Events, activities and ideas to make Easter for family, friends a memorable one

Easter is the Christian holiday that celebrates the day Jesus returned from the dead after being hung on a cross. The holiday is often the marker that kicks off spring gardening and that warmer weather is on the way.

While Easter Sunday is the big day, the holiday is a weeklong affair, known as Holy Week, comprised of certain events and traditions in the Christian religion.

The week begins on Palm Sunday, the Sunday before Easter, and culminates on Resurrection Sunday, or Easter Sunday.

Throughout the week, Christians will often take part in a variety of ceremonies that include feet washing, gathering palm fronds and abstaining from eating meat.

Good Friday and Easter Sunday services will be taking place across Weld and Larimer counties as well as around the Denver Metro area.(Photo credit Tina Marie Photography)

Christians typically describe Easter as a foundation of their faith and reason behind the belief that Jesus has risen, fulfilling the prophecies recorded in the Old Testament.

Religious or not, the holiday is often filled with family, friends and food.

If you aren’t singing “Here comes Peter Cottontail,” that may be because you don’t know about all the fun and festive events, activities and services taking place in celebration of the holiday.

So take a moment to check out this list of events and Easter services that are taking place before and during the Easter Weekend, or some activities that you can do at home to celebrate the Easter holiday.

Egg hunts for kids and adults, visits with the Easter Bunny and snuggling baby animals are just a few of the Easter events taking place around Weld and Larimer counties. (Greeley Tribune file photo)

Easter Events

Easter egg hunts aren’t just for kids. Adults are invited to take part in The Great Grown UP Golden Egg Hunt beginning Monday online. Hosted by Northern Colorado Credit Union, adults age 21 and older will solve daily clues to win one of two prizes. The event is free to play and more information including rules and a game card can be found by going to https://bit.ly/3NM5J9K.

Dust off your Easter baskets and head over to the Fort Collins Marketplace Easter Event at noon Saturday at College Avenue and Horsetooth Road. Participating merchants will be handing out eggs filled with goodies as supplies last. Festivities will include face painting, balloon twisting, a visit from the Easter Bunny and more. The event is free and open to all ages. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3DN7mzy.

The Ranch Event Complex is hosting a Spring Craft and Gift Show at 2 p.m. Friday, April 15 through 4 p.m. Saturday, April 16 at 5280 Arena Circle, Loveland. In addition to craft and art vendors, attendees can take part in an Easter egg hunt and toss and a chance to win $1,000 in cash. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3u7aUcq.

Westview Church of Christ is hosting a free Easter egg hunt from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 16 at 4151 W. 20th St., Greeley. All ages are invited to come enjoy games, prizes, food, candy and a visit from the Easter Bunny. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3qZ1m1u.

Head over to Sweet Heart Winery at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday for Easter Wine and Chocolate Pairing at 5500 W. Highway 34, Loveland. The event will feature four wines paired with decadent chocolate from The Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. The event is open to adults age 21 and older and tickets are $41.94 per person. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3JawPnA.

A community egg hunt is scheduled to take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 16 at Bromley Farm, 1594 E. Bromley Lane, Brighton. The event will feature three different egg hunts by age group, crafts, egg coloring, baby animals, gunny sack races and more. The free event is open to all ages. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3KcrhKn.

Enjoy an Easter brunch and snuggle time with a variety of farm animals at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, April 17 at Broken Shovels Farm Sanctuary, 8640 Dahlia St., Henderson. Attendees of all ages are invited to enjoy food from Way Veg and mix and mingle with piglets, lambs, calves and more. Tickets are $27.24 per person. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3x0cKOp.

The annual Easter Egg Hunt at Wiley Roots Brewing Co. is set for noon Saturday, April 16 at 625 3rd. St., Greeley. Adults age 21 and older are invited to take part in collecting five eggs with the purchase of a full pour. Around 500 eggs will be hidden around the brewery for participants to find and win prizes. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3u4eQuB.

The Great Easter Egg Scavenger Hunt at Village at the Peaks is taking place daily from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. at 1250 S. Hover Road, Longmont. Participants will hunt for 60 hidden painted eggs for a chance to win prizes such as gift cards, free meals and $1,000 in cash. For more information, or to print out a game board, go to https://bit.ly/3Kcw6mX.

Celebrate Easter with the White Horse Inn at 10 a.m. Sunday, April 17 at 2750 8th Ave., Garden City. Festivities will include $10 hoppy shots bingo boards, free pool, a golden egg hunt, and eggs filled with prizes. The event is open to adults age 21 and older. For more information, contact the White Horse Inn at (970) 356-5386.

Good Friday and Easter Sunday services will be taking place across Weld and Larimer counties as well as around the Denver Metro area. (Photo credit Anton Petrus)

Easter Services

If you are looking for a Good Friday, Easter Sunday or even a Saturday service to attend, there is no shortage of churches in Greeley, Windsor, around Weld and Larimer counties and beyond.Whether you are looking for a sunrise service, a kid-friendly event or a Spanish service, check out these offerings that are set to take place.

