Most Easter egg hunts appear to be happening at home this year as we await COVID-19 recovery. But there are a few large-scale events available, some involving a bit of a drive from Chattanooga. You might also want to make the trip to Talladega, Alabama, on Friday for the chance to circle the legendary NASCAR track. Here's what's coming.
* Hug a Bunny: This spring tradition at Chattanooga Zoo, 301 N. Holtzclaw Ave., offers morning and afternoon sessions Friday and Saturday: 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 1:30-5 p.m. Admission includes a scavenger hunt, themed animal enrichment, candy-filled eggs, take-home crafts and take-your-own photos with the Easter Bunny. Nonmember admission is $14.95 for adults, $11.95 for kids 3-12 ($7 and $5 for members). Tickets will not be sold at the gate. Find the reservation link at chattzoo.org.
* Easter luncheon cruise: The Southern Belle riverboat will welcome the Easter Bunny for a two-hour cruise embarking at 2 p.m. Sunday from 151 Riverfront Parkway. Cost is $36.95 for teens and adults, $19.95 for ages 3-12. Live music, tours of the pilot house and a one-time-through buffet lunch are included. Book at chattanoogariverboat.com.
* Bunny photos: The Easter Bunny will be available for photos at the East Ridge Bass Pro Shops/Cabela's, 620 Camp Jordan Parkway, 2-6 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Easter Sunday. Make a digital reservation at basspro.com/easter. A 4x6 photo is free, and there are packages available for more images.
The bunny is in pose mode at Hamilton Place mall, 2100 Hamilton Place Blvd., through Saturday. Hours are 11 a.m.-7 p.m. daily (closed Easter). Reservations are strongly encouraged. Find the link to register and prices for photo packages at hamiltonplace.com.
Northgate Mall is offering virtual photos only. With this option, you can upload personal photos of family, friends and pets (past or present) to holiday images to print and display or share on social media. Get prices and how-tos at www.visitnorthgatemall.com.
* Egg hunts: Brothers William Jones Odom and Jamar Jones will sponsor their eighth annual Easter egg hunt from 2-3 p.m. Sunday in Chattanooga's Eastside community, a change from the traditional setup at Westside Park because of COVID-19 restrictions. The girl and boy with the most eggs will win an Easter basket, and there's a cash prize for whoever finds the golden egg. The hunt will take place at a private residence. Call 423-505-1070 for directions.
Mayfield Farm Park, 257 Highway 307 E in Athens, Tennessee, will offer the final weekend of its Eggstravagant Easter Egg Hunt 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday. Eggs are spread across 3 acres. Bring your own basket or borrow one from the farm, then trade in your eggs for a prize pack. The Easter Bunny will be on hand for take-your-own photos, and all farm activities will be open. Timed-entry tickets ($7-$12 plus fees) are not available at the gate. Purchase online at www.mayfieldfarmpark.com.
Fall Creek Falls State Park, 2009 Village Camp Road in Spencer, Tennessee, will sponsor a hunt for candy-filled eggs for children 12 and younger 10-11 a.m. CDT Saturday. Meet at the Taft Village by the flag poles. Craft time will follow in the Visitors Center. Find out more at tnstateparks.com.
The Adventure Park at Nashville, 801 Percy Warner Blvd., will have an Easter Egg Hunt in the Trees this weekend. The Easter Bunny is taking advantage of the park's zip line and treetop climbing experiences to hide the eggs high off the ground. Hours are noon-8 p.m. Good Friday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday, noon-6 p.m Easter (all times Central). General admission is $46 for ages 14 and older, $38 for ages 7-13. Find out more at myadventurepark.com/NAP or 615-610-9500.
* NASCAR dreams: You can wheel your own vehicle around Talladega Superspeedway on Friday to benefit Alabama tornado victims. For a $50 donation, you can drive around NASCAR's biggest track for two full laps, navigating the mammoth 33-degree banks at highway speed behind a pace truck.
No vehicles will be allowed on the top lane of the 2.66-mile oval, and no passing will be allowed, but you will be able to drive through the Turn 3 tunnel to start your drive from pit road, as if your last name were Yarborough, Keselowski or Earnhardt.
You must show a valid driver's license, and your ride must be street legal with a valid license plate and seatbelts for all occupants. You'll also need to sign track and COVID-19 waivers. Drive-ups will be available as space permits, but you can guarantee a spot by registering at https://www.nascarfoundation.org/talladegagives. Hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. CDT.
Proceeds will go to American Red Cross Alabama Disaster Relief through the NASCAR Foundation's 'Dega Gives fund.
Contact Lisa Denton at email@example.com or 423-757-6281.