Muggles of MNSU for Quidditch

(Photo from the 2nd Annual Quidditch Tournament Facebook page.)
(Photo from the 2nd Annual Quidditch Tournament Facebook page.)

Catch the golden snitch for a good cause this April 24

In Harry Potter’s Hogwarts universe, Quidditch is a sport that received as much adoration as hockey does in Mankato. However, you don’t have to be a witch to try Quidditch. If you are aged 18 or older, you can come participate in the second annual Mankato Quidditch tournament on April 24, even if you have Muggle blood.

Students from the Event Management class at Minnesota State University, Mankato, are hosting this event for credit and for fun. Admission is $5 per person and $35 per team, and the funds will go to benefit Leisure Education for Exceptional People (LEEP).

On the day of the tournament, registration begins at 10 a.m., and the game will begin at 11 a.m. No prior experience is necessary. The event hosts will thoroughly explain the rules and provide a learning session before the tournament begins on the intramural fields near the fitness trail.

J.K. Rowling, author of the hugely popular Harry Potter series, invented this sport on the fictional page, but fans found it easily adaptable to real world recreation.

“[Quidditch] combines several popular sports like basketball, dodgeball, and soccer, into one united sport,” said Greta Wintersteen, student contact for the event.

For this tournament, participants are expected to form teams of seven and assign three Chasers, two Beaters, one Keeper, and one Seeker. There will be no flying involved, as that comes with an excess of health hazards, but the event hosts will provide the players with brooms upon their arrival. If a player does have a Nimbus 2000 stuffed in their dorm closet, they are free to bring it along.

Traditionally, a Quidditch game ends when the Seeker catches the snitch. In the fictional series, a snitch is a tiny, golden flying ball that zips through the air at high speed. As this would not possible for slower, ground-bound Muggles to capture, student Breagan Shoquist explained their substitute. “The snitch for the Muggle version is an unbiased endurance athlete that has a sock with a tennis ball attached to them, usually around the waist. Once somebody detaches the tennis ball sock from the snitch, the game is over.”

Wintersteen said that the hosts have made a few changes from last year’s Quidditch tournament. “With it being the second year, we have more hype for the event and more participants,” she said. They also received an increase in sponsorships for the event, which provided giveaways and goodie bags for the participants. “The community of Mankato [is] really being open to sponsor and support the event as much as possible,” said Shoquist.

Official registration for this tournament ended on April 17, however, late registration is still open throughout the week. Contact Greta Wintersteen at greta.wintersteen@mnsu.edu to sign up or request additional information. There is also a Facebook page for the event, which participants can find by searching “2nd Annual Golden Snitch Quidditch Tournament.”

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