Harry Potter magic comes alive at DeKalb library


Young Harry Potter fans enjoy a game of chess Tuesday at the Harry Potter Party held at the DeKalb Public Library, 309 Oak St. in a reenactment of the chess theme prevalent in the first book, The Sorcerer’s Stone.

By Kevin Bartelt

It was a long broom ride from 4 Privet Drive to 309 Oak St., the DeKalb Public Library.

Hogwarts felt closer to home Wednesday as the librarians hosted a Harry Potter Party in honor of the 15th anniversary of Harry’s arrival in the States. Young DeKalbians created magical potions, built their very own golden snitches and pondered wizard chess strategy all before supper.

Members of the NIU Nargles quidditch team discussed the upcoming sport with the young, eager athletes.

“Our goal is to get DeKalb involved in the quidditch community,” said junior illustration major Micah Jade Haji-Sheikh. “Events like this are exciting for us.”

Of the hundreds that applied, Scholastic selected 15 libraries nationwide to host the party. Darcy Tatlock, 31, tween coordinator at the library, is not too sure what set its 330-word application aside from others, but she has a hunch.

“I believe it was cooperation with NIU because NIU STEM is doing a potion class for us and we have the NIU Quidditch team over here.”

The library received a grant of $100 and 100 copies of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” with a new cover drawn by artist Kazu Kibuishi. Tatlock’s preparation may have put her application above the others.

“When I submitted, I actually had a timetable for what everything was going to be as opposed to just a general idea…I think that might have helped,” she said.

The employees of Scholastic gave the library a Harry Potter kit with name tags, book discussions, bookmarks and activity sheets which were distributed among the attendees.

Running and laughing little wizards, wise professors and 20 pounds of Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans made the library a busy place Wednesday.