America's home of blues, soul and rock 'n' roll, Memphis, is set to celebrate its bicentenary in 2019, and it's the perfect time to visit the homeland of Elvis. In true Tennessee style, Memphis is making its 200th birthday the biggest bash yet with events all over the city throughout May.
The month-long celebrations will include the Memphis in May International Festival, which is usually a chance to focus on trade ties and other countries, but this time will be solely focused on all that is wonderful and unique about Memphis.
May is also the month of the Beale Street Musical Festival, which will run from May 3-5 and is sure to be one of the stand out events with the streets lighting up with amazing outdoor bars and incredible live music from the locals.
A new event, ‘Celebrate Memphis’ will take place on May 25, which will honour the city’s heritage and history through the food, music, and people that make it special (past and present).
The more fit amongst us can discover Memphis on foot during a 5km race that takes place in downtown Memphis. The Great American River Run will be on May 25 too, so don’t forget your runners!
Throughout the month the Memphis Pink Palace Family of Museums will also have a special exhibit titled Making Memphis: 200 Years of Community. The display will showcase stories of the past and present and their influence on the future. The multimedia and multisensory experience will also illustrate the interconnected web of Memphis history through technology, interactive components, art, and design.
The event we’re perhaps most excited for at the bicentenary is The World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest on May 15-18. Food in Memphis is next-level and we’ll be eager to sample and judge the competition entires.
So why should you head to Memphis and join in on the fun? “The 2019 bicentenary provides an incredible opportunity to visit Memphis to witness not only all that is great about the city today, but to celebrate its past and be part of history in the making,” Chris Ingram, Director of IGG Destination Marketing, representatives of Memphis Tourism in Australia and New Zealand says.
"Memphis is a city that has changed the world – we call it a city of soul, and the last 200 years will be on display to feed yours.” - Chris Ingram
The full calendar of events is yet to be released but if you keep your eyes on the official Memphis website you’ll be the first in line.