All month long, the Kingsport Public Library is hosting a number of special events and themed classes to celebrate all things Harry Potter. The celebration is being called OWL Wizarding Wonder Month and it’ll run from July 31 — Harry’s birthday — through Sept. 1.
The library will essentially be 4 Privet Drive, Hogwarts and Diagon Alley all wrapped into one through the end of the month. It’s the first time such a magical transfiguration has taken place at 400 Broad St.
“This is the first year we’ve done this,” explained Youth Services Librarian Casey Applebaum. “We’ve played around with the idea, and since we’re all kinds of Harry Potter geeks around here and a couple of other libraries in the area are doing Harry Potter events, we decided to make it a monthlong celebration of Harry Potter.”
The celebration kicked off on July 31 with a birthday party at the library for Harry (who turned 39 this year). More than 200 fans turned out for it, some in robes with a wand in their hand. This past Saturday featured an Ordinary Wizarding Level Escape Room.
It was much like a professional escape room, but one geared toward younger fans with easier-to-solve puzzles.
“We maxed out this escape room real quick and had a wait list for it, so we opened up extra slots on the Friday before,” Applebaum said. “It went great, we had all but one group escape and everyone had an awesome time. I don’t think anyone left disappointed.”
Enough about what’s already happened. What’s yet to happen later this month?
— On Thursday at 4 p.m., the library is hosting a Teen Wizarding Food Fest. Chocolate Frogs, Every Flavor Beans, Butterbeer and more will be on hand, made by the best house elves the library can find.
— Harry Potter Trivia Night will be on Aug. 13 beginning at 6 p.m. Bring your team of Gryffindor or maybe Slitherin to face off against your fellow wizards in answering some of the toughest questions to come out of the Ministry of Magic. You won’t win the Tri-Wizard Cup, but you will have bragging rights for the rest of the evening.
— The Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Test Escape Room will be on Aug. 17 from 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. This will be the second and last escape room event for the month and will include harder puzzles aimed at older kids and adults.
— Movie showing on Aug. 24 at 2 p.m. The library isn’t allowed to publicize the name of the movie, lest the Aurors come hunt them down and send them to Azkaban. But I’m sure whatever movie is shown it’ll be a “fantastic” time for all manner of “beasts.”
— A scavenger hunt is taking place all month long in downtown Kingsport. Just go to the library to get a list of clues to various locations in the downtown area. Find each one, hunt for the Harry Potter-themed image nearby and make a note of it. Turn the list back in at the library to earn points for your house.
By attending events throughout the month, going on the scavenger hunt and winning programs ,you’ll earn points for your house. At the end of the month, the house with the most points wins. Again, just for bragging rights, but it’s all in good fun and just a way for fans to show their love and affection for Harry Potter.
For more information about any of the events, call the library at (423) 229-9366 or go to www.kingsportlibrary.org.