October 31 is going to be one magical day for a number of Harry Potter fans, especially those willing to travel all the way to Diagon Alley. Of course, this trip doesn’t requires a magical train ride or a no quick run through Platform 9 3/4, all it takes is a trip to the muggle city of New York. For five magical hours, the street of Press Bay Alley in Ithaca, New York will be transformed into that childhood dreamscape, Diagon Alley.
The landmark, award-winning series undoubtedly left readers and viewers alike wishing for a trip to the magic-filled land. Theme parks and amusements the world over have managed to capture the magic of Harry Potter and give it to the public. However, unlike most attractions, this upcoming Diagon Alley Halloween event will be totally free to attend. The college town of Ithaca is able to play host to this wizarding treat because of the hard work of thousands of volunteers with a love for the Harry Potter franchise. The transformation of the very muggle downtown Press Bay Alley into the magical shopping district that is Diagon Alley will be brought to life next Saturday as over 2,400 Harry Potter fans wave their magical wands (or, in this case, apply tons of elbow grease) to make everything look just right.
The event will take place from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. and the Facebook page for the magical Halloween setup is hosted by a participating business in the event, called Life’s So Sweet Chocolates. Businesses like Bramble Herb and Spice Store, Modern Cottege Industry and Ithaca Generator, which Press Connect identifies as a nonprofit, and all others along the alley will actually be participating in the Wizarding Weekend. Promises have been made that all the shopkeepers can be seen in their finest witch and wizard attire. The page also shows that although only approximately 2,800 persons were sent official invites, the number of people who have stated their intent to attend the event is over 4,000 and counting. All attendees are being urged to join in the Potter-style fun and dress like the wizards and witches most fans (not so) secretly want to be.
Hello Giggles has mentioned the event is sure to have plenty of mischief to manage during the New York family wizardry Diagon Alley event. Those lacking motivation to get costumed up, even if it is Halloween, might be more inclined to do so for the costume contest. There is going to be a prize available for the best “good” wizard and another for the best “bad” wizard. In addition, the best muggle and the most creative get their own prizes. One adult and one child will be chosen from each category.
Parents and children alike can delight in the trick-or-treat experience, as all the businesses will be participating in candy giving; of course, only those between the ages of zero to 12 may actually receive candies. Ithaca’s circus school, Circus Culture, will also be putting on a show inspired by Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes. Speaking of performances, Boxy Bikes are set to deliver a captivating electric broomstick reenactment that Quidditch fans will not want to miss. The host store, Life’s So Sweet Chocolates will be giving parents a break from spending in Diagon Alley with the story and crafts that can be found there.
The free Weekend Wizardry event at Diagon Alley is also going to play host to a number of food trucks like Star Truck, Silo Truck and College Town Crepes.
If you happen to live in the New York area or have the ability to travel there for Halloween, be sure to take a trip down to Ithaca’s Diagon Alley and celebrate in fine Harry Potter style.
Editor’s note: a previous version of this story erroneously stated that the Press Cafe would be giving out free apple cider to attendees all day. The Press Cafe has contacted the Inquisitr’s editorial team to clarify that this is incorrect.
“We will be offering Harry Potter inspired treats for sale in our Cafe as well as the great Coffee Drinks which we make on a daily basis.”
[Photo by Sheri Lowen/Universal Orlando Resort via Getty Images]