Wizarding Weekend Case Study

CHALLENGE: When SDG caught wind of a wizarding festival for families, held during our favorite time of year, in our beloved town of Ithaca NY – well, we had to add in our own bit of magic. The grassroots event sparked wild amounts of public interest in its first year, when social media set fire to a terrific idea developed by local Ithaca business owners. Crowds in the thousands, an outdoor venue and an audience base that knows their magic inside and out – this certainly felt like a creative ‘lean in’ opportunity.

SOLUTION: We took a wholistic approach to designing and creating the space around this experience. Our 3d team set to work on interpreting 4-5 different interactives and exhibits. They organized volunteer build parties throughout the summer, enlisted a fair bit of family elbow grease, chopped up Halloween decorations, and reached far back into our theatrical set design days to create some truly amazing pieces. Our audio-visual technicians helped to coordinate with international fan clubs to provide content for our networked displays.

Meanwhile our designers were hard at work interfacing with local artists to create digital assets, a website and printed materials, including a 24 page ‘Daily Non-Profit’ to highlight the weekend activities.

Attendance in the two years SDG participated in the festival soared, with crowds of more than 20,000 traveling from throughout the Northeast to wait more than an hour in queue to interact with our creations. The festival in itself is greater than just the SDG exhibits and continues on to be an Ithaca tradition. Proof that creativity exists as a collective, not just in the hands of an individual.

some photos courtesy of Wizarding Weekend, shot by Allison Usavage allisonusavage.com others, SDG.

Design & Build

Directives were to be wildly imaginative, weather resistant, and capable of withstanding interaction with tens of thousands of visitors annually. This sounds like something to go all in on.

Exhibits and Av Solutions


Graphics and Collateral

Voice Over Talent and Copywriting


When you hear visitors traveled hundreds of miles, and their experiences are described as the ‘best day ever’ you know you’re doing the work right. SDG aspires to bring magic to every project, but there will always be a special place for Wizarding Weekend, and the fun our team had with our friends, our families and our community.

All the Work

I’d like to decide where to next.

Moving On

Take me to the next project please.