Quidditch World Cup flying to North Myrtle Beach

More than 80 teams from the U.S., Canada, and even Australia will compete for the Quidditch World Champion title at the new North Myrtle Beach Sports Complex this weekend.

"A lot of fans and a lot of people start Quidditch because of the Harry Potter connection, but it's a competitive sport," said Sarah Woolsey, event and development coordinator of the International Quidditch Association.

But what exactly is Quidditch?

Woolsey says "It's a full contact co-ed sport, and is a mix between rugby, dodgeball, lacrosse and tag almost."

Matt Gibbons, superintendent for sports tourism for North Myrtle Beach, expects around 4,000 people to not only play in the championship, but also watch the action.

"It's a great time and great opportunity to showcase our facility," said Gibbons.

Gibbons says the city has been working with the International Quidditch Association to prepare for the games.

"It's a testament to the area, it's great when you can promote North Myrtle Beach and it's an easy sell when you have the ocean, the accommodations and the attractions that we have," said Gibbons.

North Myrtle Beach beat out other competing cities including Kissimmee, Florida, where it was held last year.

"The facilities are very nice and the city support has been fantastic as well. So it just stood out as a great choice for our world cup," said Woolsey.

The games begin Saturday 9 a.m. To 11 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. To 6 p.m., locals do get a discount.

There is also a World Cup celebration held at the House of Blues in North Myrtle Beach on Sunday afterward the games.

The Harry Potter Alliance is bringing their annual book drive to North Myrtle Beach this weekend as part of the Quidditch World Cup.

You can drop a book off at various book drop-off locations throughout the park.