The bunny is the star at some Sunday celebrations

WAIPOULI — The Easter Bunny hopped, skipped and jumped around Kaua‘i on Sunday.

Spotted at the Courtyard by Marriott at Coconut Beach, the Easter Bunny was escorted by Jaye Youn, the resort’s sales director, as the furry white icon of Easter celebrations greeted poolside guests to hand out little treats.

 Youn was stopped by a guest who presented her a set of rabbit ears, a white furry tie and cotton tail. “I guess I’m the adult version of the rabbit,” Youn said while greeting Easter Brunch guests at the Voyager Restaurant. A petting zoo outside the restaurant featured chicks and live rabbits.

Bunnies, eggs and yellow chicks stem from pagan roots and have nothing to do with the Christian holiday, states the discovery.com website.

The origin of the celebration and the Easter Bunny can be traced back to 13th century Germany, when people worshipped several dieties, according to the University of Florida’s Center for Children’s Literature and Culture.

The Teutonic deity Eostra was the goddess of spring and fertility. Her symbol was the rabbit because of the animal’s high reproduction rate, and feasts were held in her honor on the Vernal Equinox.

Eggs were an ancient symbol of fertility, and spring symbolized new life and rebirth.

The first Easter Bunny legend was documented in the 1500s, and these legends were brought to the United States in the 1800s when German immigrants settled in Pennsylvania Dutch Country, according to the Center for Children’s Literature and Culture.

The tradition of making nests for the rabbits to lay eggs followed. Eventually, nests became decorated baskets, and colorful eggs were exchanged for candy, treats and other small gifts.

On Sunday, the Easter Bunny also made an appearance at the first Starwish fundraising event to raise money for island nonprofits at Sheraton Kaua‘i in Po‘ipu. Here, guests could have their photos taken with the  bunny.

The famous bunny also made an appearance at the Associated Students of the University of Hawai‘i-Kaua‘i Community College Spring Festival. Here, the bunny was   joined by a cast of Showtime Characters, appearing about the time Sponge Bob, Squidward, and Patrick Star of Nickelodeon fame popped up at the Child and Parent Fair at Kukui Grove Center.

Showtime Characters spokeswoman Brenda Biehler said the bunny made an earlier stop at Ka‘ Eo Kai to entertain guests.

For those who missed seeing the Easter Bunny, the edible chocolate version likely will be on sale following the holiday at shops dispensing Easter goodies.

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