PORT GAMBLE — Ever wondered what it would be like to cross over to the wizarding world and study at the prestigious Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry?
Mrs. Muir’s House owner Christine Wingren is attempting to bring the fantasy world to life, as she prepares to host a birthday bash in honor of Harry Potter for all to enjoy from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. July 30.
This is a special birthday for Potter, born July 31, 1980. This year marks the year that Potter’s age catches up with readers in the final scene in the books — he’s 37 years old.
Wingren (who refers to herself as “The Willy Wonka of Tea”) is back in the kitchen, preparing a menu fit for The Great Hall, including mint chocolate chip “Troll Scones,” chocolate “Cauldron Cakes” with bubbling green icing, “Sorting Hat” cupcakes that identify your Hogwarts house, and a “Book of Monsters” sandwich on dark bread.
And, of course, tea: “Bramble and Snap,” “Wizard’s Brew,” and a house-made Butter Beer. “There’s a magic in what tea gives you,” Wingren said. “It’s an adventure and I’m still learning.”
It’s an event that J.K. Rowling wouldn’t want to miss.
The Harry Potter series holds a special place in Wingren’s heart. “My kids grew up on Harry Potter,” she said. “It was a journey we took together.”
Wingren, who has said she “never wants to grow up,” said, “This is very much a kid-friendly event.” And by “kid,” she means kids of all ages.
All Mrs. Muir’s House staff will be in character, and participants are encouraged to dress as their favorite Potter characters or wear their Hogwarts spirit house swag. Wingren will offer a discount in “Diagon Alley” and special gifts to those dressed for the occasion.
The tea room will be decorated in Hogwarts house colors, featuring cast iron cauldrons and other Hogwarts decor.
“Sometimes, we forget that childlike wonder of discovery when we’re ‘adult-ing’,” she said. “We wanted to create a place for people to feel comfortable to have fun and celebrate our nonsense.”
Other events: A scavenger hunt, crafts, carnival-type games, a lollypop pool, Quidditch ring toss, make-your-own Howler station, and spider toss.
Around noon, Hagrid himself (spoiler: he’s portrayed by Wingren’s husband, Jim) will arrive via motorcycle to deliver Harry’s “Hapee Birthdae” cake.
The Wingrens have been on the board for the Port Gamble Theatre since 2011; Jim designs set displays and has been involved in community theater for more than 20 years.
“Port Gamble is our home,” Wingren said. “We really wanted to create a place where people can come and enjoy all of the good feelings this town has to offer … For those of us feeling different from the masses, J.K. Rowling opened up a whole new world to be different and to be celebrated for it.”
“Mischief managed,” as Hogwarts Professor Lupin would say.
The event is free and no reservations are required. More: www.facebook.com/TeaTreasuresandMore/ or 360-930-6619.