Don’t worry, be hoppy!

Easter basket drive-thru makes an ‘eggcellent’ alternative


Ky McCombe

Volunteer Jack Hartmann waves near a firetruck escorting the Easter drive-thru at Whitewater Middle School Saturday, March 27.

Carina Lopez Quintero, News Editor

The pandemic couldn’t stop the Easter Bunny from bringing baskets of joy to Whitewater this year. The Communicating Health in Practice (CHIP) organization and UW-W Community Optimist Club kept the 25 year-long Easter Bunny & Friends tradition going with a drive-thru hosted at Whitewater Middle School Saturday, March 27. 

With the exception of last year’s cancelation, an annual Easter egg hunt has always been available for families in the surrounding Whitewater area. In order to safely continue this event, the organizations put together a socially distanced drive-thru. Each child at the event received an Easter basket with toys, candies and other goodies. 

Senior Grace Jezuit (chick costume), the Culver’s Scoopie, Easter Bunny (Stephanie Hartmann), Jack Hartmann the Easter Bunny Helper, Willie Warhawk and Jack Jarecki (carrot costume) pose for a group photo at the Easter Bunny and Friends event, Saturday, March 27. (Kylie McCombe )

“I’ve been involved in getting all the materials ordered,” said associate professor of communication Kate Ksobiech. “I had CHIP students assisting with the stuffing of the baskets.” 

Members Erin Huizenga, Afton Campbell and Hans Murtell helped Ksobiech prepare the baskets for the big day. 

Whitewater’s Community Service Officer and McGruff the Crime Dog put their thumbs up in approval of the socially distanced drive-thru. (Kylie McCombe )

“We always try to help out when we get the opportunity to,” said Huizenga. “Around March 9 was when we all got together and stuffed Easter baskets for a few hours.”

 Although unable to take photos with the children, the Easter Bunny was still able to make an appearance during the event along with McGruff the Crime Dog, Culver’s Mascot “Scoopy” and UW-W’s very own Willy the Warhawk. 

The Easter Bunny takes pictures with oncoming cars and attendees for the Easter Bunny and Friends event. (Kylie McCombe )

The organization put together 120 baskets and extra baggy treats in case they got more visitors than expected. 

“We probably would normally have more kids, because this is a different way of doing things,” said Ksobiech. 

Whitewater’s Community Service Officer hands out Easter prizes for the children to enjoy. (Kylie McCombe )

Any extra baskets or bags would be donated to the Community Space or the City Food Pantry, Ksobiech said. 

“We’re really excited to be able to participate in general, plus the baskets are so cute,” said Huizenga. 

Happy Easter Whitewater!