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February 2011

V-Day Advice for Players Quidditch on the Hill The official

Quidditch 101

magazine of the International Quidditch


Monthly Seer February 2011 Volume 1 • Issue 5 Editor in Chief Alicia Radford Cover Design Alex Benepe Contributors Alex Benepe Zara Fishkin Andrea Hendrickson Andrea Hill Kathryn Mudgway Kati Polaski Alicia Radford Tesia Schiltz Rebecca Seidel Art Directors Alicia Radford Andrea Hill Advertising Alicia Radford

To advertise in the Monthly Seer, contact

The Monthly Seer is published electronically by the International Quidditch Association. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the consent of the IQA. For information about cataloging the Seer contact Alicia Radford. The International Quidditch Association is a magical nonprofit that governs the sport of Quidditch and inspires young people to lead more physically active and socially engaged lives.

Contents 1

Editor’s Letter

3 Calendar News

5 Ives Pond Invitational 6 IQA iPhone App Debut 7 2011 State of the League Address 9 Regional Tournament Bid Begins 10 Welcome to the League! 11 OSU Yule Ball a success 11 The IQA’s new digs 12 Book Aid International Donation 13 Volunteer of the Month 14 Horcrux Hunt

Team Spotlights 15 16 16 17

High school team takes flight Queensland Quidditch treading water A look at Quidditch in California Bay Quidditch on the Hill

Players’ Corner

19 Building something from nothing 20 Quidditch 101 21 Why I Love Quidditch


23 Daniel Miller: IQA Player of the Month 24 Of brushes and brooms 25 Valentine’s Day Advice for Quidditch Players 27 January Contest winner


Editor’s letter Dear Readers, I’ll admit that I’m always surprised and a little unprepared for each new month; there’s so much going on that sometimes it feels like we’re riding on the back of a blue whale and I’m cognizant of the date and time only when it surfaces for air. Strange similes aside, I’m excited that it’s February because this is a big month for the IQA. Regional tournament hosting applications were due on the first (see page nine for a list of the applicants) and official member teams will vote for which tournaments will receive funding and support from the IQA. World Cup location bids are also due on February 15 and will again be open to an official member vote. The World Cup 2011 date and location will be chosen by March 1st (start planning now!). Over 250 people filled out our Monthly Seer advertising and content survey last month – thank you! I loved reading all of your suggestions and we immediately implemented several of them. This issue profiles four different Quidditch teams (see the new “Team Spotlights” section starting on page 15), has two articles with advice for starting a team (“Players’ Corner,” pages 19-22), and a new Player of the Month profile. And whether you’ll be celebrating Valentine’s Day or Single Awareness Day, don’t miss Zara Fishkin’s romantic advice for Quidditch players on page 25. To all the new teams who signed up with the IQA in January (see a full list on page 10), I’d like to personally welcome you to the league. Starting a Quidditch team isn’t always easy, but I think the two main themes that come up in every Seer issue, website post, or tournament are persistence and community. When starting a team, don’t take no for an answer, and keep in mind the Chinese proverb, “fall down seven times, stand up eight.” And second, don’t try to do it alone. Quidditch brings together all kinds of people and in many inspires a unique kind of passion - I know it has in me. Find people; commiserate and celebrate together. Yesterday was National Girls and Women in Sports Day, and the IQA used the occasion to debut a video celebrating co-ed Quidditch as a role model for other sports to follow (be sure to watch it on our website!). This month, try to take some time out from tournaments, Valentine’s Day fun and playing in your area’s brand of crazy winter weather to think about how Quidditch is unique as a co-ed sport and how playing with and against people of both genders has changed how you think of sports or life in general. And tell us what you think! Mischief Managed, Alicia Radford

1| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

From the Archives

The original Quidditch email

From: Manshel, Xander Date: Thu, Oct 6, 2005 at 9:10 AM Subject: From the makers of bocce...

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |2

February Sun














10 11

13 14 15 16 17 18 20 21 22 23 24 25 27 28 On February 27th the Shamrock Quidditch Club will host the Central Pennsylvania Open Tournament in Camp Hill, PA. The tournament will feature teams from Cumberland Valley, Trinity High School, Cedar Cliff High School, and even teams from New York, the Pocono region, and Maryland. Game are free and open to the public.

3| The Monthly Seer • February 2011



From Feb. 16 to 22, the Vaasa Centaurs Quidditch team will tour the Northeast U.S., playing some of the biggest names in college Quidditch. The Vaasa Centaurs team is made up of players from three Finnish universities: University of Vaasa, Åbo Akademi Vaasa and Hanken School of Economics. Players are travelling to America as part of a debate team competing in the Harvard National Model United Nations. The team will play Vassar College at Vassar on Feb. 16. On Feb. 20 the team will face Harvard College, Boston University, University of Massachusetts, Emerson College and Tufts University at Harvard College. The team’s tour will end with a match against Stony Brook University at Stony Brook on Feb. 22. All matches are free and open to the public. ­— Andrea Hill


5 12 19

1. Arrive in U.S., stay at Vassar College - Feb. 15 2. Match against Vassar College - Feb. 16 3. National Model United Nations - Feb. 17-20 4. Match against Boston-area teams at Harvard University - Feb. 20 5. Leave for New York - Feb. 21 6. Match against Stony Brook University at Stony Brook - Feb. 22

26 || Graphic by Kati Polaski

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |4


News I.Q.A.

Ives Pond Invitational || Photo by Alicia Radford


n Saturday, Jan. 15, a historic Quidditch tournament took place on what seemed to be the arctic steppes of Siberia in Buffalo, NY, at the inaugural Flurrious! Winter Festival. Despite dangerous driving conditions due to an oncoming blizzard, four of the six slated teams arrived at the pitch in Delaware Park and proceeded to slog through seven matches in a Hoth-like environment. The host team, Ives Pond, played dominantly throughout the day and won the tournament, with seeker Grant Peehler snatching the snitch in every match he played. Their skill and ferocity was equally matched by the SUNY Geneseo players, who finished the tournament in a close second, with RIT in third and City Honors High School in fourth. IQA Communications Director Alicia Radford live-tweeted the matches, posting such incidents as a Geneseo player (in shorts) smashing one of the goal hoops in a slam dunk; strong winds knocking over tents; sideways, blinding snow; two overtime games and finally a gathering of all the teams in the lodge afterwards for hot chocolate, a roaring fire, and a group photograph to commemorate the day. IQA Commissioner Alex Benepe presided over the tournament and delivered (due to weather conditions) a truncated version of the 2011 State of the League Address. After the tournament he declared “That was the most masochistic Quidditch tournament I have ever witnessed –

and I loved every second of it.” The tournament also saw the debut of the first test version of the IQA iPhone app, which received 59 downloads on its first day and allowed the app creators to live test its features and find any bugs. The app currently allows users to “cheer” and “boo” teams in specific events (content updates as new events begin), answer trivia questions, vote for participating teams and upload photos and video. It should be noted that whiteout conditions and subzero temperatures seem to bring out the beast in the average Quidditch player. Almost every match had at least one overaggressive tackle that resulted in fists being thrown, even between players of different genders. While holding a bloody snowball to her wounded lip, one female Ives Pond player remarked to her teammates “He punched me! But it’s okay, I punched him back.” Please note: while the IQA does admit this is fairly badass, even mutual punching is not allowed in Quidditch and is forbidden in the rulebook. Luckily disputes were resolved quickly and players apologized and were shaking hands by the end of the day. On a final high note, no tauntauns were killed for the duration of the storm. The IQA would like to thank James Maska, Nicholas Kelly, Newell Neusbaumer, and the City of Buffalo for helping organize the tournament. n

