The Eagar Brothers and The Tradition to Celebrate Simple Things in Life

(L-R) The Eagar brothers — Steve, Chris, and Jeff — posing with the auto-rickshaw during their trip in India in 2004.

In 1999, the Eagar brothers – Jeff, Chris and Steve – embarked on their first trip to India. Little did they know, this adventure would spark the creation of a special tradition known as Bang 7. Inspired by the genuine kindness, compassion and hospitality of the people in India, despite the challenges in their lives to make ends meet, the brothers declared a day dedicated to celebrating the little moments of happiness in life, Bang 7 – Life Day, on June 7, 1999.

Born in Newfoundland and Labrador and raised throughout Eastern Canada, the Eagar brothers attended high school in Cape Breton before enrolling at the University College of Cape Breton (UCCB – now Cape Breton University). Jeff completed his Bachelor of Business Administration in 1994. Chris and Steve followed, graduating from the Bachelor of Science program in 1995 and 1996, respectively.

Growing up with an outdoor adventure lifestyle and a desire to explore the world, the brothers, despite working and living in different parts of the world, have always tried to make time to travel together. They have witnessed the core of happiness in various countries they have travelled to, but none more profoundly than in India. “The premise of Bang 7 is rooted in the fact that if you have your freedom, health, family and friends, that is really the root of all happiness,” says Jeff. “The people we met didn’t have stacks of money, a huge house, a fancy car or brand name handbag but they had time to show us kindness and generosity.”

In 2004, the philosophy of Bang 7 was put to the test during their second trip to India. The Eagar brothers decided to travel across India on the Grand Trunk Road on a three-wheel auto-rickshaw, a domestic vehicle known for its challenges on long distances. The remarkable journey of more than 2600-kilometre, from Kolkata to Wagah (on the border of Pakistan), later became the subject of a documentary aired on the National Geographic Adventure Channel and the Outdoor Life Network.

After completing their trip, the brothers purchased a second vehicle to donate to Butterflies, a children’s charity in Delhi, to help deliver food and aid to many poor children living in the streets of the city. They also donated the original rickshaw to the University, receiving positive feedback and a warm community welcome. This year, as part of CBU’s 50th Anniversary celebrations, the CBU Art Gallery will unveil the restored auto-rickshaw as a permanent art piece during the Anniversary Week, from June 24-27, 2024.

Reflecting on this special journey, the brothers emphasized that thinking about the premise of Bang 7 puts everything in perspective. “The people we met each day during our trip inspired us with their positivity and compassion even though they had very little and struggled to get by each day,” shares Jeff. “If they could battle through daily life with optimism and generosity, then surely we could too!”

This experience greatly shaped their outlook on life and the significance of Bang 7. “It’s easy to say things and tell people how they should live, but we brothers truly make an effort to live each day being patient and kind to other people, both strangers and people we know,” Jeff says. “We’ve seen it and have been treated to it by many people around the world so we know the power of being positive and kind. It just makes life better, easier and more beautiful.”

Since creating the holiday in 1999, the number of people celebrating Bang 7 each June 7 has grown. In 2021, Jeff and Chris visited the very spot in the village of Pushkar in the Thar Desert, Rajasthan, where they created the holiday. “We all get caught up in the chaos and forget that life truly is a beautiful thing; and Bang 7 is that safety net day,” says Jeff. The tradition has lived on ever since and hit its 25th-anniversary mark in 2024. The brothers celebrate each year by taking time off from work and focusing on their health, family and friends. “Everyone can appreciate Bang 7 because we are all the same: black or white, fat or skinny, old or young—no one is exempt from the ups and downs of the topsy-turvy roller coaster of life,” he shares.

As CBU celebrates its 50th Anniversary, the Eagar brothers see Bang 7 as a valuable tradition for the University community to inspire others and focus on the positives in their lives. “We hope that Bang 7 will become a cherished tradition for many and that CBU will keep thriving as a place where people come together to learn, grow and celebrate life,” Jeff shares.

We are proud of our Alumni who have made a significant impact and carried the spirit of perseverance through and through. Today, June 7, join the Eagar brothers in taking a moment to reflect on how fortunate we are and focus on the things that are truly meaningful in your life.

To stay up to date on the 50th celebration, visit