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Bunny, Walking Carrot Compete for Kids’ Favor

It was a tossup as to who was mobbed the most often while strolling along the promenade at Ventura Harbor Village on Sunday: the Easter bunny or the walking carrot.

The human-size bunny may have been the sentimental favorite, but it was the nearly 6-foot carrot handing out the candy.

“Just one, girls!” a mom yelled into the crowd of kids ransacking the carrot’s basket.

Two children emerged from the horde with sheepish looks on their faces, while the rest kept on digging.

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“What do you say?” mom asked.

“Thank you, Easter Bunny,” the sisters said in unison.

The bunny received the credit, but the carrot didn’t seem to mind.

So many basket-wielding kids on the hunt created an egg shortage.

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“We had 7,000 eggs, and we’re running out,” said Cherrly Connally, marketing director of Harbor Village, where merchants handed out two eggs to each child. “I’ve got to find some more.”

The plastic eggs were filled with candy, a small toy or a gift certificate.

In addition to the egg crisis, a strong wind at the harbor forced cancellation of a parrot show. Connally feared the bird might fly away.

But a magic show did go on as scheduled.

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Eggs were disappearing there, too. Magician Dan Ray called kids up to the stage as assistants.

“Ooh, ooh! Me, me!” the kids grunted while stretching their arms high.

“I never get picked,” one dejected boy said, sighing.

But lucky 6-year-old Lukas Owens did. After Ray made an egg vanish into an empty cloth bag, Lukas got it back with a wave of his hand and the magic words--"Purple Puppy Chow.”

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“He was acting a little silly when the egg was missing,” Lukas said about the magician. “He was funny.”

Bethany Cox, 11, out for the Easter egg hunt with her mom and brother, was happy to find certificates for free ice cream tucked inside her eggs.

It was an all-around fun Easter, she said, but one thing did puzzle her.

“I don’t understand why a bunny would want a carrot that walks,” she said.

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