A stroll with Keith Mailhotte is more than just a walk. You never know where exactly it's going to end.
Mailhotte is always looking for the perfect spot. Not to stop and take in the sights, but to hide something special. "I like to hide it where it's not obvious. You can't just stumble upon it," he said."
It's a treasure hunt -- more like an Easter egg hunt year round -- with his unique carved eggs. Mailhotte hand carves egg shells, from chickens to emus, in his Morrisville workshop. "I like the thought that they're fragile and it takes skill to do them," Mailhotte said.
Reporter Gina Bullard: What is the skill that it takes to carve an egg?
Keith Mailhotte: Some patience, which I'm surprised I have.
With tools that sound more like they should be in a dentist office, Mailhotte says each egg takes more than an hour.
"The cuts I do don't have any rhyme or reason. I just kind of cut away," he said.
But cutting away isn't as easy as it sounds -- trust me. The eggs are delicate. While you're carving them, and especially after. I found out the hard way.
These intricately carved eggs aren't exactly for sale. Mailhotte tucks them away in secret spots all over the state. He posts photo clues on the Vermont Finders Keepers Facebook page, leading to the eggs. Once found, the keepers contact Mailhotte and can purchase a certificate of authenticity. Prices vary anywhere from $35 to a couple hundred, depending on where the egg is hidden.
Reporter Gina Bullard: What if they don't want to pay?
Keith Mailhotte: Then they don't pay.
Reporter Gina Bullard: You're willing to take the loss?
Keith Mailhotte: I think they're taking the loss. I think this is going be worth quite a bit to someone.
The harder the spot, the higher the value.
"I could hide this egg in Morrisville, but hiding it on top of Camels Hump brings it a whole new value," Mailhotte said.
And although they may be eggs, and Mailhotte is hiding them, he does not want to be confused with the Easter Bunny. "Man, I'd rather be known as the next Fabergé rather than the Easter Bunny," he said.
Unique hand carved eggs being hidden and Made in Vermont.
Wednesday, December 4 2013 8:05 PM EST2013-12-05 01:05:10 GMT
Burlington's deputy police chief is off the hook on drunk driving charges after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors Wednesday.More >>
Burlington's deputy police chief took a plea deal Wednesday, and then announced his retirement. The plea gets Andi Higbee off the hook for drunk driving, but the resolution of the case also ends his 24-year career with the BPD.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 9:45 AM EST2013-12-04 14:45:58 GMT
Police are looking for two Massachusetts men in connection with an assault and robbery in Burlington's South End. It happened Tuesday afternoon on Marble Ave. Investigators say Bryan Frazier, 30, and Rashad Sabree,More >>
Police are looking for two Massachusetts men in connection with an assault and robbery in Burlington's South End.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 9:31 AM EST2013-12-04 14:31:50 GMT
An accused murderer has fired his investigator. Dennis Tribble was convicted of murder twice. The 63-year-old Vermont man was convicted of shooting and killing Michael Borello in 2000. But the VermontMore >>
An accused murderer has fired his investigator.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 6:24 PM EST2013-12-04 23:24:21 GMT
He's already in jail accused of burglaries, now a Lamoille County man is facing more charges. Police say Joshua Loura is now linked to three break-ins in Wolcott and Johnson. He was already accused ofMore >>
He's already in jail accused of burglaries, now a Lamoille County man is facing more charges.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 8:18 PM EST2013-12-05 01:18:10 GMT
Some of Vermont's craft beers are so popular they are being re-sold illegally on the internet, and now the state is cracking down. Brewers like Heady Topper, Hill Farmstead and Lawson's Finest have notedMore >>
Has the Heady Topper craze gotten out of control? Now, a lawyer is in trouble with the law for allegedly trying to capitalize on the Vermont craft brew craze.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 6:03 PM EST2013-12-04 23:03:30 GMT
Still no word from investigators on what caused a fatal fire in Northern New York. Police say Sierra Daha, 22, died in the fire at her home on Dugway Road in Moriah Tuesday morning. An autopsy was completedMore >>
Still no word from investigators on what caused a fatal fire in Northern New York.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 8:09 PM EST2013-12-05 01:09:38 GMT
Betsy Bishop and staff at the Vermont Chamber of Commerce spent much of the year on the phone, convincing business operators to bring their insurance business to the state's online marketplace. But now,More >>
Individual and family enrollments are picking up speed on Vermont Health Connect, but a new extension for businesses is forcing some to re-think health coverage strategies... again.More >>