Harry Potter fans vie for Beedle the Bard look

Amazon is sponsoring an amazing contest to give fans a shot at seeing one of the seven copies of The Tales of Beedle the Bard. Through April 22nd, 2008, you can take a shot at winning a very magical trip:

Amazon.com wants to send you and a friend to London, England to spend a weekend with the rare and delightful book of fairy tales (security guards included, of course), handwritten and illustrated by J.K. Rowling herself. Open to muggles ages 13 and older in 24 countries, the Beedle the Bard Ballad Writing Contest challenges you to creatively answer one of the following three questions in 100 words or less:

• What songs do wizards use to celebrate birthdays?
• What sports do wizards play besides Quidditch?
• What have you learned from the Harry Potter series that you use in everyday life?

English-language submissions will be accepted through 11:59 p.m. PDT April 22, 2008. An Amazon.com committee will select 10 semi-finalist submissions (based on creativity and writing style) from each of two age categories: 13-17 and 18-and-over. Amazon.com customers will determine the two finalists and Grand Prize winner by voting for their favorites. The Grand Prize includes round-trip airfare, two nights lodging at a London hotel, as well as an expense allowance. Plus, each of the finalists from the two age groups will receive an Amazon Gift Certificate in the amount of $1,000.

I can’t really think of a prize more fanciful than if they could offer you a weekend at Hogwarts. And really, if they could do that, then you’d have to worry about being turned into a teacup or having your soul sucked out by Dementors or something. The trip they’re offering sounds a lot safer, and still pretty exciting.

You’ve gotta love that it’s open to kids, too. The Harry Potter enterprise knows its fans, that’s for sure. May the best muggle win!

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