Thursday, February 6, 2020

2020's Celebration That Must Not Be Named: Cornish Pixies, Puking Pastilles, & Pocket Hagrid!

 For 3 magical years Universal Orlando hosted the "Celebration of Harry Potter", a full weekend of Potter-ific exhibits and activities, before abruptly cancelling the event last year. We fans showed up anyway and had a grand time, but hoped Universal would officially bring back Celebration for 2020.

Here we are in the future, though, and Universal has still shown no sign of bringing Celebration back. But not to worry; once again the fans took matters into their own hands, and hosted their own!

It's called Un-Celebration or The Celebration That Must Not Be Named, depending on the group, and I almost like this version better than the official one. We basically had a mini Potter convention right there in the park, complete with games, costumes, and mingling with new and familiar friends.
These are just the Ravenclaws; there were too many of us to attempt a full group photo!

The CUTEST little Hedwig.

The Central Florida Slug Club organized this meetup, and Melissa - who helps run the group - even passed out a fun "Bingo" style game to get everyone mingling. This was brilliant, because it encouraged folks to approach each other and start chatting about things they had in common. I'm definitely stealing this idea for the future!

This is Melissa, btw:

Ha! Do you recognize her cosplay? It's from a display in Weasley's Wizard Wheezes:

Weasley's Puking Pastilles!

John and I didn't really have costumes, but the night before I remembered our friend Sharyn had made us three crocheted badger hats for our Hufflepuff Slumber Party. So we grabbed our friend Karen and showed up as a Hufflehug of Hufflepuffs:

 Karen is actually a Ravenclaw (SHHHHHH), but we Puffs welcome all Houses to show some badger pride.

The hats were a HUGE hit, and we had people stopping us all day - even outside the meetup - to talk about them. My favorite was a young girl who shyly approached me in the tavern (her dad hovering behind with a proud smile) and then proceeded to go into full Ravenclaw geek-out mode with us about all things HP. It was glorious. I want to wear these hats every time we go to the parks now, we had so many great interactions! (And seriously, Sharyn, you need to sell these! We had so many people ask!)

Wow, I'm already off track, ha. Ok, back to looking at cool costumes!

This nurse from St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries has Gilderoy Lockhart's chart on her clipboard - complete with a moving image of him she built in using her phone:

 (I tried to get video of it, but the sun was too bright, drat.)

Anna here brought her own adorable niffler:

This sweet Ravenclaw was handing out little cauldrons filled with chocolate!

Inside there were chocolate owls, frogs, and little bees. So cute!
You can also just see the Bingo sheet (upside down) in the background. It had things on it like "Has a Harry Potter tattoo" or "Saw the movies first" or "made your own Butterbeer" - and you would find people to initial the one that applied to them. Super fun, and a great conversation starter.

Of course, my conversation starter is jumping in front of people and screeching about how amazing they look and can I please have a photo. Which, you know, seems to work OK:

These two are Owl Postal workers... so they're covered in (fake) owl droppings! Bahahaha! They were even handing out letters at one point, but I think they'd run out by the time I got to them.

Also gotta give a shout-out to Jessica in the middle there and her beautifully improvised wand holder:

It's a silver ring safety-pinned to her bag! So simple, and so smart. (Of course that only works for wands with bumps on them.) We had to pet her vintage bag; those wiry loops were actually stiff, felt super funky cool.

Next up is Diego as that pesky Peeves:

And he was sure to photobomb some friends in a truly Peeve-ish fashion:

Don't worry, the purple tongue is on a stick. :D

Dobby came in his slightly warmer "pillowcase":

And Bellatrix is hair goals:

That's her real hair!  ::swoon::

This mischievous lady made her Marauder's Map dress:

Gah, so pretty. I love that gold feather belt.

Hermione & Victor Krum!


This Dudley was SO GOOD at getting into character and looking mad, but I promise he was having a blast:

I've never seen anyone dress as Dudley in his school uniform!

Later Dudley was trying to catch one of Harry's letters:

How fun is this?! It was windy, so the letters were blowing around and really looked quite magical. (They're attached with clear line to the umbrella!)

Later Jacob and Queenie shared a sweet moment under Harry's umbrella:

(@house of phoenix cosplay)

D'awwww. They were so perfect like this, I almost got a little teary. I yelled at Will (that's Will, btw) to stop making me cry. :-p

A trio of students:

Our fellow 'Puff came over to talk about our hats, but hers is just as fabulous!

