Warped Tour 2012
1255 Hempstead Turnpike
Uniondale, NY 11553
Those of you who have experienced the Vans Warped Tour know exactly why the people and bands involved refer to it as“punk rock summer camp.” Owner and creator, Kevin Lyman each year hand selects dozens of the most eclectic array of up and coming and established bands to create what is one of the most fun outdoor tours of the summer. Primarily based in punk rock music, one would not be surprised to find emo, hardcore, metal, rockabilly, pop & retro rock bands all sharing the multiple stages. Not only does the daily line up of bands change but so does the order they play in. The tour switches up the rotation every single day to create an equality amongst the bands doing away entirely with the concept of a “headlining act.”
Kevin makes sure there is some type of fun for everyone who attends be it bands, skaters, sponsor booths, signings or my favorite part, the BBQ! Each year Kevin picks one band to be “the BBQ band.” It’s their job to pull Kevin’s massive grill from show to show to show and at the end of the day, host and run a BBQ for all tour participants. It’s their job to feed the thousands of people that are a part of the tour. Every once in awhile along the route, Kevin steps up the game by throwing the biggest of BBQs and every year at the Nassau Coliseum date in Uniondale, Long Island, NY, the BBQ party is like none other.
Now in it’s 4th year, Kevin throws an after show BBQ party for people on the tour for a tradition which I like to call “Kev and Rev’s Awesome Parking Lot BBQ.” It started as a joke when several years ago I emailed Kevin to let him know the tour was hitting the Uniondale stop on my birthday. That’s when Kevin showed me what it’s like when he says “let’s go big.” A complete parking lot rager with DJs, bands, BBQ, beers and all kinds of funny-fun-funsterooing happens. It’s honestly one of the best days of the summer because not only do we get to have a great party but it’s preceded by an awesome parking lot concert.
The tour also features vendors of all sorts and all kinds of displays and information booths for you to peruse and enjoy between bands. On the way into the festival my friend George proclaimed there was no way he was going to miss out on a free slurpee from 7-11 this year. So that’s the very first thing we did after checking in.
From there we got to check out great bands like Skinny Lister, Patent Pending, You Me At Six, New Found Glory, All Time Low, Taking Back Sunday, Every Time I Die and more.
But it’s not all fun and rock and roll. BBQing for several thousand people is no small task and thankfully Kevin has a crew of people who are happy to help out.
Assisting in the process does come with one great perk; Taste Testing the Meat!
This includes our good friends from the Lagunitas Brewing Company who provide “VIP Beers” for the BBQ. We make sure to put it to good use.
Once all the food gets prepped, it’s placed into Kevin’s giant Pabst smoker to do just that, SMOKE!
This year we made 60 lbs of Ribs, 60 LBs of Tri-Tip and 120 LBS of chicken along with Slaw, Beans, Corn and more! Once it’s done smoking, we raise up the flames, finish the Meat on the grill and serve.
As you can see, there’s no shortage of hungry tour folk ready to eat after a long hot day in the sun.
Once everyone has had chance to grub up, that’s when the parking lot party starts. Usually around this time Kevin and I collapse into a chair, bus or bunk from exhaustion.
BIG UPS to Kevin, Sarah, Kate, Julie and the rest of the Warped Tour family for always throwing the most fun and hospitable BBQ party of the entire summer. I look forward every year to the big fun.
Much much thanks to Doug & George for rides to and from Strong Island City to Strong Island. The party couldn’t happen for me without you.
Thanks to Mark for more IPA than I we could shake a set of BBQ tongs at.
I hope the rest of the tour was just as rad.
Still thinking about that tri-tip…. Wish I had some now!