Memphis on the 4th of July

We thought that there would be a lot of action in Memphis on the 4th of July, but it was not so in the downtown area to which we limited ourselves. Most of the action that we know of was centered on Mud Island River Park  (zoom out on map).

The first activity for us was going across the street to the Peabody Hotel to view the ducks parading to the fountain in the center of the main floor. The parade starts at 11am as the ducks descend from their rooftop home and parade out of the elevator into the fountain (watch YouTube Video). At 5pm the process is reversed. I tried to shoot a video of the parade from the mezzanine but the lighting conditions were not good. My video editing software is old and could not handle the process of enhancing the video.

The View from our hotel room is of the Peabody Hotel

Next we walked to Beale Street. Most of the action is between South 2nd and South 4th streets.  When we arrived, many of the businesses were just opening and the crowds were thin.

Beale Street Scene
Beale Street Scene
Susie and a tribute to Johnny Cash
Susie and her favorite beer… just kidding. Note the cane she uses as a prop… gets a lot of sympathy? She doesn’t use it to walk.
A. Schwab
Guitar art piece on sale at A. Schwab

We walked over the Rock and Soul Museum, located just off the intersection of B.B. King Boulevard and Beale Street. The museum is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Museum. It is definitely a place to visit if you have an interest in rock music. We took about an hour to walk through the museum and could have spent more time there. We returned to Beale Street and visited A. Schwab, which was once a general store and bills itself as one today.

Rock and Soul Museum
The name B. B. King came out of what he was called when he worked at WDIA, Blues Boys Kingdom.
In addition to a number of displays in other rooms, a whole room in the museum is devoted to Elvis Presley.
A display dedicated to Dewey Phillips. The main character in the musical Memphis was based on his life.

This evening we had planned to eat at the Rendezvous Restaurant, across the alley from the hotel. I have eaten there while a business trip, thirty years ago and again with Susie a few years ago. As luck would have it, we couldn’t eat there last night because it is closed on Mondays and it is closed today because it’s the 4th of July. We walked out to get dinner in a sports bar across the street when the sky opened up. Luck was on our side and the rain let up when we left the restaurant.

Last night there was a fireworks show at the AutoZone Stadium, which is one block away. We couldn’t see it, but sure could hear it. This evening a fireworks show is scheduled on the roof of the Peabody Hotel. As you can see from the first picture in this in this entry, we should have a good view. We did get a view of some fireworks from what we assume was Mud Island.