LAURINBURG — A trio of Laurinburg natives will return home on Saturday to give the children living in their old neighborhood an Easter celebration to remember.
Terry Hope, now a resident of Durham, started “Eggstravaganza” in 2013 to give back to the Washington Park community.
Hope will organize this year’s event, which is geared toward children aged 2 to 12, with Tracey McLeod of Raleigh and Reco Douglas of Charlotte.
“We go back — Washington Park Elementary School, when it was a middle school,” said Hope. “We actually stayed right there and walked to school.”
This year’s event will be held from 1-5 p.m. on Saturday at Washington Park, kicking off with a hunt for 300 eggs hidden throughout the park.
The Easter egg hunt will be followed by a cookout with hot dogs and hamburgers for all, live jazz music, storytelling, face painting, and games. State Rep. Garland Pierce and Chief Darwin Williams of the Laurinburg Police Department are expected to speak.
“The whole purpose of this thing is a way of letting the younger generation of kids coming through know that people care about them, love them, and want them to do well in life and come up to do great things,” said Hope.
Last year’s event drew more than 200 children. Admission is free to all, but children must be present to receive an Easter basket.
Also on Saturday, the Laurinburg Police Department will host a community cookout between the McIntosh and Duncan Smith housing projects.
The cookout will be held from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. in the open space near the intersection of Melton and Hood streets. Similar to prior events held in the Tara Village and Washington Park communities, the cookout will serve hot dogs, chips, and drinks to fuel participants for a day of fun.
“We just want to go out there for fellowship with the community,” Williams said. “It’s something we’re going to continue to do, hopefully churches and other community folks will get involved with us and help us with the logistics.”
The police department is organizing the event in partnership with the congregation of Unionville Missonary Baptist Church.
“It’s a win-win for the police department and the community,” said Williams. “We’re thankful to have everybody coming to the table and seeing the need to bridge the gap with the community.”
Mary Katherine Murphy can be reached at 910-506-3169.