Kids run free at an Easter egg hunt in Texas in 2011 - unlike at a similar hunt in Colorado Springs, Colo., last year where parents at last year's event jumped the rope and fetched the eggs themselves. (Joel Andrews/The Lufkin Daily News/Associated Press)
By The Associated Press
Organizers of a popular Easter egg hunt in Colorado Springs, Colo., have cancelled this year's event after pushy parents at last year's event swarmed in to be sure their children got an egg.
Last year's event, held in a tiny park in the city's historic area, drew hundreds of young children and their parents.
Thousands of plastic eggs filled with donated candy or coupons were placed in plain view on the grass.
But when the master of ceremonies called "Go," some of the more aggressive parents jumped a rope barrier - set up to allow only children into Bancroft Park - and grabbed the eggs themselves.
The hunt was over in seconds, leaving many children eggless and their parents furious.
Organizers say the event has outgrown its original intent of being a neighborhood event.
Parenting observers cite the cancellation as a prime example of "helicopter parents" -- those who hover over their children and are involved in every aspect of their children's lives -- sports, school, and increasingly, work -- to ensure that they don't fail, even at an Easter egg hunt.
"They couldn't resist getting over the rope to help their kids," said Ron Alsop, a former Wall Street Journal reporter and author of The Trophy Kids Grow Up, which examines the "millennial children" generation.
"That's the perfect metaphor for millennial children. They (parents) can't stay out of their children's lives. They don't give their children enough chances to learn from hard knocks, mistakes," said Alsop.
Lenny Watkins, who lives a block away from Bancroft Park, took his friend's then four-year-old son to the hunt in 2009 and understands why a parent would step in.
"You have all these eggs just lying around, and parents helping out," Watson said. "You better believe I'm going to help my kid get one of those eggs. I promised my kid an Easter egg hunt and I'd want to give him an even edge."
Have you seen instances of "helicopter parenting" in your community? Would you have grabbed an egg for your child if you'd been at the egg hunt? Why or why not?
(This survey is not scientific. Results are based on readers' responses.)
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