My photo
I been a professional photographer since I worked for the US Government documenting Test and Evaluation of Research and Development projects for the US Army and US Navy in the later half of the 1980s. I came home to Maine to finish my Marketing Degree at USM and began to work full time in Market Research and Marketing for many years while documenting weddings and occasional photojournalist and commercial jobs on the weekends. In 2001 I again returned to photography as a full time trade and have never been a happier man. I love working with creative individuals, couples, small businesses and select Non-Profits and can’t imagine working in any other trade. In 1987 I was lucky enough to wed my high school sweetheart and we now live in a cozy little solar powered, recycled bungalow a mile deep in our woods in the Western Hills of Maine with our two brilliant home-schooled teenage daughters and our three cats.

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Stuck in Hogwarts Hel

So the last of the Harry Potter books came out last night. While I've not been all that interested in reading them myself, my wife has began reading them to the grrrls soon after the second book came out and we've all been going to see the movies. Like any red blooded grrrls, mine are smitten with young master Radcliffe and really like the series. All manner of media frenzy has broken out over this last of the books release and MuggleFest Portland was conceived of.

While the concept of any such socially phenomenal event such as this is often brilliant, it is another thing entirely to pull it together in reality. The energy of the event was palpable, and in the long run, I suppose we can say that we are happy that we were among the 5000 people who purchased tickets, but it was a trying many hours. Here are some of the photos that I made of the event to give you some idea of what you may have missed:

The Narrow Gauge Railroad on Portland's Eastern Prom was transformed into Hogwarts Express for the afternoon.


"All Aboard!" and the train is away ...well, except for those of us who wouldn't push and shove our way to get onto the train...we gave up waiting for a second attempt at boarding and we walked down the tracks to the event...It was a pleasant walk at least.


A half a mile later we arrived and queued up to get our (sold out!) tickets punched and our green arm bands. We then adventurously entered the warehouses of The Portland Company Complex which had been converted for the day into Diagon Alley.

There were certainly many colourful characters and great costumes from volunteers to attendees:




There were shops in the 'alley' from a number of very good causes such as Habitat for Humanity and the Barbara Bush Children's Hospital and there were on hand even some commercial entities such as our favourite local Portland Purveyors of Spritual Goods...


Again, the concept, the design and all the work put into the event...and all of the awareness and money that was probably raised through the event is admirable and to be applauded, but there were 5000 tickets sold to this event and everyone wanted to stick around until midnight to get their books. Sadly, what I will remember most about MuggleFest was 10 hours of this:


No, there is nothing quite like a 10 hour experience with 5000 sweaty nylon costumed mugglespawn all near brainless sugar-high on Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans, Droobles, Ice Mice, Fizzing Whizbees, Cockroach Clusters, Jelly Slugs, Blood Pops, and Chocolate Frogs crushed in tightly together suffering +100° heat and high humidity in a 161 year old collapsible firetrap of a warehouse complex built to hold maybe 1000 people comfortably and safely.
Oh the joy of the shared social experiences that I get talked into forking over cash for!

1 comment:

Cate said...

Thanks for your good humor about the more-than-well-attended Mugglefest! Scores of huge-hearted, talented, dedicated volunteers made this event possible. The sponsoring organization, Youth & Family Outreach, made a small profit, but also made many friends in this small town of great folks which is the state of Maine. Thank you.

www.yfoutreach.org
www.mugglefest.org for more photos