The End of An Era: Denver's Final Warped Tour Was Everything We Wanted

By: Nathan Sheppard

After 24 years, Warped Tour is ending with a bang. 

 Warped Tour had all the feels this year. 

Warped Tour had all the feels this year. 

Warped Tour made its final stop in Denver recently, marking the end of an era. Many of us look forward to the one day of summer where our favorite bands play our favorite songs in a hot parking lot, and Denver showed up in full force to make the most of this bittersweet ending.

The day started off early with some of our favorite local bands- In The Whale and One Flew West- who both rocked the stage and made the Denver music scene proud. We also got our fix of new era of punk/pop-punk with State Champs, Movements, and Waterparks. Also to note- Australia was representing big time for this last Warped Tour- we caught amazing sets from In Hearts Wake, The Amity Affliction, and Tonight Alive.  

 Every Time I Die.

Every Time I Die.

After seeing a few bands, we took a break to talk about something that is especially important in today's current entertainment industry: mental health. We caught up with one of our favorite non-profits, To Write Love On Her Arms (TWLOHA) for a little Q&A on the topic:

Tell us a little of what you guys do and how you got started.

We’re a mental health non-profit dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with things like addiction, depression, self-injury, and suicide. We started 12 years ago trying to help one of our friends enter treatment by designing a t-shirt and that has evolved into this movement helping hundreds of thousands of people.

What are the main things that you all do to help with mental health?

The biggest way we provide help is providing scholarships for counseling and treatment. Our profits from t-shirts we sell here go towards those scholarships.

What has your relationship with Warped Tour been like over the years?

We’ve been on Warped Tour for 12 years, ever since we started, and they’ve helped us grow and welcomed us to this wild family and we love it so much. It’s a group of people that has a special place in our heart, because every summer we see familiar faces and get to ask how they are, how they’ve been doing since last year, and see it evolve over the years.

With this being the last Warped Tour what are your plans going forward?

It’s bittersweet to see Warped Tour go, obviously, because a lot of us have grown with it, so it’ll be interesting to see what avenues are next. We’ve been getting into the EDM world a little bit; the yoga world which has been fun. There's just going to be some adapting [with] how to interact with these different groups that we’ll be learning about. But we’ll always have Warped to look back on foundly- thanks for the memories Warped!

What are some ways that people can get involved with TWLOHA?

There’s a “Get Involved” tab on our website that can give you a little more detail about bringing the message of hope and health. Whether that looks like bringing a speaker to your area or simply purchasing info cards online to post coffee shops, it’s the little things that really push and make people want to see change and get help. You can also donate directly on the website, and recently we’ve had people donating their birthdays on Facebook to TWLOHA which is an easy way to help us and also get the word out as well. You can find more info at TWLOHA’s website.

 Don Bronco.

Don Bronco.

After our interview with TWLOHA, we got right back at it with some of our favorite hardcore bands Wage War and Every Time I Die, where the crowd surfers made security work overtime! Towards the end of the day, we were hit with a massive dose of nostalgia with our favorite old-school emo bands The Used and Mayday Parade. We knew that the day would have to end eventually, and it closed with Simple Plan. It was a “Perfect” way to end the fest, and many of us shed a tear or two.

 Simple Plan.

Simple Plan.

For 24 years, Warped Tour has been a place for many of us to let go and forget about the worries of the world while listening to the music that means everything to us. This year’s tour had a little bit for everyone, from new up and comers to the classic bands that we all love. It also had all of our favorite non-profits- communities that we have learned about and grown with over the years of Warped, and people that we can always count on and call home. We will always remember all the great times we had at Warped Tour. We can only hope that they bring this fest back to live on in some capacity, even if that’s another Warped Rewind at Sea or having the festival in a single location where we can relive the glory days of summer. What will Warped Tour become as it burns out and shines on? We can’t wait to find out.

See our full gallery from Warped Tour here

-Nathan

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.