Hogwarts is in the UK – But Will that Still be True on Thursday?

Logos of the two campaigns for and against an independent Scotland.   Image via http://studyinuk.universiablogs.net

Logos of the two campaigns for and against an independent Scotland.
Image via http://studyinuk.universiablogs.net

If you think elections only matter when you’re voting for a leader, this week offers a pretty good example of why it’s important to get to the polls even when big name politicians aren’t running.  This Thursday, voters in Scotland will be making one of the most important decisions in their history: to stay a member of the United Kingdom, or to become their own independent nation.

Read more ⇓

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Think Global, Act Local: Why Midterm Elections Matter

This is the first piece in our Sonorous: Make Your Voice Heard series on elections and GOTV.  Are you under 18, not a U.S. Citizen, or both?  Don’t worry!  We’ll have blog posts for you, too!

Image by  nirots via http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

Image by nirots via http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

You’ve probably heard the phrase “Think Global, Act Local”.  Hermione Granger, founder of our Granger Leadership Academy, has been living this mantra for years: concerned about the rights of house elves everywhere, she started her work by trying to improve the lives of those working at Hogwarts (admittedly, she had a pretty steep learning curve…).

You probably think global and act local, too.  Do you ever ride your bike or carpool to cut down on climate change?  Do you work to reduce illiteracy rates by donating to Accio Books?  Maybe you’ve even joined or started an HPA chapter!  Everyone has done some small, localized action because they recognize that those small actions can impact global issues.

So… why is no one showing up for local and midterm elections?

Read more ⇓

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GLA: You’ll want to bring your time-turner

Witches and wizards!

Have you heard about MY leadership conference? Yes. I am running a leadership conference. It’s called Granger Leadership Academy, which is a delightful name for a conference in my humble opinion.

Granger Leadership Academy will include two full days of workshops that will prepare you to fight the dark arts in your community. I literally cannot think of anything more exciting than two full days of leadership training workshops! But if you need more convincing, consider these fun facts: Read more ⇓

Posted in Action, Chapters, Connect, Hunger Games, LGBTQ, Panem | Tagged , , ,

Top 7 Things That Happened At LeakyCon

Safe sounds don't tolerate gender-based harassment!  Do you know who the Title IX Coordinator for Hogwarts is?  Image: http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/File:Concept_photo_of_The_Hogwarts_Castle_%28
Exterior%29.jpg

We had the time of our lives at LeakyCon, and we still can’t quite believe it’s over. Since we don’t have a time turner, here are just a few of our favorite memories from LeakyCon 2014:

1. Open at the Close gave 1,500 wizards a night in Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley.Between riding the Hogwarts Express, drinking butterbeer in the Leaky Cauldron, and taking on the Gringotts goblin coaster, experiencing the Wizarding World with our fellow fans was unforgettable.

Read more ⇓

Posted in Chapters, Connect, Esther Day | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Hermione Granger wants YOU – Granger Leadership Academy!

Safe sounds don't tolerate gender-based harassment!  Do you know who the Title IX Coordinator for Hogwarts is?  Image: http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/File:Concept_photo_of_The_Hogwarts_Castle_%28
Exterior%29.jpg

Hermione Granger: Part human. Part cat. ALL hero.

Hermione Granger is the HPA’s catspiration, and she’s also a huge influence on our social change methodology. When Hermione believed in a cause, she didn’t hesitate to organize her friends (often by force) and direct them toward some ambitious goals. Whether it was fighting for house elf rights or defeating Voldemort, Hermione was often the catalyst for movements that shaped the wizarding world’s future and made it a safer and more equitable place for all.

Harry Potter Alliance Chapters are built on the foundation that Hermione established with SPEW. Thus, it makes perfect sense that our first annual leadership conference has been named in her honor!

Granger Leadership Academy takes place from October 17 to 19, 2014, in Auburn, Alabama. We’ll have two full days of programming, a variety of leadership workshops, two keynote speakers and lots more. It’s a fantastic opportunity to level up your leadership resume while celebrating the stories and fandoms you love most! Read more ⇓

Posted in Action, Chapters, Connect, Empowerment, Human Rights, Hunger Games, LGBTQ | Tagged , , , , ,

Hangin’ with the HPA at LeakyCon

Photo courtesy of Leakycon.com

In just 3 days, we’re going to back Hogwarts.

We’ll be at LeakyCon in Orlando, FL this whole weekend. This is one of our favorite times of the year. It’s also one of our busiest. Our plans include five panels, orchestrating a magical book swap, and winning a Quidditch showdown. Here’s where you’ll be able to find us around the con:

At the Marketplace

When we’re not winning Quidditch matches, running panels, or singing Total Eclipse of the Heart, we’ll be open for business in the Marketplace. This’ll be where you can find our merchandise, including some throwback t-shirts in the bargain bin and our Books Turn Muggles Into Wizards journals.

