Jen Clark works about 100 hours each week as the owner of a specialty bakery in Cudahy, Wisc., but she still didn’t feel right about taking a vacation last year unless she combined it with a good deed. So she added a trip to Memphis, Tenn., onto her Easter vacation trip to Nashville — just to bring Easter baskets to the kids of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
“Every kid needs an Easter basket,” Jen said. She and her daughter, Cortney, who also works at the bakery, drove nine hours to bring 80 Easter baskets to Memphis last year, filling an SUV. “We had baskets upon baskets upon baskets. My daughter held an Easter basket the entire way.”
Hopper, a gray, stuffed rabbit, is the mascot for what Jen calls Operation Bunny Hop, which has its own Facebook page.
Operation Bunny Hop expanded to about 550 baskets this year, because Jen saw many more than 80 children when she visited St. Jude last year. The hospital treats upwards of 277 patients a day, with most St. Jude patients treated as outpatients to preserve as much of a normal routine as possible.