“That was the most masochistic Quidditch tournament I have ever witnessed – and I loved every second of it.” – Alex Benepe

5| The Monthly Seer • February 2011


Ives Pond Standings FINAL SCORES Game 1: Ives Pond vs. Geneseo (60-40) Game 2: RIT vs. City Honors (70-30) Game 3: Ives Pond vs. RIT (60-0) City Honors vs. Geneseo (30-20) City Honors vs. Ives Pond (0-90) Geneseo vs. RIT (60-30) Ives Pond vs. Geneseo (70-40) FINAL RANKING 1. Ives Pond Quidditch Club 2. SUNY Geneseo 3. Rochester Institute of Technology 4. City Honors High School

Players brave stormy weather in Buffalo. || Photos by Alicia Radford

IQA iPhone app debuts The IQA iPhone app is now available for free download on the iTunes store. Search “IQA fanjingo” to find it and download. This test version is oriented around events and tournaments so it currently does not have any content on it, but content will be programmed in before big IQA events like regional tournaments. The app debuted on Saturday, January 15, at the Ives Pond Invitational Tournament at the Buffalo Flurrious! Winter Festival in Buffalo New York, which featured four teams from New York state. Fans on-site or across the globe can tune in to the app to cheer on teams, answer questions or vote on the matches, and upload photo and video content. Additional features including league news, a rulebook, team pages, and other concepts will not appear on the application until updated versions are released later this year. Please send any feedback you have or suggestions for improvement by tweeting @mugglequidditch or posting on our facebook page.  — Alex Benepe February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |6

2011 State of the League Address || Photo by Ariel Ritchin

By IQA Commissioner Alex Benepe

Players, fans, supporters &of the IQA:

Thank you for watching and listening.

I am speaking to you from Buffalo, New York, home to the first Ives Pond Invitational at the Buffalo Winter Festival, and I am here with four local teams. Ives Pond, RIT, SUNY Geneseo, and City Honors High School. With 2010 behind us and 2011 off to a great start, it’s a good time to look at how far we’ve come, and how far we have yet to go. Last march, just five years after Muggle Quidditch came into being, the IQA incorporated as a non-profit organization. I appointed nine members to the Board of Directors, based upon their outstanding records as founders of successful teams, their widely spread geographic locations, and what level their World of Warcraft character was. The Board met in person for the first time in May and hosted an exhibition match in New York City that was covered by many major press outlets including NPR and the Huffington Post. The Daily Prophet nearly came but they were busy covering the oil spill, which, in case you haven’t heard, WAS caused by dark magic. In the fall of 2010 the new website, was launched, to great critical acclaim, including Steve Jobs, who after viewing, reportedly tweeted, “just saw the new IQA site. Accio my face, because I think it just melted on to the floor.” Regional tournaments and interscholastic competitions took place throughout the 7| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

fall, and on November 13th and 14th, 46 teams from around the country, including three high school teams and one adult club team, competed in the World Cup at Dewitt Clinton Park in New York City. The event drew over 750 athletes and more than 10,000 spectators, not to mention over 40 national and international media outlets, ranging from Time Magazine to a very lost and confused writer from Jedi Styles. Forty thousand people visited the IQA website that weekend and over 20,000 watched the live webcast. The IQA raised $5,000 to cover tournaments in 2011, as well as an additional $5,000 for Book Aid International, a partnering organization that donates half a million books to libraries throughout Africa each year. Now, if you’ll just twist the dial on your time-turner a few times, we’re going to look ahead to the future. The IQA is starting off 2011 by revamping its website. Over the next few months we’ll be rolling out new features, starting with improved international forums, a comprehensive events schedule that teams may contribute to, and an interactive world map of our official member teams along with regional hubs and pages for each official member team. A new standings section will track the scores of games all over the world throughout each season, and our editorial staff and new video production team will keep you informed with weekly news updates and monthly video reports. Thanks to press attention from the World Cup, the IQA now has a roster of over 100 volunteer staff. IQA directors are placing those volunteers in various divisions, and we look forward to working with them to improve league organization and efficiency. One challenge we face in this department is deciding what to do with an application from a misunderstanding Mafia hit man who wants to help us with our “snitch problem.” Throughout 2011, the IQA will be organizing six big regional tournaments throughout the US and Canada. All official members can apply to receive funding and organizational support in return for hosting or transforming their local tournament into an official tournament of the IQA. The Board of Directors will be screening applications and placing the best applications up for a vote open to official members. Planning for the 2011 World Cup is already underway. In response to multiple suggestions for alternative locations, we are opening the 2011 event to bids from anyone: official members, captains, players, fans or otherwise. Applications are available on our website and due by February 15th. As with regional tournaments, the Board will screen applications, and final voting will be open to official members. Additionally, each team whose bid reaches the final vote will receive a free session with legendary trainer Patches O’Houlihan, writer of the acclaimed book If You Can Dodge A Wrench, You Can Dodge A Bludger.

The official membership program is starting to amp up, with over 50 teams signed up, and by the end of February, official members will have unique team pages on the IQA website for photos, rosters, schedules, videos - you name it. Official members will also get special voting abilities, funding application opportunities, and be able to post upcoming games and local tournaments as news stories on our website and receive support through social media and traditional public relations assistance from the IQA. Official teams will also be able to promote IQA t-shirt sales and receive portions of the proceeds to help raise additional money for their team, and will continue to have cutting edge access to the best funding and developments options for any Quidditch team as they become available. On the topic of fundraising, the IQA has partnered with a sports fundraising group to launch and conduct fundraising campaigns for no upfront cost to our teams. Our partners have worked with thousands of teams and raise an average of $4,000 per team, which will help more IQA teams acquire equipment, travel for competitions, and attend World Cup. Interested team captains can find more information about that on our website. The IQA has also learned that Quidditch motivates youth and young adults to participate in team sports who might not otherwise. With that in mind, we will be launching an “Adopt a Quidditch Team” program, in which we aim to equip fifty schools with all the equipment they need to start and a mentor team to train and work with students, to ensure the long term success of Quidditch as a team or PE class at any school, and we can do this for just a few hundred dollars per team. Anyone out there watching or listening can donate now to support this program and several others. Additionally, National Women in Sports Day is coming up, and the IQA is using the event to launch its own gender equality program, Title 9 3/4. We are starting things off by asking our teams to submit videos about what gender equality means to them, in Quidditch, sports, and life, in order to help promote the program and set co-ed sports participation in Quidditch as a new standard for all sports. With all of these exciting projects on the horizon and more teams than ever, 2011 promises to be an exciting year. I encourage all of you who are official members to be as engaged with our league as possible and make use of the resources we provide, and those of you are not, I urge you to support the future of Quidditch by joining and contributing to our league. And of course, I hope to see all of you on the pitch at the World Cup this fall. Thank you for bearing with me through this address, and in order to prevent the audience from turning into a new glacier formation, I will let us get back to playing Quidditch and leave you with these words:

“Mischief, Managed.” February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |8


Regional Tournament Bid Begins T

he IQA is sponsoring six regional tournaments in the next year, one in each region of the United States and one in Canada. All official member teams were eligible to submit applications until Feb. 1. Official member teams can vote for which tournaments should receive funding on the IQA website from 12:01 am on Feb. 4 to 11:59 pm on Feb 11. Each tournament selected as an official regional tournament will receive a $1,000 grant from the IQA as well as extensive logistical and promotional support, including a full PR campaign and assistance with equipment funding and volunteers. The IQA will also send at least one chief officer or director to each tournament.

