Timeline of Veishea’s History

Staff Writer
Story City Herald

Veishea was named by professor Frank Paine as an acronym for the then-departments — Veterinary, Engineering, Industrial Science, Home Economics, Agriculture — of the Iowa State College.

Before Veishea, the college’s divisions each held their own celebrations. Veishea was a merging of those celebrations and a way to show off the college to the public.

Performers who have been a part of the Veishea celebration or at Iowa State during the event include Bob Hope, John Wayne, Cary Grant, Sonny and Cher, The Goo Goo Dolls, Ronald Reagan, Black Eyed Peas, Count Basie, Meredith Wilson, John Denver, John Oliver, Dave Attell, Donald Glover, Jay Sean and Amy Sedaris.

Timeline of events in Veishea’s history and those that took place during Veishea weekend:

1922: Veishea founded. Parade, open houses, horse show, vaudeville acts

1931: Crews from Paramount Studios film Veishea

1934: The moving up ceremony, a mock graduation for students other than seniors and for freshmen to burn their beanies, ends

1941: As World War II begins, a committee votes to abolish Veishea; after student protest, the motion is withdrawn days later

1943: Veishea is shortened to two days and many activities suspended

1944: With few resources, Veishea is reduced to one day

1945: Veishea ups to two days a week, but many regular events won’t return until the next year

1953: Veishea is broadcast on national television

1970: The last Veishea queen is crowned; anti-war protests occur because Veishea took place the weekend following the Kent State shootings

1985: During “Ash Bash,” a greek community event, cars are burned and flipped over

1988: First riot takes place Sunday morning with a crowd of about 5,100; problems occurred the two previous nights with parties shut down; 45 people arrested including 25 ISU students

1989: Classes are held on the Thursday of Veishea week for the first time; there are still no classes on Fridays

1992: The second riot is comprised of 8,000 people who throw various objects at the police; 27 arrested and 47 treated for injuries

1993: Classes are now held on the Friday of Veishea week; more entertainment added to prevent chances of another riot

1994: A crowd throws objects at the police; 20 arrested, including 11 ISU students

1997: A visitor to Ames is murdered in a stabbing by another visitor at Adelante Fraternity

1998: Veishea becomes dry; a crowd of about 300 are dispersed after chanting and attempting to tear down a light pole

1999: A protest against the second dry Veishea takes place three weeks before the event and involves vandalism and profanity as the crowd marches to the Knoll and then to Jack Trice Stadium

2001: Some students unsuccessfully petition to create a student referendum to end Veishea’s funding by the student body government; it happens again in 2002

2004: A riot of 2,000 people in Campustown results in $250,000 in destruction of property; 37 arrested including 22 ISU students

2005: President Gregory Geoffrey suspends Veishea; instead, small events and community works projects take place

2006: Veishea reinstated with more alternative entertainment on campus

2009: Wristband policy and small ticket price enacted for the main concerts; a disturbance in Campustown causes police to evacuate the area

2012: Out-of-town visitor falls to his death at Campustown apartment

2014: President Steven Leath cancels the remaining week of Veishea after a disturbance in Campustown and later announces the annual celebration will be ended permanently