And here's comes Tina & Queenie:

Here's a snippet of the Slytherin group shot; I couldn't fit them all in:

Sirius and Lily:

And the cutest little Luna, ermergersh:

Another Luna, this time in her yellow dress!

I always fangirl over Hayley and Michael here, because, well, LOOK AT THESE OUTFITS:

In the books both Durmstrang and Beauxbatons were co-ed schools, so Hayley is repping for the female Durmstrang students, and Michael for the male Beauxbaton ones! LOVE IT. 

(Hayley was the Mrs. Doubtfire Playboy Bunny at Dragon Con last year, btw. Ergo my undying love.)

Amanda here would scream on demand, ha, but I'll spare you the volume on that video:

Her skirt has the wording from the mandrake label on it!

A Fantastic Beasts group:

Cornish Pixie!

More Mandrakes - but her potter came prepared:

The award for "most snuggly outfits" goes to:

The Pygmy Puffs!  These ladies' jackets were INSANELY soft (yes, I pet them - with permission!) - so I see their need for Pygmy Puff Protectors, lol. (His shirt back says "Respectfully pet the puffs.")

Close up of the insane cuteness, plus her Pygmy Puff hat topper!

I really love her hair color with all that lavender. So dreamy.

An absolutely STUNNING lolita outfit - complete with a tiny owl on her hair piece:

Quidditch group shot!

I wasn't the only one covering the event, of course:

Rita Skeeter was on the job. o.0

Two lovely witches:

Oooh, I just realized young McGonagall is wearing one of my wand holsters. Or she may have just been inspired by the design. Either way, YAY!

Here's Marlah as Professor Sprout with Harry & Ron:
It's not a Slug Club event 'til I find these three! It's actually really wonderful learning some names and getting to recognize so many of the regulars; feels more and more like a big family reunion.

Now brace yourselves for my favorite interaction of the day: POCKET HAGRID.

Pocket Hagrid has no ideas where all his students went.

Pocket Hagrid will now attempt to look for Harry:

NOPE. No idea.

Y'all, this woman had us in hysterics, and I regret not asking her to sit with us for lunch like a shy second grader. Someone please tell me who she is so I can stalk her online and/or ask her to be my friend.

On the other hand, I feel like I should warn Madam Hooch about these shady characters...

Definitely don't want to run into those two in Knockturn Alley.

Although I will say that Death Eater really livened up Mad Eye's photo with what can only be described as a Snape-like flounce:

For comparison:
(If you've somehow never read Background Slytherin before... you're welcome.)

K, gang, that's all my people pictures, so I'll leave you with a pretty castle shot!

I shared this crop in my story for phone wallpapers:

I have several more eye candy photos I want to show you, but I'll put those up separately since this post is getting waaaaaay too long. Ha. Oops.

There's something really magical about getting together with other adult fans and being silly together, gang, so I hope my posts inspire you to dress up, go out, or connect with others a little more. I'd bring you all with me to these events if I could, but 'til then, I hope these vicarious visits make you smile!


P.S. I have a "Harry Potter Favorites" list on Amazon, and I think my most recent additions may interest you:

These are $10 doggy bandanas and oh. my. HUFFLEPUP!! The puns. The puns are so doggone good. Which one's your favorite?


  1. Your posts always fill me with happiness! I think it's cool how you share so many geeky things. You've inspired me a lot. I also wanted you to know that I sent you an email, and I have no idea if you got it. Anyways, I just wanted you to know that you are an amazing, creative person. Keep doing you!

    1. Thank you! I never check e-mail anymore, but John's been keeping an eye on it, so yours will get to me eventually, I promise. ;)

  2. The cosplay is AMAZING! I’ve never tried anything but last time we went to Universal Wizarding World my daughter wore her thrift-shop assembled Hogwarts student outfits and got a lot of compliments.

  3. I have to tell you that as soon as I saw Bellatrix's hair, my first thought was, "That looks like Jen's hair." True story!

  4. I am heartbroken to miss this! I dragged my sister and her friend to the parks on the January 24-26 weekend, thinking that it would be the un-Celebration. Turns out it wasn't...and it was Christian Rock Festival Youth Leadership weekend. Maybe next year.

  5. Follow the Facebook page Central Florida Slug Club as we post the event there. We pushed it because of that festival lol.

