AMES, Iowa — The final recommendations of a task force on the future of VEISHEA were released Friday evening.
It will now be up to Iowa State’s president to make a final decision on the tradition.
President Leath formed the task force after this year’s VEISHEA festival ended in violence. Thousands of people took to the streets in Ames’ Campustown, tipping over a car and pulling down light posts. One student was seriously injured when a light pole came down on his head.
As the task force’s report points out, VEISHEA has a long history of alcohol-fueled violence.
In response the task force created a list of twelve recommendations on the future of the event. They include not calling the event VEISHEA or continuing it in its current form, breaking up the event into three smaller events, and creating stronger penalties for those who get out of control for the event. An increased law enforcement presence around Campustown during the event is also recommended.
“A survey done in 2004, a task force did a survey, and I think it was 80 percent or 75 percent of students when you say what do you think of when you say VEISHEA the first thing they thought of was party so that was what was done by the 2004 task force and we kind of reassessed that and one of our recommendations was based on that,” says Jeff Woody, task force member.
“It’s really, really too bad. Like I feel bad for all of my friends who were active in the musicals and the drum line and the marching band and all that sort of thing. It’s too bad that partying had to ruin all those deep rooted traditions,” says ISU student Erin Asmus.
This isn’t a done deal. President Leath will have the final say. He is expected to make his decision by early August.