Time Warp: The best day ever

Austin B.

Senior Managing Editor

The motto for Warped Tour is “the best day of our lives,” and it undoubtedly lives up to its expectations. The tour began in 1994 when Kevin Lyman, a musician, came up with the idea while on a skateboarding/music tour. Every year thousands of fans get to see their favorite bands live due to this summer-long spectacle. After many years of success, the tour engaged in its 20th Anniversary tour.

Warped Tour is a concert that ventures all over the country, spanning from late May to early August. It features around 80 bands, ranging from alternative to pop-punk to post-hardcore. The tour visits a different city every day over the summer and runs from about 11:00 in the morning to 9:00 in the evening. In order for all of the bands to get a chance to perform, the tour features eight different stages at every show: the Kia Soul Stage (which, along with the Electric Soul Stage, makes up Main Stage), Electric Soul Stage, Monster Energy Stage, Journey’s Stage, Warhead Stage, Beatport Stage, Hard Rock Stage, and the Ernie Ball Stage; the separation of the stages is one of the many features that help the event run much more smoothly.

I attended the tour for the first time during its visit to Aaron’s Amphitheater at Lakewood in Atlanta on July 24th, 2014. The experience was beyond anything I could have expected. Not only did my friends and I get to see our favorite bands live, we were able to meet them. During the concert, the sky fell, and it rained cats and dogs; contrary to what the fans expected, the concerts went on, and the fans got to jump, sing, and cheer while watching the bands play in the rain. Senior David Schwieger comments, “I was watching Issues perform when it first started to rain, and I expected them to stop and put the show on hold, but they just kept going. It was almost as if the rain gave them more energy and made it more exciting.” Numerous other fans also gave this same description of a phenomenal show in the pouring rain. While this rain shower did not cause any problems, a more serious storm did eventually hit (around 6:30) and cause all stages except the amphitheater stage to be temporarily closed down. When this happened, all of the fans were herded into the amphitheater to get out of the dangerous weather. With thousands of people overcrowded into one place, it became a little bit uncomfortable, but after around an hour, it blew over, and the open stages were reactivated. Sophomore Jenna Purpura claims, “That was actually one of my favorite parts of the day. It was kind of cool, because it was the one time that everyone that was there was in one place listening to one band, instead of being in different places listening to different bands; we were all one big group instead of smaller groups for a little bit.” After all of the stages had been reopened for performances, the show went on. Many of the bands that played the second half of the day were of the alternative genre, such as We the Kings, Yellowcard, and Echosmith. Purpura was delighted to admit, “Echosmith was my favorite band to see perform. They have such a great energy on stage, and I loved that the lead singer, Sidney, didn’t just stand and sing; she had a drum, a keyboard, and a tambourine that she used in some of the songs.” The general consensus seems to be that the tour was everything that fans were hoping for.

Warped Tour runs so effectively due to all the different aspects that help keep the concerts organized. At every event there is a huge inWT AB 2flatable schedule that the staff of the tour updates at the beginning of every day; the schedule shows what, where, and when bands are playing. Another way that the events stay organized is through all the different services that are provided. The staff of the tour understands that a large portion of the fan base for the tour is teens, most of whom are not able to drive; to make going to Warped Tour doable for non-drivers, the staff allows parents of fans in for free and also gives them a section of the park near the gate and away from the stages where parents can go to sit and not be dragged to all of the performances. In this section, parents can talk to other parents, read magazines, get drinks, and relax, despite the loud concerts that are occurring in the same park. Another service that the staff provides for the fans is water filling stations. Warped Tour staff understands that the concert goes on over the summer in the blazing heat, so to prevent people from passing out from dehydration, there are stations set up throughout the park where fans can go fill up their water bottles for free. These are just some of the numerous ways that attending Warped Tour can create a remarkable experience.

Warped Tour has been a way to escape from everyday life for fans for 20 years now, and this year’s tour was as good as ever. The event has progressively been improved over the years, with the help of creating ways for it to be easier to attend and get through without issue. Due to the popularity of the tour, it will, without a doubt, be around for a long time.

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