Harry Potter fans have quite a bit to celebrate. With the recent announcement of the PotterMore website, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter’s one year anniversary, and the newest – and last – film coming out on July 15, what more could there be? How about a full-on conference celebrating the much-treasured books and films?
LeakyNews.com, part of The-Leaky-Cauldron.org, the most notable and established Harry Potter fan-site, is presenting LeakyCon 2011 July 13-17 in Orlando. A charity conference thrown by the staff of the website, it’s bringing the magic of Harry Potter to Orlando. This is the website’s second conference; the first, held in Boston in 2009, raised several thousand dollars for charity. This event will benefit The Harry Potter Alliance, a nonprofit that educates young adults about world issues (literacy, equality, human rights) and helps empower them to make a difference, and BookAid International, a global charity that promotes literacy for disadvantaged people in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The conference is described as “what happens when the best academic minds in the Harry Potter fandom and its most dedicated fans come together to create a canon-centric environment in which all of us can learn, talk, and play.” There will be a wide range of activities, including formal academic programming to information programs, to special events. There are several tracks as well – one more directed towards the younger crowd, and one for the literature crowd.
Formal programming includes panels and keynote speeches, workshops and round table discussions. The programs are based on the lessons, morals and ideas found in the Harry Potter books. Informal programming includes wizard rock concerts, podcasts, Quidditch games, movie screenings and other fun-fill activities. Lit Day, which is currently sold out, will focus on popular children’s and young adult authors. Authors in attendance include: Ally Carter, John Green, Maureen Johnson, David Levithan and Scott Westerfeld. Publishers, agents and more will also be in attendance.
Since the conference coincides with the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II, there will be a trip to view the movie. In addition, groups will go and experience the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at the Islands of Adventure theme park. Both activities cost extra.
While it is an unofficial event, several people involved in the Harry Potter books and movies will be in attendance, including Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood), Chris Rankin (Percy Weasley) and many of the young children from the films. Team StarKid, which created A Very Potter Musical and A Very Potter Sequel will also make an appearance. The group includes Glee breakout star Darren Criss (Blaine). Neil Cicierega will also have a live Potter Puppet Pals act. Arthur A. Levine, American editor of the Harry Potter series, will host a keynote speech.
LeakyCon 2011 is for those aged 13 and up, with those 13-17 needing a chaperone 21 or older. There’s a special family track for children under 13, which includes safe and fun activities. Basic registration is $200 per person, and it includes access to the opening festivities, programming, wizard rock, podcasts, meetups, vendor room, galleries, the Rocking Charity Ball, the Leaving Fest and more. There are also higher level passes that include more. Chaperones can apply for a White Pass, which is free.
The event will be held July 13-17 at the Royal pacific Resort at Universal Orlando. Tickets are now on sale.
For more information, visit www.leakycon.com
*Update: Tickets are currently sold out for the conference, however there is a waitlist open on the website for those still interested in attending.