Photos Courtesy of the City of Peoria

The city of Peoria will be celebrating the 46th year of an annual Peoria tradition, the Dolly Sanchez Easter Celebration. The festivities will be from 8 a.m.-noon at the Peoria Sports Complex, located at 16101 N. 83rd Avenue.

“This year’s celebration is a great way for Peoria families to have fun in a safe manner,” says Marylou Stephens, Peoria’s arts and events manager. “Be sure to stop by, eat, play and be ‘hoppy’ at the Dolly Sanchez Easter Celebration!”

Families and kids of all ages can hop through Cottontail Lane, take a picture with Mr. and Mrs. Easter Bunny, visit the flower growing kit station, and collect eggs and goodies. There will be a variety of breakfast and snack food trucks, inflatable slides, a rock-climbing wall, Euro bungee, a photo booth, and a live band playing musical favorites from the 50s and 60s. The Dino Crew will also be making an appearance.

In addition, the event will have a sensory room, which is a calming space for individuals with sensory processing needs. Noise-canceling headphones, weighted blankets, plush chairs, and soft toys are available to ensure all attendees can enjoy the celebration. Sensory kits will also be available to check out during the event. Just like the Teal Pumpkin Program signifies a safe food home or event during Halloween, Peoria will have teal eggs throughout the Dolly Sanchez Easter Celebration. For those families managing food allergies, children are encouraged to visit the booths with teal eggs or bags to get a variety of non-food items like toys and arts and crafts.

This event is a Peoria tradition where families have gathered for 46 years, thanks to the Sanchez family. In 1976, Dolly Sanchez, who was a Peoria resident and member of the Peoria Community Action Program and Parks and Recreation Board, started a community Easter egg hunt. The city of Peoria became an official event partner with the Sanchez family in 1983, expanding the family Easter egg hunt from Varney Park to a city Easter event in seven neighborhood parks, to finally the Peoria Sports Complex in 1994. This event has become a community tradition attended by thousands of Peoria and Valley residents. The Sanchez family remains an integral part of the Easter celebration, helping plan the event and volunteering their time during the holiday festivities.

For more information about the Dolly Sanchez Easter Celebration, visit