To quote our youngest party go-er - it was the "best. party. ever."
As I said in a previous post I was so thrilled to find Marty Carew and his company - Young Wizards Academy. I knew it would be the perfect addition to the party.
And they did not disappoint. Marty - aka Professor Marty McGonagal - and his assistant - Professor Trelawney - arrived right on time and were in character from the moment they arrived.
They even parked out of view of the house so that no one would spot them getting out the car. They came up the stairs with the Harry Potter theme music playing and all of the kids were immediately intrigued.
As Professor Trelawney headed straight for the kitchen to set up all the ingredients for Potions lesson, Professor McGonagal got right into the sorting ceremony with the kids.
This was the first of many times where I saw a Harry Potter newbie really get pulled into the magical world. The hat talked. It moved. It was funny. The kids LOVED it. They didn't even mind if they wound up in Slytherin.
After each child was sorted they were given a robe with their house crest on it and then told to pick a wand. Once they had their wands it was time to teach them how to use them.
Wand Training 101 consisted of learning proper pronunciation of spells, the very important swish and flick motion, and most importantly that if you concentrate very hard you can actually break glass.*
* safely and in a plastic bag it should be noted...but still they broke the glass!
After wand training we took a quick break for refueling and a few trips to visit Moaning Myrtle in the girls lavatory...and then it was off to Potions Class.
The Potions element of the party is a new offering for Young Wizards Academy and it is amazing. If you book a Harry Potter party (and you should do so right NOW) book the Potions Party. This was - according to most of the kids - the "totally coolest" part of the party.
And if you had seen the looks on their faces as they added that one secret ingredient to the Invisibility Potion that turned it from dark blue to clear immediately you would know what I'm talking about. It was just darned impressive!
The kids made three different potions in total and each one had a completely different set of ingredients and instructions.
After potions we took another quick snack break.
One thing I would do differently next time is make sure the kids were fed before the Young Wizards Academy arrived and started the party. It was long - and while none of the kids got bored (not even a little bit) - they were hungry and I had to interrupt the natural flow of the party to accommodate that a few times.
The party was now nearing an end and the kids had ultimate confidence in their wizarding ability by this time which meant it was a perfect time for a treasure hunt, one last group spellcast and some photo opps.
The photo opps were great...they brought the sign with them:
And with that we all bid a fond farewell to Professors McGonagal and Trelawney.
The best testimonial I can give you for their impact on the kids:
My 9 year old told me later that she's pretty sure they "are actually real wizards and are pretending to be pretend wizards teaching kids so that no one knows they actually have magical powers."
Maybe my love...maybe...
After that we sang happy birthday twice, ate lots of cake, and sent 12 kids away from our house knowing they will forever be Harry Potter lovers.
We couldn't have made that happen without the Young WIzards Academy. If you live in the lower mainland...book them. It's worth every penny. They are a new business and need are support. We need more Muggles like Marty and Cheryl bringing magic into our kids lives.
Next year: Jedi training.
Young Wizards Academy
Marty Carew - 778.846.9400