The Student Activities Centers’ (SAC) presentation of Harry Potter Day brought hundreds of students, staff, faculty, and community members to the University of New Mexico Student Union Building Atrium, Nov. 24.

Ryan Lindquist, associate director of SAC, was the master of ceremonies for the event and said Harry Potter Day, in its second year, is popular with the entire UNM community, not just students.

“We have people who have brought their children out of elementary school to participate,” he said.  “It really is a great event for the entire University.”

Lindquist said they organize the event as a way to help kick off the holiday season, but added that these small celebrations do more than just spark some holiday cheer.

“Harry Potter Day is a way for us to help the students relax before finals come up,” he said.

Lindquist said these events also help create memories for students. He said that when graduates are looking back on their time at UNM they likely won’t be telling their children about the exams and homework, instead he hopes they will remember events like this that helped them get through this hectic and stressful time of year.

And the community certainly turned out in force. While some students sampled “Butter Beer” and tried to guess the flavor of “Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans,” others took turns being photographed as they were sorted into houses.

“This is great. I felt kind of nervous walking around with a wand and all this, but there are a lot of fans here too,” said one UNM freshman.

Although internationally Harry Potter day is celebrated on May 2, commemorating the day of the Battle of Hogwarts, UNM’s observation of the events of the fictional series serves as a way to ease the tension of finals and help celebrate the holidays. The Student Activities Center is already hard at work on its next event to make sure Lobos are having fun between classes.