The Day the Music Died

Glasses1After taking off from the Mason City Municipal Airport early February 3, 1959, a Beechcraft Bonanza piloted by Roger Peterson carrying Rock and Roll idols Buddy Holly, J.P. (Big Bopper) Richardson, and Ritchie Valens, crashed just north of Clear Lake. The singers had performed at the Winter Dance Party at the Surf Ballroom earlier that evening, and had chartered the aircraft to fly them to their next show in Fargo, North Dakota.


Directions to the crash site from airport:

  • Leaving the airport, turn right on Highway 122
  • Turn right on N 8th St in Clear Lake (4th traffic light)
  • Continue on N 8th St (Grouse Avenue, Cty Rd S28) to 310th St
  • Turn right onto 310th St, then immediately left onto Gull Ave
  • The crash site is located on the left, approximately 1/2 mile west of the road at the intersection of Gull Ave and 315 St.