Pages

Horcrux Hunt Escape Room Part 7: Hogsmeade, Peverell Ring

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

As noted in the overview post, our horcrux hunt party had (3) locations with (2) horcruxes per location. This allowed for the large number of guests to be broken down into smaller groups and rotate between locations.

Each group was given a clipboard with blank paper to take notes, and a blacklight flashlight.

For the party overview, see THIS post.

The Hogshead portion of the party was in our basement. It consisted of Honeydukes, the Owl Post, the Forbidden Forest, and our bar was the Three Broomsticks. The basement contained the Peverell Ring & Nagini horcruxes.

... and it, arguably, held the two most difficult challenges.

Peverell Ring: Math Challenge

The Peverell ring first made an appearance in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. The ring was seen in Dumbledore's pensive, owned by Morvolo Riddle, a descendent of Salazar Slytherin. The ring had the Deathly Hallows symbol carved into the stone. 

We later learn, in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, that the symbols of the Deathly Hallows was central to the 'Tale of the Three Brothers' in Tales of Beedle the Bard

In the 'Tale of the Three Brothers,' the Deathly Hallows symbol's central line symbolizes the Elder Wand, the circle symbolizes the resurrection stone, and the triangle symbolizes the invisibility cloak. Each of the brothers in the fable acquired their gift from Death himself, and the story was rumored to be a story of three real brothers, the Peverell brothers (the Peverell Ring stone was the fabled Resurrection stone).

We tied our Peverell Ring hunt to the Deathly Hallows and the 'Tale of the Three Brothers.'

The key to this particular horcrux hunt was the Three Broomsticks sign...


Horcrux Hunt Escape Room Part 6: Hogsmeade, Nagini

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

As noted in the overview post, our horcrux hunt party had (3) locations with (2) horcruxes per location. This allowed for the large number of guests to be broken down into smaller groups and rotate between locations.

Each group was given a clipboard with blank paper to take notes, and a blacklight flashlight.

For the party overview, see THIS post.

The Hogshead portion of the party was in our basement. It consisted of Honeydukes, the Owl Post, the Forbidden Forest, and our bar was the Three Broomsticks. The basement contained the Peverell Ring & Nagini horcruxes.

... and it, arguably, held the two most difficult challenges.

Nagini: Dates Matter Challenge

Nagini was Lord Voldemort's pet snake. Though we weren't given the backstory of how or when he became a horcrux, the books did include several cameos of Nagini throughout the storyline.

Our hunt for Nagini started with a Little Hangelton newsletter which announced the death of Frank Bryce, the groundskeeper of the Riddle house. Voldemort commanded Nagini attack Frank Bryce in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.


Horcrux Hunt Escape Room Part 5: Hogwarts, Tom Riddle's Diary

Sunday, November 12, 2017

As noted in the overview post, our horcrux hunt party had (3) locations with (2) horcruxes per location. This allowed for the large number of guests to be broken down into smaller groups and rotate between locations.

Each group was given a clipboard with blank paper to take notes, and a blacklight flashlight.

For the party overview, see THIS post.

The Hogwarts portion of the party was our living room (Gryffindor Common Room) and dining room (Great Hall). It contained the Ravenclaw Diadem & Tom Riddle's Diary horcruxes.

Tom Riddle's Diary: Enigma Challenge


The story of Tom Riddle's diary is primarily told in book 2, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

[Spoiler Alert if you haven't read book 2]

In Chamber of Secrets, Harry learns that the Slytherin founder of Hogwarts, Salazar Slytherin, created a hidden chamber in the school:
"Reliable historical sources tell us this much. But these honest facts have been obscured by the fanciful legend of the Chamber of Secrets. The story goes that Slytherin had built a hidden chamber in the castle, of which the other founders knew nothing. Slytherin, according to the legend, sealed the Chamber of Secrets so that none would be able to open it until his own true heir arrived at the school. The heir alone would be able to unseal the Chamber of Secrets, unleash the horror within, and use it to purge the school of all who were unworthy to study magic."
Harry found the hidden entrance to the Chamber of Secrets in Moaning Myrtle's girl's bathroom. The 'horror within' was a Basilisk, a giant snake. Slytherin had an affinity with snakes, as he was a Parseltongue, a wizard who could communicate with snakes. We later learn that the powerful venom of the basilisk is one of the few magical substances powerful enough to destroy a horcrux. Harry used a fang from the defeated basilisk to destroy the Riddle diary.

Horcrux Hunt Escape Room Part 4: Hogwarts, Ravenclaw Diadem

Friday, November 10, 2017

As noted in the overview post, our horcrux hunt party had (3) locations with (2) horcruxes per location. This allowed for the large number of guests to be broken down into smaller groups and rotate between locations.

Each group was given a clipboard with blank paper to take notes, and a blacklight flashlight.

