Our son convinced me to read the book the summer after his fourth-grade year. I loved it; I encouraged my husband to read it, and thus we began a wonderful family adventure. Seven years of reading all the books in the series, and ten years of going to see the movies.
The character, Harry Potter, was 11 years old in the first book, and our son was eleven when we chaperoned his fifth-grade class to see the very first movie. Yep, there were kids there from age 10 to age 40 :-) Then when our son got a little older, he went to see the movies with his friends and their parents, or his friends came along with us. And finally, after sophomore year in high school, he decided he was too old for Harry Potter. A lot of his college friends are still seeing the movies, but our son has moved on.
I noticed when we saw the last movie that most of the audience was our age (which might have been because we went to the matinee showing). But my husband says that a good story has something in it for everyone. The Harry Potter books have excitement, imagination, wonderful humor, poignancy, and unforgettable characters. And they're allegorical. Yes indeed; they teach wonderful lessons about friendship, loyalty, courage and the choices we make in life.
The actors began acting in these movies as children about the age of our son. Like him, they've grown up too. But to us, they'll always be those beloved Hogwarts students -- Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny, Luna and Neville.
Thanks for the memories, J.K.R.