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PA Forward: Harry Potter Book Night

Susan Sentz
Susan Sentz

By: Susan Sentz

One of my favorite parts of being a librarian is being able to connect with others over a shared interest. This can be through discussion about a new book, movie or my favorite topic Harry Potter.  The purpose of Harry Potter Book Night is to pass the magic of the Harry Potter Books onto the next generation of readers. Harry Potter Book Night is celebrated by schools, book shops and libraries around the world. This will be the second year that the Northampton Area Public Library will be taking part in this event.

Harry Potter Book Night was created by Bloomsbury as a way for Harry Potter to be kept alive with younger generations that did not grow up with the books. Each year Bloomsbury provides the theme, promotional items, and an event kit to help guide your program. The night is usually held the first Thursday in February, this year it was Thursday, February 2nd. To accomplish this program the Northampton Area Public Library holds Harry Potter Book Night for children including activities, crafts and more magical fun!


The Northampton Area Public Library closes the night of the event to allow the program to take over the Library. The following is what we have found to be successful for Harry Potter Book Night. The program always begins with the kids getting sorted into the four Harry Potter Houses. From there they are free to go to the different “classes” (stations) for activities and crafts. This year these classes include potions – science experiments, care of magical creatures – creature scavenger hunt, and divination – fortune telling.  There is another station for crafts that included the creation of tie and scarf bookmarks. We always end the night in a group activity, which is a large game of Pictionary set as transfiguration class.

Along with the activities we hold a contest for the best costume and a guess how many Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans is in the jar. We also found that it adds to the night if staff dress up in appropriate costume and that the Library is decorated to meet the theme.  This type of night can work for any type of library and be modified to fit your library’s capabilities. Keep it fun and magical to see a great turn out at your Harry Potter Book Night!

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For more ideas on how to promote the PA Forward Basic Literacy in your library, visit the PA Forward Commons and be sure to add your programs to the database by completing the PA Forward Commons Submission Form!



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