Campus Traditions

The President's Ball is a biennial tradition welcoming thousands of Wake Forest community members.
Springfest is week-long event including Shag on the Mag, a dance held in a large tent on Manchester Plaza.
Wake Forest Lovefeast has grown to be the largest Moravian-style lovefeast in North America.

Each year, the WFU community comes together to celebrate and serve others in a wide variety of campus traditions. Some are hosted by student groups, others by departments, but all rely on student involvement for their success! Joining a committee for the following events is a great way to get involved on campus.

Family Weekend, The Office of the Dean of Students
Family Weekend is the perfect opportunity for parents, siblings, grandparents, and friends to experience college life with their student, including social events, campus traditions, educational opportunities. Held during early October, you’re certain to fall in love with this tradition.

For more information contact Kathy Arnett at arnettkc@nullwfu.edu.

Homecoming, Student Union
Homecoming weekend welcomes alumni back to campus with a bonfire pep rally on Davis Field, the Festival on The Quad, various class reunions, an alumni tailgate party, and, of course, the Saturday afternoon home football game. Founded: 1835

President’s Ball, The Office of Student Engagement
After President Nathan Hatch was named the university’s 13th president in 2005, a group of student leaders worked to organize a formal event as an official welcome to Wake Forest, birthing what is now known as The President’s Ball.

What started in 2005 as a way to to celebrate President Hatch’s inauguration has now turned into a biennial tradition welcoming thousands of Wake Forest community members. The event is held during homecoming weekend in the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum and has become a highlight of many students’ experiences at Wake Forest. Founded: 2005

Hit the Bricks, Pro Humanitate Institute
Hit the Bricks for Brian Piccolo is a full day, relay-style running race between a wide variety of teams and campus organizations. In recent years, the event has raised more than $25,000 for the Brian Piccolo Cancer Fund Drive.

Brian Piccolo attended Wake Forest in the early 1960s on a football scholarship, eventually winning the ACC Player of the Year as a senior. Unselected in the NFL draft, he tried out for the Chicago Bears as a free agent, and slowly worked his way up the ranks until he earned a position as a starting fullback in 1969. Halfway through the season, he began showing symptoms of poor health, was diagnosed with embryonal cell carcinoma, passing away a year later. His friendship with teammate Gale Sayers was portrayed in the movie “Brian’s Song.” Founded: 2004

Project Pumpkin, Pro Humanitate Institute
A student-organized event brings about 1,400 area children from local schools, agencies and organizations to campus for an afternoon of Halloween festivities in late October.

The annual event is sponsored by the Volunteer Service Corps and is designed to bring the Wake Forest and Winston-Salem communities together for a safe and fun Halloween experience. Each year, about 1,000 student volunteers operate carnival games on the Quad, take children trick-or-treating at residence halls, play live music and more. Founded: 1988

Lovefeast, Office of the Chaplain
Moravian student Jane Sherrill Stroupe ’67 organized the first Wake Forest Lovefeast in December 1965, and 200 students gathered to celebrate the traditional meal. Since then, the Wake Forest Lovefeast has grown to be the largest Moravian-style lovefeast in North America, and one of the favorite features of Wake Forest tradition.

The Lovefeast and candlelight service occurs on the first Sunday in December in Wait Chapel. It is sponsored by the University and celebrates one of the unique traditions of the Moravian community in Winston‑Salem. The Quad is lined with luminaries, and the Chapel is adorned with Christmas decorations and filled with people.

The Wake Forest Lovefeast consists of a sweetened bun and creamed coffee. It is served to the participants by dieners (German for servers). During the meal, music is offered by the Wake Forest Concert Choir, Handbell Choir, Flute Choir, and the Messiah Moravian Church Band. During the service of song and scripture reading, handmade beeswax candles decorated with a red paper frill are distributed to each worshiper. The candles are lit while the worship space is darkened except for a large illuminated Moravian Advent Star for the singing of the final hymns.

A lovefeast is a service dedicated to agape, or Christian love, considered the greatest of virtues. A lovefeast seeks to remove social barriers and encourage reverence and respect for the legitimate rights of all people.

The first lovefeast was served in Germany on August 13, 1727, following the renewal of the Moravian Church. The Lovefeast is not the sacrament of Holy Communion. It is styled after the common meal partaken in love and fellowship by the early church (described in the book of Acts) prior to their celebration of the Lord’s Supper. Founded: 1965

Springfest, Student Union
An annual event organized by Student Union which includes a wide variety of events across the span of a week in April.

This week-long event concludes on Friday night with its largest event, Shag on the Mag. Shag on the Mag is an annual dance held in a covered tent on Manchester Plaza (also known as The Magnolia Quad). Students dress up for a night of live music, dancing and catered food.

In 2005, Student Government started Springfest to bring the campus community together. The 2005 event included a performance from comedian Lewis Black and big-screen viewing on the Mag Quad of the NCAA Final Four and “Napolean Dynamite.” Founded: 2005

Wake ‘N Shake, Pro Humanitate Institute
Wake ‘N Shake is an annual dance marathon fundraiser benefiting the Brian Piccolo Cancer Research Fund.

This 12-hour event is largest single fundraiser for the Brian Piccolo Cancer Research Fund each year and typically raises more than of $25,000.

Brian Piccolo attended Wake Forest in the early 1960s on a football scholarship, eventually winning the ACC Player of the Year as a senior. Unselected in the NFL draft, he tried out for the Chicago Bears as a free agent, and slowly worked his way up the ranks until he earned a position as a starting fullback in 1969. Halfway through the season, he began showing symptoms of poor health, was diagnosed with embryonal cell carcinoma, passing away a year later. His friendship with teammate Gale Sayers was portrayed in the movie “Brian’s Song.” Founded: 2005

Stop Hunger Now at Wake Forest University, Alpha Phi Omega
Stop Hunger Now Meal Packing event. Students from across campus come volunteer and pack meals. Last year, we had over 100 student volunteers, raised over $5,000, and packed 18,340+ meals. The meals were sent to a partner organization in Nicaragua, ORPHANetwork.

Want to join in the tradition? Contact Contact Matt McNiece at mcnimr13@nullwfu.edu for more information.