It’s time to say goodbye to Van’s Warped Tour. After being established in 1995, the “punk-rock summer camp” will come to an end in 2018. The festival's creator took to Twitter on Wednesday to issue an official statement.
“Today, with many mixed feelings, I am here to announce that next year will be the final, full cross-country run of the Vans Warped Tour,” Kevin Lyman, the founder of the traveling festival, said.
“I have been a very lucky person to have traveled across the country and sometimes around the world as one of the founders and producers of the Vans Warped Tour,” he added on Warped Tour’s official website. “Today, with many mixed feelings, I am here to announce that next year will be the final, full cross-country run of the Vans Warped Tour.”
Declining ticket sales and fewer bands participating were some of the reasons Lyman decided to cancel Warped Tour. “Before Warped I was on three years of Lollapalooza, so [it’s been] 26 straight summers out on the road,” Lyman told Billboard on Wednesday.
More than anything, Lyman was drained by the festival. “Not that I’m completely going anywhere, but traveling around the country with a tour this size in the landscape that we’re in is… to be honest, I’m just tired.”
While 2018 will be Warped Tour’s last summer, Lyman teased some favorite bands would return—even though the lineup hasn’t been finalized.
“You’re gonna see a big mix of bands I felt really embraced the Warped Tour lifestyle,” he said. “I don’t want to say a ‘mature’ lineup, but bands that I think could use one more big push of Warped Tour to help further their careers.”
Van’s sponsored the festival in ’95 and has ever since. “Kevin came to us about how he wanted to do this tour and he needed money,” Steve Van Doren, the sneaker company's vice president, told Billboard. “For myself, Vans was really strong in Southern California, but I wanted to get our brand out to the youth of America around the country.”
While Warped Tour’s final run will take place in 2018, there will be a 25th anniversary celebration in 2019.
“I truly look forward to seeing as many of you as possible during this final cross country run, and getting to thank you for your support on this wild adventure,” Lyman wrote. “Until then, take care and be safe.”
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