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Have a Harry Potter Party

This Friday, the highly anticipated first part of "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" will be released in theaters. Our daughter, who is a huge fan of the books, turns 8 in a few weeks and we are celebrating with a magic-filled, Potter-themed birthday party.

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Bring the Hogwarts Express candy cart to your young wizards with these tasty treats inspired by the sweets in the books.

Bertie Bott's Jelly Beans

What you need: Triangle cellophane bags ($1.99, Hobby Lobby), metallic twist ties ($1.99 for 50, Hobby Lobby), Jelly Belly’s (large jar, $14.99, Costco), decorative tags ($3.99 for 40 tags Hobby Lobby)

Make it: Fill the bag with 3/4 cup beans, ad tag to tie and twist around bag.

Chocolate Frogs

What you need:
Chocolate frog mold ($2.49,, Milk Chocolate-flavored candy ($5.99 for 2-pound bag, Hobby Lobby)

Make it: Follow directions on bag to melt chocolate. Pour into mold, set mold on cookie sheet and place in freezer until chocolate is firm.

Butter Beer

What you need:

1 cup light or dark brown sugar

2 tablespoons water

6 tablespoons butter

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cider vinegar

3/4 cup heavy cream, divided

1/2 teaspoon rum extract

Four 12-ounce bottles cream soda

Make it: In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the brown sugar and water. Bring to a gentle boil and cook, stirring often, until the mixture reads 240 F on a candy thermometer.
Stir in the butter, salt, vinegar and 1/4 heavy cream. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Once the mixture has cooled, stir in the rum extract. In a medium bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar mixture and the remaining 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Use an electric mixer to beat until just thickened, but not completely whipped, about 2 to 3 minutes.

To serve, divide the brown sugar mixture between 4 tall glasses (about 1/4 cup for each glass). Add 1/4 cup of cream soda to each glass, then stir to combine. Fill each glass nearly to the top with additional cream soda, then spoon the whipped topping over each. (The Associated Press)


Broomstick races

What you need: Use a broomstick from the pantry or buy one online ($17.49,, sport cones or plastic cups

How to play:
In two parallel straight lines place cones/cups 4 feet apart. With the broomstick between their legs have the children weave through line of cups (like an obstacle course) the one who crosses the finish line first wins.

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Catch the snitch

What you need: Handheld net (butterfly or fish) and tennis balls

How to play: Kiddos try to catch the balls thrown into the air by an adult. The child who catches the most balls wins.

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Get tableware in Gryffindor colors of red, yellow and black or buy party supplies from sporting the characters themselves. Hang a Hogwarts banner on the front door for another festive touch (below: $12.99, More Potter party supplies available at

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Party favors that include a bag of Bertie Bott's jelly beans, a chocolate frog wrapped in cellophane and a Harry Potter bookmark (above: $2.99 for 4, are the perfect way to send your wizards home with a piece of Potter.

Top photo: Butterbeer, chocolate frog and Bertie Bott's Beans, Heather Witherspoon