For the party overview, see THIS post.

The Hogwarts portion of the party was our living room (Gryffindor Common Room) and dining room (Great Hall). It contained the Ravenclaw Diadem & Tom Riddle's Diary horcruxes.

Ravenclaw Diadem: Logic Puzzle Challenge

Very little was known of the Ravenclaw diadem in Harry Potter. Harry assumed he was looking for a relic that was related to Ravenclaw, and in the end, he obtained its whereabouts from Rowena Ravenclaw's daughter (the Grey Lady, the Ravenclaw ghost). 

This did not give us much of a story to follow for our hunt, so I played heavily on the Ravenclaw theme, 'Wit Beyond Measure.'



The Diadem hunt began with a logic puzzle that I designed:
Last week, one student in each of the four Hogwarts houses was reprimanded by a Hogwarts professor for an infraction and had house points deducted. There are 5 clues to help you solve the puzzle. Wit beyond measure will unlock the horcrux!
Can you work out the name of the student, the infraction, the professor who deducted points and how many points?
Hint: House points are the key you need!
This piece was openly displayed with a logic puzzle worksheet.


Horcrux Hunt Escape Room Part 3: Diagon Alley, Slytherin Locket

Thursday, November 9, 2017

As noted in the overview post, our horcrux hunt party had (3) locations with (2) horcruxes per location. This allowed for the large number of guests to be broken down into smaller groups and rotate between locations.

Each group was given a clipboard with blank paper to take notes, and a blacklight flashlight.

For the party overview, see THIS post.

The Diagon Alley portion of the party contained the Slytherin Locket & the Hufflepuff Cup horcruxes.

Slytherin Locket: Decoy Locket Challenge

We are introduced to the Slytherin Locket in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. If you aren't brushed up on your Harry Potter, I have included a brief outline below.

[Spoiler alert if you haven't read the books...]

  • Professor Dumbledore used the Pensive to introduce Harry to the Gaunt family, the descendants of Salazar Slytherin, who inherited the family locket.
  • Tom Riddle's mother, Merope Gaunt, sold the locket to Borgin & Burkes, where Hepzibah Smith later purchased it.
  • Tom Riddle later killed Hepzibah for both the locket and the cup, and made them both into horcruxes when he became Lord Voldemort.
  • Dumbledore eventually found where the locket was hidden, in a seaside cave where Tom had tormented his fellow orphanage children when he was on a field trip under Mrs, Cole's charge. He took Harry with him to help find the locket, with the intent to destroy the horcrux.
  • Dumbledore was subsequently killed, and Harry learned that the locket they found in the cave was a decoy - someone with the initials R.A.B. had stolen the real horcrux locket and replaced it with a fake. 
  • Harry later found the real locket was acquired by Delores Umbridge.

SO... Our hunt began with a Ministry of Magic Incident Report from Bob Ogden who was dispatched to the Gaunt home. The report referenced the Slytherin Locket, which led the group to understand that they were looking for the Locket horcrux.

Horcrux Hunt Escape Room Part 2: Diagon Alley, Hufflepuff Cup

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

As noted in the overview post, our horcrux hunt party had (3) locations with (2) horcruxes per location. This allowed for the large number of guests to be broken down into smaller groups and rotate between locations.

Each group was given a clipboard with blank paper to take notes, and a blacklight flashlight.

For the party overview, see THIS post.

The Diagon Alley portion of the party contained the Locket & the Hufflepuff Cup horcruxes.

Hufflepuff Cup: Gemino Challenge


In Harry Potter, the Hufflepuff Cup was found in a Gringotts vault. The vault had the Gemino Curse applied to it, causing its contents to be constantly replicated. With this in mind, we had our first step of the hunt for the Cup to be a 'Gemino Curse' applied to its locks. 

Horcrux Hunt Escape Room Part 1: Overview & Menu

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

After Little Tomato's Harry Potter party this summer we had several friends 'subtly' mention that they would love to see the party decorations in person. Husband and I decided to plan an adult party around Halloween in the Harry Potter theme. As the party activities at Little Tomato's party were all very 'child oriented' we started brainstorming ways to make the party more adult. Being the giant puzzle nerds that we are, we settled on creating an Escape Room in the Harry Potter theme.



Horcrux Hunt Party

The overall party theme was a hunt for horcruxes. Harry Potter has a total of (7) horcruxes, counting Harry. Our party hunt was for the (6) horcruxes that weren't Harry. 

Our guest list was just under 30 guests, so we set up three separate 'locations' and hid (2) horcruxes in each location. This allowed us to split up the party into three manageable groups to not overwhelm any one area.

We also felt that it was important that each horcrux would be solved differently. If all six horcruxes were solved in the same formulaic method, the party would get dully repetitive. Each horcrux had its own theme and we tried to tie it to the story as much as possible.

