Young Entrepreneur Creates a Magical Summer Camp

Maddy Kirstein is a young entrepreneur creating pure magic with her summer camp: The Alectoria School of Magic.

Maddy Kirsten Douglas magazine Vancouver Island News
Maddy Kirsten. Photo by Belle White.


Who hasn’t wanted to live inside the pages of their favourite book? A generation of children have fallen in love with Harry Potter and Hogwarts, which is why local high school student Maddy Kirstein created the Alectoria School of Magic, a three-day, overnight-camp experience for youth ages 11 to 17.   


The Alectoria School of Magic grew out of a project Kirstein was completing at the Pacific School of Innovation and Inquiry.

“At first it was to create an inclusive safe place for youth to be creative and completely themselves,” she says about the summer camp that strives to bring the magical world of Hogwarts to life.

In developing her experiential camp, Kirstein realized it needed to be much bigger than the “one night in the woods,” she had initially envisioned. She approached Shawnigan Lake School and brokered a deal to rent the facility for the three-day immersive adventure.

While the camp was originally Hogwarts Summer School, a Cease and Desist from Warner Bros. prompted a name change.

“We worked with them to find an alternative name,” she says.

Last year’s sold-out camp ran with classes such as herbology, history of magic, magical creatures, astrology, divination, archery and more.

“I was surprised by the level of interest, not only from the people who wanted to attend as students, but [also from] people who wanted to be instructors,” Kirstein says. “Right now, I’d like to see it run long enough that a kid who first came when she was 11 [could] go through and graduate at 17.”

This article is from the August/September 2019 issue of Douglas.