish rabbits, ducks and chickens. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., animal keepers will talk to guests about their animals; the full list is located on the back of the zoo map.
Easter fair The Convention Center on Coastal Highway in Ocean City is holding an Easter Art & Craft Fair and the Kid's Fun Fair Friday-Sunday. Hours are 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m. today, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sunday. Ticket prices are $4 for adults, $3 for seniors and students, and free for kids under 3. There will be 80-plus arts and craft exhibitors, three days of Easter egg hunts, puppet shows, magic shows and classes, and the Easter bunny. There will also be "pay-as-you-play" activities such as a rock wall.
Easter Bunny The Easter Bunny is visiting Rams Head Shore House at 800 Main St., Stevensville, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday. Kids can meet with and have their pictures taken with the bunny for free, but the restaurant will also be selling photo key chains for $10.
Craft show and market The Carroll County Farmers' Market is hosting its free 39th Easter Market and Craft Show in the Agriculture Center at 700 Agriculture Drive in Westminster from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Visitors can meet the Easter Bunny and browse vendors selling pottery, jewelry, baked goods, flowers and plants. "It's an excellent place to shop if you like to buy local," said Anita Bullock, co-manager of the event. Several thousand people attend the event, which is held in four enclosed buildings and is adjacent to the Carroll County Farm Museum.
Harvester egg hunt Harvester Baptist Church at 9605 Old Annapolis Road, Ellicott City, hosts a free Easter egg hunt from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday. The egg hunt is open to the community and has more than 4,000 eggs for participants to find. There will also be crafts, face-painting and an Easter story. This event is intended for kids 2-12 years of age, and participants can register upon arrival.
Westminster egg hunts There will be two free Easter egg hunts on the groundsa of Westminster City Hall, at 1838 Emerald Hill Lane, at 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Saturday. The first hunt is for ages 1-4 and the second hunt is for ages 5-8. Starting at 10 a.m., there will also be a petting zoo with bunnies brought by 4-H; McGruff the Crime Dog will talk to kids about drugs; food will be for sale; and there will be face-painting and raffles.
Cromwell egg hunts Cromwell Valley Park is having four free Easter egg hunts on Saturday at 2002 Cromwell Bridge Road in Baltimore. Ages 3-4 start hunting at 10:30 a.m., ages 5-6 hunt at 10:45 a.m., ages 7-8 hunt at 11 a.m. and ages 9-10 hunt at 11:15 a.m. Kids will also be able to visit with the Easter Bunny, use natural dyes to decorate eggs, decorate bonnets, see a rabbit club presentation from 4-H, and play family games.
Egg-dyeing event The Irvine Nature Center is teaching guests how to naturally dye eggs from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. at 11201 Garrison Forest Road in Owings Mills. It costs $8 for members and $12 for nonmembers and only the natural dyes (created from items like berries) will be provided. Guests are requested to bring in no more than a dozen of their own boiled eggs. Preregistration is required; call 443-738-9200.
Easter Monday The National Zoo in Washington plays host to "Easter Monday: An African-American Family Tradition" from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday. The event is free and held in honor of a tradition that goes back to the 1890s, when African-American families first started coming to the zoo on Easter Monday because so many were domestic workers and had to work the day before. "This year's event will feature traditional Easter activities for families such as an Easter egg hunt, Easter-themed games and a visit from the Easter Bunny. There will also be live entertainment - a performance by an a cappella gospel quintet, an R&B group, and a children's musician and puppeteer," said Enica Thompson, the public affairs specialist at the National Zoo. Representatives of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the first national museum to be devoted to the documentation of African American life, will be there to discuss their forthcoming museum and talk about the tradition of Easter Monday.