Seniors compete in annual Quidditch tournament
Children’s Literature classes play magical matches
Raise your brooms, seniors.
The Children’s Literature class competed in a tournament of muggle Quidditch at the close of their “Harry Potter” unit for the fourth consecutive year.
“We have the regulated equipment for the sport,” English teacher Tris Wenker said. “They wear different colored headbands based on the position that they’re in. If you are the golden snitch, the way that it’s done is we have a tennis ball in a sock and it kind of hangs through a flag football kind of belt.”
The students are split into the four houses, Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Slytherin and Hufflepuff, in order to compete in the tournament and are encouraged to take the Pottermore.com quiz in order to properly assess which house they should belong to.
Since muggles, those who do not possess magical powers, cannot fly broomsticks, there are some slight differences between muggle Quidditch and regular Quidditch.
“Muggle Quidditch is a bunch of muggles, non-magic folk, running around with a broom between their legs, throwing the quaffle to try to score,” English teacher Caitlin Fowler said. “There are also bludgers, which are dodgeballs, and [they] try to hit each other with the bludgers, like dodgeball and we also have a snitch.”
In addition to the regulatory balls for muggle Quidditch, there are also regulatory goalposts which, when run into or put under force, may fall over or temporarily break.
“I think we need to get enchanted [goal posts] or something like that,” senior Tim Baldwin said. “This non-enchanted PVC stuff just doesn’t cut it.”
Principal Kevin Buchanan has refereed the Quidditch matches since the game’s arrival on Oak Park High School’s campus. He donned an AYSO soccer referee uniform which came equipped with yellow cards that can be used for misdemeanor on the pitch, such as a broom violation.
“I have a long history of Quidditch refereeing in my wizard life,” Buchanan said.
Wenker acknowledged that Quidditch as a major reason in why students may choose to take Children’s Literature.
“We try to make it as positive as an experience for [the students] as we can,” Wenker said. “But, we do make them sign a permission slip because kids have gotten hurt in the past. Kids get really into it.”
Senior Savannah Lizakowski, donning a Gryffindor tie, said that going down to the field to play Quidditch was a better option than being stuck in a cold classroom listening to a lecture.
“I mean playing Quidditch and just having a good time is pretty great,” Lizakowski said.
The level of intensity and dedication to character differs depending on the student; some choose to simply watch, while others try and play in as many games as they can. A Gryffindor is not limited to just the games that he or she may play in for the tournament as they can be a snitch or a substitute for other houses.
“Kids often dress up in capes and tights and bring really interesting brooms,” Fowler said.
The various positions to play while on the pitch are chosen willingly, not appointed. Senior and Ravenclaw Nicholas Demirjian was a snitch while his house was not playing.
“I got destroyed because I’m slow and Nick Catania is really fast,” Demirjian said. “I tried hiding and I couldn’t. I thought I would be faster, but I’m not.”
Some students have considered the Quidditch tournament to be the highlight of Children’s Literature.
“It’s hard to explain Quidditch on paper when you can actually play it,” senior Cheyanne Taylor said. “We obviously read ‘Harry Potter,’ but being immersed in ‘Harry Potter,’ that’s pretty cool.”