Organizations create Veishea alternatives


ISU President Steven Leath announced his decision on the future of Veishea on Aug. 7. He decided to discontinue the celebration and retire the name “Veishea” as a result of events that happened during the 2014 Veishea celebration, including a violent disturbance in Campustown that sent one ISU student to the hospital April 8.

Will Fowler

Though Veishea may have been canceled, student groups have been appearing and offering replacements for the event on social media.

Seek Entertainment, a group aiming to improve the Ames music scene, is hosting a “Spring Musical Festival” in April of 2015. The event was originally called “WEishea.”

“This is our destiny to fill in this void,” said Matt McDonald, cofounder of Seek Entertainment. “We were very disappointed that the Veishea concerts got canceled. We felt like it would be a great opportunity for us to step in.”

More than 1,300 people on Facebook say they are going to the event. While the Spring Music Festival is the most popular Veishea replacement event planned, other groups are springing up.

“Unofficial Veishea” gained hundreds of likes with the description that “President Leath can come out and cancel Veishea; that doesn’t mean we have to stop the celebration.”

Unofficial Veishea no longer appears when searched for but Score! Bar and Arcade is hosting a “Veesha” with 400 people on Facebook saying they’re going to attend. Score! did not immediately respond to an interview request.

“It was only five days ago [Leath ended Veishea],” said John McCarroll, executive director of university relations. “He indicated he planned to work with the leadership of student body to look at past events and the possibility of some new events.

“He made it very clear he didn’t want to be locked into a timeline. Everyone has the right to start [these organizations]. I just think you need to give these things some time.”

McCarroll said that it was too early to decide whether any events would be acceptable but that Leath knew there would be a wide range of reactions to the cancellation of Veishea.

“That’s fine,” McCarroll said. “We monitor social media. But we haven’t looked into it. I can’t make decisions since this only happened a few days ago.”

Even though new university events and traditions have not been determined yet, McDonald said he still feels a responsibility to offer an alternative to Veishea concerts.

We want to see this event take place for the wellbeing of Ames,” McDonald said. “We want to keep the music alive.”