Photo by Megan Pacer/Peninsula Clarion Magical concoctions, spellbinding books and cobwebs adorn the snack table during a Harry Potter Birthday Bash on Friday, July 29, 2016 at the Kenai Community Library in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Megan Pacer/Peninsula Clarion Magical concoctions, spellbinding books and cobwebs adorn the snack table during a Harry Potter Birthday Bash on Friday, July 29, 2016 at the Kenai Community Library in Kenai, Alaska.

Harry Potter Birthday Bash celebrates literacy, beloved series

Between homemade wands and wizard trivia, children who attended the Kenai Community Library’s Harry Potter Birthday Bash on Friday had their hands and imaginations full.

Some came dressed to the nines in robes, glasses and even fabricated lightening-bolt scars, while others wore excited smiles as they darted from craft stations to a table piled high with magic-themed treats. Children’s Librarian James Adcox, who dressed as the character Professor Snape for the occasion, said although the generation that grew up with Harry Potter is getting older, kids who use the library’s programs still get enjoyment out of the series. Adcox said he wanted to throw the party in part to bring awareness to the release of “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” which came out Sunday, the lead character’s fictional birthday.

“We knew that obviously they planned the release date on Harry Potter’s birthday, so we called it a birthday bash,” Adcox said. “It’s always fun to throw a program like this. It’s almost kind of like summer Halloween.”

The Kenai Community Library will have five copies of the new book, which is a script publication of the play of the same name, on its shelves in a matter of days Adcox said.

Friday’s celebration included plenty of Harry Potter-themed activities for kids to dive into, including a potions relay, book trivia and a wand-making station.

In the approximately three months Adcox has served as the children’s librarian, he’s enjoyed creating programs that not only foster reading and literacy but set the library up as a source of overall education for kids.

“It’s offering healthy hobbies, and there’s education involved,” he said. “We’re offering art classes next month.”

Libraries in general are a great place for people to gather as they offer a “level playing field” for people of all different ages and backgrounds, Adcox said.

“I think the idea of offering a safe place to come, not to mention, just a great place … if you nurture that at a young age, you know, hopefully it’s going to be a place that they enjoy,” he said.

 

Reach Megan Pacer at megan.pacer@peninsulaclarion.com.

Photo by Megan Pacer/Peninsula Clarion Benjamin Farrer, 10, lends a hand and some hot glue to 7-year-old Justice Adcox while they make magic wands during a Harry Potter Birthday Bash on Friday, July 29, 2016 at the Kenai Community Library in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Megan Pacer/Peninsula Clarion Benjamin Farrer, 10, lends a hand and some hot glue to 7-year-old Justice Adcox while they make magic wands during a Harry Potter Birthday Bash on Friday, July 29, 2016 at the Kenai Community Library in Kenai, Alaska.

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