Northeastern USA Southern USA

Midwestern USA

Emerson College Boston, MA The New England Cup

University of Florida Gainsville, FL The Swamp Cup

Ball State & Purdue Universities Hamilton County, IN Midwest Regional Tournament

Boston University Boston, MA Northeast Regionals

University of Arkansas Fayetteville, AR Hog’s Head Invitational

Southwestern USA Western USA


Texas Tech University Lubbock, TX Southwest Regional Tournament

Carleton University Ottawa, ON The Ravens’ Cup

IQA West Los Angeles, CA Pacific Cup

McGill University Montreal, QC First Annual Canadian Cup

9| The Monthly Seer • February 2011


Welcome to the League! New January team sign-ups


any college, high school and community representatives contacted the IQA in January expressing interest in forming a Quidditch team in their area. Regional Directors will work with these individuals to ensure all teams get off the ground.

American teams Huntsville Panters Quidditch (Huntsville, AL) Berkeley High School (Berkeley, CA) Castro Valley United (Castro Valley, CA) Mater Dei High School (Santa Ana, CA) University of Colorado at Boulder (Boulder, CO) East Haven High School (East Haven, CT) University of Hartford (West Hartford, CT) Georgetown University (Washington, DC) Titusville BCC Quidditch Team (Titusville, FL) Palm Beach Central High School (Wellington, FL) Georgia Southern University (Statesboro, GA) Indiana University South Bend (South Bend, IN) Fitchburg Finches Quidditch Club (Fitchburg, MA) Simon’s Rock Quidditch (Great Barrington, MA) South Shore Regional Vocational Technical High School (Hanover, MA) Needham Rockets Quidditch (Needham, MA) Eastern Nazarene College (Quincy, MA) Stevenson University (Owings Mills, MD) Northern Ridgebacks Quidditch

(Grand Rapids, MI) Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, MI) International Academy West (White Lake, MI) Jefferson Jaguars Quidditch (Bloomington, MN) Central HS Quidditch Team (St. Paul, MN) Fuquay Varina High School (Fuquay Varina, NC) Southern Alamance High School (Graham, NC) Wet Jets Quidditch (Union City, NJ) Sierra Vista High School (Las Vegas, NV) Ravens Quidditch (Fredonia, NY) Garden City High School (Garden City, NY) Hamilton Quidditch (Hamilton, NY) The Ravens (Jamestown, NY) The Spence School (New York City, NY) Clinton Community College Cougars (Plattsburgh, NY) Victor Senior High School (Victor, NY) Ohio University (Athens, OH) Marietta College Wizbangs (Marietta, OH) Tiffin University (Tiffin, OH) Metropolitan Learning Center (Portland, OR) City of Tualatin Recreation (Tualatin, OR) Rockwood Rockets (Confluence, PA) Middle Tennessee State University (Murfreesboro, TN) White Station Quidditch (White

Station, TN) The Allen Texas Firebolts (Allen, TX) Birdville High School Quidditch League (North Richland Hills, TX) Westlake Academy Quidditch (Westlake, TX) Eagle Strikers (Wichita Falls, TX) Wimberley High School (Wimberley, TX) Utah State University (Logan, UT) Fairfax Quidditch League (Fairfax, VA) Herndon Quidditch (Herndon, VA) Long Trail School (Manchester Centre, VT)

Canadian teams The Calgary Chinooks (Calgary, Alberta) Henry Street High School (Whitby, Ontario)

International teams Colegio Guido Spano (Buenos Aires, Argentina) Wantirna College (Wantirna, Australia) The Amateurs (Vila Velha, Brazil) Kazan Zilants (Kazan, Russia) Uppsala University (Uppsala, Sweden) Bedfordshire Broomsticks (Shillington, United Kingdom) HMS Albion (Bristol, United Kingdom)

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |10


OSU Yule Ball a success By Andi Hendrickson


ew Quidditch clubs on campuses across the U.S. often have trouble recruiting, planning and holding events, not to mention getting the funds to actually make those things happen. The students at Ohio State University have found a creative solution to that ever-popular problem: the annual OSU Quidditch League Yule Ball. The OSU Quidditch League is only four years old, but the Yule Ball has been a success since its inception three years ago. The Yule Ball is just like the one Hogwarts hosted in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: a formal dance for anybody who wants to come, including rival universities in the area. However, the students at OSU have turned this themed dance into a fundraiser both for their own club, and for organizations around Ohio. This year, the organization chosen was the Mid-Ohio Food Bank. The club took canned food donations at the door and took $1.00 off the ticket prices of those bearing donations. The OSU team rents out a large space every winter for this event. There is space for dancing and a room resembling the Great Hall. To make the Yule Ball more than just a dance, the team decorates the halls and rooms with winter decorations, including Christmas lights, sparkling snowflakes, miniature Christmas trees and ornaments, garland and homemade banners and shields depicting the mascots for Slytherin, Gryffindor, Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw. This year’s decorations also included a door adorned with a giant portrait of the Fat

Lady that guards the entrance to the Gryffindor common room. This year’s Yule Ball, which took place Jan. 21, earned the club about $1,650 in profit. The team charges $3.00 per person and $5.00 per couple upon entry, and this year’s dance welcomed over 850 guests over three and a half hours. Expenses included renting tables, purchasing new decorations and food bought in bulk. The club rented out DJ equipment, a popcorn machine and uses various university resources for free. Cleanup and event security were the team’s responsibility. OSU gets the word out about its annual event using flyers that are posted in dorms and classroom buildings throughout campus, including an electronic advertisement in the new student union building. A Facebook event was also a vital advertising tool. This event included basic information and allowed guests to ask questions and interact with one another before the night of the event. The club utilizes word of mouth as well, making announcements in classes during the weeks preceding the event. OSU had a sign-up list at the door for those wishing to join the team, and by the end of the evening they had about 10 prospective new members. Holding an event similar to OSU’s Yule Ball is not only a way for clubs to make some extra money, but it is also great for advertising and recruiting for their teams. n

The IQA’s new digs


n the weeks after World Cup 2010, in between catching up on sleep and clearing out over 1,200 emails from his inbox, Alex Benepe moved into the IQA’s first-ever office in Bedford Hills, NY, about an hour outside of New York City. The IQA shares office space with the fundraising company My Sports Dreams, who manages fundraising campaigns for thousands of sports teams around the country. The IQA has a total of five cubicles in the back of the office, two of which are for the CEO and COO, two for packing and shipping t-shirts and other IQA merchandise, and one for a future IQA intern. Do you live in the Bedford Hills/Westchester area and want to have a dynamic and fun after school internship experience with free waffles? Contact commissioner@internationalquidditch. org to see if you’d be a good fit for an IQA internship. — Alicia Radford 11| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