The 75th annual Easter Sunrise Service at Red Rock Amphitheater is scheduled to take place in-person at 18300 W. Alameda Parkway, Morrison. Doors open at 4:30 a.m. with the service beginning at 6 a.m. Participants are advised to arrive early and dress warm. Seats can be reserved by going to https://bit.ly/3j4Qfzz. All ages are welcome to attend. For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3fpz37m.

Celebrate Good Friday with Windsor Community Church at 6:30 p.m. at 700 Automation Drive. Easter Sunday service will take place at 10:15 a.m. at Windsor High School, 1100 Main St. All ages are welcome to attend. For more information, go to www.windsorchurch.org.

Connections Christian Church is hosting a Good Friday service at 6:30 p.m. an Easter Sunday services at 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. at Roosevelt High School, 616 N. 2nd St., Johnstown. All ages are invited to attend. For more information, go to www.connections.cc.

Journey Christian Church will be offering four different Easter services — 6 a.m., 8:30 a.m., 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.— Sunday at 4754 W. 31st St., Greeley. The 6 a.m. service will take place outside, so attendees are urged to dress for chilly weather and bring a lawn chair. All ages are welcome to attend any of the four services. For more information, go to www.journeychristian.org.

Easter at Christ Community Church is set for 6:30 p.m. Friday, 4 p.m. Saturday, 8 a.m., 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. Sunday at 1301 15th St., Greeley. All ages are invited to attend. For more information, go to www.cccgreeley.org.

Grace Community Church is offering Easter Sunday services at 8:30 a.m. and 10:15 a.m. Sunday at 2033 W. S. 1st St., Johnstown. The 10:15 a.m. service will feature Children’s and Youth ministries. All ages are welcome to attend. For more information, go to www.graceconnect.com.

Greeley Vineyard Church will be hosting three Easter Sunday services — 9 a.m., 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. — at 1015 9th Ave. All ages of new and returning members are welcome to attend. For more information, go to www.greeleyvineyard.org.

Easter at Restoration Church is set for 10:30 a.m. Sunday at Embassy Suites by Hilton Loveland Hotel, Conference Center and Spa, 4705 Clydesdale Parkway, Loveland. All ages are invited to enjoy singing, prayer and more. For more information, go to www.restorationchurch.online.

Traverse Christian Church will be holding Easter service at 9 a.m. Sunday at 810 Automation Drive in Windsor. All ages are welcome to attend. For more information, go to www.traversechristian.com.

Celebrate Easter with City Lights Church at 9 a.m. or 11 a.m. Sunday at 4100 20th St., Greeley. Services are open to all ages and will include Crumbl Cookies, a children’s service and a photo area. For more information, go to www.citylights.church.

Chocolate bunnies and eggs as well as other Easter candy and goodies can be found at local supermarkets and stores including King Soopers, WalMart and Target. (Photo credit Tomas Anderson)

Easter activities

Of course, you can always opt to celebrate the holiday at home with family and friends. Here are some fun and creative activities that will make your Easter celebration one for the memory books.

Guess the number of jelly beans is a fun and easy indoor game for all ages. Simply fill up a jar with vibrant colored jelly beans (be sure to count them while filling) and ask each family member and guest to give their best guess. The winner closest to the number without going over receives the entire jar as a prize.

Go with an old school game of egg and spoon races. You can use hard boiled or raw eggs, depending on how much mess you want to clean up and a metal or wooden spoon. Races can be individual or a relay style to kick the competition up a notch.

Make Easter easy by hosting a potluck lunch with friends and family. Ask each guest to bring a side dish, salad, dessert or other item. Pick up some to-go containers at the Dollar Store to pack up and share the leftovers with the crowd.

Like gingerbread houses during Christmas, get the kids and teens involved in building Peeps houses. You can use graham crackers for the walls and roof and frosting to glue it all together. Lay out a variety of decorations such as jelly beans, sprinkles, colored frosting and other candies.

Instead of spending the afternoon in the kitchen cooking the traditional ham or lamb, do a late afternoon picnic with finger foods, sandwiches, chips and dip, fruit and other easy to transport food items. Bring a blanket, some fun books to read to the kids, a couple of outdoor games and enjoy the holiday in the sunshine.

It isn’t really Easter without coloring eggs. Make the project easy by setting up egg coloring outside on the lawn or driveway. Bring out the sidewalk chalk for a full day of coloring and creativity for family members of all ages.

Not really a fan of boiled eggs? Then opt to decorate cupcakes. You can make or buy vanilla cupcakes and decorate them with vibrant colored sprinkles and sugar, marshmallows, food coloring, candies and other fun edible items. For a great vanilla cupcake recipe, check out The Pioneer Woman at https://bit.ly/37iMQdC.

Don’t get caught with an empty basket: Events, activities and ideas to make Easter for family, friends a memorable one