Warped Tour organizers say they were 'blind-sided' by Wilmington

Warped Tour organizers say they were 'blind-sided' by Wilmington

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - The Wilmington leg of the VANS Warped Tour, scheduled only days from now on Tuesday, July 4th, will not take place as scheduled, according to city leaders.

The organizers of the event failed to come to terms with the city on a contract for the use of the Legion Sports Complex. The tour, which features simultaneous acts on four large stages, was expected to be a logistical challenge for organizers, as nothing of that large of a scale has been done at the sports complex before.

The decision by the city to not enter into an agreement with Huka Production, LLC of North Carolina was based on a concern about the group's ability to provide safe and appropriate arrangements for concert goers.

“It is unfortunate we are unable to hold the Warped Tour at Legion Stadium as we had worked for months to try and make it happen. However, events held at city facilities must be hosted by groups with the ability to provide safety for concert goers as well as financial viability for ticket buyers. We hope we can host similar events here in the future.”  - Malissa Talbert, Wilmington Communications Manager, said.

Paul Cannell, program director Modern Rock 98.7, said Thursday night that his understanding of the situation is that the city refused to issue the permits and that the Warped Tour had not choice but to cancel.

"We feel like we've been punched in the face," Cannell said in an email. "We put a lot of time and effort into promoting the tour here, and Wilmington fans stepped up and topped much larger markets in ticket sales. I feel like the rug has been pulled out from under the radio station, our listeners, and everyone that was looking forward to an event of this magnitude in Wilmington."

Cannell also wondered if Thursday's news might prevent Wilmington from hosting future shows.

"Only time will tell if someone will be willing to put up the money and the effort to try to bring an event like this to Wilmington again in the foreseeable future," Cannell said. "Honestly, if I were a promoter, I'd definitely have to think twice about it."

Warped Tour organizers released the following statement Thursday afternoon.

To all our fans - it is never easy to do this, but due to circumstances beyond our control we have been forced to cancel the 7.04 Wilmington, NC show.

Kevin Lyman, founder and producer of the VANS Warped Tour spoke with WECT over Facetime Thursday night. He said they found out about the cancellation when the public did.

"I'm heartbroken. I really looked forward to coming over there. I don't cancel shows. I'm not that kind of person. I've been doing this for so long for a reason, and I would have done anything possible to make that show happen for you," Lyman said.

The statement from the Warped Tour does not address the city's concern that Huka had not yet purchased the certificate of insurance of paid a deposit, which were required for the event.

According to organizers, you have three options for your tickets.

1. Use the tickets at any other VANS Warped Tour Show.  Bring the hard ticket to the yellow Guest List tent by the main entrance to exchange your ticket.

2. Refund your ticket if you purchased it online via Ticketfly.  Reach out to customersupport@ticketfly.com.  Send your order number and/or original confirmation email when you reach out to them.

3. Refund your ticket purchased at a Journeys Store.  Mail the physical ticket and customer info, including full name, shipping address and email address to the following address: (You can not get a refund directly at a Journeys Store.
  CCRL - VANS Warped Tour
  5200 West Century Blvd
  Suite 810
  Los Angeles, CA  90045

The tour is scheduled to be in Charlotte next Thursday.

Copyright 2017 WECT. All rights reserved.