With the muggle coronavirus pandemic still raging as fiercely as the wizarding world’s Dragon Pox epidemic of the early 1900s, many iconic events have been significantly changed or flat-out canceled.
San Diego Comic Con 2020 made use of muggle technology to reimagine the world-renowned, geeky mass gathering as a remote, virtual event.
Generations of wizards and witches before us have survived plagues and raging illnesses like the Dragon Pox pandemic and Scrofungulus outbreaks, long before COVID-19 descended on us. As nefarious as this virus is (one that’s made even more ominous when looking at its origin from captive wild animals in overcrowded wet markets where they are slaughtered), and as uncertain as the times are, one thing we can count on is what the esteemed Albus Dumbledore once said as he spoke to a crowded hall of Hogwarts students:
“Happiness can be found even in the darkest times if one only remembers to turn on the light.”
This includes not only our happiness but the happiness of our companion animals, too!
“Anyway, Harry,” said the giant, turning his back on the Dursleys, “a very happy birthday to yeh. Got summat fer yeh here — I mighta sat on it at some point, but it’ll taste all right.”
From inside a pocket of his black overcoat he pulled a slightly squashed box.
Harry opened it with trembling fingers. Inside was a large, sticky chocolate cake with Happy Birthday Harry written on it in green icing.
Harry Potter merch collabs have been dropping this July like it’s nobody's business. It is, after all, the birth month of everyone’s favorite boy wizard, and Warner Bros. is acting like a Rememberall and making sure we don’t forget.
The latest Potter swag to come careening at us like a rogue bludger are the K-Swiss x Harry Potter sneakers.
These Hypercourt Express 2 shoes are inspired by Harry’s beloved Firebolt and are detailed enough to make even the most stoic Slytherin squee a little bit. There’s a glossy, faux woodgrain sole, silver embellishments that resemble the broom’s footholds, and embroidered golden “Firebolt” lettering on the heel. The shoes arrive in a box with Daily Prophet-inspired tissue paper and come with the chance to win an exclusive prize if the image of an enchanted key is stamped in the box.
But, there’s a dark side to the Quidditch chic shoes: they’re crafted from patent leather and are definitely not vegan.
Speak Beasty x The Protego Foundation Team Up To Host Trivia Fundraiser
On Sunday, June 21, 2020, the Protego Foundation teamed up with the magical folks at the Speak Beasty podcast to host our first-ever fundraising trivia event, Fantastic Facts and How to Know Them!
For two fast-paced, action-packed hours, Protego’s co-founder, Tylor Starr and Speak Beasty hosts Ann Lysy, Rex Haden, and producer Ashley Craig, ran the event on Facebook Live.
The Wizarding World isn’t exactly known for its creature-free products.
The popular Honeydukes sweet Fizzing Whizzbees are made with dried Billwing stingers. The Sleekeazy’s Hair Potion and Scalp Treatment that tamed Hermione’s notoriously bushy brown hair for the Yule Ball counted among its active ingredients Asian Dragon Hair. And don’t even get us started on Ollivanders’ wand cores!
Thankfully, the muggle and no-maj world is making big strides when it comes to limiting and reducing animals being harmed in cosmetics testing and having their parts used to make said cosmetics.
Horace Slughorn, it’s safe to say, is definitely not a vegan.
As much as we love the Slytherin potions master who reclaims his old post in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince… the food he serves at his famous and elite Slug Club dinners and parties? Not so much.
The one that stands out the most? The Slug Club’s most notorious appetizer—the Dragon Balls served during the infamous Christmas party at Hogwarts in the Half-Blood Prince film. The seemingly innocuous little appetizers are made from raw dragon meat, making them anything but appetizing.
It started with a seemingly off the cuff remark.
"I hope there are no animal products in the cake.”
It was enough to make me pause. Did I just read what I thought I did? Was a student at Hogwarts actually just admitting she was … *gasp* vegan!?
The creature-loving Slytherin, Liz Tuttle, is the Wizarding World’s first open vegan and, with regards to Hermione Granger, its second-most outspoken creature advocate. (We have yet to see actual activism on Liz’s part.)
The Protego Foundation’s own Tylor Starr is also a co-host on the friendly, weekly, vegan, animal rights podcast, The Chickpeeps, which was started by Evanna Lynch (the Irish actress who brought Luna Lovegood to life onscreen in the Harry Potter films). Recently, The Chickpeeps podcast was awarded “Best Vegan Podcast of 2020” by the UK’s best-selling Vegan Food and Living magazine.
PROTEGO FOUNDATION X ROOM OF REQUIREMENT APPAREL COLLAB: MAGICAL MENAGERIE TEE, PART OF PROCEEDS TO BENEFIT PROTEGO FOUNDATION
Of all the quintessential shops in Diagon Alley, one that springs to the forefront of minds of witches and wizards of all ages, is the Magical Menagerie. Visiting the Magical Menagerie, which is located just across the street from Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour, is as much a rite of passage as receiving a Hogwarts acceptance letter. After all, it’s the one-stop-shop for Hogwarts-approved companion animals, rat tonic, talon clippers, and an assortment of non-Hogwarts-approved creatures ranging from cuddly Puffskeins to exotic Fire Crabs.
Most famously, the Magical Menagerie is where Hermione adopted everyone’s favorite fluffy, ginger half-Kneazel, Crookshanks!
However, the Magical Menagerie has some less-than-pleasant descriptions in the Harry Potter books: