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Wild about Harry Potter 

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Bookstores throughout Arkansas will be getting into the Harry Potter spirit with the release of the newest J.K. Rowling-penned novel, “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince,” this weekend. Potter parties will begin on Friday, July 15, at most stores, and the first sales of the book will occur at midnight. Barnes and Noble on Financial Centre Parkway in West Little Rock will begin its “Midnight Magic Pre-Release” party at 9 p.m., featuring trivia, a costume contest, pictures, face painting, arts and crafts and more. Meanwhile, the Barnes and Noble location in North Little Rock also will be open through midnight with fun and games. Another North Little Rock bookstore, Tyler and Tyler, will begin its party at 10 p.m. Friday and will include zoo animals representing those found in the book. Tyler and Tyler is at 4560 JFK Blvd. Wordsworth Bookstore in the Heights will begin its party of games and costume contests at 10:30 p.m. Wordsworth is at 5920 R St. Books-A-Million in Lakewood Village has a whole array of Potter fun in store Friday night, and promises an “express lane” for book sales. That Bookstore at Mountebanq Place’s “Celebration of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” will begin at 11:45 p.m. Friday in Conway, and TBMP will have contests and drawings where all family members attending can win such items as gift certificates, a Deluxe Hogwarts Express HO gauge electric train, an official Harry Potter cap, first edition copies of “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” and the grand prize: a Freedom 946 motor-scooter. Judging in the contests will begin at 12:30 a.m. Call 327-8900. That Bookstore in Blytheville is sponsoring a Harry Potter “lock-in” at the First United Methodist Church; the event will benefit the Red Cross. Call 870-763-3333. Not all area bookstores have Harry Potter fever. Pyramid Art, Books and Custom Framing will present Arkansas native Denise Michelle Harris, who will sign her book “Sweet Bye-Bye” from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday at the store, 500 President Clinton Ave.
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