A bouncy house was set up, tickets were ready, and a number of “bunnies” were starting to arrive by 10 am on Friday, March 29, for the first day of this year’s Bunny Watch, near Glander Field on the Fairfield Hills campus.
The Bunny Watch has been held annually for the last couple of years as a fundraiser for local Odyssey of the Mind teams. The event is set to be open from 10 am until 4 pm on both Friday, and Saturday, March 29.
“Hi, Bunny!” one boy said while waving to a large white Easter Bunny, who was stationed along the tractor-pulled ride’s path.
A $5 donation for each person earns a spot on an antique wagon ride along the paved walking trails at the Fairfield Hills campus. During the long leisurely ride kids and their families can spot and tally dozens of bunnies in all shapes and sizes hidden along the route.
“He’s got carrots. Do you see?” said one mom to her two young boys on the first ride of the 2013 Bunny Watch.
Along with the ride, game stations are set up for lawn games, including egg tossing and egg rolling, as well as a game called Bunny Says, a team-created version of Simon Says. A giant slide inflatable ride, an egg hunt, and concessions for a nominal cost are also be available.
This is the third year a Newtown High School Odyssey of the Mind team, coached by Ann Ziluck, has been overseeing the Bunny Watch, and a Reed Intermediate School team, coached by Greg Martiska, oversees the games and concessions.
Rob Emmerthal, who is in charge of hayrides at Silverman’s Farm, oversaw all of the equipment this year, except for two tractors owned by Casey Roman, and George Birch.
One table, overseen by Janet Emmerthal, at this year’s Bunny Watch is offering donations that were given to the Snowflakes for Sandy Hook School PTA campaign to anyone who would like them. Some of the donations include teddy bears with books and bracelets made by a woman in Texas. Ms Emmerthal said the table with offerings will be available throughout Bunny Watch, until supplies run out.
Odyssey of the Mind is the largest intellectual competition in the world. Teams of up to seven students select and solve one of five long-term problems that they present at the annual state competitions. The top 30 teams in each competing state then head to World Finals, where teams from more than 30 countries come together in the spirit of international competition. The Connecticut Odyssey State Finals will be held on April 6 at Bristol Eastern High School where teams from Newtown High School, Newtown Middle School, Reed Intermediate School, and the local elementary schools will be presenting their solutions to these open-ended and complex problems.