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Homecoming bonfire warms faces and hearts

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Nikki Yopp/The Carolinian

Nikki Yopp
 Staff Writer

There aren’t many times of the year where UNCG students come together, outside of tragic circumstances. Homecoming, however, is one of the biggest reasons students, alumni, and the surrounding community come together to celebrate everything about UNCG.

Homecoming kicked off on Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016 with the King and Queen contest. While getting to see the Homecoming Court take the stage is always interested, some other events offer comforts that are more interesting to the UNCG student body.

The annual bonfire, is one of the events that students look forward to every homecoming. This year, the bonfire took place on Oct. 21, 2016 from 7 to 9 p.m. on the EUC Lawn.

Students filled the lawn to watch the Dance and Cheer teams perform routines, and meet the homecoming court. The music helped to keep students warm before the fire was even lit.

In addition to the music, there were also several local food truck vendors lining Stirling Street to feed hungry college students. Among the trucks were Grinder Cafe, Tropical Smoothie Cafe, Fish n’ Wings, Pita Delite and Cameron’s Funnel Cakes.

Students flocked to these food trucks early in the night seeking warmth from food, for the most part. However, there were some brave souls who opted for cold or frozen drinks, despite the chilly weather.

For those who did not want to spend any cash at all, the event had food and drink options available through catering services. Catering had a spread of both cold and warm food options for students. This food however, did not last long at all. Students were piled into a line before food even arrived and it disappeared just as quickly as it came.

The freebies of the night continued with, of course, t-shirts. UNCG loves handing out free shirts at every event during homecoming, undoubtedly an effective technique by campus leaders, to ensure that students will continue to be interested in coming out to future events.

Around 8:30 p.m., the Greensboro Fire Department, arrived to ensure that the bonfire went off without a problem. The pile consisted of nearly 100 wooden pallets and straw, in order to keep the fire going.The temperature quickly rose, as soon as the fire started.

Students who were wrapped up in jackets and scarves, quickly dropped the extra layers due to the heat coming from the fire. Several students commented that it burned to look at, or that it felt like they had placed their face inside of an oven.

Of course, despite this, students still tried to edge closer to the safety cones to see how much of the heat they could handle. Thankfully UNCG Police Department, Security, and Greensboro Fire Department members were all around to ensure the safety of students while this event was going on.

One of the members of the Homecoming Court, Dale Hacker, was loving the festivities. While her favorite homecoming event, is the Day Party, she said, that to her, the bonfire is a close second.

For Hacker, both of these activities foster a sense of Spartan community, as people spill onto the EUC Lawn to mingle and come together for a common event. Hacker loves the Day Party, because it brings in family and alumni, much more than any of the other events.

Another student, Mark Perez, loved the bonfire this year because they’ve added more food options. S’mores were amazing last year, but he loves the fun of being able to share funnel cakes with his friends around a bonfire.

The bonfire is just one of the many events for homecoming, that involves plenty of food. The Day Party, has food available to students for free, and available at $6 for guests and alumni. In addition to the student events, there is also a whole multitude of events for alumni of the university.

Every UNCG student should go out to experience homecoming at least once. Not only is this an amazing celebration of the university, but it is a chance to get to meet new people and foster a sense of  community on campus.

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