While you’re there, you can also buy tickets for our raffle. The winner will win a copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone signed by one J.K. Rowling. You know, the lady who wrote it. Maybe you’ve heard of her? Seriously. It’s signed and you could win it!

Our booth will also be the home to our Apparating Library. Our magical book swap first materialized in LeakyCon London last year. It’s been around the world since then, and we’re so psyched to see it come back to where it all began.

Here’s everything you need to know to participate: Read more ⇓

Posted in Chapters, Connect, Esther Day, Harry Potter Alliance News | Tagged , , , ,

Esther Day: Harry Loves Hermione

esther-day-2014

Esther Day is just a 1 week away!

We’re starting to see some of the projects coming in and it’s awesome. If you’re looking for Esther Day events on August 3rd, we’re encouraging people to list all their events here:
http://nerdfighteria.com/events

As we get closer to Esther Day, we’re asking everyone to think about those people to whom they may have trouble saying “I love you.” It can be a scary thing to do.

To help rally your courage, we asked our friend Harry Potter to take the lead. See what Harry has to tell Hermione.

Esther Day happens on August 3rd, so get ready! For more information, go to estherday.org.

The Weapon We Have is Love,
The HPA.

Posted in Esther Day | Tagged , , ,

Seven Years since Deathly Hallows came out!

hpa-logo-trans

Seven years ago, the world said it was the end of an era. News outlets prepared for what they thought – and perhaps hoped – would be their final coverage of the Harry Potter phenomenon. While small bookstores celebrated alongside readers, big box stores were gearing up for “one last midnight release.”

Seven years ago, we knew better. We were ready. We were decked out from head to toe, friends new and old by our side and wand at the ready. Maybe we were lining up, filling stores and sidewalks with our excited chatter, shutting down Harvard Yard with our music movement, pushing our favorite fansites’ servers to their limits. We were loud because we knew the rest of the night would be spent in silence. We knew we’d be reading well into daylight. We knew better. Read more ⇓

Posted in Empowerment, Literacy, Philosophical Musings, Stories | Tagged , , , ,

Internet Merch Table

Safe sounds don't tolerate gender-based harassment!  Do you know who the Title IX Coordinator for Hogwarts is?  Image: http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/File:Concept_photo_of_The_Hogwarts_Castle_%28
Exterior%29.jpg

Did you know we have an internet merch table?

We’ve spent our summer apparating from one con to another, so our physical merch table has been pretty busy. Thanks to wizard science and our friends at DFTBA Records, however, all our wizard wearables (including shirts for people and walls) are also available through the internet. We’ve even gotten the Ministry of Magic to let us lift all the charms on it and make it available beyond the Floo Network.

Our online store just got some new additions:

Now you can rep the internet with our Hogwarts Internet Club and Grangr t-shirts. There’s also our super-swanky Books Turn Muggles Into Wizards journal, which we promise is not a horcrux. And if you’re in need of some encouragement, you can hang the Hang in There, Baby Crookshanks poster on your wall for instant, furry moral support.

These are the latest in our merch line, which includes some of our old favorites like the Granger/Lovegood 2016 campaign tee and our classy HPA logo shirt. So classy.

We’d love to see you at our booths and tables across the country (LeakyCon Orlando, anyone?), but the internet’s got your back if you can’t make it.

Each purchase helps support our work at the Harry Potter Alliance. So thanks!

Feel free to buy all the things. 

Posted in Harry Potter Alliance News | Tagged , ,

Don’t let Net Neutrality disrupt your regular stream of cat videos

Image source: http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/01/net-neutrality-is-half-dead-court-strikes-down-fccs-anti-blocking-rules/

Flickr user M3Li55@

Hey, do you love YouTube?

Maybe you’ve heard about this thing called Net Neutrality.

It’s the idea that once you’ve paid for your internet service, you should have equal access to the entire internet: from your favorite independent YouTube creators and to streaming services like Netflix or Hulu.

But internet service providers (ISPs) want that to end. They want to be able to charge the content creators to get onto your computer screens: a service that you’ve already paid for.

Today is a big day in the fight to preserve Net Neutrality.

The FCC’s public comment period ends this week!

Take a few minutes to watch our friend Hank Green’s video on net neutrality and sign this petition which sends comments directly to the FCC.

Tell the FCC that you love YouTube. Tell them about how independent video creators have enriched your life and remind them that it was made possible by Net Neutrality.

Let them know! Now!

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