To the Middlebury Campus,
My family drove from New Hampshire to New York City this weekend to attend the Fourth Annual Quidditch World Cup. This was our third cup. Our son is a senior at Middlebury and has played quidditch all four years. In fact, he saw someone in a Middlebury Quidditch t-shirt on his tour before he even applied and that was something he eagerly anticipated. He packed a broom as an essential item going off to college. From the impressive organizational skills of Alex Benepe, Kate Olen and the other members of the IQA to the team members, student fans, alumni and Middlebury parents we saw, it was a truly magical weekend.
Proving that the Middlebury prowess was not a factor of the Cup’s location, Middlebury battled its way through seven matches to retain its title. We sat with the students who gave up a weekend to support the team and they were instrumental in the joy of every score and victory. Painted blue, wearing t-shirts and school colors, they were a constant source of encouragement. I know what kind of work load Middlebury students have, and giving up a weekend to be a spectator at a sport many deem silly is no small sacrifice. Seeing the team and fans huddled together singing “The Midd Kid” rap after the victory, I couldn’t help but smile along. The tournament and victory were fabulous, but without the fans, it would have been like one-hand clapping.
We had family from the New York area there, including small children. One Middlebury referee took the time to teach them and other children the game and referee for them — when she could have been taking a break. Our son was injured in one game and we worried he might have a concussion. I was amazed and impressed at the caring and concern for his well being from the Middlebury students and other fans. I made and carried a sign, which became an invitation for Middlebury supporters to approach me. I met parents of students still in Vermont who came to support their child’s peers. I met alumni and their parents. I met parents of team members. They were all supportive and enthusiastic.
It’s hard to know what the future of quidditch as a sport and Middlebury quidditch in particular will be, but if the behavior of those involved so far is any indication, that future is bright! Thanks to everyone who made it a fantastic weekend! Go Midd Quidd!
P.S. I forgot to mention the Middlebury student volunteers, the commentators, the Mountain Ayres and the fact that the Middlebury team members had cameras on them and microphones in their faces nearly constantly — and they were unflaggingly patient, smiling, and terrific ambassadors for the school!
Maureen Redmond-Scura is from Concord, N.H.