AUSTIN (KXAN) — It allowed Harry Potter fans to experience the magic of the Wizarding World, but Austin’s very own Diagon Alley also provided some magic for a nonprofit theater program: $4,000.
People waited in lines down the block Halloween night in the Circle C neighborhood of Austin to get a peek at the driveway of Joel and Amanda Pace’s house, which had several shopfronts set up with details from the books and movies: Flourish and Blotts, with a poster of Gilderoy Lockhart in the window; Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes with copies of the Quibbler magazine on the front; even the Gringotts Wizarding Bank complete with a smoke-breathing dragon on top.
Before entering through a brick front, people had the chance to donate to The KidsActing Foundation, which provides free classes to children and teens with Down Syndrome or who are on the autism spectrum.
“We can’t thank you enough for your support and generosity,” the Paces wrote on a Facebook page they set up for their project.
The Pace family created a smaller version of the display last year, partially as a creative outlet as Amanda recovered from breast cancer.
“It kind of spun out of control, frankly,” Joel Pace said before the creation’s big debut. “And I, you know, got too far into it, and once I got too far into it, I had no choice but to finish it.”