Muggles and wizards alike are excited for “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts I & II.” It will be released on July 31 (which is the day both Harry Potter and J.K. Rowling celebrate their birthday) and bookstores around Chicago are ready to celebrate.
“Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts I & II” is a play that debuts in London’s West End on July 30, 2016, based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany. The play will be published in book form. The story picks up 19 years after the conclusion of the original series with Harry now a father of three and working at the Ministry of Magic. As the Pottermore website explains, “While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted.”
Tuesday, June 28
The Book Stall at 811 Elm Street in Winnetka will be generating excitement for the release with a Harry Potter Party from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. It is recommended for children between ages 8-10 and kids will be able to create a House crest and make their own wand. Cost is $5.
Saturday, July 30
Anderson’s Bookshop will host “The Party that Shall Not Be Named” at each of its locations in Naperville, LaGrange and Downers Grove.
Many businesses in both downtown Naperville and downtown LaGrange will be celebrating the event. For example, the Naperville Running Company will transform into the Naperville Quidditch Company by encouraging kids to come find the golden snitch, Haagen-Dazs will become Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlor by serving butterbeer shakes and Naperville Bank & Trust will morph into Gringott’s Bank with the lucky gold coins to be found inside.
Festivities run throughout the afternoon and evening so little ones with earlier bedtimes can still join in the fun. A book and ticket to the midnight release party at Anderson’s costs $26.88.
The Book Cellar at 4736 N Lincoln Ave. in Lincoln Square will celebrate the release with lots of Harry-themed fun for Muggles who are looking to make merry and wish Harry a happy birthday. The party kicks off at 10 p.m.
The Seminary Co-op Bookstore will host a release party at 57th Street Books at 1301 E. 57th St. in Chicago for readers “young and old(er)” and includes a costume party, wand making and trivia. Festivities start at 10 p.m.
The Frugal Muse at 7511 Lemont Rd., Darien will host a release party starting at 10 p.m. that will include a costume contest, crafts for kids and a Harry Potter trivia contest. Tickets cost $25 and include a copy of the book and free refreshments.
The Magic Tree Bookstore at 141 N. Oak Park Ave. in Oak Park opens its doors at 10:30 p.m. for their release event that includes sorting attendees into houses and butterbeer, as well as costume and trivia contests. Purchase of the book is admission to the party. Call 708-848-0770 or stop in to pre-order the book and reserve your spot at the party.
Sunday, July 31
In addition to hosting countdown parties on July 30 , Barnes & Noble locations will be following up with events on July 31 so that readers can begin discussing the new book. Get the details on the events at a store near you here.