Dakota Datebook

Zip to Zap

Saturday, May 11, 2013


In 1969, a bored NDSU student, lacking the funds to go on a spring break vacation, decided to write a satirical piece promoting the small town of Zap in western North Dakota. The promotion appeared in the NDSU student paper, The Spectrum. The student paper at UND also picked up the story, and soon a full-scale festival, called the ‘Zip to Zap’ was planned. Thousands of students from around the country and Canada flooded the small mining town, which quickly ran out of beer and food. The students began dismantling the town’s only bar to build bonfires in the street. The National Guard was called in to quell the party, and by May 11th, the students had abandoned the town.


Dakota Datebook written by Jayme L. Job



Dill, Joseph (ed.). 1988 North Dakota: 100 Years: p. 124. The Forum Publishing Company: Fargo, ND.

The Sunday Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. Sunday, May 11, 1969; pp. 1, A-4.





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Dakota Datebook is a project of Prairie Public, in partnership with the State Historical Society of North Dakota, with funding from the North Dakota Humanities Council.

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