  6. Okay, I LOVE the female Durmstrang & male Beauxbatons students! What a great idea. And flouncing Snape is goals. <3

  7. Sloberin for the dog banadana. Love the Slytherin comic!!!!!

  8. I love seeing all your photo posts! I'm especially loving this one because we are going to Orlando in June and I will finally get to go to Wizarding World!! Although not looking forward to the Florida heat in early June, and trying to figure out how on earth to turn our Potter bounds into something suitable for surviving the heat and humidity. My 12 yr old is desperate to wear his Hufflepuff robe, but I'm thinking he'll melt in it and I'll end up carrying it around for most of the day.

    1. I do pity the folks I see in robes during the Summer, lol - especially the park robes, which don't look like they breathe at all! That said, you can wear them open so they catch the air like a sail, which might cool you off a little. ;)

    2. I'll suggest the open robe idea to my son, although I decided to tell him that if he decides he's too hot, he'll have to be in charge of carrying his robe! I suspect he's hoping that if he's decked out in all his Hufflepuff glory he'll be chosen at Olivander's. I think I'm going to just wear Ravenclaw t-shirts or a blue tank top with my shorts. June in Florida is not the time for me to be trying out a full cosplay, alas, although at one point I was contemplating an Ilvermorny uniform. It's so fun to see your pictures and be inspired, though! Gives me so many ideas!

  9. Wonderful post and pictures! Thank you for the vicarious visit :-)

  10. Love these posts. Thanks for letting me come with you vicariously to the un-event! I love the Slobberin' dog bandana!My bestie is a Potter fan too, and has two cute little Westie dogs. (My bestie with the Westies! Heh!) I might have to get her a couple of different ones.

  11. Little Luna...omg! A coworker has a small blonde daughter that I may have to dress up in that costume. :) And someone beat me to the Madame Hooch's striped referee robe! :( Oh well, another in the world will be ok, right? :)

    Are all of the construction stuff in the back from the Jurassic Park building? That was going on when I was at Universal the first week of December. (Echoing the commenter above, I did email you to see if you'd be able to meet up with me and my friends, but I wasn't sure you received it, but you were also going through a lot during that time, so we understood. Maybe another time!) I would LOVE to go to a big cosplay even there someday. As much as I told myself and try to keep telling myself, "I went once, that's going to be enough...", who am I kidding? I keep checking ticket prices, etc. to see if I can't squeeze in another weekend because I've never felt more myself and had such an amazing time than I did that week. :) <3 Take care and thank you again so much for all the pics you share. :)

    1. Hi Kerri! Aw rats, I'm sorry we didn't catch your e-mail - although you're right, that was the week of our Labyrinth party so it was CRAZED over here. o.0 Please do try again next time!

      From that direction, yes, pretty sure the construction is the Jurassic Park area. And of COURSE you need to come back! As many times as I've been to Wizarding World, I still find new little details to love each visit. Not to mention the interaction with fellow fans, even during non-event days! If you can come during Dressed to the 9 3/4s that's an especially lovely time, though. :)

  12. Cosplayers are the best peeps. They also tend to have music with them and impromptu dance parties frequently will happen :) We used your wand tutorial to make our daughter's wand for her Harry Potter costume and she gets compliments every time she brings it out. People tend to be stunned that it actually lights up! Thank you for sharing all the knowledge you and John learned from your builds.

    1. Ohhh, this makes me so happy! One of our wands STILL lights up, can't believe the batteries have lasted so long, haha. I hope your daughter's keeps going strong for years, too.

  13. Pocket Hagrid is behindthemilk on instagram :)

  14. Tie between Slobberin & Huffle Pup - my dog is both!
    Please explain Pocket Hagrid. Such a cute cosplay, but I don't get it.

    1. Ah, I should have mentioned that: she called herself "Pocket Hagrid" because she was so small! :D

    2. That's adorable! She's rockin' that Hagrid vibe!

  15. Jen have you ever watched The Potter Collector on YouTube? Looks like him in your quidditch photo with the Slytherin robes!

    1. Yes, that's him! He was also the incredible Dumbledore in my photos from last year.

  16. people are SO CREATIVE - i love this post, thank you!!!

  17. It was just the best time. We were the Owl Post workers. Looking back at this post, a year has past and the Celebration was cancelled in 2021. This is a reminder of what was and more to come once we all get back to our normal world. What ever that is😉 Thank you for this post and all the pictures.. Best wishes, Tale of 2 Castles ❤


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