Va. town transforms into Hogsmeade for Harry Potter-themed weekend (Video)

WASHINGTON — Harry Potter fans, get your cloaks and wands ready — a town in Virginia is hosting a weekend-long Harry Potter-themed festival in September.

Staunton, Virginia, will flip its quaint, historic downtown to reflect Hogsmeade village for its annual Queen City Potter Party from Sept. 22 to Sept. 24. Businesses will change their decor, soundtrack and merchandise to elicit a magical feel.

Fans dress up as the founders of Hogwarts from “Harry Potter” at the first Queen City Potter Party in Staunton, Virginia.

Visitors can participate in tarot card readings with Sybill Trelawney at the Queen City Potter Party in Staunton, Virginia.

A young visitor is making a wand at Scrivenshafts during the 2016 Queen City Potter Party in Staunton, Virginia.

This Staunton business featured a Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes pop-up shop during the 2016 Queen City Potter Party.

Young fans dressed as “Harry Potter” characters pose for a group picture at the 2016 Queen City Potter Party in Staunton, Virginia.

Staunton residents and visitors sit in on an herbology class at Mary Baldwin Greenhouse.

This year’s Potter Party will include numerous activities for all ages, Festival Organizer Sarah Lynch said.


Festival organizer Sarah Lynch said participants will be able to experiment with potions, drink some butterbeer and go Horcrux hunting. There will also be plenty of photo and selfie opportunities with dragons, a large basilisk and a restored train.

While there is no entry fee, some activities and crafts will involve a fee.

Lynch said around 30 businesses were involved last year and around 5,000 people attended. This year, Lynch expects to have more than 80 businesses involved and 5,000 to 10,000 attendees.

“We aspire to have something for everyone for the entire weekend,” Lynch said.

Staunton, Virginia, is about three hours away from D.C.

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow WTOP on Twitter and Instagram to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2022 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up