Tour de Fat to visit San Diego!

This post was written by Timur Ender.


The Bicycle Army will soon invade San Diego. Flickr/forloveofexploration Mark your calendars! Tour de Fat is coming to San Diego on September 29, 2012!!


What is Tour de Fat?

Tour de Fat is a bike festival organized by New Belgium Brewery, makers of Fat Tire.  The day starts out with a costumed bike parade and then an afternoon on the lawn with shows, beer, and an opportunity to ride weird bikes.  It is essentially a day to celebrate bikes & beer and a chance to send the message that bikes can be a mainstream part of society.


Why is Tour de Fat coming to San Diego and not somewhere like Portland where there is more bike culture?

Cities like Portland already understand the tremendous positive benefits of bicycles.  Tour de Fat aims to visit cities that have yet to embrace bicycling as a legitimate form of transportation.  It essentially acts as a catalyst for building bike culture and a bike-friendly city.  It shows people what is possible and how fun riding a bike can be.


How much is admission?

All ages are welcome and admission is free.


Tour de Fat ride before the celebration of bicycle. Photo:

Is there a fundraising component to this?

Yes, there is.  New Belgium does not make a profit from these events, it is considered a marketing expense for the company.  There is a suggested $5 donation at the door.  The money collected before the costume bike ride as well as beer & merchandise sales go almost exclusively toward local bike non-profits.  Here in San Diego, Tour de Fat will donate this money to the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition and the San Diego Mountain Biking Association.  Last month in Durham,NC, Tour de Fat was able to donate $15,000 to local bike non-profits from its visit to the area.


Is this a family-friendly event?

Absolutely.  This is a bike festival with beer, not a beer festival with bikes.  Having attended a Tour de Fat this past week I can attest that this is truly a family-friendly event.  There are lots of shows, acts, and exhibits to keep all ages entertained.  There is one main stage and several small stages, meaning there is always a fun show to watch.


Sweet! How do I get involved?

Be on the lookout for volunteer opportunities, they will need lots in order to pull off this event.

Otherwise, come and celebrate two of mankind's greatest inventions: bicycles & beer.

For more details read the event description on New Belgium's website.

Pictures from the 2011 Tour de Fat

Yesterday New Belgium's Bike FUNdraiser and bike carnival made its third annual stop in San Diego. Bike San Diego supporter, reader and occasional contributor, Robert Leone was kind to take photos documenting the event. Other participants took videos of the event. Scroll down below to relive the day both through photos and videos taken by other bike enthusiasts who know how to have a good time.

Bikes parked at Tour de Fat, San Diego. Photo by Sam Ollinger
Round about cycle. Photo by Robert Leone
Periscope. Photo by Robert Leone
Bicycling Caped Crusaders. Photo by Robert Leone
Definitely not Singapore. Photo by Robert Leone
Biking to nowhere. Photo by Robert Leone.
New Belgium Bike. Photo by Robert Leone
Improv Bike Parking at Tour de Fat. Photo by Robert Leone
Last Call. Photo by Robert Leone
Kids on a Bike Park Simulator. Photo by Robert Leone
More improv bike parking. Photo by Robert Leone
The Breeze Bike. Photo by Robert Leone
Bike Token Guru, Kevin. Photo by Robert Leone
Tour de Fat 2011 Beer Tokens. Photo by Robert Leone
Newly car-free, Allison W with her brand new New Belgium Bike. Photo by Robert Leone
Newly car-free, Allison W with her brand new New Belgium Bike. Photo by Robert Leone

Tour de Fat comes to San Diego Again

One of the most successful bike carnivals created by the New Belgium Brewing Company, Tour de Fat, will make a stop in San Diego for the third successive year.

Tour de Fat Poster.

The event this year will be held at the Golden Hill Park which is part of Balboa Park and located in the bike friendly neighborhood of South Park. The location was moved from the previous one at 6th and Laurel due to numerous noise complaints from neighbors who resided along 6th Avenue.

Tour de Fat is one of the major fundraising sources for the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition and the San Diego Mountain Biking Association.

As with previous years, the carnival begins with a bike parade at 11 AM. The parade route is embedded below:

View 2011 San Diego Tour De Fat in a larger map
After the bike parade, Tour de Fat will feature music and theatrics by Daredevil Chicken Club, The Dovekins, YoYo Squared, Free Energy, and Extra Action Marching Band.

As always, Tour de Fat is also looking for a local resident who felt left out of the car-free day celebration yesterday and would like to trade away their car in exchange for a new commuter bicycle from New Belgium.

Below are some photos from previous Tour de Fat carnivals in San Diego.

Bike for Car Winner
2009 Trade Car for Bike Winner. Photo flickr/protorio
Some of the San Diegan's Bikes at the 2009 Tour de Fat. Photo: flickr/crosby_cj
A Happy Participant at the 2009 Tour de Fat. Photo: flickr/markjdos


Epic San Diego Bike Day: Photos from the Tour de Fat and Miramar Air Show

Saturday, October 2 was a day of too many good things for San Diego cyclists. For air show buffs, the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition offered valet bike parking at the Miramar Air Show, while closer to central San Diego, the New Belgium Tour de Fat took over a corner of Balboa Park with its carefully scripted beer-and-bike madness. Robert Leone of San Diego's bike touring club, the Knickerbikers, offers this glimpse into both events.

Tour de Fat:

Miramar Air Show Bike Parking:

New Belgium Tour de Fat is Tomorrow!

In case you've been living in a cave, the New Belgium Tour de Fat is tomorrow in Balboa Park, starting with the Bike Parade registration at 9:00am. Send us your TdF photos, or post them to the Bike San Diego Flickr group!