The 25th Anniversary Season of Downtown After 5, presented by Harmony Motors, returns tonight, June 21, from 5-9pm with Shonna Tucker and Eye Candy taking the stage following local opener, The Hermit Kings. Taking place the 3rd Friday of the month from May through September, Downtown After 5 is located at N. Lexington Avenue and I-240 and is always free.
“Celebrating 25 years is a major milestone for Downtown After 5. A hard-working group of community members had the vision that a street festival could be instrumental in helping people rediscover downtown. That festival has grown from 100 or so neighbors and curiosity-seekers into one of Downtown Asheville’s biggest — and funnest — events. It’s now the official kick-off to summer,” said Chris Bubenik, events committee chair for the Asheville Downtown Association.
After eight years as bassist with the Drive-By Truckers, Shonna Tucker has a brand new band. Bringing together some of Athens, Ga.’s most prolific musicians, Eye Candy brings a mix of soul, country and good ol’ Southern rock to the stage. Local opener, The Hermit Kings, start things off with their post-folk sound.
Thirsty concert-goers will find plenty to wet their whistle including local brews from Highland Brewing Company, Pisgah Brewing, Asheville Brewing Company and French Broad Brewing Company. Plus, regional favorites Sierra Nevada, SweetWater Brewing and Foothills Brewing as well as national brands from Budweiser and Empire Distributing will be on tap. Wine and water will also be available for purchase.
To purchase alcohol attendees will need to show a valid picture ID and buy a $2 wristband. Proceeds from wristband sales for June’s event support Youth OUTright. With a mission to empower lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth to be confident and vital members of our community, Youth OUTright provides resources to youth in 18 counties across Western North Carolina.
From sandwiches to pizza and ice cream to tacos, food vendors offer a something for everyone’s taste.
Downtown After 5 is committed to reducing its impact on the environment and features a solar-powered stage, complimentary bike corral, compostable food and beverage containers, and staffed recycling and compost bins. Since implementing its greening initiative, the event has reduced the number of bags headed to the landfill to just a handful.
Downtown After 5 sponsors include: Harmony Motors/Volkswagen of Asheville, Budweiser of Asheville, Pisgah Brewing, Highland Brewing Company, Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, SweetWater Brewing Company, 98.1 The River, Rock 104.9, 105.9 The Mountain, WNCW 88.7, 99.9 Kiss Country, Mix 96.5, Star 104.3, 880 The Revolution, Asheville Scene, Asheville Citizen-Times, WLOS ABC 13, Sundance Power Systems, Lexington Avenue Brewery, The Orange Peel, Go Mini’s, ARC, Foothills Brewing, Lagunitas Brewing Company, Angry Orchard, French Broad Brewing Company, Trinity Oaks and Samuel Adams.
Downtown After 5 is a production of the Asheville Downtown Association, a nonprofit organization committed to the preservation and improvement of the central business district.
More information about Downtown After 5 and the Asheville Downtown Association can be found online at www.ashevilledowntown.org or by following through social media including Facebook and Twitter.