Ever wanted to ride the Hogwarts Express like in Harry Potter? Visit the shops of Hogsmeade? Chug some Butterbeer? Practice your skills in a Defense Against the Dark Arts class?
If you answered yes to one (or all) of those things, mark your calendars for October 21st and 22nd and pack your bags for Philadelphia: a Harry Potter festival is. Actually. Happening. Screw Coachella, this is the festival I’d be dropping some serious bucks on.
Chestnut Hill College – which, if you ask me, looks eerily similar to the architecture of the Hogwarts castle itself – is hosting a weekend full of witchcraft, wizardry, and quidditch, complete with a pub crawl. *Cries softly.* They’re shutting down entire streets for this 10-block expanse of HP magic. The SEPTA regional rail is going to morph into the infamous Hogwarts Express. It’s pretty legit.
I’m freaking out just a lil’ bit – but can you blame me? From what I hear, you can meet Harry Potter and company, and even get to be sorted into a house in Hogwarts by the Sorting Hat. Throwing in my nerdy two cents here, but I’m a firm believer that I’m a solid mix between a Gryffindor and a Hufflepuff. I’ve given this issue a lot of thought. Maybe this sorting is just what I need to finally get an answer…
Oh, and by the way: did I mention it’s free?!
The street fair is pay-as-you-go, although tickets to the pub crawl portion of the festival go on sale September 28th. Pro tip: this festival is a great alternative if you can’t afford to go to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme parks because you’re a broke college student! Take a road trip and stay at a budget hotel and you’re all set for the most magical time of your life.
So, here’s to hoping Chestnut Hill plays the Harry Potter theme music on repeat for the entire weekend (and that I’ll finally get to have a taste of Butterbeer). I’ll be seeing you muggles in Philly.
Featured Image via screengrab from Harry Potter.