There’ll be no VEISHEA next year, and Iowa State University’s president says changes must be made or the student-run celebration will not continue. I-S-U president Gregory Geoffroy has appointed a task force to assess VEISHEA’s future. Geoffroy says while he and others would like to see VEISHEA continue, they must look objectively at the risks association with the spring-time festival after the rioting that occurred this year. Geoffroy says he’ll make a decision about the long-term future of VEISHEA after the task force he’s appointed gives him its report. Geoffroy says the safety and security of students and the community will be paramount, and any plan for future VEISHEA celebrations must address how to minimize the likelihood of riots. Geoffroy says “such violence and destruction simply cannot be tolerated.” Geoffroy says he has great faith that Iowa State’s students will take control of VEISHEA and “bring it back to the great celebration it is intended to be.” Student reaction was mixed.
Some students say the university made the right decision. Others point out the riot did not occur on campus. One student wondered whether I-S-U’s president would have canceled the basketball season if the riot had happened after a basketball game. And another says Iowa State administrators like to cut budgets, and canceling VEISHEA is just another way to cut.
VEISHEA has been held on the Ames campus every spring, since 1922. On April 18th, a riot in Campustown caused thousands of dollars in property damage and led to the arrest of 38 people. There have been six VEISHEA-time riots in Ames.