Photo by Mo Fries

LC quidditch combines fantasy literature and athletic competition

By Casey Pickard

After discovering their mutual love for the Harry Potter books, roommates RuthMabel Boytz ’20 and Katie Hull ’19 decided to begin building Lewis & Clark’s quidditch team. Boytz began to conduct research online to see if there were any schools in the area who ran their own teams.

“When I was touring colleges I remembered that some schools had quidditch teams,” Boytz said. “I wondered if any schools around here had it or if Lewis & Clark had one that doesn’t exist anymore.”

After learning that LC did not have its own team, Boytz’s search led her to usquidditch.org, the website of the governing body of quidditch in the US. The website listed many resources on how to start a quidditch team. Thus, Boytz, Hull and Emma Campbell ’20 began Lewis & Clark Quidditch in October 2017.

So far, the team hasn’t had an official competition. Boytz explained that it was hard to get students out in the fall semester since LC Quidditch was not at the Pio Fair.

“We’re still working on getting people to come out consistently so we can go to competitions because right now people come but not all the same people every time,” Boytz said. “It would be really hard to actually get to a competition.”

Other quidditch teams in the area include Reed College, Western Washington University and Willamette University.

Quidditch competitions are available to watch online. UCLA, a major school in the world of competitive quidditch, has their own YouTube channel and the U.S. Quidditch Tournament and International Quidditch World Cup both post full length matches online.

Players must run with a broom between their legs, with one hand on the broom and the other used to handle the quaffle, bludgers, beater bats and the golden snitch.

“Everybody has a broom,” Boytz said. “Then you need a volleyball that’s deflated and that’s the quaffle, that’s what you score points with.”

Many of the rules and regulations are the same that wizards in the Harry Potter novels play with. The only major differences are that players carry their brooms instead of flying on them and there are three bludgers instead of two.The bludger is a ball used to knock players off of their brooms, and three bludgers ensure each team will have possession of a bludger.

Most people who attend LC Quidditch events want to attend because they know what quidditch is, but Boytz notes that not everyone who joins is a Harry Potter fan. Some members have never read the books or have never seen the movies but join anyways to have a good time.

“You don’t have to be a fan (of Harry Potter) to play because it’s still a fun game,” Boytz said.

Quidditch practices are held on Saturdays. In an effort to be accomodating to everyone’s schedules, a Doodle poll is sent out to see what time everyone wants to meet.

The club also has movie nights where they gather to watch Harry Potter movies and eat themed snacks. The team is looking forward to baking pumpkin pasties, a baked treat described in the Harry Potter novels.

For future events, LC Quidditch plans to have a quidditch night and provide snacks for Accepted Students Day on April 13. Additionally, the SOA dorms will be conducting a Triwizard Tournament where LC Quidditch will run a quidditch section of the tournament.

In the evening of April 13, there will be a try-out session where people can practice playing quidditch or enjoy provided snacks. The team has a Facebook account and an Instagram page where they post updates on practices being held.

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