Bundaberg Regional Library was transformed into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry on Friday evening as 50 young locals gathered for an after-hours Harry Potter event.
The event proved so popular it was booked out within an hour.
As the doors to the library closed to the public the inside was transformed into a magical wonderland of Harry Potter inspired activities, from wand making to edible potions creation full of wizardry and flavour.
There was even an opportunity for the children to sit under the Sorting Hat to find out whether they were best suited to the Slytherin, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw or of course the favourite, Gryffindor house at Hogwarts.
Norville State School Year 3 student Bayden Freebairn had his fingers crossed as he was hoped to be chosen for the favourite Gryffindor, but when he ended up in Ravenclaw he said it was next best.
“Everyone wants to be in Gryffindor – just like Harry,” Bayden said.
The eight-year-old said he was reading the books at the moment and he was curious to find out what happened next in the third book, The Prisoner of Azkaban.
Bayden was dressed in theme and attended the event with his grandma Jessica Phillips.
“He really does love Harry Potter and we were so excited when we heard about the night and had to make sure we came along,” Jessica said.
Bundaberg Library Youth Services Librarian Jaala Beauchamp said the event was designed to grab the imagination of young people and to even inspire the reluctant reader to pick up a book and see what story was hiding inside.
“This age was targeted as it is often those aged between 8 and 13 who begin to drift away from the library and forget the value it can bring to their lives,” she said.
“Hosting events such as this one helps to remind them that there is magic to be found in their local library and celebrates a story that has encouraged many reluctant readers to discover the joy of written stories.
“This event bought over 50 kids together to share their passion. It is hoped many new friendships are formed as they take part in something that they are all interested in – they have a common ground to forge a new friendship with.”
East Bundaberg State School Year 5 student Lillie Jeffries said she’d also started the books and couldn’t decide on one favourite character.
“I love all of them, Harry, Ron and Hermione,” Lillie said.
“If I was at Hogwarts I would be in Gryffindor and my power would be to talk to all the animals like Harry’s owl Hedwig – he is so beautiful!”
Harry Potter is a series of fantasy novels written by British author J. K. Rowling. The novels chronicle the lives of a young wizard, Harry Potter, and his friends Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley, all of whom are students at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
Since the release of the first novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, on 26 June 1997, the books have found immense popularity, critical acclaim and commercial success worldwide.
They have attracted a wide adult audience as well as younger readers and are often considered cornerstones of modern young adult literature.
As of February 2018, the books have sold more than 500 million copies worldwide, making them the best-selling book series in history, and have been translated into eighty languages.