At last, my Harry Potter weekend has come and gone. It was tons of fun and we're all so tired. But anyway, here's how the weekend went.
Friday night was arrival for most folks, and the highest attendance. I set up a scavenger hunt around the house for people to explore all of the fun rooms and test everyone's knowledge of HP lore (but only a little). My favorite clue read as follows: "You can see all your heart’s desires in this magical object. But don’t be fooled, for the things it shows are neither real, nor true. Resist its allure if you can, as you’ll have to gaze into it to find your next clue."
You probably guessed that this one is related to the Mirror of Erised, and you would be correct. The best part, however, was that the clue hidden there could only be read through the mirror, as it was printed backwards.
Sadly, I messed up a little bit because rather than the clues leading directly to the final location, each clue had a piece of a cipher which would eventually have to be unscrambled to figure out the treasure's final hiding place. Unfortunately, I forgot a letter so that tripped a few teams up. Regardless one team successfully found the treasure chest full of Honeydukes candy OM NOM NOM
Once snacks were procured for the weekend, we had a little welcome bonfire (which took several Incendio spells to conjure since it rained Friday morning so all of the wood was wet. However, with fire being conjured, we also had a very special performance by one of our talented witches, doing a native Albanian dragon mesmerization ritual. Needless to say, it was quite effective on us, dragon or not.
Friday also marked our first brewing of potions and they were moste potente. It certainly made for a fun evening.
Saturday morning started with a delicious breakfast prepared by one of our favorite Hufflepuff chefs, followed by a morning wandmaking workshop. People made some awesome wands for use throughout the weekend.
Our newly crafted wands did take some time to dry so we took our opportunity to visit a local park for a short game of quidditch and a picnic lunch.
Fun continued back at the Hogwarts sattelite campus with a magizoology lesson and a series of logic puzzles to earn points for the house cup competition. Most of you learned about many of the fantastic beasts covered, but here's a little glimpse of our care of magical creatures area.
Ok, yes, mandrakes are plants and not animals, but those lines can be kinda blurry when it comes to magical flora and fauna anyway.
As for the logic challenge, the centerpiece was pointedly Professor Snape's own creation, but involved several other riddles and puzzles for our witches and wizards to solve.
While on the subject of Snape's potion riddle, I feel it appropriate to add that the other safeguards protecting the philosopher's stone were also employed, as we had a stone of our own to keep safe.
Saturday evening was by far the fanciest feast we had all weekend, as our head house elf pulled out all of the stops for dinner. Shepherds pie, boiled potatoes, steak & kidney pie, and brussel sprouts were just the beginning of the culinary extravaganza he prepared.
With all of the witches happy and full, we moved on to games including the much anticipated trivia game. Ravenclaw had the highest takeaway from the match and we moved on to the much less serious game of Cards Against Muggles. Yes, it's exactly what you're thinking and yes, it's just as absurd as you might expect. The House Cup was a pretty even split at this point.
As I'm sure you can imagine, Sunday was a bit of a lazy start, and many witches and wizards who traveled quite far to join us had portkeys to catch, but we did practice some patronus summoning, and we had a few extra special creatures join us for the morning. The first being a rather large bird of an unusual quality, and the second being a very sweet pupper with a few extra heads. They got along quite famously.
With many happy memories from the weekend, casting patronuses was easy, and our resident boggart-turned-dementor made for good target practice.
And how appropriate that we ended with the happiest memories in our minds as everyone began their journeys home. It was certainly a magical weekend, and an event I hope to repeat in the future!