Memphis offers music, art, ethnic cuisne and more to visitors to Graceland and the city itself.
Johnny Cash grew up there. Elvis Presley graduated from high school there. It is known as the home of the blues. It is the birthplace of rock and roll. Stax Records was formed there by Jim Stewart and Estelle Axton. Live music can be heard seven days a week down on Beale Street again. In May every year thousands flock to the Beale Street Music Festival. Year round music fans descend upon Graceland and the Memphis Rock n’ Soul Museum. Welcome to Memphis.
The Memphis Rock n’ Soul Museum offers free admission on Tuesdays for the local Shelby County residents. The Stax Museum of American Soul Music is the only museum dedicated to soul music. Tour Sun Studio and touch Elvis’ first microphone. Sun Studio also introduced us to the sounds of Johnny Cash, Bobby "Blue" Bland, Howlin' Wolf, Roy Orbison, Carl Perkins, and Jerry Lee Lewis.
Music and Memphis are almost synonymous now however Memphis was in fact named after ancient capital of Egypt. Memphis was believed to have been founded by the Pharaoh Menes.
Mud Island, and entertainment center on a peninsula within the city limits, is connected to Memphis by the Memphis Suspension Railway. The Railway, also known as the Mud Island Monorail, is a suspended monorail connecting the two.
The city offers much more than music. The AutoZone Park, a brand-new retro-style ballpark for the AAA affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team, the Memphis Redbirds, opened in 2000.
The Memphis Zoo welcomed a hatched Komodo dragon baby for the first time in Zoo history. The baby was born October 8, after 222 days of incubation, and weighed approximately 99 grams at birth. Komodo dragons, according to the Zoo, are native to Indonesia and are considered to be the world’s largest species of lizard. Adults can grow to be more than 10 feet long, weigh up to 250 pounds and can live up to 30 years in the wild. The Zoo is also expecting a baby elephant in 2012.
Art galleries feature local, national and world known artists. The Brooks Museum of Art is the oldest fine arts museum in the city. The Jay Etkin Gallery features contemporary fine art. The Art Village Gallery specializes in African-American and Carribean Fine Art. Memphis also offers ballet and opera.
Enjoy the outdoors at the Lichterman Nature Center or the Memphis Botanic Garden. The
Lichterman Nature Center offers a visitors center, nature store, nature trails, an amphitheater, and lake boardwalks. The Memphis Botanic Garden will entrance you in tranquility. Enjoy over 96 acres of sweeping vistas, lakes and woodlands as well as the Japanese Garden of Tranquility and the Sensory Garden.
Memphis is a vibrant, exciting city full of life and attractions. It will soothe your soul with its music and tempt your palette with its ethnic cuisine. Mix the two at B.B. King’s Café on Beale Street. Dance to the music of the 50’s while you dine from two buffets at the American Incredible Pizza Company. If you prefer a nice steak, head over to the Butcher Shop Steakhouse on Front Street. Take in the ambiance at the Hard Rock Café on Beale Street.
With over 200 places to eat in the city, you will not leave Memphis starving … but you will leave hungry for more!
ABOUT JEANNE RUCZHAK-ECKMAN
Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman began writing in 1985, with her work appearing in several local newspapers. From 2003-2009, she spearheaded an online newspaper company, which had two newspapers, the PA Farm News and SolancoNews.com. The latter covered everything from hometown heroes and new businesses to the Nickel Mines Shooting. She received my Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Lock Haven University, and was diagnosed with diabetes in 2009. Her interests include learning more about diabetes and how to deal with it, genealogy, history/travel, gaming and Orthodoxy. You may contact Jeanne with your comments and questions.