What's New 2017

Right now is the best time of year to plan your trip to Memphis. Maybe this is your first time, or you’re a frequent visitor (if so, we now consider you an honorary resident!). While a trip to the National Civil Rights Museum and Graceland is always in order, Memphis is budding with new attractions, events and happenings in 2017. 

It is simply impossible to get bored here. You’ll be planning your next trip to Memphis before you leave.


ELVIS PRESLEY’S MEMPHIS

Located across the street from the Graceland mansion, this new 200,000 square-foot entertainment complex will feature museums, exhibits, restaurants, shops and a concert and film venue. Elvis Presley’s Memphis will host a Grand Opening on March 2, 2017. Read more in here.

Photo by EPE

OLD DOMINICK DISTILLERY

You can’t come to Tennessee and not sample our renowned whiskey. Opening this spring is Memphis’s own whiskey distillery. After lunch at Gus’s Fried Chicken downtown, walk across the street and turn up at The Old Dominick Distillery

The distillery will produce Memphis vodka and offer tours, tastings, retail and a restaurant. They’ll also begin the aging process for Memphis whiskey, the first batches of which will be ready in three to four years. Prepare to call an Uber or cab after your tour.

CLAYBORN TEMPLE

What’s a trip to Memphis without a walk through history? Around the corner from the National Civil Rights Museum, Clayborn Temple is undergoing a makeover. The space, which served as headquarters for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Sanitation Strikes of 1968, is already open and hosting events leading to its grand opening in April 2018. 

From concerts to poetry slams, something is always happening there, reaching people from all backgrounds to promote solidarity and diversity. 


CENTRAL STATION

Memphis is preparing for the redevelopment of another prized possession: South Main’s Central Station. Constructed in 1914, the 4,700 square-foot monster will soon hold apartments, a new Kemmons Wilson hotel and a seven-screen Malco Movie Theatre. Plans also include concerts and plays with food and drink delivery.


MEDDLESOME BREWING CO. 

After a ride on the Greenline biking trail or a paddleboat in Shelby Farms Park, take a 10 minute walk or a three minute bike ride to a cold brew at Meddlesome Brewing Company, the first brewery in East Memphis. The space will include an outside patio with a 1,200-square-foot taproom indoors. The initial opening will offer draft beers only. 


COLLAGE DANCE COLLECTIVE AND CONSERVATORY

Did you happen to run across a photo of five African-American ballerinas “on pointe” on Instagram? Did you know those ballerinas were from Memphis and members of the Collage Dance Collective and Conservatory? Plan to catch a performance from this exciting Memphis arts group.
 
The group - comprised of professional dancers from around the world - hosts a number of public performances that “push the boundaries of ballet.” One show will leave you breathless at the electricity of each move, and you’ll wish just for a moment you could move like that. This is a great date night or field trip for the kids to gain exposure to something other than “The Dab.” 

THE HIGHLAND STRIP

The University of Memphis is one of the city’s most prized possessions. The surrounding area, known as the “Highland Strip”, has undergone big, exciting changes lately. Take some time to explore the Highland Strip’s long-standing restaurants (we recommend BBQ tofu nachos at R.P. Tracks or the award-winning breakfast at Brother Juniper’s) as well as the newest spots for nightlife and dining. 

The remodeled Newby’s is the perfect spot to catch a game, The Casual Pint offers a chance to sample local beer, The Bluff is the area’s newest music venue, and Insomnia Cookies will deliver you warm treats until 3 a.m., just to name a few.
 

VINTAGE 901 FESTIVAL 

You may have read this and thought “Elvis’ Wardrobe Yard sale.” But on the contrary, Vintage901 is a three-day weekend of wine, music and entertainment. The Women’s Foundation of Memphis unites every year during this time to raise money toward poverty-fighting efforts that uplift women and children. What better way to give back than over a glass of wine, Memphis music, and plenty of food all weekend? 

Buy your tickets now because this event will sell out. If you miss Vintage901, don’t worry; there’s always a great festival happening in Memphis.
 

LYFE KITCHEN

Let’s face it: you can’t eat BBQ for every meal. Luckily, Lyfe Kitchen has stepped in to save the day and pounds with two locations in Memphis. The downtown location is undergoing a renovation for an even snazzier new dining area to open in early 2017. Lyfe’s menu caters to any dietary need including gluten allergies, peanut allergies and vegan. There’s a full bar and weekend brunch.


H&M DESSERT LOUNGE

Move over Gladys Knight, there is a new chicken and waffle heaven in town. Before you salivate at the thought of a “dessert lounge,” know that H&M Dessert Lounge offers more than just sweet delectables. A family restaurant in the heart of midtown, this new spot offers quality sweet and savory dishes, plus live music throughout the week and during Sunday brunch.

Before you dive into your Caramel Apple Crisp with ice cream, check out the local art adorning the brightly colored walls. You can even bring your own champagne during brunch hours. Please be advised: wear stretchy pants. You may need an Uber for this day too!
 

CROSSTOWN CONCOURSE

This is one of the most anticipated grand openings in recent history. Locals and visitors will experience a cynosure of entertainment, diversity and community with the mixed-use redevelopment of former Sears building. Crosstown Concourse is set to open in May with a big celebration, the perfect way to kick off your summer vacation. 

Inside the enormous space, you can find a cool arts center, a fitness center and a high school. Check out the following restaurants and retailers:
  • The Curb Market
  • I Love Juice Bar
  • French Truck Coffee
  • MEMPops
  • Mama Gaia
  • The Kitchen Next Door 
  • Crosstown Brewing
Kirstin Cheers | February, 2017