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Hope Afield celebrates Easter

By Angie Long

The Lowndes Signal

Hope Afield at Blessings Farm welcomed spring and celebrated the reason for the Easter season last Saturday with a celebration at the farm’s location on Old Stage Road near Greenville.

Dozens of children, youth and their family members were split up into groups that rotated around the grounds and under Hope Pavilion to enjoy horseback riding, outdoor games like beanbag toss, kickball and football toss, Easter picture bingo and themed crafts with the help of volunteers.

Volunteer Dale Brannon taught Bible study classes based on the Book of Genesis to explain the reason why Jesus came to earth to redeem his people, while volunteers Carolyn Whiddon and Cindy Faulk called out the Easter symbols on the cards, waiting to hear that cry of “Bingo.”

GACOC Camellia Girls Kimball Nall and Hannah Jayroe were also on hand to assist with the games and even got in a few ball kicks and bean bag tosses of their own along the way. And volunteer Kim Foster enjoyed assisting youngsters on their horseback rides around the ring—the first time some of them had been on a horse.

Colorful bags with the children’s names added were given out to any child who did not bring an Easter basket for the big egg hunt, with those ages seven and up heading in one direction and the younger set, in the other when it was time to hunt.

“Check all your eggs . . . every egg has something inside, but some have tickets and you will turn them in for prizes. And there are some golden eggs. Bring those to me and you will get an extra-special prize,” Jan Kilpatrick of Hope Afield explained.

Happy pandemonium reigned once all the eggs were collected, as golden eggs were exchanged for monetary prizes, tickets were turned in for snack bags and toys of the children’s choice and many “oohs” and “aahs” were heard as favorite candies were discovered inside the rainbow of eggs found in the green, green grass of Hope Afield.

“This is what you called ‘controlled chaos,’” said Ken Kilpatrick with a laugh as he glanced around the pavilion. Once all the treasures had been discovered and collected, a prayer of thanksgiving was held and those in attendance enjoyed a lunch of barbecue sandwiches and chips with Whiddon’s homemade Easter cupcakes as dessert.

“We appreciate all our volunteers for helping us out today and to all the families who joined us as we celebrate Easter and the wonderful gift of a risen Savior,” Kilpatrick said.

Hope Afield is a non-profit Christian organization that works with at-risk children and youth in Butler and Lowndes counties to provide a healing environment where they can learn, work and play in the great outdoors.