Hard at work in the IQA’s new office. || Photo by Andrea Hill

IQA gifts $5000 to Book Aid International By Alex Benepe


am proud to say that the IQA has just gifted $5,000 to Book Aid International, one of the world’s premiere organizations for global literacy. Book Aid donates over half a million books to libraries in sub-Saharan Africa each year. The IQA raised the money through a combination of sales of official t-shirts at the 2010 World Cup and online sales on our website. Book Aid was founded, interestingly enough, by Lady Hermione, the Countess of Ranfurly, in 1954. Since then, they have given over 25 million books to communities and institutions in need, and changed people’s lives for the better. In 2002, author J.K. Rowling set an example for the world by supporting Book Aid International with an exclusive auction at Sotheby’s of a teaser for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. And again, in 2006, she donated a handrawn map of the Black family tree to an auction at Bloomsbury that raised over $50,000 for Book Aid. Between these and other generous actions to support groups like Book Aid, Joanne Rowling has established herself as a champion of literacy and inspired others, including groups like the HP Alliance and the IQA, to follow in her footsteps. In an official statement, Book Aid recently said ‘We’re delighted to have been chosen as the International Quidditch Association’s charity partner! For every official IQA t-shirt bought, the donation made to Book Aid International will pay for us to send one new book to a library in sub-Saharan Africa, to countries where books are a luxury that very few people can afford.”

The IQA is grateful to be a part of this tradition, and also for Book Aid’s willingness to partner with our organization. We look forward to continuing to support Book Aid as our league grows and develops. If you are interested in supporting Book Aid International, please follow this link to learn more and donate directly through their website at Book Aid International is one of the world’s foremost library development charities and provides around half a million books to libraries in sub-Saharan Africa and the Occupied Palestinian Territories every year. Book Aid supports libraries in schools, refugee camps, prisons, universities, communities and more. Book Aid also supports libraries by providing grants for purchasing books locally, maintaining library buildings or training for library staff. By working with a wide range of partners in 12 countries, Book Aid International ensures that the books sent match the local need and that they are distributed to the libraries and communities that need them the most. In sub-Saharan Africa, 153 million adults are functionally illiterate and most people simply cannot afford books of their own. Without literacy people are not able to access education or healthcare, take advantage of opportunities for employment, or participate in social, economic and political decisions which affect their lives. And without books, literacy is very hard to foster and maintain. Registered charity number: 313869. February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |12


Making the Magic Happen: Alicia Radford

IQA Volunteer of the Month By Alex Benepe


t’s only fitting that it would take five issues of the Monthly Seer to include a profile on one Ms. Alicia Radford, the IQA’s Chief Operations Officer and Editor in Chief and birthmother of the Seer. As someone who stays out of the spotlight but orchestrates everything behind the scenes, it is typical for Alicia to be modest about her hand in guiding the league, kind of like Eric Axlerod but more attractive. So it was I who recommended her as Volunteer of the Month for the fifth Seer, to which she semi-reluctantly agreed. It is also prescient that Alicia is profiled at this time because she has made some major sacrifices this month in the name of Quidditch. Having graduated early in December from the University of Washington, she apparated from her comfy apartment in Seattle to the bustle of New York City with no job and no housing in order to work for the IQA. Since then she has couch-surfed around the tri-state area, found a full time job with the Jewish National Fund, and logged riddikulus hours working with me at the IQA’s new headquarters in Bedford Hills, NY. So what makes Alicia so great besides her balls-to-thewall attitude? To get straight to the heart of it, a fellow board member and Chief Strategic Officer of the IQA, Alex Terry, once compared her to Hermione, and the analogy is relatively apt. She works harder at Quidditch than anyone else, has an amazing talent for multi-tasking, manages dozens of complex projects at once, has a masterful touch for working with and motivating others, and possesses a strong creative streak that allows her to produce fantastic layouts in the Monthly Seer. She is indefatigable – once she begins working on a project she will not stop until it is done. Over the past year in working with her remotely or in person (she flew out a week early to organize World Cup) I have lost track of how many all-nighters she has pulled. She never complains or gets discouraged; setbacks are nothing more than new challenges to her, and whatever she doesn’t know, she learns quickly, ranging from complex website coding to corporate taxes and filing. Guys, I think Alicia has

13| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

some dirt on her shoulder, can you brush it off for her? Some other things you should know about Alicia: she can play the guitar; loves swing dancing and jazz; used to play Starcraft; participated in/produced the “Intercollegiate Quidditch Trailer” on YouTube (221,000 views, NBD); and would probably gladly marry Joe Walker, the dazzling actor who played Voldemort in “A Very Potter Musical” (which leads me to suspect that perhaps Mr. Terry was right when he incongruously pegged Alicia as a Slytherin). Joe, are you out there? If so email alicia.radford@ and she’ll find some space for you on her schedule. And if you want to be her boyfriend, expect a Google form application to fill out first.


Fighting real-world Horcruxes with the HPA By Alicia Radford


he Harry Potter Alliance is the world’s premier Harry Potter-related charity and their work brings together fans of all stripes to raise money and awareness for realworld causes, drawing parallels between our world and Harry’s world. The HPA’s latest campaign is the Deathly Hallows campaign, spanning the months between the releases of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One and Part Two. During these nine months, the HPA has picked seven real-world Horcruxes for the fan community to focus on and fight against. The seed for the Deathly Hallows campaign was planted after the movie Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was released, when the HPA launched a “What Would Dumbledore Do?” Campaign. “The Dumbledore campaign was very introspective,” said Andrew Slack, the Executive Director of the HPA. “Half-Blood Prince is a very introspective movie. It was centered on romantic maturity and Dumbledore’s death, and the campaign was about ‘what has Dumbledore done for you?’ It was our most popular and fastestgrowing campaign ever, I think because it was so connected to the canon. So we knew we had to do something for Deathly Hallows.” Where Half-Blood Prince is introspective, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is action-oriented. “We brainstormed what kind of actions we could take and thought that maybe we could have seven Horcruxes for our world. It was a long process figuring out the concepts and took a long time to develop.” Each month, a new real-world Horcrux is unveiled and the HPA community is encouraged to engage with and fight against it in several different ways. Organizing and launching not just one campaign, but seven one after the other has been “exciting and exhausting,” Slack said. “In the middle of one campaign you have to be planning the next one – and all the previous ones continue as well. Deathly Hallows was exhausting for Harry, Ron and Hermione. They’re on an epic journey, and so are we. The Harry Potter books are built on the premise that we can learn from and be like the heroes we read about – and become heroes in our world.” February’s Horcrux is the Bullying Horcrux, focusing specifically on the bullying and inequality that is often a way of life for people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or questioning their sexuality (LGBTQ).

