Don’t tell the Daily Prophet reporters. Just find a spot on Platform 9¾ and make your way to the Hogwarts Homecoming in Haverhill. N.H.!
By Laura Jean Whitcomb
Photos courtesy of Court Street Arts
Are you a Harry Potter fan? Then you’ll want to attend the Hogwarts Homecoming in Haverhill, N.H., on Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019, from 1 to 4 p.m.
2019 is the second year for this event. Last year, 400 wizards and muggles visited Court Street Arts at Alumni Hall for an afternoon of magical fun and merriment.
“The HP event blossomed when a group of local artists got together to put their collective creativity to work,” says Keisha Luce, executive director of Court Street Arts. “The event was spread across the village in various buildings and what we created were essentially theater sets in various locations — like the potions shop where kids could walk in and see bottles filled with herbs and spice and use them to make potions to take home. Each kiddo was able to enter the wand shop and talk to the shopkeeper who chose a wand for them. Education events like the owl show and snake showcase were also added. The idea was to create an artful experience that gave kids and parents the feeling as if they were in a wizarding world.”
You’ll feel like a Hogwarts student on the first day of school. You can take a trip to Ollivander’s Wand Shop, where a wand will find you. (There will be a chance to bedazzle your wand, if you wish.) Or you can learn how to find the golden snitch and put your skills to the test in a group Quiddich match. Or, as you wander down Diagon Alley, let the scrumptious smell of Honeydukes lure you in for a chocolate frog or maybe an ear wax Bertie Bott.
Other activities include flying lessons with New England Circus Arts, Owls 101 (get up close and personal with live owls!), a race to find the horcruxes in a scavenger hunt with prizes to win, and time to experiment with new potions — and mix one to take home. All the while you’ll be hobnobbing with Hogwarts professors and other students.
What fun! And the proceeds support Court Street Arts, a small performing arts venue located in a former 1846 courthouse in a historic village of Haverhill Corner. “The building was restored and now we host music, dance and theater performances as well as art classes. The building was on the brink of being condemned, until a local resident had a big dream to save it and find new community use for it,” says Luce. This event is a fan-created festival, managed by a 501(c)3 nonprofit, run by volunteers, and supports other community activities in the region.
“We would love people to attend!” says Luce. “Last year we had to stop ticket sales when they reached 400 sold, but we are planning for more this year.”
Tickets are $10 per person; age 4 and under can attend for free. Don’t forget to wear your house colors.
Laura Jean Whitcomb is the publisher and editor of Kid Stuff magazine.