The Horcruxes were a laminated picture of the horcrux, as it allowed more flexibility on where they could be hidden and we could have three copies for each of our three groups to collect. Horcrux design found HERE.


I will be following up with separate posts that breakout the Horcrux Hunt details per room. Once the posts are up, I will hyperlink the associated section in this post as well... stay tuned for the Escape Room details!

Horcrux Hunt - Escape Room Style Party: 8 Days and Counting!

Friday, October 27, 2017

Party planning is officially DONE. All 6 horcruxes are hidden and I have cataloged every step of every process to solve the hunt. Phew!

Tonight we are having Husband's cousin and a couple of her friends over for a 'beta test' to determine how much time each room will take and if there are any bugs to work out.

A couple extra sneak peek photos...

Crookshanks prowling in Diagon Alley shops. 

The Felix Felicis advertisement was found HERE.

Dark Arts Cabinet Detail

Ollivander's Wand Shop is little changed from Little Tomato's party. We have added a locked box and a fun little fist-shaped pencil cup that I found. 

Ollivander's Wand Shop

A school trunk in the Gryffindor Common Room @ Hogwarts.




Horcrux Hunt - Escape Room Style Party: 11 Days and Counting...

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

This is definitely my most time consuming party I have every planned... Though we had a LOT of party decorations and props designed for Little Tomato's party, we are certainly going over the top for this one. Our kitchen and dining room tables have been overflowing with craft supplies and projects in progress, but we are checking them off one by one in the last days before the party.

I thought I'd post a few sneak peek pictures, but the full party details will be posted after the party. Since it is an 'escape room style' party, we don't want to give any clues before the guests arrive!

Three Broomsticks Sign

This one has been a work in progress for a while. Apparently insulation foam reacts to spray paint and essentially  'melts'... I tried to save time and spray the sign black (when I've previously used primer + acrylic craft paints). Bad call. 

So... I had to acrylic paint OVER the spray paint, but the sign was definitely bumpy and degraded in areas. I made lemonade out of lemons and added layers of brown 'antique wax' to accentuate the degradation and give it an aged 'rusty' look. It worked out in the end, but it certainly added extra time to getting it done.


Owl Post

Another 'location' in the party is an Owl Post. We have set a table with several packages and letters that are addressed to various students & teachers at Hogwarts, as well as a name or two in Hogsmeade. 



The cabinet behind the table has some open 'box' storage shelves, where there are owls in waiting for their delivery assignments. 


We tucked feathers in a few packages and had a few loose about the table. Owl messaging can get a little messy!

All of the packages are empty cardboard boxes that we had laying around. I am a giant fan of kraft paper. It is an inexpensive material and is like a little black dress, it goes with everything. I bought a 48"W roll almost 4 years ago and it is still going strong. Kraft paper + twine and a few red wax seals to make it pop = Owl Post! 

More later...

Piñata Costume

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Last week, Husband and I went to a fundraiser with a ' fiesta' theme. Costumes were encouraged.

I wanted to dress in something fun and different, and saw some really cute piñata costumes on Pinterest. The only thing I didn't like about the costume tutorials I saw online was the fact that they were all made using crepe (or tissue) paper. I didn't want any areas to wear thin from sitting down, and with our rainy weather recently, I definitely didn't want it to start disintegrating on me.

I decided to instead use felt fabric. And being the neurotic crafter that I am, I didn't want to glue the costume together, but chose to sew it together instead. It took a lot longer than anticipated. It was around 50 layers of felt individually sewn into the dress.


Materials:


12" each color x 6 colors of felt.
Thread.
Dress - I used an old jersey maternity dress that I had in the back of my closet.
Scissors.
Sewing machine.

Directions:


Cut the felt into strips. I made my strips approximately 2-1/2" wide (the felt colors I bought at Hobby Lobby weren't perfectly 12", so I couldn't make it a 3" strip).

'Fringe' the individual strips. Just eyeball the cuts to be evenly spaced and cut around halfway up the strips.

Start with the bottom strip, pin it to the dress, and sew it to to the dress. As my dress was jersey and I wanted to maintain some stretch, I used a widely spaced stitch - not quite a basting stitch, but close.

Subsequent strips are spaced to overlap the lower strip by about half. Pin, stitch, repeat.

Once I got to the neckline, I had some leftover pink strips and decided to add a little fringy detail. I sewed two strips together make a pink fringe and pinned and sewed it around the neck.


I took the leftover scraps and hot glued them to a dowel and added a Christmas bow to the top as the piñata stick.

Finally, I took a couple of disposable plastic cups and glued scraps to them. I cut some holes into them and laced them through a headband to make piñata ears.


Proudly designed by | MLEKOSHI PLAYGROUND |