From the HP Alliance website, “Often this type of bullying encourages high rates of depression, suicide, and hate crimes. Bullies in the US have spread their hate to Uganda, where they are trying to pass a law to murder everyone who is LGBTQ and all straight supporters. What started off as bullying in schools has escalated to potentially mass human rights atrocities of genocidal proportions.” This month the HPA will fight the Bullying Horcrux by working to create safe school environments that accept all youth for who they are; promoting a bill to prevent government interference in same-sex marriage; and working with human rights organizations to end LGBTQ hate crimes in Uganda. The HPA is also launching Fans for Equality, which is a “bigger group than the HPA, in the sense that it will bring together multiple fan communities for equality.” Every Horcrux is interconnected, from the Starvation Wages Horcrux, which petitions Warner Brothers to use only certified fair trade chocolate for all of their Harry Potter merchandising, to the Body Bind Horcrux, which focuses on accepting our bodies and living healthfully. “The Body Bind Horcrux is not considered a traditional activist cause,” said Slack. “We’re redefining what activism can be. If you’re getting into your body, connecting, having fun, isn’t that a form of making the world better? When a population is disempowered – hobbled by the Dementor Horcrux or the Body Bind Horcrux – we also aren’t conscious of what we’re eating or buying, or of our power as consumers. On accident, we become oppressors. When we don’t ask companies with our dollars to act in a way that is ethical and common sense, no one is going to stand up. “J.K. Rowling said, ‘We do not need magic to change the world. We have the power to imagine better’ – society asks us to imagine worse.” But we don’t have to. That’s the power of the Deathly Hallows campaign. “Most of us can’t take down the equivalent of Voldemort – Osama bin Laden or poverty – but we can do small things, and those small things add up. We’re all making it happen together.” To learn more about the Deathly Hallows campaign and the Harry Potter Alliance, visit

“The Harry Potter books are built on the premise that we can learn from and be like the heroes we read about – and become heroes in our world.”

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |14

Team Spotlights I.Q.A.

High school team takes flight By Rebecca Seidel


he story of Wayne Hills High School’s Quidditch Club will sound familiar to many muggles: it started out as a joke. But now, just two months since their first officia lmeeting ,Quidditch enthusiasts at this New Jersey high school have their club up and running. Flying – well, that’s the next step. In the wake of November’s Quidditch World Cup, held in New York City, sophomores Anthony Gilgur and Thomas Mattera joked around about introducing Quidditch to their school. For Gilgur, the joke started when she saw a Facebook post by Wayne Hills alum Gabby Taub saying she would be playing on the New York University team at the World Cup. “I remember commenting on her status somewhat sarcastically that maybe I could start a Quidditch team at Wayne Hills,” Gilgur said. “After her response saying that there were actually high school teams at the World Cup as well as many college teams, I actually wanted to make one.” The club attracted Potter enthusiasts right away, and about 20 people showed up to its first meeting. Those interested were separated into two teams led by captains Natalie Mikhol, a freshman, and Greg Zuber, a junior, who double as seekers. “Keeping with Potter tradition, the original team names are Gryffindor and Slytherin,” said Zuber. “We haven’t really had much time to practice or have matches, as we are still starting up, but once the spring meetings begin when the weather improves, a game schedule will most likely be written up for weekly practices and possibly bi-weekly matches.” The club is currently run by five copresidents: Gilgur, Mattera, Zuber, junior Justin Ort, and sophomore Alyssa

15| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

High school Quidditch teams, like the St. Ursuline Koalas, are becoming more common. || ­Photo by Jamie NYC

Scheiner. “We run a Facebook group and a website to keep all of our members informed,” Scheiner said. “Overall, we consider this club to be a team effort, and that’s how we run it, as a team.” Since it’s the off-season, there isn’t much action on the field right now for these Quidditch players. But they’re using the time to get a faculty advisor, brainstorm ideas, and generate enthusiasm. “Once we completely settle down and work out all the kinks of our club, we’ll start the planning for a competitive team,” said Mattera. “For now, we’re just a group of friends and high school students who share a common interest.” “It’s a way to connect with all the other Harry Potter fans who people think are weird,” he added. “The people who go around singing the theme song and shouting spells. The people who shout [Hogwarts] house names in the hallways. We have something to do with each other.”

The team members are excited to start playing regularly and to make a splash at their school. “We’re planning to have one of our snitches dress up in yellow or gold one day during school, and we’ll run around trying to catch him in between classes,” Gilgur said. The team doesn’t have a mascot just yet, he added, but “if we do make one, it’ll probably be something crazy and fun like we are!” At Wayne Hills High, Quidditch draws people of all athletic abilities. “For those of us who are not that sporty, it’s a fun extracurricular,” said senior club member Neha Gandhi. Of course, the Wayne Hills Quidditch Club has World Cup aspirations. “Though we’d need plenty of fundraising and practice before then, it sure is a dream we’d like to accomplish, and perhaps we’d see some of our alumni while competing,” Gilgur said. “If not next year, definitely the year after we’ll go to the World Cup. I’ll make it happen!” n


Queensland Quidditch treading water By Andrea Hill


assive flooding in Queensland, Australia has left the state’s Quidditch League without a pitch and essential equipment. By the middle of January, the team’s practice space was underwater and hoops and balls were destroyed. The lost supplies represent six-months worth of labour and fundraising. “It’s kind of horrible,” said Nicola Caldwell, founder of the Queensland Quidditch League. “But we’re tough, we’ll get through it.” Among the League’s few remaining possessions are players’ homemade brooms. These were stored in Caldwell’s home, one of the only houses on its street that was not evacuated. Though the water came up to her doorstep, Caldwell’s residence was spared from extensive flood damage. Caldwell said that before the floodwaters hit, players dreamed of travelling to the 2011 Quidditch World Cup. Now, with so much money and effort needed to replace equipment, it is unlikely athletes will be able to afford the trip so soon. But Caldwell has not given up the dream. “We definitely want to go in 2012,” she said.

The Queensland League was born in August 2010 after Caldwell learned about Muggle Quidditch online. Using social media sites, Caldwell appealed to Harry Potter fans in the state and soon three teams were born. “It was insane,” Caldwell said. “The amount of response I got was overwhelming.”

Two community teams, the Privet Drivers and Whimsic Alleys, are composed mainly of college students. The third team, Dumbledore’s Army, consists of students from Miami High School. Until December, athletes practiced and scrimmaged every second Sunday. Some travelled up to an hour and a half by train to reach the practice field. Players also met to sell sausages in store parking lots to raise money for equipment and uniforms. Unfortunately, much of this money has now been lost. Caldwell said the League plans to start fundraising again in April at a pop culture convention in Brisbane where players will sell team badges and promote Quidditch as a sport. Cadwell said she hopes the League will eventually grow to include more teams from Queensland and other Australian states. But for now, she and the rest of the League have a long period of rebuilding ahead. n

Did you know? After the United States and Canada, Australia has the most Quidditch teams of any country in the world.

A look at Quidditch in California Bay


he Pacific School of Religion (PSR) Quidditch Team was founded in August 2008 by PSR alumna and current staff member Rev. Joellynn Monahan. However, the name quickly changed to the Graduate Theological Union (GTU) Quidditch League when more students from the GTU’s other seminaries wanted to join in on the fun. The league’s members are the graduate students, staff, family members and alumni. Besides regular season matches and scrimmages, the league also hosts special events like the annual fall season opening ceremony that includes a pregame oblivate ceremony to rid athletes of previous traumatic sport experiences.

