Kiara Libal filling Easter eggs for paying clients to hide them in their backyards for Easter.
Kiara Libal fills Easter eggs that she later will hide in the backyards of her 33 paying clients. Photo courtesy of Michelle Libal.

The Easter Bunny had competition this year as Kiara Libal took its job by hiding Easter eggs for families in Ashland and the surrounding area.

Libal, a sophomore nursing student at Nebraska Wesleyan University, is in her fourth year of hiding Easter eggs for families.

She started playing the Easter bunny while she was a sophomore at Ashland High School as a way to make a little extra money.

“I started brainstorming and I was like, ‘I bet there’s parents that just don’t really have a lot of time to hide eggs, or it’s hard because their kids are awake and they don’t want to stay up late,’” she said.

Libal said she posted about the proposed service to her Facebook page, in addition to the Facebook pages of the Ashland and Saunders County communities, but she wasn’t expecting much. To her surprise, the post blew up and 40 people signed up for the service. 

Monica Payne, one of Libal’s clients, said this was her fourth year having Libal hide eggs for her four children, and certainly doesn’t plan on it being her last.

When Payne saw Libal’s Facebook post, she said she thought it would be a great way to save some time.

“We have four kids, our youngest is two months old, and having time to hide eggs in the middle of the night or do all those crazy things doesn’t seem to happen anymore,” Payne said. “Being able to have someone else that’s extremely dependable come and save us time and still make a fun experience for the kids was awesome.”

Libal’s service includes buying the candy and plastic eggs, filling them up and then hiding them Saturday night before Easter.

Libal said the price differs with the amount of eggs the family wants hidden. For 25 eggs, she charges $20; for 50,  $35; for 75, $50; and for 100, $65. Libal said these charges help cover the cost of candy, which is expensive. It also covers the cost of travel as some of her clients are from towns outside of Ashland, requiring her to drive longer distances. After buying the eggs and candy, Libal said she made a profit of $1,000 this year.

With 33 clients, Libal says she filled a total of 1,800 eggs this year. She said this is the most eggs she’s filled yet, partly because for the first time this year she offered to hide 100 eggs. Additionally, she said her past clients have often bumped up the amount of eggs bought from previous years.

To prepare for the big day, Libal posts her ad a month before the holiday. About two weeks in, she buys the eggs and candy. If the parents are able, Libal said they will often return eggs from previous years to reduce the amount she needs to buy the next year. 

A week before Easter, she fills the eggs. Libal said she has help from friends and family when she fills and hides the eggs.

 Michelle Libal, Libal’s mom, said she has helped for the past four years and said she enjoys watching her daughter be successful with her novel idea to make money.

“At first I was like, ‘Oh gosh, I don’t want to do this,’ but then once you go do it, it’s like, ‘Oh that wasn’t so bad, that was kind of fun,” Michelle Libal said.

Once the eggs are filled, Libal sorts them into bags labeled for each individual house, stating the ages of the kids. 

The eggs are hidden in varying difficulty based on the ages of the kids, she said. Come the Saturday night before Easter, Libal develops a route for her four helpers to ensure the easiest ways to hide the eggs. She said each house takes about only five to 10 minutes; she especially likes hiding them in gutters, sandboxes and swing sets.

Come Easter, Libal’s hard work is done and she can sit back and relax and reap the benefits. As a thank you to her helpers, who were all family members this year, she prepared Easter dinner.

“My favorite part is when the parents send me pictures of the kids with all their eggs and tell me how much they loved it and how much fun they had,” she said.

Libal said she plans to continue her egg hiding business with hopes of reaching more towns than just Ashland and a few others. She also said she hopes her client list will grow, reaching more people through her ad and word of mouth.

“I keep telling myself it’s so much work, but if I don’t do it then I feel like people will be sad,” Libal said. “It’s also a great way to make some extra money being in college.”