New Belgium brings Tour de Fat, Third Eye Blind to Asheville

New Belgium Brewing is bringing its Tour de Fat beer, bikes and music event to Asheville Saturday, May 20. Photo courtesy New Belgium Brewing Co.

New Belgium Brewing Co. will bring its big Tour de Fat beer, bikes and music event to Asheville this spring, and the events lineup will include a concert by rock band Third Eye Blind.

The touring celebration will play Asheville on Saturday, May 20, at the New Belgium brewery at 21 Craven St. in West Asheville. Tickets are $25 and are available online. The party can accommodate up to 4,000 merrymakers, brewery spokeswoman Jenny Foust says.

This is the 18th year for the tour and its first visit to Asheville, where New Belgium operates its eastern U.S. expansion brewery. The tour is visiting 33 cities this year including Charlotte (May 27) and Atlanta (May 31). .

Tour de Fat will include an ensemble of artists, circus and vaudeville performers, plus local buskers and street musicians. Different headliners will play at each date — in Charlotte, the big act is A Thousand Horses and in Atlanta, Corey Harper will star.

The philanthropic tour looks to raise $600,000 for various local causes. Since its start, it has generated $4.5 million for nonprofit organizations.

This is the first major concert at New Belgium in West Asheville since the brewery hosted a 30th anniversary party there Aug. 27, 2016. with the band The Naked and the Famous.

Third Eye Blind, formed in San Francisco in 1993, has sold more than 12 million recordings worldwide. Its first album, the self-titled Third Eye Blind,  was released in 1997 and had five hit singles: “Semi-Charmed Life,” “Graduate,” “How’s It Going to Be,” “Losing a Whole Year” and “Jumper.” “Semi-Charmed Life” made it to number one on Billboard’s Modern Rock Tracks chart and won a Billboard Music Award for modern rock song of the year.

The band’s second album, Blue, included the singles “Anything,” “Never Let You Go,” “10 Days Late” and “Deep Inside of You.”

The band’s lineup has changed through the years but currently includes core members Stephan Jenkins on vocals and rhythm guitar and Brad Hargreaves on drums, plus Kryz Reid on lead guitar and backing vocals, Alex Kopp on keyboard and Alex LeCavalier on bass.

Follow Tony Kiss on Facebook at Carolina Beer Guy and on Twitter at BeerGuyTK. Email



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About Tony Kiss
Tony Kiss covers brewing news for the Xpress. He has been reporting on the Carolina beer scene since 1994. He's also covered distilling and cider making and spent 30 years reporting on area entertainment. Follow me @BeerguyTK

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7 thoughts on “New Belgium brings Tour de Fat, Third Eye Blind to Asheville

  1. just sayin'

    Third Eye Blind? Seriously? Is this the county fair or New Belgium in Asheville?

  2. deafbeer

    I’ve seen videos of last year’s NBB show and it looked a bit lean during the day but the Naked and Famous people kicked it up a few notches with their show. The NBB sign language interpreter was incredible and had to be the hardest working person there. All day long he was on stage and when it started raining, the band seemed to panic but he kept on going like a wet energizer bunny. Will this year’s shows be interpreted as well? It was cool that NBB included everyone in their parties. I hope to make the Atlanta show.

    • disappointed

      A friend contacted NBB about having interpreters this year at the festivals because I have heard some great things about them and the fun they have on stage while signing. There is nothing on their website about having interpreters any more. The company replied with a listing of just 2/3rds of the shows would be signed and the others might be by special request only. The ADA requires this but NBB does not seem to care. Now it seems as if none of the shows will be inclusive or accessible to deaf or hard of hearing people. Sad that NBB moves to NC becomes corporate and starts to discriminate. I know what I am not drinking any more!

  3. Impressed

    I was at the Asheville show and while the beer lines were way toooooooooo long to buy a beer that they make right there, I was very impressed by the fun festival party they had. I only know a little bit of sign language but the guy they had was unbelieveable and incredible. He was sweating and working it but seemed to know every word to every song 3EB played. He made it look easy and like he was a life-long member of the band. The hearing impaired people I was next to in the crowd were astonished and seemed to be having as good of a time as everyone else if not better. I don’t know about other shows but this one rocked and the beer was cold and delicious-if you could get it.

  4. Jay Zea

    I am a beer loving sign language student. I went to one of the Tour de Fat shows recently and it seemed the festival has just become an overpriced beer commercial. I saw some of the 3eB videos and admit that the interpreter looked incredible, skilled, and added to the show. I loved how he jammed with the music and seemed to have all of the song lyrics memorized beforehand. His performance looked great but at the show I just went to they had some other interpreter and they were horrible. It was embarrassing to the company to have such unskilled people up there. Some of the deaf people I was with told me that they were leaving early because the show was gibberish…almost like that horrible interpreter in South Africa a few years ago. They told me that there is an on-line petition and beer boycott against NBB because of their new poor accessibility attitude. I am just glad that there are more choices for other beers and many more music festivals out there. So long New Belguim and the Tour de Fat…Thanks for the ride but this is where I (and others) get off.

  5. Thomasina

    I, too, heard about the boycott of Fat Tire beers by deaf people and their allies because of the lack of access to the Tour de Fat shows or if they have interpreters, they are of extremely poor quality at one or two shows. I encourage others to do the math-Tour de Fat used to raise about 1/2 million dollars every year in just 10 cities for cycling groups with free shows. Now they say they will raise about the same funds in over three times the number of cities and they charge for the shows. If they were the same kind of brewery they used to be, I’d expect three times the funds for cycling with free shows that were inclusive and accessible to all. Charging bucks for shorter shows with no beer included (long lines, too), with less funding per show for the bike groups can only reflect growing greed. Add no poor or no accessibility to it and their discrimination just grows. So long Fat Tire and other beers, it was a good ride but when you started becoming more corporate you lost my support. Thank goodness for other great beers out there!

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