It was butterbeers all around as hundreds of muggles and wannabe wizards queued in the Quad for the inaugural Sorting Hat ceremony in UCC.
The ritual was inspired by the Harry Potter series where every year first year entering Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and proved to be a magical event for the Harry Potter Society at UCC as 590 students took part.
Die-hard Potter fans had a “siriusly” good night as they queued for hours before being sorted into one of the four houses of Hogwarts: Hufflepuff, Slytherin, Ravenclaw, and Gryffindor.
Founding member of the Harry Potter Society Kelly Coyle said they were amazed at the turnout on Tuesday night.
“We weren’t expecting those kind of numbers at all. We actually thought no one was going to show up at all so we were very shocked.”
The second year UCC Law student explains how the ceremony works: “Everyone who came in got a ballot sheet of paper with a pencil and they had to answer three random questions. Based on their answers we then decided what house they went in. Everyone was called up on to the stage individually, the hat was put on their head and then it was announced what house they were in.”
This is the first year of the Harry Potter Society but it seems students are already bewitched by what the club has to offer. A Nearly Headless Nick birthday party, a Horcrux hunt, Slughorn’s Christmas Club, Christmas Feast, Prisoner of Azkaban trail, a Yule Ball, and a Triwizard tournament are just the tip of the wand of what the society has to offer.
And the magic is not confined to UCC as the club will be joining forces with three other Harry Potter societies around the country as they come broom-to-broom against each other in the other-worldly game of Quidditch.
“We’re having a Triwizard tournament with NUIG, DCU, and UCD. They’re coming down here for November for the first half and then we’re going to Dublin for the second and Galway for the third. It’s going to run for the whole year so we’re excited about it,” Ms Coyle said.
On a serious note the club will also be taking inspiration from the happiness-sucking dementors and collaborating with the Suicide Awareness and Mental Health Society (SÁMH) in a bid to raise awareness of depression and encourage people to talk openly about it.
“We’re collaborating with SÁMH through the use of dementors. We’re going to have a cut-out of a dementor up on campus and we’re going to have people throw blue paint at it like throwing a patronus charm. Then you write your happy thought up on a board after.”
The non-Potter fans out there might think the society is Riddikulus but many seem to be Rowling with it.
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