PUEBLO, Colo. — A Pueblo egg hunt was a wild ride for those who signed a waiver. Brave kids all ran after the steers to get their hands on treat-filled eggs.
The day began with a Cowboy Easter service, then the three-and-under were let loose in the egg-filled arena.
Meanwhile, the steers were prepared for the main event of the afternoon.
“Cowboys are notorious for doing crazy things that are… some people might wonder because you’re putting yourself in a little bit of danger,” said Pastor Jake Shuey, who with the help of a friend , hosted the Extreme Egg Hunt about six years ago.
This activity is generally called “Bull hunting”. This year they used steers instead, so they changed the name to “Extreme Easter Egg Hunt”.
“I wanted something fun, exciting, and they could go home and have dinner on Easter,” Shuey said.
The excitement is there, both for the participants and for the spectators.
“We were told this a few weeks ago and thought, ‘We’re definitely going to do this,'” said Tavie Hunter, an Extreme Egg Hunt participant. “And, as soon as we found out there was money involved, it was obvious. We had to do it.”
The money was hidden in eggs and attached to steers’ horns and tails as an added incentive to take extra risks.
“When they were in the corner I was trying to reach for the tail and one of the steers – one of the black ones – kept kicking us away and I was ducking just as he gave kicked so I almost got kicked in the head twice,” Hunter recalled.
Injuries are not uncommon in this egg hunt.
“There are little bumps and bruises, but if there’s someone who stands out, we’ll have a small award for them,” Shuey said. “We don’t want to mother them, but we want to recognize, man, that you endured and had some bad luck today.”
Even with the “Tough Luck Prize” there is still a real element of danger. Thus, children are asked to sign waivers before entering the arena. But after that, it’s every man for himself.
“I kind of hesitated and waited for the others to leave,” Hunter said. “And then I ran and just tried to corner the steers because I thought that would be the best way to get one.”
The pastor said this event also doubles as a character building exercise for children.
“It doesn’t always work the way we want it to or the way we think it should,” he said. “God never promised us a rose garden. He said it was going to be tough, actually.
And the funds from live and silent auction will help them to be able to do more business in the future.
“We want to do every event that people can think of: bull riding, bronc riding, roping, barrel racing, ranch-rodeo… attracting people to show them, ‘Hey, I’m sorry for the way you’ve experienced God there in experienced places and church and we want them to have a different experience,” Shuey said.