Ottawa is home to many sports enthusiasts who favour obscure sports over those that are mainstream. These games are favoured because they aren’t highly competitive yet they still allow for the social aspect of being on a team. Quidditch is one of them.
“I’ve played a lot of other sports and thought it would be kind of a joke,” says Claire Steckle, University of Ottawa’s Quidditch team chaser. “After one practice I was hooked and am now playing for the competitive team. Quidditch is a great workout. I’ve also been really surprised how it is a mix of a number of different skill sets from many different sports.”
Despite Quidditch being based on the wizarding game, for many people the decision to join the team was not influenced by the Potter franchise, but by the challenge and social gathering. There are many who join who aren’t very familiar with the wizarding world.
Curling is another game in which players join for a social time, more than to fulfill the need to compete.
“I’d made some other friends through curling and played just to be with them. I saw it more as a social event, rather than a sport,” said Alex Cross, a curler of six years, attending the University of Ottawa. “For one, it’s more adult than hockey or soccer mainly because day long tournaments revolve heavily on how much alcohol you can drink rather than who wins the game.”
A sport like Ultimate Frisbee also flies below the radar. As Christiane Marceau, the executive director of Ottawa Carleton Ultimate Association put it, most of the “old timers” don’t want it to be mainstream. However, Marceau states that the past few years have shone some light on the popularity of Ultimate, creating a bit of a buzz in its own respect.
Whatever you’re looking for in a sport, there’s no question it can be found in Ottawa.