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We Attended Quidditch 101 at C2E2

We Attended Quidditch 101 at C2E2

Rob Gaczol

As we wandered aimlessly through the immense main floor of C2E2, we heard an someone mention a Quidditch 101 class going on in the building. Like Pavlov’s dog we dutifully dropped everything we were doing and meandered panicked and aimlessly through the vast building, importuning anyone looking remotely official with a simian, “Quidditch? WHERE??”

Quidditch was founded in 2005 at Middlebury college in Vermont by Xander Manshel. After being featured in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and on MTV, quidditch began to gain national recognition. The first international match was played between Vassar college and the University of Vassa, Finland, in 2011. By 2012 there were 110 teams recognized by the IQA, and Chicago hosted QuidCon, the first ever quidditch conference. 2013 brought us the first televised quidditch match, between Bowling Green State University and the University of Toledo, aired on the Buckeye Sports Network. Today the IQA’s reach extends to the United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, Italy, and France[1]

All the mystique of magic (cheater!) and flying lost in the muggle version of quidditch is made up in brute force and athleticism. Quidditch is not for the feint of heart. We would say it’s a mix between rugby, dodgeball, basketball, flag football, and bull riding. Easier said, it’s absolute chaos.

The teams are split up into chasers in white headbands, beaters in black headbands, and the keeper for each team wears a green headband. Everyone must keep their broom between their legs at all times, which means all ball-handling is done one-handed. The chasers’ main objective is to try and throw the quaffle, known as a volleyball by muggles, through one of the three hoops located at the rear of the opposing team’s zone. Bludgers, or dodge balls, or thrown by the beaters at opposing players to prevent them from scoring. Should one be struck by a bludger, that player is required to cease activity, run to the rear of their zone and touch one of the hoops before returning to play. The keeper’s job is to block the quaffle from passing through their team’s hoops. Successfully scoring will result in 10 points given to the scorer’s team.

What about the snitch? This is the most interesting and, if you are unfamiliar with Harry’s quidditch, get out of here the most important and game changing aspect of the game. The snitch in muggle quidditch is in fact a golden clad human being with a flag ala flag football tucked into the rear of this ideally wily and elusive player’s shorts. To add to the already chaotic game in progress, the seekers’ goal is to grab the flag from the snitch, in turn earning their team 30 points and signifying the end of the game. The craziest part of the snitch side-game in is that there are no boundaries whatsoever. The earth is the limit, and a referee is assigned to follow them wherever they may go.

Our short game of quidditch pitted the evil Sparkle Motion against the amazing and cool Felix Felicis. After perhaps only ten minutes of being struck by bludgers and a few too many quaffle shots just out of the keeper’s reach, evil prevailed over good and the mighty Felix Felicis fell to the dark Slytherins of Sparkle Motion. Until next time, you rogues!

There you have it. Quidditch is a serious workout, it’s easy to acquire the necessary equipment, and most importantly is a ton of fun. We’ll see you out on the pitch!


Tags: harry potter, movies, sports, quidditch, c2e2, comic cons

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About the Author
Bo Larkin

Based out of Chicago, Bo Larkin, aka Bryan Albert, makes a living as a writer and musician. Bryan comprises half of the cabaret/art song duo "Lovers' Quarrel" and is a guitar teacher and ensemble coach at Sherwood at Columbia College and Southport Performing Arts Conservatory. Check him out at and @bogitano

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