04/11/2017 Youngsters with vision problems enjoy Easter egg hunt

Story re-posted with permission, courtesy of The Suncoast News.

By CARL ORTH | The Suncoast News
Published online: April 11, 2017
PHOTOS: Carl Orth

Lighthouse stages event at Grey Preserve

Youngsters with vision problems enjoy Easter egg hunt

NEW PORT RICHEY—Seeing is believing for most people. But hearing is believing for children with vision problems at one Easter egg hunt last weekend.

Youngsters thrive on the excitement from Easter egg hunts, so Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind didn’t want their youthful members to feel left out.

Plastic eggs emitted a beeping noise to help guide children by sound, organizers explained.

“It sounds like crickets,” Queen Chasco Angel Cook said with a chuckle about the beeping eggs in a field. Cook and King Pithla, New Port Richey Police Chief Kim Bogart, were among many volunteers who helped stash plastic eggs with candy or prizes inside.

With some 500 eggs lying around a field, the youngsters were sure to fill their Easter baskets.

Siblings without vision problems put on simulator glasses that imitate vision defects, Sylvia Stinson-Perez, CEO of the Lighthouse, explained.

Besides the egg hunt, children romped on the playground at New Port Richey’s James E. Grey Preserve, a new location for the Lighthouse event. A bean-bag toss was among numerous games. And the Easter bunny stopped by to pose with children for photos.

Parks and Recreation Director Elaine Smith and many of her youth advisory board members appeared Saturday to lend a hand setting up the preserve on the Pithlachascotee River.

The nonprofit Lighthouse provides free services to youthful clients from birth to young adults. The Little Lighthouse aids children up to age 5 adapt. Children’s program make sure youths ages 5 to 13 meet their developmental milestones. The School to Work Transition program focuses on teens ages 14 to 22.

Photo captions:

  1. Youngsters get a bit antsy for an Easter egg hunt to start Saturday as Sylvia Stinson-Perez, far left, chief executive officer of Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind, gives the children instructions.
  2. Brothers Caiden Zeigler, 4, left, and Brody, 8, sit on the Easter bunny’s lap to pose for a photo for parents Amanda and Justin from Spring Hill. They took part in the Easter egg hunt put on Saturday by Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind.
  3. Arabella Pirello, 2, is thrilled to find her next egg with a prize inside during the Easter egg hunt put on Saturday by Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind. She is the daughter of Brandie and Milo Pirello.
  4. Chasco Fiesta 2017 King Pithla Kim Bogart and Queen Chasco Angel Cook scoop up the plastic eggs with candy inside them to help hide the prizes for the Easter egg hunt put on Saturday by Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind.
  5. Brody Zeigler, 8, gets encouragement in the bean bag toss from folks Amanda and Justin and others during the Easter egg hunt put on Saturday by Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind.
  6. Children swarm over the playground at the Grey Preserve where Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind held its Easter egg hunt Saturday.
  7. Sisters Danica, left, and Kenza Galbraith compare their ‘loot’ after filling baskets with plastic eggs with candy inside during the Easter egg hunt put on Saturday by Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind. They are the daughters of Bret and Rachel Galbraith.

Learn more about our programs for babies, children and teens who are visually impaired and blind.