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Vans Warped Tour ’17 Preview

Shannon Christensen, Writer

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Since 1995, the popular apparel company Vans, known for their “authentic” shoes, has been putting on an annual Warped Tour where many rock/alternative bands can perform all around the country. The event features more than sixty artists, workshops for attendees, meet and greets with bands, merchandise stands, and convenience stands. Going into their twenty-second year, Vans shows their dedication to making every festival better than the last. This year, they have paired with twenty non-profit organizations in attempt to benefit their mission and help them raise money for their cause.

The tour travels to over forty venues in the course of about two months (June 16 – August 6) across the United States. Since most areas are incredibly hot at this time of year, the Vans company takes many precautions in keeping the event-goers safe and hydrated. Around each venue, there are free water stations (presented by Cool Gear), kiosks with lower priced water bottles and drinks, and a slip and slide to stay cool. The Warped Tour website suggests you bring a seal-able water bottle to refill at the water stations, sunscreen, and homemade snacks to stay safe in the heat.

The event consists of seven stages, featuring different genres of artists ranging from alternative and pop to heavy metal. Each artist performs for a time slot of approximately thirty minutes and also has their own small tent with merchandise, information, and sometimes even the band members themselves. Occasionally, a band or artist will also schedule a meet and greet with their fans, so it is also recommended to bring a Sharpie and something for them to sign. Some bands require a wristband to meet them, to keep the line at a limit, while other smaller bands just have casual meet-ups at their tent. Information about specific bands’ meet-ups will be available soon on the official website here

Along with concerts, food, and merchandise, there are almost thirty workshops featuring artists and musicians to teach the aspiring bands, managers, producers, or anyone interested in music, about all the fundamentals that go into each piece of music they put out there. Some featured hosts of the classes are: Fil Thorpe-Evans of Neck Deep, Shawna Potter of War on Women, Connor Dennis of Beartooth, rock photographer Lisa Johnson, and many more!

On the Warped Tour 101 page of the official website, they list recommended items to bring and restrictions. You can bring a small backpack, a small expandable umbrella, sunscreen, a hat to cool yourself, a camera, and one seal-able refillable water bottle. Items such as alcohol, weapons, chains, knives are of course prohibited, as well as recording devices and selfie sticks. Other quick 101 info can be found on their page here.

Lastly, you want to find a perfect location that is not too far from you and has your favorite artists. The closest dates to Bergen County are the Holmdel, NJ show at PNC Bank Arts Center on July 15th, and further east, the Wantagh, NY show at Jones Beach Theatre on July 8th. Both locations are only about an hour away and in different weeks so it won’t conflict with any other vacation dates.

Tickets sell for around $45 each; tickets for the Holmdel show are here and tickets for Wantagh can be found here. Other ticket and date information can be found at the Dates page on the Warped Tour website. Enjoy the tour and make sure to be safe and hydrated in the hot Northeastern summer!

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The student news site of New Milford High School, New Milford, New Jersey
Vans Warped Tour ’17 Preview