Last night, the Fort Wayne Allen County Public Library held probably the most outstanding event that I remember at the Library. They recreated Diagon Alley and had so many great things to do and see and have. There was a free wand shop, free candy, tattoos, harry potter glasses and more. You could make and adopt an owl, make a clock, make a card and mail it with a special Harry Potter postmark. There was a costume show and Potions class and a magical astronomy show. You could have your picture taken with Harry Potter and Professor Dumbledore at the headmaster's table and in the Flying Car. There was a magic show, games, fortunetellers, and so much, much more.
I videotaped the crowd when the doors opened at 9pm and I must have taped a steady stream of people going into the library for probably 10 minutes. I hope to have some YouTube videos up soon. I don't know how many people were there, but I know there were thousands. There will probably be an official estimate soon.
Library staff (including several senior managers) became Harry Potter, Professor Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall, Professor Snape, Mad Eye Moody, Hagrid, and Moaning Mary. They mingled and interacted with the crowd and signed autographs, posed for pictures and stayed in character beautifully.
Then at midnight, checkout opened and the lucky lottery winners checked out the final Harry Potter book. The smiles on the faces of kids and their parents and everyone who came down was priceless.
It was a wonderful, magical night. Here are my flickr pictures of the event. I hope to have some YouTube videos coming soon.
UPDATE - NEW! Here are flickr pictures of the party from the ACPL.
I hope Fort Wayne appreciates the wonderful asset the city has in the library and how much it does for the community. Go check out the ACPL web site to see some of the activities they offer. Or better yet, visit your local branch and see what is going on. You might be very surprised.