Quidditch is coming to Cal Poly Pomona

By Alexander Murphy

There is a new club at Cal Poly Pomona, and its name is Dumbledore’s Army. Sounds familiar, right?

While fighting against He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named is not of prime concern, CPP’s Dumbledore’s Army is a club where Muggles (non-magical folk) can partake in a number of themed activities from the famed “Harry Potter” series, in addition to participating in CPP’s first Quidditch team.

Not to be confused with the “Harry Potter” version of Quidditch, although derived from the novel, this version of Quidditch has a few alterations. It is internationally recognized as a sport, with more than 300 teams from 10 countries.

In the United States, Quidditch is popular on college campuses such as Stanford, UC Berkeley and Harvard. Beginning this fall, CPP can join the few colleges that offer a Quidditch team.

Professor Melissa Aaron, who teaches a class that focuses on the literature and culture of “Harry Potter,” is the advisor for the incoming team.

“[Quidditch] is a contact sport with some combination of dodgeball, soccer, and flag football,” said Aaron. “The game is played as close as will be allowed compared to the novels.”

One of the elements being utilized is riding a broom.

“One of the rules is you must have a broom,” said Aaron. “You do all different kinds of maneuvering holding onto a broom with one hand, which makes it much harder.”

The game’s essential equipment, which fans will recognize, includes the quaffle, the bludger and the Golden Snitch.

Other elements borrowed from the novels include the different houses ” Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw ” and players ” chasers, beaters, a keeper and a seeker.

However, changes had to be made. Changes include the substitution of the Golden Snitch, a different scoring system, the elimination of bats and the use of dodgeballs.

Another difference is the shortened time length. In the novel, Quidditch could potentially last for days, weeks or even months.

Aside from the differences, the game is played as it is in the series. Three beaters try to score with the quaffle, hitting it into the opposing team’s goal hoops. The Golden Snitch is a person instead of a flying ball. That person carries a tennis ball in a sock attached at the waist. The seeker tries to steal the sock, as one would in the game of flag football.

“Surprisingly, I didn’t think [Quidditch] would be that tiring, but it’s really tiring,” said Dumbledore’s Army vice president and second-year kinesiology student Matthew Herrera. “We’re mainly all just here to play and have fun.”

Aside from Quidditch, Dumbledore’s Army offers events similar to those in the novels such as the Yule Ball and a Triwizard Tournament, a three-day event that will take place every quarter.

Samantha Hee, president of Dumbledore’s Army and a second-year hospitality management student, is responsible for starting the organization.

“‘Harry Potter’ was a huge part of my childhood,” said Hee. “I wanted to share my love for ‘Harry Potter’ and the magical world with Cal Poly Pomona.”

Dumbledore’s Army currently has 52 members, with hopes to increase membership to at least 100 by the end of this fall.

Hee ultimately hopes to generate enough interest in Dumbledore’s Army, and is determined to have the Quidditch team compete against other college’s teams.

“It just means the world that I created a club where people can share their interests together,” said Hee. “Hopefully with my club, I can create friendships that can last a lifetime. You never know. Maybe a housemate can end up being your future maid of honor or best man.”

Harry Potter Quidditch

Monica Lopez / The Poly Post

Harry Potter Quidditch

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