Salisbury, MD – Muggles on the Lower Shore will be able to get a taste of Hogwarts without even having to board the train at Platform 9 ¾, as the US Quidditch Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship is coming to Wicomico County.
Wicomico County Recreation, Parks & Tourism is set to host the championship Nov. 19-20. Games of quidditch, based on the sport of the same name introduced in J.K. Rowling’s popular “Harry Potter” series, will be played at Fruitland Recreational Park, and admission is free to the public.
“USQ is excited to be in Wicomico County, Maryland for Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship,” said Mary Kimball, events director for US Quidditch. “Working with Wicomico County Recreation, Parks & Tourism has been really great so far, and we can't wait for the event in November.”
Games will begin at 8 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 19, with the last game of the day starting at 4 p.m., and on Sunday, Nov. 20, games will begin at 8 a.m. with the last game starting at 3 p.m.
At least 24 teams are set to take part, bringing more than 1,000 players, coaches and families to the area from seven states and Washington, D.C. An economic impact of more than $300,000 is expected.
“We are thrilled to have been selected as the first Maryland host of the US Quidditch Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship,” said Stan Adams, Wicomico County sports marketing representative. “Quidditch is the fastest-growing collegiate sport in the United States, and we are excited to bring that momentum to the Eastern Shore.”
At the regional championship, youth of all ages can get a chance to try the sport on a youth field run by US Quidditch with help from the Salisbury University quidditch team from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. each day.
While there’s no flying on broomsticks as there is in the “Harry Potter” books and movies, players in this co-ed sport do use broomsticks. The “snitch” is a person rather than a flying golden ball. Teams score points by either catching the snitch or getting a ball called the “quaffle” into one of three large hoops at the end of each side of the field. Meanwhile, players try to avoid getting hit by another type of ball, a “bludger.”
The winning team will continue on to the national championship.
“This tournament is a special opportunity for our community to see the best quidditch players in the region go directly head-to-head and compete for a spot in the US Quidditch Cup,” Adams said.
For more information, visit www.SalisburyChampionships.org.