Quidditch takes the pitch

Brooms, quaffle and snitches are just some of the terms used to describe a sport that is quickly gaining popularity around the world and here in Central Alberta.

Brooms, quaffle and snitches are just some of the terms used to describe a sport that is quickly gaining popularity around the world and here in Central Alberta.

Familiar to Harry Potter fans, quidditch combines rugby, dodge ball and capture the flag.

Jillian Staniec, founder of Central Alberta Quidditch and current president of the Central Alberta Centaurs, said the growth in this area has been substantial from when she started three years ago. There are 38 members in the club.

This Sunday the Central Alberta Quidditch will host the Quidditch Fall Festival at the Bower Community Centre field at 85 Boyce Street in Red Deer.

“We have been able to start a youth a program and are currently in our fourth session, which we do in the spring and fall. Our adult program has also taken off this summer, so it’s been fantastic for us,” said Staniec.

Quidditch is a gender inclusive game, which is something Staniec believes is special to the sporting world.

“You play as you identify and I feel it has really increased understanding and has challenged the assumptions that people have about gender in sports. It allows people to create friendships and connections with people all over the world,” said Staniec.

No matter what type of sporting background one has, Staniec said it’s a sport anybody can play and a great way to stay active.

“You get to build up your overall fitness along with learning basic skills of passing, catching and shooting. The types of things you need in a lot of other sports,” said Staniec.

Teams consist of 21 players with a main goal of scoring points by throwing the quaffle (ball) through one of the three hoops placed on the pitch.

The free fall festival includes a low-contact tournament between the Central Alberta Centaurs, Edmonton Aurors, Calgary Kelpies and the University of Calgary Mudbloods. There are two youth games, a try-it session along with a full-contact game between Northern and Southern Alberta which will be televised on Shaw TV Red Deer at 12:30 a.m. The fun starts at 10 a.m.

To learn more about quidditch visit: centralalbertaquidditch.com

jguignard@bprda.wpengine.com

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