Friday, July 20, 2007

Harry Potter Interlude (Neighborhood Pride)

Yes, I've been writing about my trip, but today is special. Today is the day before the Harry Potter book is released. In case you didn't know....

I just wanted to post a note about how I think I might have the coolest neighborhood in the world. You see, my neighborhood (Andersonville in Chicago) is hosting a Harry Potter Book Release Celebration. Of course, it started with the local book store Women and Children First, which has been planning a Harry shindig for months. They said it is a lot of fun and a good time if you have kids, and even if you don't, it's a lot of fun watching the kids go nuts as the time approaches for the book to be sold. Because I don't have kids, I wasn't too excited about that prospect -- kids hopped up on anxious energy and sugar? No thanks. But then again, the book release at 12:01 AM....

Happily, when I got to the store the other day, I saw this:

I don't know if you can read what it says if you blow it up, but the point is that this party is no longer just for kids (well, it probably never really was since there are so many non-kids who read the stuff) and it's no longer limited to the bookstore. I couldn't believe it when I heard that the bookstore had actually gone to the Andersonville Chamber of Commerce to hook others into having "a Neighborhood-wide celebration of all things Harry Potter, featuring a scavenger hunt, costume contest, food and drink specials, games, prizes, [etc.] . . . ."

So, you see, I DO in fact live in the coolest neighborhood ever. Not just because they got on the HP bandwagon, but because they did it in such a fun way and because they've decided to make it fun for everyone! I am truly impressed that there is such a willingness to embrace silly things in the name of fun -- to make the neighborhood a more pleasant place -- and I am reminded once again why I wanted to move back to this neighborhood when we came back to Chicago! Hooray!

If you can't see what it says and you actually care, I will tell you that among other things, 9 local restaurants and bars have gotten on board to offer HP themed food and . . . butter beer!! Does such a thing actually exist in real life? I can only imagine. And some of the places offer discounts on items after 12AM with the book! I can't wait!

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