By Kathryn Mudgway Monahan describes the league as “a model of interfaith, magical cooperation – students from many faiths, races, ethnicities, countries of origin, ages, genders, and sexual orientations play together.” If you’re in the California Bay Area and am interested in joining or even becoming a spectator during events, please contact GTU Quidditch League Commissioner “Constance Vigilant” (aka Rev. Joellynn Monahan) at for more information. Quidditch enthusiasts from all over the world can enjoy search for the Graduate Theological Union Quidditch League on Facebook. n

The GTU Quidditch League. || P ­ rovided

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |16


Quidditch o

A look at the growth and development

By Andr


n Chestnut Hill College campus in Philadelphia, Pa., most students either know about the Quidditch team or play themselves. Over the last three years, the team has become well-established on campus, making itself known to students of all ages, programs and backgrounds. “Quidditch for us has really brought together different segments of the campus culture,” said Krista Murphy, dean of student activities at Chestnut Hill. “I think it’s been very positive for our campus culture overall.” Chestnut Hill’s team started in the spring of 2008 after student Max Kaplan saw a muggle Quidditch match on YouTube. Kaplan was so impressed by the sport that he became determined to make Quidditch work at Chestnut Hill. “There wasn’t really one thing on campus that unified the student body in any way,” Kaplan said. “So I was like, ‘you know what? I think this could possibly be it.’” Kaplan approached the Murphy with the idea. She was so excited by the proposal that she volunteered to help lead the first practice. Murphy, a former soccer coach, adapted soccer drills for students to run through. She said the most amusing part of the day was watching players try to complete the drills on brooms. “It was interesting,” Murphy said, remembering the practice. “There was a lot of falling and laughing and hilarity that ensued.” Devin DeVoue, a veteran player on the team, said he remembers that first practice. Though running on a broom was initially a challenging skill to master, DeVoue said, it now comes naturally to many players. “To be able to run with it needs a combination of balance and a little bit of strength to hold it and still run at a high speed,” DeVoue said. “It’s a skill in itself.” One of the most difficult aspects of running with a broom is overcoming the feeling of ridiculousness it inspires, DeVoue said. Self-consciousness, he said, has no place on the Quidditch pitch. “You can’t play Quidditch without looking a little silly,” DeVoue said. “It’s part of the environment. It’s part of the game.” After the success of the team’s first practice, team members continued to meet and hone their skills. 17| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

The following fall, Kaplan and Murphy organized Chestnut Hill’s first Quidditch tournament in which the college’s teams competed. Team administrators observed games and selected an all-star team that went on to play in the second annual Quidditch World Cup in Middlebury, Vt. in October 2008. The team finished third. The Chestnut Hill Quidditch program has grown very quickly, in part because of the support it receives from college administration. The college’s student activities budget fully supports the team, covering everything from equipment to transportation costs. “It makes things a little easier,” DeVoue said. “It helps us focus on the game itself and not so much on selling the game.” The beneficial relationship the team has with the university works both ways, said Stephanie Rief, a

second-year player on the te Chestnut Hill is a small col often get much attention. H known Quidditch team is b “Because we bring a lot they’re willing to support go to the World Cup witho it too much. They get the b Chestnut Hill, even though in a lot of places.” In the weeks leading World Cup, the Chestnu in reports by media outlet Daily News. The team was released documentary. Despite the help the te it remains predominantly a “It’s something the col financially but the idea and to-day work is all student“It comes from students for

Left: The Chestnut Hill Griffin stands with IQA CEO Alex Benepe. Right: Chestnut Hill player Tom Weigel run


on the Hill

nt of Chestnut Hill College Quidditch

rea Hill

eam. She said that because llege, its sports teams don’t However, the school’s wellbeginning to change this. t of attention to the school, us,” Rief said. “We get to out having to worry about benefit of having the name h it’s a really small school,

up to and following the ut Hill team was featured ts including CBS and the s also the star of a recently

eam receives, Murphy said a student-run initiative. llege has involvement with d the passion and the day-generated,” Murphy said. r students.” n

ns with the Quaffle. || P ­ rovided

The Chestnut Hill Quidditch team at the fourth annual Quidditch World Cup in New York City. || P ­ rovided

Griffin players share their favourite drills “Steal the bacon”

“The Atom”

“It’s to help practice reaction times for the beginning of the game when they yell ‘Brooms up!’ It really helped us in the World Cup. We won a lot of the brooms up battles.” – Devin DeVoue

“For the Beaters it’s really good practice because they have to hit someone who has the ball. It works on not wasting the Bludger.” – Stephanie Rief

Multiple Quaffles and Bludgers are placed in the middle of the field and players are divided into two groups of six or more players. A player in the center calls out the number of balls he or she wants (for example, ‘one Quaffle and two Bludgers’) and then randomly selects numbers (for example, ‘numbers 1 and 5’). The player in the center then yells ‘Brooms up!’ Players pick up their brooms and charge to the center of the pitch and whoever makes it back to their side with all the balls wins the round.

Team members form a circle around two Beaters, each of whom have a Bludger. The players on the outside of the circle are Chasers who must pass a quaffle without being hit by a Bludger. If a Chaser is hit by a Bludger while he or she is holding the Quaffle, he or she is out. The drill continues until only one chaser is left.

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |18

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Building something from nothing By Andrea Hill

Many starting Quidditch teams struggle with a lack of funding, equipment and players. Though this can make things difficult, it does not make things impossible. With some creativity, innovative individuals can build something from nothing.

Funding Many high school and university teams can apply for funding from their schools. But for community teams and teams unable to get funding, money can be raised quickly by charging team fees or by organizing a simple fundraiser such as a bake sale. It is possible for teams to hold practices before acquiring significant funds by getting team members to contribute to finding and building equipment.

Equipment In IQA-regulation Quidditch, a volleyball is used as a quaffle and three dodgeballs are used for bludgers. However, starting teams can substitute other balls such as basketballs and soccer balls if these are available. Before a team’s first practice, captains can organize a meeting for interested players and ask if anyone can bring a ball or balls to practice. Teams don’t need to provide a full set of Alivan’s brooms for their players. Captains can ask team members to bring their own brooms or broom-like implements. These can include kitchen mops, canes, lacrosse sticks or pool noodles. Ski poles are a great option because they are light and players can bring one for a friend. One player on the Carleton University team uses a beat-up piece of plywood with “BROOM” sprawled across it in permanent marker. If players want to get a cheap broom, wooden corn brooms can be picked up at most grocery stores for under $10. These are long and awkward to run with and can be cut down to a more acceptable size with a hand saw. Goal hoops are often the most difficult piece of equipment for teams to acquire. Instructions on how to build IQAregulation hoops are available in version 4.0 of the IQA 19| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

Carleton University playersguard home-made goal hoops. || P ­ rovided

rulebook. But if teams can’t afford the materials required to make these, other alternatives are available. Hula hoops can be purchased cheaply from toy stores or dollar stores. The real challenge is getting these to stand upright. Hoops can be duct taped to fences, hung from tree branches or suspended from the cross bars of soccer goal posts. If there are no structures on which to secure hoops, makeshift stands can be made using materials found in people’s garages or at a second-hand store. Bird baths, plastic lawn chairs and artificial Christmas trees make great hula hoop stands if teams can’t afford to make stands of wooden poles and piping. If teams are really in a bind, a hula hoop can be taped to a long tree branch and the branch can be supported

PLAYERS’ CORNER by heavy book bags.

