We are pleased to inform you of the EWU Harry Potter Club. OK, it may be far from Hogwarts, but the Harry Potter Club (HPC) is a sanctuary for muggles who dream of an owl dropping a sealed letter on their windowsill.
The HPC originated when current club adviser, Michelle Schultz, needed feedback from fans while writing her thesis paper, “Harry Potter, Prejudice and Bigotry: A Learning Process.”
“I had originally planned on doing a reading group so I could use my friends as a sounding board about my ideas for my thesis, and then we jokingly discussed creating a club,” said Schultz. “Eventually we just decided to do it.”
The 20 members of the club, which became official in 2007, are separated into four houses: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw. New members actually take a “sorting hat quiz” that determines a member’s personality and the most suitable house based on their answers. A sorting hat ceremony follows in which members are placed in their respective houses, they’ll even receive house scarves.
During club meetings, the houses compete in a hodgepodge of activities ranging from “muggle duels,” which are trivia quizzes, to an adapted version of quidditch. “We don’t have brooms, so that’s a bummer,” said Gryffindor Head of House Nicole Werner, “but it’s a mix of dodgeball and Ultimate Frisbee, and the goal is to get the Frisbee down the field and through the [opponent’s] hoops.”
The club also hosts film screenings and wizard rock concerts. “Wizard rock is pretty much music based off the Harry Potter series,” said Werner, who estimates that there are more than 600 bands worldwide. This past Halloween, in addition to a screening of “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince,” the club also put on a concert featuring the Whomping Willows and Justin Finch.
Even though the club enjoys rocking to tunes such as Draco and the Malfoys’ “I Gonna Kick You in the Face,” the club’s top priority is to promote literacy.
One of the club’s current endeavors is working with an organization called Page Ahead. Club Treasurer Brittany Fitzthum said, “Their main goal is to get books to unfortunate kids who don’t have money to buy books.” The club is currently talking with Page Ahead to start a book drive. The HPC also reads to children at Cheney and Spokane libraries.
“Literacy is really important for kids,” said Werner. “We’re working really hard to get reading out there and have reading be fun.”
If you are interested in joining the HPC, their next meeting is at 5 p.m. in Streeter Hall Dec. 1 or you can contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org.