Strasburg gets ready for Harry Potter event

STRASBURG – Calling all witches and wizards: there’s a Harry Potter festival in Downtown Strasburg beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday.

Debbie Ritenour, organizer of the event, is a fan of the Harry Potter books and wanted to share her love and enthusiasm with her local community.

“A lot of people don’t know how big Harry Potter really is,” she explained. “Plus,” she added, “there are so many kids here in Strasburg that love Harry Potter. It’s something that can bring us all together.”

Ritenour based her event off of a Harry Potter event held in Staunton, which draws thousands of Harry Potter book fans.

“I wanted to bring it to Strasburg, but on a smaller scale,” she said.

“The Staunton organizers have been a huge help,” she said. “They’ve given me all kinds of ideas and tips to make this event a huge success for everyone involved.”

The excitement for the Harry Potter Festival can be seen all around Strasburg. Decorations are going up, and the alley next to Pot Town Organics will become Diagon Alley, a cobblestone alleyway behind the Leaky Cauldron pub here Harry Potter and fellow classmates purchased their Hogwarts supplies.

Potterheads will be able to participate in various activities around the downtown including Quiddich matches, potion cases, a snitch-making table and a scavenger hunt. The Strasburg Library will offer Harry Potter story time from noon to 1 p.m. A Harry Potter Jeopardy game begins at 4 p.m.

Participants are urged to wear house colors, and costumes are recommended but not required.

Phoenix Photography will offer souvenir-themed Harry Potter photos for $3. Tarot card reader Joy Anderson will be onsite for readings.

Food vendors will include Bobbie Joe’s Red Trailer and Taco Penton.

0-60 Café will re-create favorites from the Potterverse, including Butter Beer, chocolate frogs, pumpkin pasties and Hogwarts Steak and Kidney pie.

Admission is $5 at the gate, though only a handful of tickets remain. Kids under 9 are free.

N. Fort Street will be closed from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. for the event.