August 24, 2023
By River Scofield, Pickerington Online Intern & Ridgeview STEM Junior High Seventh Grader
On August 11 in Victory Park, Pickerington’s first-ever Wizard Faire took place as part of Wands & Wizards Weekend in Fairfield County.
Visit Fairfield County created Wands & Wizards weekend in 2019. The county library came up with the idea to celebrate Harry Potter’s birthday. Shops in downtown Lancaster offered potions classes, the Ohio Glass Museum created crystal balls, and the library re-invented itself as a magical school.
This year, Pickerington joined the fun. Sorso Coffee sold specialty drinks and sorting hat cupcakes, Rule 3 discounted its Sorcerer’s Study Escape Room, Humble Crate had magical inventory, and Fiiz had drinks for each Hogwarts house.
Local scout troops and art students created tiny homes for a Fairy House Trail, which you can still follow using the Visit Fairfield County app. There was also a Creature Hunt in which you could win prizes by answering questions and puzzles found on posters around Violet Township.
By far, the biggest event in Pickerington, however, was Wizard Faire on Friday night.
I arrived at 3:30, even though it didn’t officially start until 4 p.m. As I waited, my best friend showed up unexpectedly, which was a great surprise! Then another friend arrived.
They wore Hogwarts robes. I was dressed as a steampunk potions master. Not everyone was dressed in costume though. If you didn’t go, Wizard Faire was like a free Renaissance festival. It was all about fantasy. I saw magicians, and I got to hold a brightly colored dove.
We mostly hung out and walked around the shops. I got a cute crochet plush and a sparkly purple crystal spider pin. We decided to walk over to Fiiz and found another friend.
We ordered two “Ambition” drinks and a “Loyalty”. I had an Ambition, which was Sprite mixed with green apple then topped with whipped cream and a gummy worm. It was delicious! My friends also liked their drinks.
We returned to the park to watch the bird show from the Ohio School of Falconry. I saw this cool owl, although I wished I could have pet it. It flapped its wings, and it was beautiful!
We bought tickets for the carnival games. Each game required one ticket. Each ticket cost $1.00 or you could buy seven tickets for $5.00.
I beat my friends at the duck race. The hardest game was a slingshot where you tried to launch plushies through a Quidditch hoop. At one point I was so close, but the plushie turned at the very end.
Throughout the Faire, there were performers included musicians, a juggler, belly dancers, and tarot card readers.
I finished the night by participating in the costume contest and eating donuts.
Riley McGirr said that she thought Wizard Faire was, “fun, hot and exciting.”
She told me that she “went broke” but was okay with that since she got to buy crystals and played games.
She said, “it was nice that bottled water was free”.
Wizard Faire was created by the Pickerington Village Association and the Pickerington Public Library with assistance from Visit Fairfield County and the city of Pickerington. They estimated 2,400 people attended, which they said is great for a first-time event.
It was a nice night. It was fun, there was cool stuff to buy, and I got to hang out with friends. I recommend coming next year for anyone who loves fantasy!
For more photos of the event, click here.