“I was right there and watched them find it,” the Prestonsburg resident said. “So this year I started digging around in the grass under the bushes until I found it.”
Hamilton found the egg near a drainage ditch at the Martin redevelopment site, hidden beneath a bush and covered in grass and leaves.
The Floyd County Times’ 2011 Great Easter Egg Hunt ended Wednesday morning, when Hamilton found the grand prize egg along a hillside at the redevelopment area in Martin.
Hamilton called ahead to The Times before bringing the egg to claim the $500 prize, accurately describing it and the certificate. She arrived shortly afterwards with the egg, accompanied by her sister, Marsha Collins, and niece, Lillian Maynard.
For the contest each year, The Times hides one Easter egg and then publishes clues to its location in the 12 issues preceding Easter. Whoever finds the egg and returns to the newspaper office wins $500.
Hamilton, who owns and operates Hamilton Painting with her husband, said her approach each year has been pretty straightforward.
“I just follow the clues and collect them and make a list,” she said. “I wasn’t sure about where it was until the clue about the city that will rise came out. Then I was pretty sure where to look.”
Other places Hamilton said she had tried before Martin were Allen Park and Archer Park, adding that she had only one regret.
“I wish my kids could have been with me when I found it,” Hamilton said Wednesday morning. “But they’re in school right now, so there’s not much I could do about that.”
As was the case last year, the egg remained unclaimed after the 12 clues had been published, prompting an additional clue which ran Wednesday morning.
Some hopefuls said the clues may have been hard to interpret, but Times’ Managing Editor Ralph Davis disagrees.
“I don’t think we could consider the clues too difficult after witnessing the sheer number of people who were searching for the egg all around it,” said Davis. “Personally, I thought the egg was easier to find this year, because it was more accessible than last year.”
Last year, the egg was found along the Garfield Trail in Prestonsburg and had been obscured by overgrowth that wasn’t present at the time it was hidden.
So how is Hamilton going to spend her $500?
“Probably on gas,” she said, laughing.