Sports aren’t interesting to me, they just aren’t. Football is boring, soccer is average, and tennis is like a in real life metronome of “tiks” and “taks.” Now, of course, there’s an exception to every rule, and that exception for me, is Quidditch. I can tell you that there are 700 fouls in Quidditch and that in the 1473 World Cup, all of them were broken, including turning one of the players into a polecat.
Now, of course, I have a dilemma on my hands. Quidditch is technically a fictional sport from J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, and is played by flying around on broomsticks. So, not only can I not watch, I can’t play… until recently. In October 2005, the first Quidditch game was played on Battell Beach at Middlebury College in Vermont. It was a makeshift game for pure fun, where they used capes made from towels, and one student used a lamp instead of a broom to fly. By November, there were a few teams and Middlebury held a tournament.
As news grew of the new sport, others started to play. In 2006, it grew popular, with people creating their own teams in other colleges, and one college officially making it a collegiate sport. By that December, it had so much attention, that the Wall Street Journal did its own article about it. The article, humorously called “What’s That Student Doing With A Broom,” talks about the beginning of the sport and how the Middlebury students grew bored of their regular games, and started their version of the airborne sport. One student commented that, “We are the first college students who grew up reading Harry Potter. It’s very much a book of our generation.”
In 2007, they held the first Quidditch World Cup, which is based off the event in the book. It was held between Middlebury and Vassar, two of the original colleges that made the sport popular. By 2008, articles in MTV and USA Today are published, and even more teams rise up and begin competing with others colleges. That November, there is another World Cup, and it finally starts to live it’s name, now international, with a college from Canada joining the tournament. 2009 brought 21 teams and 2,000 spectators, while the next one brought 46 teams, 15,000 spectators, over 40 media outlets, and the first held outside of Middlebury. Soon came the first intercontinental game with Vassar College competing with the University of Vassa from Finland. Soon, countries all over the world are creating their own teams and competing and getting together for now correctly named World Cups.
By Quidditch’s tenth birthday in October of 2015, it has a huge following with teams all over the world and it’s a great way for the community to get together, in fact the Quidditch club is one of the most popular activities in some colleges.
So it’s official, all of my dreams of actually being a quidditch player are coming true. Of course, now they just have to fly, and I don’t think flying broomsticks are scientists’ primary concern… darn.