Easter fun that doesn’t end up in the landfill

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Spring has sprung, bunnies are hopping, but wait a minute — where has all the plastic gone? This time around, have Easter fun that leaves a mark on memories and not on the planet.

A nest containing several pastel-colored eggs with one egg in the foreground bearing the message "happy easter.
Kickstart your Easter celebrations with these waste-aware activities, proving that going green can be fun. Photo credit: Depositphotos.

What goes into creating memorable Easter fun? Plastic eggs and baskets, fake grass and candy wrappers probably aren’t at the top of the list. If you’re buying disposable plastic every year only to throw it away once Easter is over, then you might want to learn about alternative, fun and eco-friendly Easter festivities.

Say no to single-use plastic

For many Americans, spring flowers or warmer weather may not be the first signs of Easter’s approach. Instead, your initial reminder about the upcoming holiday likely comes from the shelves of your local Target. As retailers begin stocking Easter-themed holiday items, you might feel tempted to pick up a bunch of cheap plastic eggs and Easter decorations while running other errands. It’s hard to resist the allure of making your Easter egg hunt a little bit easier to plan.

Unfortunately, what begins as an impulse purchase often ends up in the landfill. Those plastic eggs, which look so tempting on display in stores, lose their appeal once the holiday is over. Many families may not have the space to store bulky Easter baskets or piles of crumpled plastic grass. Since most of that plastic can’t be recycled, according to Nature World News, families simply throw it away. 

With 81% of Americans celebrating Easter, according to Statista, those individual choices can add up quickly. UN experts are sounding the alarm about the toxic tidal wave of plastic, such as toys, bags and other products that end up contaminating the environment. In a recent statement, UN’s David R. Boyd and Marcos Orellana warned that “the contribution of plastic pollution to climate change is alarming, yet often overlooked.”

The good news is that it’s possible to have beloved Easter festivities without all that waste. For many Christians, the real meaning of Easter isn’t buying and discarding a jumble of single-use plastics. Instead, the holiday is a time to reflect upon core Christian values of sacrifice and simplicity. 

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Eco-friendly Easter activities for kids

With a little creativity and planning, you can introduce fun Easter activities that don’t involve spending money on wasteful plastic products. Instead, hop into an Easter celebration that’s kind to your wallet and the Earth. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Outdoor Easter scavenger hunt

In a twist on classic Easter egg hunts, don’t send your kids out searching for plastic eggs. Instead, organize an outdoor Easter scavenger hunt with fun riddles as clues. Have meaningful prizes at the end of the hunt.

Easter baking

Ditch the individually wrapped Easter candies and bake some Easter treats together as a family. Cookies, wrapped in paper or stored in jars, are a great gift to share with loved ones.

Dyeing hard-boiled eggs

Did you know that dyeing real hard-boiled eggs is way more fun? It’s easy to use natural food dyes, like onion skin or turmeric. And because these dyes are natural, you can eat the eggs as part of your Easter menu, so nothing goes to waste. 


Easter is all about celebrating new beginnings. Planting seeds or seedlings with kids is an engaging activity that is also environmentally friendly.

DIY-ing instead of buying

DIY instead of buying your Easter baskets this year. Egg cartons, old newspapers and magazines can all be used to make Easter baskets and decorations. 

“One of our family’s favorite activities to do on Easter is crafting,” says Siobhan Alvarez-Borland of Mimosas and Motherhood. “From keepsake handprint or footprint crafts to utilizing found materials from an outdoor nature hunt to create a spring collage, this family crafting time has become one of our most treasured traditions.” 

If your kids are old enough, encourage them to get involved in planning and choosing eco-friendly options for Easter. This will not only help kids understand the importance of sustainability, but it’s also a great way to get them excited about celebrating holidays in a way that doesn’t damage the planet.

Tips for reducing waste during Easter celebrations

No matter how you celebrate Easter, there are lots of ways to reduce waste. Start by taking stock of what you already have. You may turn up a box of Easter decorations you didn’t know you owned, avoiding the need to purchase something new. Or, consider connecting with other community members who are also celebrating Easter to swap supplies.

When you’re putting together Easter baskets, don’t forget about your local thrift store. Thrift stores often have a plethora of wicker baskets available at low prices. These higher-quality reusable baskets can be saved and re-used from year to year, avoiding waste. If you own a shredder or a pair of scissors, you can easily create your own recyclable paper grass — an alternative to plastic Easter grass. 

Visit your local retailers to check out eco-friendly alternatives to Easter-themed plastic products. Recyclable paper eggs, which are great for decorating the house or an Easter egg hunt, are becoming increasingly available in stores. Also, use eco-friendly basket fillers, like tickets to zoos or museums, seed bombs and wooden puzzles.

The positive impact of eco-friendly Easter fun

Initially, a low-waste Easter might seem like added pressure during an already busy time of celebration planning. But, as you implement the tips suggested in this article, you might be surprised at how sustainability becomes less of a chore and more of an integral part of your family values. You’ll quickly appreciate the liberating feeling of having less plastic waste cluttering up your home post-celebration. 

Developing sustainable holiday traditions reduces waste and minimizes your family’s environmental footprint. When you engage in eco-friendly activities it’s an opportunity for family bonding while also setting a great example for children. Avoiding consumerism on Easter is the perfect way to be grateful for what you already have, placing the focus firmly on Easter’s true meaning.

Before you know it, as your kids enjoy an outdoor Easter scavenger hunt, you’ll be hunting for more ways to keep your family’s life eco-friendly beyond Easter — and the planet will thank you for it.

Tamara Tsaturyan is the owner and writer of Thriving In Parenting, a website focused on providing simple tips for busy parents — easy and healthy recipes, home decor and organization ideas and all things parenting.

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