Players Organizing productive practices can be challenging if teams don’t have a full roster. However the rules of the game can be tweaked in order for smaller groups to scrimmage amongst themselves. Teams can play without seekers and go for a predetermined amount of time or until a predetermined number of goals are scored. Teams can also play with one less

chaser or one less beater (if a bludger is removed from play). If teams don’t have enough goal hoops, half-court Quidditch can be played with a neutral keeper defending against both teams. And practices aren’t all about scrimmaging. Many drills can be run with only a handful of players. Most Quidditch drills are adapted from drills used in other sports. Captains can ask players to come up with their own drills based on what they’ve seen in sports such as basketball, soccer and hockey. n

Quidditch 101

Getting your school to recognize your team By Kathryn Mudgeway Sometimes, getting your school to recognize your team as an official club can be a pain in the butt. It’s like as if trying to get people to understand and respect Muggle Quidditch isn’t hard enough already! However, despite all the of the trials and tribulations that your group may go through, the positive results of accomplishing this goal are definitely worth it in the end. Even though I don’t personally have the time to be on a team myself due to my crazy school and work schedule, I have had college club experiences in the past and hopefully this advice column will help some of you out there that don’t know where to start. — Be confident about your proposal and know what your wants and needs are ahead of time. I know this sounds cliché and everything, but the more organized your thoughts are, the more confident and secure you’ll be when it comes time to writing that application and/or making that presentation. After all, even Harry Potter star Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood) said that “I don’t believe in mental blocks. I don’t believe in what other people tell me I can and can’t do. Basically, I have very little regard for the idea of “can’t”. (To read Miss Lynch’s full “Why The Body Bind Is My Nightmare” blog article, head over to this link: why-the-body-bind-is-my-nightmare/). — Get a copy of your school’s club rules and read through them thoroughly. Highlighting certain points that relate to your group isn’t a bad idea to. When I was working as secretary of a club last semester, knowing the rules definitely helped me and everyone else in the group out. Possessing knowledge of these rules will not only help you understand why the Council may say yes or no to an idea, but it will also help you stay out of trouble for whatever reason. — Get an IQA Handbook and make sure that your school is also aware of what the IQA is and what we do. Since Quidditch isn’t an NCAA sport, persuading others that it is indeed a sport can be a difficult task. However, if the school is aware of the fact that you have additional community support, hopefully they’ll continue to move forward with you. Buying an IQA Handbook is easy. All you have to do is head over to this link: http://www.internationalquidditch. org/handbook-version-4-0-digital-download-pdf.html and make your purchase from there (the PayPal link is at the bottom of the page). Currently, the deluxe package is $3 and is a digital download.

$1 of each purchase however goes to our good friends at Book Aid International. If you experience any technical difficulties with your purchase, please email about your inquiry. — Gather up support. This ranges not only from family and friends but to the entire student body. Ask yourself this question, “How will having a Quidditch team benefit your school?” Then make a T-chart with all the pros and cons. Sometimes, schools tend to favor older clubs because they have already established a solid reputation on campus. — Find an advisor that’s on your side. I know my school requires an advisor to present at all club meetings and events, etc. — **Put a huge emphasis on safety. ** Since Quidditch is a co-ed contact sport (a combination of real-life sports rugby, dodge ball, and tag), sometimes schools might shy away from supporting you because of liability reasons. Reassuring your school that safety is your top priority might help you win the argument if that concern does come up. (IQA Note: By using our rulebook you agree to follow our safety guidelines available on our website). — Set up an archive and keep track of everything. You can this as ammo if someone tries to make a false claim about your club. But really, it’s great to keep track of history and see how far everything has come if you decide to look back. — ­­Have fun and enjoy the ride! It’s Quidditch after all! Need I say anything else? Although this may not be the complete list of things to do, hopefully it will help some of you get onto the right track. Another thing that you can add to this list as well is a demo scrimmage. Seeing is believing and most of the time people are biased and doubtful about something until they witness it for their own eyes. So what are you waiting for? In the words of young Ellie from Disney and Pixar’s Up, “Adventure is out there!” n To contribute story ideas or input advice for future Quidditch 101 articles, please email Kathryn Mudgway at

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |20


Why I Love


By Tesia Schiltz


ven today, fourteen years later, I can still remember when I first read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. It was the book my mother and I chosen to read together every night before bed. At first glance, it was not one that appealed to me, but my mother showed me there was more than just a boy on a broom. With the promise of magic and adventure, my mother and I began to read. It took us forever to get through that first book, but after that I was in love with getting lost within the world J.K. Rowling had created. Whenever I think of that first introduction to the world I would grow to love, my mother is always there with me in the adventure. 2000, the year Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was published, brought even more adventure than the previous books, but it was also the year I lost the woman who helped me find this love. My mother died of cancer and I was struck with grief. Lost and sad, I turned to books. For the next ten years my only constant friends would be paperbacks and hard covers. I gobbled up the words that brought me magic, love, hope, and good always triumphing over evil. But amongst all those books, Harry Potter still shone brighter than all. His world was some days darker and more horrible than I could ever imagine, but in the end he always found a light to make it through the dark. The series ended my junior year of high school, but I still held a soft spot for the books up to my sophomore year of college when I saw a flier that changed things for me. Simple and with splashes of yellow, it advertised a Quidditch team

21| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

The Illinois State University Quidditch team

that would be starting. A dream right out of the book come true, I had to go. Sadly, due to scheduling I didn’t even make it to a practice for the first month, but then it finally worked out and I made my way to the practice field they had made on

moving across the field untouched, something exciting about throwing a Bludger and getting that person right before they score. But what is more amazing is finding people passionate about something so simple as a game that

“That first day I was so nervous. What if this game from this book I had loved so dearly wasn’t as wonderful as it seemed? My fear was lost the second I began to play. I was in love.” the quad. That first day I was so nervous. What if this game from this book I had loved so dearly wasn’t as wonderful as it seemed? My fear was lost the second I began to play. I was in love. Quidditch is more than just a game for me. My family is not always accepting of the fact that I “run around with a broom between my legs”, but playing this game is not something I could give up easily. There is something so wonderful about

came from one woman’s imagination. I started loving Harry Potter while sitting in my bed with my mother. I lost my mother, but I’m grateful for her helping me to find the world I still love. But now instead of simply reading one of the books before bed, I get to go out and live part of that world while on the Quidditch field. n



Why do you love Quidditch?

Why do you love Quidditch? Is it because you finally get to play the game from your favorite book? Is it because of the victory that you share with your fellow teammates after the fight is over? Or is it the journey that you took to get where you are today? Whatever the reason, we at the Monthly Seer would like to hear about it. The Seer will feature one story each month about why you (the athlete or fan) love Quidditch. Entries should be at most one page single spaced. If you’re interested, please send your entry to

IQA & World Cup T-Shirts: Just because you can’t fly doesn’t mean you can’t look fly. Get yours.



Enter ‘FebSeer’ at checkout for 10% off

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |22


Lifestyles Daniel Miller

The Monthly Seer’s Player of the Month


hio State University chaser Daniel Miller lives a busy life. When he is not racing across the Quidditch pitch, the second year atmospheric science and math student is heavily involved with the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, organizes fundraising events, coaches youth soccer and trains for marathons. His schedule may be packed but Miller said he wouldn’t have it any other way. “I’m a firm believer that you find time to do things you love to do,” Miller said. High on Miller’s list of priorities this month is ensuring the university’s tenth annual Buckeyethon goes over without a hitch. The 17-hour dance marathon raises money for the Hematology/Oncology Department of Ohio’s Nationwide Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Miracle Network with the ultimate goal of ending childhood cancer. The event runs from Feb. 26 to 27. “I just want to do my part and help out so that people with these problems can get better care,” Miller said. Already, over 1,000 dancers have registered for the event, the largest number ever. Last year, Buckeyethon raised just over $100,000 to fight cancer. This year, Miller said he hopes students will raise over $150,000. “We’re fairly confident this is the year we’ll raise the most money we’ve ever raised,” Miller said. “We’re really excited for it.” Miller is a part of Buckeyethon’s recruitment and morale steering committee. Since September he has been generating awareness of the event and making arrangements to ensure dancers have an awesome time. Some of the activities dancers can look forward

23| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

By Andrea Hill

Ohio State University Quidditch player Daniel Miller trains for marathons in his spare time. || P ­ rovided

to include live entertainment and the world’s largest game of Twister. “It’s going to be a lot of fun,” Miller predicted. When Buckeyeton concludes, Miller will continue to keep his time occupied. As president of the Ohio State Quidditch club, he organizes social events for club members including movie nights and weekly karaoke outings. Miller said these events give club members an opportunity to relax and take a break from school, if only for a short while. Once the snow melts, Miller will

recommence his role as soccer coach for a local boys soccer team. The warmer weather will also herald the beginning of marathon season – something Miller trains for year-round. “I love running,” Miller said. “It’s a great stress reliever.” Miller was an avid cross-country runner in high school and competed in his first marathon, the Columbus Marathon, in October 2010. He plans to compete in the Indianapolis Half Marathon this spring. n

Who inspires you? The people who play Quidditch are an extraordinary bunch and the Monthly Seer wants to tell their stories. If you know someone on your team who deserves to be profiled, e-mail Andrea Hill at with the person’s name, team, contact information and a brief explanation of why they deserve to be featured in the Seer.


Of brushes and brooms By Alicia Radford

Left: IQA CEO Alex Benepe’s favorite mural. Right: Benepe’s first painted leather jacket. || P ­ rovided


t’s plain to anyone who has seen Alex Benepe in his IQA Commissioner costume/super hero disguise or seen the last three Monthly Seer covers that he’s got some artistic flair. On and off the pitch, Benepe is a versatile and accomplished artist. He is a painter, drafter, sculptor, set designer, and manabout-town. “I did a lot of drawing when I was young,” Benepe said. “When I was 12 I began collecting Warhammer pieces and kept at it until I was 16 and amassed several armies worth of thousands of one inch fantasy soldiers – orcs, human space warriors, each hand-painted down to their fingernails and pupils.” After his Warhammer phase, Benepe began painting leather jackets, “when I went through a brief infatuation with the stubbornly fading and evolving punk scene in New York City.” What did he paint on his first leather jacket? “I painted the cover of the Clash album London Calling – Paul smashing his guitar.” From there, he painted one major

mural each year in college and took a few oil painting classes. “Jim Butler was an amazing professor,” Benepe said. “He taught me a lot about painting.” Benepe, an art history major at Middlebury who did most of his art outside of class, has painted murals at a Connecticut high school, bedrooms and living rooms throughout the tristate area, and put on a big graffiti show with a classmate during his senior year at Middlebury. “We invested the money ourselves in a ton of spray paint and painted a huge room from floor to ceiling, covering every surface, including windows and sometimes the floor and ceiling too. We recouped the costs by spray painting our stencils onto t-shirts and posters and selling them at opening night, which turned into a raging dance party that destroyed half of the room.” He says his often industrial style “resonates with me because I grew up in New York.” A holistic guy, Benepe sees the potential for art everywhere, including

the area that dominates his life: Quidditch. “I consider organizing this league and the fantastic visual splendor of the events that go with it to be an art form. Nothing has felt as inspiring or empowering as developing real-life Quidditch. The thrill for me comes from watching people experience the game for the first time, that click that happens in their brain when they figure out what’s going on and fully comprehend how wonderful and crazy it is. It allows me to vicariously relive that moment when I first played the game and it inspires me to keep pushing the envelope and pushing the game farther and out to more people.” n

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |24

You know why Quidditch Consequently, on every romantic in nature. Talk some, but I’m here to


You’ve been making eyes at her from across the pitch for months now. She’s the best chaser on the team, at least since Chad had to resign due to severe crotch splinters. She has the Quaffle and is headed your way! What should you do?


Don’t: Step to the side and let her go for goal. She will not appreciate the favoritism, and your keeper will be pissed off. Teammates before hot dates, bro. Don’t: Punch her in the face to show your masculine dominance. Picking on girls you like lost its charm in the third grade. Don’t: Steal the Quaffle and put it down your pants. Ew. Do: Defend the goals as you would any other opponent, but a warm hug in place of a violent tackle might be cute.

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You’ve got eyes for only one player, and that’s the snitch runner. At every match, you strain to catch a glimpse of this mischievous man, but you think he’s playing hard to get! How can you make him yours? Don’t: Attempt flattery by dressing just like him. You will end up getting chased, but not by him. Don’t: Try to rat him out. Snitches don’t take kindly to fellow tattletales. Don’t: Put weights in his sneakers. When he takes them off he’ll be even faster. Do: Try a gentle touch. Snitches are known for their flesh memory, and so are often a bit touchy-feely.

h is awesome? It’s a co-ed contact sport. team, there are bound to be some encounters king to the opposite sex may be scary for help you through it with some dos and don’ts.


It’s Valentine’s Day, and time to make your move. How do you make plans for tonight?

Don’t: Shout Imperio! There’s a reason it’s one of the unforgiveable curses. Don’t: Use the broom as a phallic symbol at practice or make related crude jokes. We have Harry Potter Pick-Up Lines on Facebook for that. Don’t: Give her chocolates laced with love potion. It’s been done. Do: Take a leap of faith and tell her how you feel. If you get shut down, see situation four.

Unfortunately, along with dating sometimes comes hurt feelings. What should you do if your Quidditch romance flies into some turbulence?


Don’t: Call the IQA requesting your ex be issued a red card for reckless play. Don’t: Key his broom. It’s harder to buff out than paint and will look more like a racing stripe, anyway. Don’t: Cry like a mandrake. It will hurt your throat and make practice next to impossible. Do: Talk it out and resume play. When it comes down to it, you’re still teammates, and fellow Quidditch players at that.

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |26

Monthly Seer contests

A winter


Freezing temperatures and knee-deep snow couldn’t chill the fiery enthusiasm of the Boston University Quidditch team this winter. Brooms, wiffleball bats and even sticks were put to use during the game, but the goofy equipment was of no concern. With smiles on their faces and snow-matted clothing, as many as 40 players buzzed around an icy pitch, enjoying the team’s first practice of the new year. The wintery conditions were welcomed by the squad as players whipped the quaffle and bludgers through the air, enduring frosty fingers for a chance to prepare for the upcoming season. The Terriers have much to look forward to, with aspirations of winning both the New England and World Cup’s of 2011, and they will be hosting their own alumni-funded tournament in February. With any luck, spring will visit Boston a bit early this year. After all, no one likes a frozen snitch. ­— Kedzie Teller (Boston University Quidditch)

Last month hundreds of Monthly Seer fans filled out our online survey. Congratulations to Makenzie Davenport, Jacob Holewinski, and Elizabeth Pashley who were randomly drawn to receive a free T-shirt!

February fan-art contest

Boston University players enjoy the wintry weather. || P ­ hotos by Dana Pelerin

27| The Monthly Seer • February 2011

Send your Quidditch-related artwork as a JPG file to The best entries will be published in the March edition of the Seer.

Makers of the Official Broom of the IQA

February 2011 • The Monthly Seer |28

Monthly Seer Volume 1 Issue 5  

The official magazine of the International Quidditch Association.

Monthly Seer Volume 1 Issue 5  

The official magazine of the International Quidditch Association.