Witches, wizards, and celebrations, oh my!

By Melissa Platero, CCNN Writer

Harry Potter 8-film collection
The ultimate collection!

You won’t find any cake or presents at this party, but Potterheads around the world are raising their wands in celebration of the book that started it all. 16 years ago, Joanne Rowling (J.K Rowling) was struggling on the streets of London in search of publication for her book. Never did she expect to have the legendary success her series has accumulated over the past 15 years!

Published on June 26th, 1997, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (or as it’s known in America, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone) marked the beginning of a 7-book series and an 8-movie production… not to mention, an increasing fandom that just keeps on flourishing as more and more children are introduced to the series.

The series follows Harry Potter, who soon discovers he’s not your average 11-year-old boy. Shipped off to the secret Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he begins a wild and dangerous journey after being placed into Gryffindor (one of the four Hogwarts Houses). Throughout the 7-book series, readers are introduced to many magical aspects that not only captivate the heart, but keep them on the edge of their seat as they witness Harry fight against the dark wizard Lord Voldemort.

If you’re a diehard fan that still dreams of receiving a letter to a school like Hogwarts, have no fear; we’ve found a few solutions to feed your nostalgia! First off, you can re-read the books. Okay, I know, kind of obvious, but think about it.

Nothing is more satisfying than going through the entire series and discovering missing elements or plot points you totally didn’t catch the first time through. Or, you can saddle up on your couch with a favorite blanket, pop those DVDs and Blu-rays in, then sit back and enjoy the show.

Okay, you say, you’ve done those things. You’ve done them more times than you can remember. You can practically recite the books from memory and mouth every line of dialogue from the movies. Well, then check out the wonderful world of Pottermore! Pottermore is the newest addition to the world of muggles (that’s Potter talk for people without magic). Not only will you (finally) get your acceptance letter to Hogwarts, but you’ll also be sorted by the Sorting Hat into one of the four Hogwarts houses. Lastly, you can whet your appetite and flex some kitchen magic by try your hand at these sweet and delectable looking Harry Potter inspired recipes.

Images courtesy of Warner Bros. and J.K. Rowling.