Vans Warped Tour is one of the most iconic traveling rock shows that comes back every single summer around the United States since 1995. This year the Vans Warped Tour is featuring Rewind at sea which is bringing a nostalgic feel to the festival from October 28th- November 4th. Vans Warped tour was created by Kevin Lyman, who focused mostly on alternative rock music, and eventually it was transformed into what it is today. The only downfall of this festival is it’s only in town for a single day, which makes it extremely hard to see some of the artists you have been waiting to see for ages. Each year that I have attended the Vans Warped Tour, it has never ceased to amaze me with the artists they choose to bring on tour with them.
The tour brings a few traveling stages with them to each venue to incorporate with stages that are already established inside the respected venue. Each year at the Darien Center the stages are set up almost the same. The stages are scattered throughout the extra parking lot from the doors all the way back to the main stages in the back of the venue. This year the stages include – Journey’s Right foot Stage, Journey’s Left foot Stage, Monster Mutant North Stage, Monster Mutant South Stage, Skullcandy Stage, Hard Rock Stage, And The Full Sail Stage.
This year each stage will get a great amount of attention due to the fact that the Vans Warped Tour is going back to their roots featuring some much heavier bands than in previous years. Some of the bands on the tour include Attila, I Prevail, Beartooth, Hands Like Houses, Fit For A King, Sylar, Carnifex, Gwar, Anti Flag, Knocked Loose, and many more favorites.
At the Darien Center, the Warped Tour can be a little hectic because it is only in the area for the day. The gates open around 11 AM, so get there early and try to avoid the line! As an avid Warped Tour attendee, skipping this line is essential in starting your whole day out with a bang. By bringing just 3 canned good items (the cans cannot be dented or expired), a $5 dollar donation or a used cellphone you can skip the longest line of your life (as it seems to be). And you are also able to get into the venue 10-15 minutes earlier, making it easier to find all your favorite artist’s tents and the stages you plan on being at all day.
By bringing one of the three options listed above and skipping the line, you are also helping to feed hungry children located within each of the respected cities and fund their youth programs. So don’t forget to donate! Although, this isn’t the only line you are going to find yourself standing in. There are many other lines such as merchandise, bathroom, water refill, food, and etc. So be prepared!
Warped Tour 101 – Here are some tips to stay your best during your day at the festival.
Tip #1 – Get plenty of sleep the night before. I know it’s hard when you are really excited to get up and go see that band that you have been wanting to see for ages. But you don’t want to get tuckered out too early, especially if you want to rage to your favorite band(s) in the mosh pits.
Tip #2 – When packing your backpack the night before, make sure you have everything you could possibly need. If you know its going to rain, bring some baggies for your electronics and a poncho just in case. You don’t want to get wet and stay stuck in those wet clothes all day. Bring some permanent markers, I can’t even remember the last time I went to a concert without one. A marker is very essential. You could catch your favorite artist walking by and then you could grab a quick autograph! Sun screen is also an important Warped Tour item to have as it tends to be one of the sunniest days out of the year it seems like. Or at least up here in New York.
Tip #3 – When you get up in the morning try to eat something even if it’s just a granola bar… trust me. At the venue you will spend an arm and a leg on food and won’t have enough money to buy that tee shirt or any other merchandise from your favorite band. Last summer, there was a vendor selling Popsicle’s in front of the stages, those kept me and my friends set for the rest of the day because they were pretty cheap. You can bring in a bottle of water as long as it is sealed and just keep refilling it at the water refill stations supplied around the venue.
Tip #4 – Keep your eyes open and watch your surroundings especially if you don’t want to find yourself falling into a mosh pit or even have crowd surfers falling on top of you. Sometimes you find yourself getting lost in the music. I’m guilty of this… regardless you don’t want to end up getting hurt because you aren’t paying attention. Nobody wants to get accidentally punched in the face by someone moshing, kicked in the head by a crowd surfer, or even having a crowd surfer dropped on top you. Be aware of your surroundings, you don’t want to take a trip to the hospital or lose something of value.
Tip #5 – Don’t get upset when both your favorite bands are playing at the same time. Figure out which one you want to see more. I have sacrificed seeing my favorite artist’s full set just to go watch another band I just started listening to and also really enjoy. It happens!
The Vans Warped Tour is a tour everyone should experience at least once in their life time no matter how old or young you are. This tour really brings people together no matter what artist you are there to see. The tour starts on June 16th and runs through August 6th. I can’t wait to see what the Vans Warped Tour has in store for us this summer. Good luck out there!