Quidditch teams fly out of the pages of ‘Harry Potter’ into real life

Sisters Meg, right, and Anne Berquist (7th and 6th grader respectively) play Quidditch. | Photo provided by Barrington Area Quidditch Club
Sisters Meg, right, and Anne Berquist (7th and 6th grader respectively) play Quidditch. | Photo provided by Barrington Area Quidditch Club

In honor of Harry Potter’s birthday July 31, we bring you stories about and local guides to J.K. Rowling’s magical world.

Harry Potter fanatics all over are trying to resurrect the art of Quidditch after J.K. Rowling’s last installment, The Deathly Hallows, was released seven years ago (has it really been that long?) Quidditch has mainly erupted from the collegiate intramural scene and local clubs, snowballing into nation-wide organizations such as US Quidditch (USQ) and the International Quidditch Association (IQA).

How to play non-magical Quidditch, as governed by the IQA

Seven players are on two teams, mounting on broomsticks as if taking flight. Players with special roles, chasers and keepers, try to get the quaffle or a slightly deflated volleyball into the opposing three goals. To impede the scoring of the quaffle, players hit others with a bludger, a slightly deflated dodgeball, which dismounts other players. The game ends when the snitch is caught, a player dressed in yellow with a sock hanging out of his or her shorts.

Northwestern Kneazles | facebook.com/NorthwesternQuidditchClub | quidditchatnu@gmail.com 

The Northwestern Kneazles was fueled in May 2012 by rising senior Juan Herrera. Conducting seasonal butterbeer sales and most recently, winning second place in the 2014 Mischief Matches Tournament, the Kneazles are flying high on their broomsticks.

 

Barrington Area Quidditch Club | facebook.com/BarringtonAreaQuidditchClub | @_BAQC_

North Barrington resident Madeleine Lebovic jumpstarted the team in spring of 2014. BAQC allows anyone to play recreationally, provides Quidditch instruction for children and runs camps for youth who wish to capture the magical snitch too.

 

Loyola Lumos | facebook.com/LoynoQuidditch | @LUCQuidditch | luc-quidditch.tumblr.com

The Loyola Lumos have participated in the 2012 Midwest Championship and Phoenix Cup at Miami Ohio. Registered under IQA, there are both intramural and traveling teams. Chaser Erika Kropp is the president.

 

UChicago Phoenixes | facebook.com/UChicagoQuidditch | ucquidditch.tumblr.com

UChicago students are very adamant about their team, which was a recipient of $2165 from an Uncommon Grant competition. From various tumblr pages dedicated to the magical sport to being registered in the International Quidditch Association, UC Quidditch boasts their t-shirt slogans “Our Sport Takes More Balls Than Yours.”

 

Elmhurst College Quidditch Society | ecquidditchsociety@gmail.com 

Although Elmhurst College Quidditch Society is not registered in the IQA, they have been a successful student group attracting around 50 muggles. The Society participated in their first scrimmage on December 2010 and snagged a third place trophy in the Illinois Triwizard Cup.

 

University of Illinois at Chicago Quidditch Club – QUIC | @QuidditchUIC 

Assembled by rising junior Gilcy Aquino, QUIC was founded last year. UIC’s emerging Quidditch team is relatively new, but new players continue to join their 30-person group at every practice.

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