Jefferson welcomes wizard festival for a second year

Published: Oct. 15, 2018 at 6:43 PM CDT
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Jefferson will once again welcome thousands of witch and wizard fans this fall. The city will host the Warriors and Wizards Festival happening October 19-21.

The festival was formally known as the Harry Potter Festival, but its director Scott Cramer said Harry Potter festivals were being shut down across the U.S. so it rebranded as the Warriors and Wizards Festival and now includes movies and comics beyond Harry Potter.

"We've been thinking about rebranding and growing this thing even more which is why we went that way," said Cramer.

Jefferson’s City Administrator Tim Freitag said the experience has been positive for the city and its businesses.

Concerns were raised by customers in 2017 who said the Harry Potter Festival had long lines, and was over crowded.

Cramer said those problems should be fixed for the 2018 Warriors and Wizards festival. He said they've simplified shuttle service and hired Contemporary Services Corporation(CSC) to manage crowds. CSC's website says it’s a 'leader in crowd management.'

The festival has also faced backlash on social media. People say it hasn't met expectations.

Cramer said positive feedback has outweighed the negative and he expects the festival to continue its growth.

This weekend's festival will have three stages for entertainment. People need to purchase a wristband to attend and the event's website said some special events may cost an additional fee.