The Wizarding World of Harry Potter returned to the Plains as Auburn University’s Engineers Without Borders hosted the second “Quidditch for Quesimpuco” tournament at the Auburn University Intramural fields on Sunday, Oct. 30.
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Katie Gauthier, Secretary for Engineers Without Borders and “Qudditch for Quesimpuco” co-coordinator, first thought of hosting a qudditch tournament when she attended the Harry Potter conference, Infinitus, in 2010.
“We originated the idea because we needed some kind of a fundraiser to support our projects that we’re doing for Engineers Without Borders” said Gauthier. “I had attended a Harry Potter conference in 2010 and they had had quidditch and seemed like a relatively simple way to have a tournament. We thought that quidditch would be a good idea because it’s something that is eye catching and fun.”
The first tournament took place in April and only had three teams compete. This semester participation in the quidditch tournament more than doubled and featured eight teams that participated in a round-robin tournament.
“This year’s event has been very successful,” said Gauthier. “Last year we only had three teams so we’ve more than doubled in size. We have eight teams this year so its been really good.”
The money raised in the tournament will go to aid Engineers Without Borders in their mission to help the small town of Quesimpuco located in Bolivia, South America.
“There is a Methodist church that would go and do mission work in Quesimpuco. We kind of partnered with them because we knew they were already going there and had become established down there,” explained co-coordinator and head of Public Relations for Engineers Without Borders, Sabrin Lynn. “Each Engineer’s Without Borders chapter has to commit to a place for five years to make sure there is progress within the town.”
Quesimpuco, Bolivia is a small, rural town in the Andes Mountains that Engineers Without Border students travel to once a year. Their current project is trying to design and install solar heated showers.
“A lot of times they (the people of Quesimpuco) don’t really take showers and they don’t shower there because the water is so cold,” explained Gauthier. “We were thinking that if installed solar heated showers it would improve hygiene and improve health.”
Their next project will focus on finding an alternate fuel source for the people of Quesimpuco.
“These people spend a good deal of their time going out and getting firewood,” said Gauthier. “That time could be better used doing other things, so we came up with a way to make charcoal out of products they have around the house.”
The money raised from “Quidditch for Quesimpuco” will go to help fray the costs of the yearly trip that Engineers Without Borders take to Quesimpuco. The group hopes to hold this fundraiser biannually, once in the fall semester and once in the spring.
The quidditch teams included 7-12 players, each of who had to pay a $10 entry fee. T-shirts advertising the event were also sold as part of this year’s event.
“So far this event has been good,” explained Gauthier. “I’m still not sure of exact profit, but I think it’s going to be great.”