The COVID-19 pandemic has made Easter celebrations less conventional for most families this year. With government mandates to social distance and not hold group gatherings, Easter traditions were celebrated in non-traditional ways.
However, some in the community were determined to make the best of a difficult situation and ‘jump’ into the holiday spirit.
This weekend sightings of the Easter Bunny running around the City of Wetaskiwin were reported.
Wetaskiwin County resident Linda Graham pulled out her bunny suit, a costume she got at Halloween, and decided to take a walk at By-the-Lake Park.
“Inside of me there is a goofy person,” Graham says, “I like to bring happiness and joy when I can.”
After her walk she decided to surprise some of her friends in the bunny suit by waving to them through their windows. From that point word of mouth made the requests for a visit from the Easter Bunny flood in.
Graham has an extensive background in social work and because of COVID-19 she recently lost her job in Camrose. “Never thought I’d see this. Ever.” Graham says about the pandemic.
Graham thought that these requests were a great way to keep her busy and not thinking too much about the circumstances she faces because of the virus. In addition, as a mother herself she empathizes for the parents right now and the pressures they are under staying locked up for their family’s safety.
On her own dime and for the sole purpose of spreading a little bit of happiness during this uncertain time, Graham hopped to it, visiting as many families that requested her as possible.
Savannah Chaffey saw a post on Wetaskiwin rant and rave with Grahams phone number, saying to send a text to it to request a visit from the Easter Bunny.
Graham showed up to Chaffey’s home in costume, “came up to the window, waved and said hi,” Chaffey says. Her daughters were thrilled to see that the Easter Bunny came around during the holiday, braving the pandemic to spread Easter cheer.
As the Easter Bunny, Graham even made her rounds through a local drive through. She hopped through the Wetaskiwin A&W to surprise the employees, and perhaps make working the holiday weekend a little more exciting.
“I got a heck of a lot out of it,” Graham says. “Being goofy pays off.”
The children of Wetaskiwin weren’t the only residents to get a visit from the Easter Bunny.
Upon request Graham made her way to the Good Samaritan Good Shepherd Home in Wetaskiwin. Wearing a mask under her bunny costume, Graham showed up outside the window of the nursing home to blow kisses and give air hugs to the residents.
Graham says that all the thankful people she visited were worth running around non-stop for two days for. “It kept me sane over the weekend,” Graham says, “I do have a lot to give still.”