The best escape rooms for kids in NYC are closed for now, but this Harry Potter-themed digital escape room will let you enjoy the thrills of solving riddles and puzzling out problems while keeping your social distance.
The escape room was created by Sydney Krawiec, youth services librarian at Peters Township Public Library in McMurray, PA, and it draws on the richly detailed world J.K. Rowling created in her seven-book Harry Potter series. Muggles like us better brush up on our knowledge of the wizarding world if we're going to make it out in one piece.
So pour yourself a butterbeer (you'll find the best recipes here), snack on a handful of Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans (taking care not to eat the ones that taste like earwax, soap, rotten egg or booger) and take this Harry Potter Sorting Hat quiz to find your house. Then get ready for some mental calisthenics that will draw on your mastery of Harry Potter's life and times, as well as good ol' logic, common sense and other noble traits every wizard should possess.
Need to brush up on the Sorcerer's Stone? We've got you covered. You can use the NYPL's free e-reader to download and read Harry Potter titles—and hundreds of thousands of other books—without having to spend a single Knut. Or you can let Daniel Radcliffe, Olivia Colman, Stephen Fry, Dakota Fanning and other boldface names read the book to you chapter by chapter.
Harry Potter scholars will want to take a virtual tour of "Harry Potter: A History of Magic" at the British Library, while all Potterheads should check out the completely revamped online Harry Potter experience at Wizarding World.
And once you've exhausted all things Potter (as if!), maybe take a look at The Ickabog, an unpublished book J.K. Rowling is posting online—and that she decided will be illustrated by children who submit their drawings to her publisher. It wouldn't hurt to give your kid some sketch paper and a box of colored pencils...