Red Deer celebration of international Harry Potter book night

Magical night of festivities in Red Deer

Fans of all ages gathered at Sunworks and The Coconut Room to celebrate International Harry Potter Book Night recently.

“It’s the magic,” said Kathryn Harris, event organizer and the general manger of Sunworks. “People love the involvement with the story — no one has created a world to this extent in a book before.”

There were 13,200 parties held through the world in celebration of Harry Potter Book Night this year, according to the Bloomsbury Publishing web site. Red Deer was one of less than a dozen cities to host an event in Canada.

Harris and her team went all out creating a magical night for guests.

The space was elaborately decorated like a tavern in the Wizarding World and the movie soundtrack played in the background. They were serving hot mugs of butter beer, a favourite beverage in the stories. There was also a wand making station, wizard chess, a scavenger hunt and book reading.

Most of the attendants were dressed in their best robes, but those in muggle (non-magical) dress were welcome, too.

For 13-year-old Paige Kuipers, she came with her nana Angie Scott and both were impressed by the caliber of the event. “I think this is awesome,” said Scott. “She did the scavenger hunt, and it’s all so fun.”

Kuipers said she became a fan three years ago, after reading the books on a family road trip.

“I like to read and I’d already seen all the movies,” she said.

When Kuipers visited the Wizarding World in Orlando for her birthday two years ago, she suited up as a proud Gryffindor with robes, scarf and a wand.

She said her dad has even built her a four-poster bed like the ones in the dorms at Hogwarts and her nana is sewing a Harry Potter quilt and long curtains to complete the look.

Harris was motivated to put on events after not being able to find anywhere closer than Calgary to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first book’s release last summer. It was so well-received she decided to put on a weekend-long movie marathon that fall.

“Before it was even over, people were asking me when the next event was going to be,” Harris said.

She laughs that she is the, “Self-appointed Red Deer Minister of Magic.”

Harris hopes to make the Harry Potter-themed events a regular thing.

 

Just Posted

Lacombe, Red Deer and Ponoka counties launch agricultural plastics recycling program

The three counties signed an agreement with Merlin Plastics

Bashaw council declines penalty forgiveness request from Bashaw Motel owners

The motel was destroyed in the 2016 fire; owners owe $46,000 in fire services, taxes and penalties

Ponoka’s Ronnie Racing wins Hot August Night

About 15,000 people filled the Castrol Raceway stands at the motorsports complex

Ponoka County residents divided on farmland uses

There were about 150 people at the county’s meeting related to reducing confined feeding operations.

Ponoka County slows changes to CFO plans

Residents speak their concerns over the potential of changing areas allowing CFOs

UPDATED: Gord Bamford Foundation Charity Gala brings the stars to Central Alberta

The Gala raises money for various children’s charities throughout Canada

Kids, seniors at risk as smoke from distant fires hangs over parts of B.C.

B.C. Centre for Disease Control says children’s lungs don’t fully develop until about age 10

New plan to lift more than two million people past the poverty line

Anti-poverty strategy will aim for 50 per cent cut in low-income rates: source

Liberals scrap lottery system for reuniting immigrants with their parents

Lottery for parent sponsorship to be replaced, more applications to be accepted

Ponoka RCMP investigate commercial break and enter

Other RCMP files include suspects photographing rural properties and other theft files

Trudeau says he won’t apologize to heckler, pledges to call out ‘hate speech’

Prime Minister had accused woman of racism as she shouted about illegal immigration at Quebec rally

Smoke from B.C. wildfires prompts air quality advisories across Western Canada

A massive cloud of smoke hangs over B.C. and Alberta due to wildfires

Pope on sex abuse: “We showed no care for the little ones”

In response to the Pennsylvania report, Francis labeled the misconduct “crimes”

Multiple quakes kill at least 12 on Indonesian islands

A shallow magnitude 6.9 quake that hit about 10 p.m causing landslides

Most Read