Hoppin’ Easter Egg Hunts near Woodland Hills
An egg hunt has traditionally been defined as a game during which decorated eggs or Easter eggs are hidden for children to find. Usually, these are hard-boiled eggs, typically dyed or painted, or artificial eggs made of plastic filled with chocolate or candies (or even foil-wrapped egg-shaped chocolates of various sizes). Incredibly, most of us don’t even know when or where the traditional Easter egg hunt originated; the egg, as a symbol of Earth’s rebirth in pre-Christian celebrations of spring, was defined by early Christians as an Easter symbol of the resurrection of Jesus. The specific custom of the Easter egg hunt has been traced by Lizette Larson-Miller, a professor with the Graduate Theological Union of Berkeley, to the Protestant Christian reformer Martin Luther. According to her, Luther held Easter egg hunts in which men hid the eggs from the women and children, probably connecting back to the idea of the egg symbol likened to the tomb from which Christ arose.

Fast-forward to spring 2017: The flowers in Southern California are blooming, the weather is becoming warmer with each passing day and the Easter season is upon us. All over the Valley, kids and parents are scrambling to be an integral part of the festivities that accompany this time of year, and if you’ve been looking for a great place to celebrate Easter as a family in Woodland Hills, we’ve got the definitive roundup of egg hunt locales.

Below are our picks for hoppin’ Easter egg hunts near Woodland Hills.

Big Bunny’s Spring Fling at the Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens runs from April 14 to April 16 from 11 am to 4 pm and allows families the opportunity to spring into fun with this annual celebration featuring a bounty of “EGG-citing” activities. Take photos with “Big Bunny” himself for a nominal fee, enjoy live performances of Kiddle Karoo’s Easter Adventure and hands-on giant bubble-making with Bubblemania, shake your bunny tail at the Family Dance Party, learn fun facts about fuzzy rabbits and wooly sheep, be mesmerized by strolling entertainers throughout the Zoo and get into the springtime spirit with seed-planting crafts and bunny nose and whisker face painting. The L.A. Zoo & Botanical Gardens is located at 5333 Zoo Drive in Los Angeles.

The Bunny Trail Jr. Egg Hunt sponsored by the City of Calabasas is a great way to end all the hysterical dashing for eggs – bring the youngsters to this fun event and slowly make your way around De Anza’s “bunny trail” while enjoying face painting and crafts, a petting zoo and time with the Easter Bunny himself. Eggs will be hidden along the trail, and everyone goes home with a treat. The Bunny Trail Jr. Egg Hunt takes place on Saturday, April 15 at 9 am to noon in De Anza Park; tickets are $3 per child, with pre-ticketing required and no on-site ticket sales. Tickets can be pre-purchased in person at Juan Bautista de Anza Park daily from 8 am to 9 pm. De Anza Park is located at 3701 Lost Hills Road in Calabasas.

The Los Encinos Easter Egg Hunt at Los Encinos State Historic Park is the Los Encinos Docent Association’s most popular event, a tradition that has endured for decades. In addition to the egg hunts for toddlers through kids 10 years old, there are traditional games, a blacksmith and “old-time music,” tours of the historic adobe and performers in period costume. The hunt will take place on the Saturday before Easter, starting around 1 pm, and the activities are grouped as follows: 1:30 pm – Toddlers two and under (in the corral), 2:00 pm – Kids three and four (in the corral), 2:30 pm – Kids five to six (in the orange grove) and 3:00 pm – Kids seven to 10 (in the orange grove). The Los Encinos Docents Association at Los Encinos State Historic Park is located at 16756 Moorpark Street in Encino.

The City of Malibu’s Egg Hoppening offers a fun-filled afternoon with an egg hunt for children ages one through 10 on Friday, April 14. Children may collect as many eggs as they wish, and everyone receives one prize (there will not be any prizes or candy inside the eggs, though). Egg hunts begin promptly at their designated times: 3:30 to 4:30 pm – Play area for children ages one to two, 3:30 pm – Ages three to four egg hunt, 4:00 pm – Ages five to seven egg hunt, 4:30 pm – Ages eight to 10 egg hunt and 5:00 pm – Family egg hunt, all ages welcome. Food and activities will include bounce houses, pet buddies, photos with the Easter Bunny, a grilled cheese truck, sweet suite truck, face painting by Camille, art activity, cartooning with Larry Scott and gymnastics activities with Cartwheel A Go-Go. The Egg Hoppening festivities will be held at Malibu Bluffs Park at 24250 Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu.

The City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks’ Eggstravaganza takes place on April 15 from 10 am to 2 pm at Shadow Ranch Park in West Hills, and includes a Spring Egg Hunt at Shadow Ranch Recreation Center with many additional activities for children to take part in. Baskets will be raffled off, over 60 Health and Safety exhibitors will be on hand and an emergency vehicle display, food trucks and car show will round out the festivities. Activities planned for the front lawn include a city climbing wall, obstacle course, giant slide, games, arts and crafts, petting zoo and face painting. Five separate age groups for the egg hunts will be coordinated on the soccer field, while the various activities, games and crafts will be available for children of all ages for free. Shadow Ranch Park is located at 22633 Vanowen Street in West Hills.

The City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks will also be sponsoring the Winnetka Recreation Center’s Spring Egg Hunt, a free event on April 15 from 9 am to 12 pm. Bring the whole family for a pleasurable afternoon of fun, including activities consisting of an egg hunt, game booths and arts and crafts. It is suggested that you bring your own basket for these festivities. The Winnetka Recreation Center is located at 8401 Winnetka Avenue in Winnetka.

Celebrating Easter can take many shapes and forms. If you honor this tradition in your family, it may include an Easter egg hunt – but if you worry that this will create havoc for your schedule and find yourself not knowing where to go this year, Woodland Hills Magazine can assure you that you have the power to make it a successful holiday that everyone can enjoy.