A great secret about being on Hilton Head at special times of the year is that island families and visitors are protected by elves that live underground. Through the years, they have observed the island’s growth from their quiet little nooks, sneaking out at dusk and in the wee hours to assist us in areas of our evolution where we need help – but didn’t always know it – and at certain times of the year, like Easter, they hire assistants to help with overflow. Right now the assistants work for Sea Pines Resort, and are taking calls for Easter Bunny pails, at $40/each, and a wagon ride, at 843-842-1979. They are under the careful supervision of head Easter elf, Jen Westerfeld, and yes, reservations are necessary.
Easter elves became necessary due to a story about a family whose parents would like to remain nameless. But whom nevertheless, had set a rather demanding precedent for their darling children, known as Carmen and Preston of Baynard Cove environs, whereby the Easter Bunny always left full, and overflowing baskets of chocolate eggs, goodies, and pastel-colored sundries next to the fireplace Easter’s Eve, giving much incentive for the little angels to snap awake early for church in the am each year.
But woe, one season back in the 1970’s, the sacred Sunday fell on the same day as the sacred Heritage Golf Tournament Final Sunday round (just like this year, of our Lord, 2017). Which also meant that sometimes, the rituals accompanying the hallowed Saturday Eves, also conflicted with one another, resulting in opposing early, Bunny tee-times, and church bells.
To wit; due to the aforementioned conflicting rituals the night before, the Easter Bunny did not make it to the fireplace of Casa Hawkins one Easter/Heritage Sunday morning, back in the day. You can imagine, upon bounding out to the fireplace in bunny pajama finery at sunrise finding no Easter baskets, the children were none-too-pleased.
As later family relations have retold this tale, the wise Queen-Mum, and her visiting sister, snuck out the back porch on the 11th tee in their dressing gowns with baskets, candy, and painted eggs (whilst the CBS cameramen were setting up on the 15th for the final day wondering to each other, what will the Hilton Head residents think of next, as they remembered that the year before, two streakers ran across the 17th fairway on live tv). Unconcerned at what the cameramen might be thinking, the sisters quickly arranged the baskets nicely at the front door of the Hawkins’ residence.
Pleased with their work, the lovely debutantes, tiptoed back around into the house, as though this was all normal, Easter-Sunday-morning-Hilton-Head-goings-on, and said, “Well, what’s wrong Preston? Why are you frowning this lovely dawn?”
And Carmen, who was older, and a little wisenheimer at this point in life said, “He’s mad because the Easter Bunny didn’t come this year.”
To which, the Queen’s sister said, “Well, has he checked out the front door? Maybe the Easter Bunny couldn’t get down the fireplace last night.” (We were also new to the Sea Pines neighborhood, so certain child-ish beliefs of a general theme were getting spun to us in odd variations as we matured).
Frowning, Preston marched his little padded hoofies to the front door, swung it open, where, SURPRISE! There were TWO Easter baskets filled with chocolate eggs, colored cellophane wrappers, with price tags, pine straw sticking out, and Spanish moss dripping off the sides. Preston stood looking down for a few minutes, and finally said, “Dumb, Easter Bunny.”
[Just a heads-up; if you weren’t living here before 1980, the rest of this might be really boring.]
Which brings me to my earlier point about the elves that have been watching island humanoids (they call us, ‘Fumbling Island Ogres’ in case you were wondering), to see what kinds of antics we might be up to, in the course of a weekly episode.
For more examples (besides just the ‘Laughingstock Hawkins Clan of Baynard Cove,’), at one time in Hilton Head’s development, early Island Ogres thought it might be nifty to erect green stop signs (so unique, even Horace Sutton mentioned it in the Chicago Tribune in 1969) and to have directional signage hanging from boat oars, to keep things recreational-looking, and resort-ish for vacationers.
As everyone now knows, landscaped rotary circles were the answer to stoplights; adorned with trees and foliage, hiding the other side of the road, so newcomers to the island would not know if the road ended, or went around to the other side, or dead-ended, or what the heck? Why doesn’t this Godforsaken place have streetlights?
Elves noticed immediately (of course, amidst much glee and knee-slapping), that Fumbling Ogres could not discern color from text when it came to disassociating the shade of green, from the word, ‘Stop’. Nor, could they retreat quickly enough from making a right turn, where the sign that said HarbourTown, with a white, painted left arrow, was hanging from a brown oar with the paddle-end pointed towards the right. This was especially funny, if it was the posted instructional sign on the rotary circle, and the paddle happened to be hanging leftward.
One can only imagine the resulting noise-pollution issues; horn honking, and finger-gesturing; lots of foreign-language shouting, which resembled much too closely, the cities from whence the Visiting Fumbling Ogres came.
So, after much more belly-laughing, the elves set about quietly adjusting mistakes for the Fumbling Island Ogres, who had to keep marching forward in this experiment known as the Shambala Hilton Head Island.
Sadly, no longer could the elves enjoy the escapades of Fumbling Ogres imbibing too much of the vine, falling from tavern into the bay, as weekend entertainment.
So, within a few short years, the green stop signs turned back to red, bike paths became more clearly marked with lots of little red stop signs, magnets appeared on refrigerators that told visitors not to feed alligators, and to turn off beach-oriented lights so the loggerhead turtle hatchlings could find their way to the ocean. Then, signs appeared on beach pathways reminding everyone to pick up after their pets, and later signs that came with plastic bags to pick up after their pets (because the elves watched Fumbling Ogres ignore the first sign, so they had to actually build a roll of plastic bags into the sign – phew – Fumbling Ogres needed lots of help).
And yes, now you can call for the Easter Bunny, so that a little kid doesn’t have to stand at the front door, shaking his head saying, “Dumb Easter Bunny” late Sunday morning.
For a Bunny pail delivery call, 843-842-1979, or go to https://www.seapines.com/events/Easter-Pail-Deliveries/April-2017 within Sea Pines Resort only. The Easter Bunny will bring a pail filled with beach toys and Easter candy, plus an elf will come along to assist. The cost is $40./pail. If you would like a pail reserved for your child and you are not staying in side Sea Pines, you can still order an Easter Pail, with 24 hours notice, and pick it up at the Sea Pines Fitness Center on Lighthouse Rd.