The 2014-2015 playing season will see USQ’s six regions expand to seven with the addition of the Northwest.
As of July 1, the USQ region formerly known as the Western region will be split into West and Northwest. The new Northwest region will consist of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming; the new West region will contain the states of Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada and Utah.
The creation of this new region will allow the states located in the northwestern United States to participate in a regional championship that is much closer to home. Even when the West Regional Championship is held in northern California, which is the farthest north point of almost all current member teams, the trip amounts to a minimum nine-and-a-half-hour, one-way drive, and the longest distances between the region could amount to more than 22 hours. With USQ support of active high-level regional competition, quidditch within the Northwest should begin to flourish as many current unofficial teams become members.
This season, teams located in western Canada will also be participating in the Northwest Regional Championship. The USQ gameplay team and Quidditch Canada leadership are working hard to determine the logistics of this pairing, both within the event and throughout the regular playing season, and updates will be provided to the public as they arise. While determining a location for the event is still in the final stages of planning, the Northwest Regional Championship should be small enough for the first year to host successfully without extra financial and logistical support from a local city.
As USQ’s primary structure to organize and facilitate competition, having regions that best meet the competitive needs of teams now while remaining cognizant of the future is important; however, because USQ has limited financial, staff, and volunteer resources, not every change can be made at once.
The last remaining USQ super-region is the Midwest, and as the bidding process is finalized for the 2015-2016 season, bids for two midwest regional championship events will be solicited. USQ is looking forward to spending the coming season adequately preparing for one final new region.
In the long-term, as the league continues to expand and team density develops, the next step will likely be the addition of sectionals or conference championships to determine which teams qualify for regionals. As the league moves closer to this eventuality, USQ will solicit the input of volunteers and players from throughout the country to develop a system that works the best for the teams and the sport.
On July 1 at 8 pm EDT, USQ management will host open office hours on Google Hangout to answer questions about the upcoming season.