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COVID-19 inspires virtual Easter egg hunt

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  • COVID-19 inspires virtual Easter egg hunt
    Amber Ayers from Remax displays her Easter egg in a home in Jones County, representing what she does with her business. CONTRIBUTED
  • COVID-19 inspires virtual Easter egg hunt
    Encounter Church shows off their Easter egg in a post that represents their church. CONTRIBUTED
  • COVID-19 inspires virtual Easter egg hunt
    Gray United Methodist Church displays its Easter egg in its profile picture. CONTRIBUTED

The Jones County Chamber of Commerce hosted a virtual Easter egg hunt due to social distancing with COVID-19 that incorporated businesses hiding eggs on their websites and social media pages.

Haley Watson, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, said the goal was to originally have a driving Easter egg hunt, and she had over 60 wooden eggs cut out. She said they were distributed throughout the county to be painted. She said after the shelter-in-place was set up, plans changed.

“I wanted to do something for the community and do something that may help businesses get some attention,” she said. “I looked around and talked to people, then the idea of a virtual Easter egg hunt came to mind.”

She said Erin Andrews Media helped to get things going with the virtual egg hunt. She said they helped to market the hunt, and she encouraged people to visit the Gray/Jones County Chamber of Commerce website to find out more about the egg hunt.

“We asked businesses to participate and gave them a painted egg because I didn’t want those to go to waste. We asked businesses to put the eggs on their web page or Facebook page, then on our virtual Easter egg hunt event page on Facebook we made hints so people could go search for the eggs,” Watson said.

The executive director said some eggs were harder to find than others. She said each business could display the Easter egg however they wanted to do so on their page.

“We’re in interesting times right now, and I felt we needed something that was as close to tradition as we could get,” the executive director said. “This was as close as we could get, but I think it was interesting.”

Watson said a lot of local businesses participated in hiding an egg. Businesses such as Encounter Church, Gray United Methodist Church and Remax realtor Amber Ayers. She said a lot more joined in on the fun around Jones County, too.

She said the family who found all the eggs first got a giftcard to a local eatery, then three more randomly drawn families won a prize, too. The race to find all eggs ended on Sunday, April 19. The executive director said she hopes once the shelter-in-place ends and things start getting back to normal, people will visit the local businesses in person.

“I think people enjoyed the virtual Easter egg hunt because it created a little bit of competition between some families,” Watson said. “It was just another way to get exposure to businesses and it got people looking at business pages they may not normally look at. I really feel people had a great time doing something new.”