Every Easter, students at Immaculate Conception Catholic School come together to brighten the day for senior citizens in Fairbanks.

They work on Operation Bunny Hop.

This is a service project that has been ongoing for nearly 30 years, a tradition begun by former teacher Chris Stepovich. She came up with the idea decades ago because she knew a Meals on Wheels driver and the first Operation Bunny Hop delivery followed his route.

Here’s how it works: Preschoolers create 100 grace prayer cards. Kindergarteners decorate 100 bunny bags. First-graders make and decorate 100 Easter cards. Second-graders fill 100 colored plastic eggs with prayers. Third-graders make 100 jelly bean prayer baggies. Third- and fourth-graders fill 100 colored plastic eggs with prayers. Fourth-graders write 100 Easter poems and then roll them up like scrolls. Fifth-graders collect fruit cups to put in the Easter bags. 

Sixth-graders then assemble the bags, filling each bag with Easter goodies and joyful messages. Each bag contains a stuffed bunny, fruit cup, a Jelly Bean prayer, grace prayer card, two plastic eggs, an Easter poem and a handmade Easter card.

In years past, these students also delivered the bags, but they did not assist in delivery this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The bags are delivered to Fairbanks residents who reside at MHL Manor, South Hall Manor, Golden Towers, Golden Ages and the Moore Street Senior Apartments. 

Operation Bunny Hop did not happen in 2020 due to COVID.

Reach columnist/community editor Kris Capps at kcapps@newsminer.com. Follow her on Twitter @FDNMKris