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Hogwarts in Birmingham

15 July 2005

Liveblogging with my Blackberry 7250…

1400 people was the staff estimate tonight for the attendance at the McWane Center’s celebration of the new Harry Potter book. One comment I heard while on the parking deck elevator during our way IN was that none of us had ever had to park so high in the deck. I lost count of how many I saw who came in costume.

Upon arrival, everyone received their own professionally produced “Marauder’s Map” on parchment-colored paper, folded up like the ‘real thing’ from the movie. The map was a work of art in its own right and must’ve taken someone a huge amount of time. I predict it’ll be a cherished bookmark for those who purchased their new books at midnight.

After crossing through Platform 9 3/4, my kids and I found the crowds large but cordial. There wasn’t an event that wasn’t standing room only, often 6 deep or worse. The staff who dressed as characters from the books (including a foreboding Hagrid and the somewhat ‘homely’ Miss Weasely) stayed in character as they led such explorations as the “Care of Magical Animals”. The “Meet a Basilisk” program was so popular that the staff/performers ran room-fulls of visitors in fifteen minute cycles, giving most everyone a chance at the experience.

What a fun family event! Kudos to Tim Ritchie, their CEO. What’s next in your bag of spells? 🙂

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One Comment leave one →
  1. 4 August 2005 2:59 pm

    Ahh! I was there too, possibly in the same room (the Basilisk thing). Just found you through the Magic City group on flickr. I still haven’t gotten around to posting my photos of the Harry Potter event.

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