With no Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardy to apply to, Harry Potter fans and wannabe wizards in Poland and Denmark created their own real-life version of the academy.
The first classes were held at fan-created Czocha College of Witchcraft and Wizardry in November. Held in a Polish castle, aspiring wizards from 11 countries spent four days working toward their S.P.E.L.L.s (Senior Protective Enchanter’s Lifelong License.)
Around 190 live-action role players (LARPers) attended, taking on the roles of students, teachers and other wizards. (And, yes, just like in the books, the professors ranged from “bumbling, absent-minded professors with scant memory of their own youth to sharp-tongued young lecturers.”
When not learning about spells and potions, the students, who were sorted into five houses, attended wizard dances and played Quidditch.
According to the college’s official site:
“It is a collaborative experience in the Nordic larp tradition, and is created by the players and organizers together, with everyone pitching in and helping make the magic come alive. It’s essentially the same as when kids use curtains as robes and sticks as wands and run around pretending to be witches and wizards — except we’re grownups with nicer costumes and a lot of experience in designing interactive experiences for each other.”
The second session will be held in April. Cost to attend: 280€, or about $390 CAD — plus the flight to Poland.
Can’t afford the flight to Poland? We might not have a College of Wizardry, but Canada certainly loves Quidditch.
In September, the University of Calgary held the world’s largest Quidditch match. Ninety-seven players took to the field over the course of the three-and-a-half-hour game.