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The Homecomings of the Century: From Hellzabruin to Bear Sync

Hellzabruin 1949

Hellzabruin 1949

Tamsin Fleming
November 27, 2023

As the old French proverb says, “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” This is definitely true for the past 100 years that UNC has celebrated homecoming. Calling home alumni from all graduation years, gathering around the bonfire with friends new and old and enjoying all the festivities celebrated that year has been the norm from the very beginning. This year, the week-long annual celebration featured classics like the football game and a tailgate, bonfire, fireworks and Bear Sync, among many others.

A little-known fact about the hit Bear Sync is that it has roots in a contest dating back to the 1940s. The group lip-syncing competition originated as “Hellzabruin,” a student talent competition, in which featured acts would even lip-sync on occasion. While programming evolved to fit contemporary student and alumni interests, Bear Sync is proof that many events stand the test of time.

Diving deep into the archives and digging up photos from all the way back to the first homecoming, nothing evokes a sense of nostalgia quite like looking back at the beginnings of our mighty Bears. What better way to commemorate a 100-year run of UNC’s beloved week of Homecoming celebrations, than a stroll down memory lane?