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AUG/SEPT 2018 | VOLUME XII | NUMBER 6

The Convention Center’s Future Graceland Revisited

2018 Meeting Guide P L U S

New Directions at

MEM

THE COOK CONVENTION CENTER RENDERING COURTESY LOONEY RICKS KISS AND TVS DESIGN

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AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018 VOLUME XII | NUMBER 6

COLUMNS 6

FROM THE EDITOR

Where are we going to meet? ••• B Y J O N W. S PA R K S

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16

SMART BUSINESS

The city’s blah economy needs more than tweaks. ••• B Y TO M J O N E S

10 C R E A T I V E C O M M U N I C A T I O N

So you’ve got a brand. Now what? ••• B Y A N D R E A W IL E Y

12 F I N A N C E & I N V E S T M E N T

The changing travel industry holds promise for Memphis.

26

••• B Y D AV ID S . WA D D E L L

26 W E S A W Y O U

There was real Magic at the Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare’s Party of the Century. ••• B Y MIC H A E L D O N A H U E

DEPARTMENTS 14 T H E H O T S H E E T

56

16 T H E O F F I C E

Linn Sitler produces and directs at the Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commission. ••• B Y S A M U E L X . CIC CI

56 V E N T U R E C A P I T A L I S M

ON THE COVER: The Cook Convention Center is expected to get a new look and a new feel as it undergoes a metamorphosis into a contemporary gathering place for conferences and events. Construction is planned to start this year and be completed by 2020. RENDERING COURTESY LOONEY RICKS KISS AND TVS DESIGN

27 Convention Center’s Future The 1974-era concrete box plans to get a makeover.

30 Looking at 100 North Main Will that empty building rise again as a hotel?

32 Graceland Revisited

‘There’s some part of me wants to see Graceland.’

35 M

E E T I N G

&

E V E N T

Talent scout Tim Smith revisits his home town “You have permission to think bigger.” ••• B Y J O N W. S PA R K S

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59 C O M M U N I T Y P A R T N E R S H I P

Hollywood Feed and All 4s Rescue League Pet well-being is at the center of the collaboration. ••• B Y E MILY A D A M S K E P L IN G E R

60 S M A L L B U S I N E S S C E N T R A L

The One and Only A re-invigorated barbecue enterprise finds the sweet spot. ••• B Y CIN DY W O L F F

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62 P O W E R P L A Y E R S

Who’s who in Healthcare Administration 64 F R O M T H E A R C H I V E S

The Crane building A revival for a downtown stalwart. ••• B Y VA N C E L AU D E R D A L E

SPECIAL REPORT

18 Singing the MEM Blues

How Memphis International Airport is faring five years after being snubbed and de-hubbed by Delta. •••

B Y

A N D Y

M E E K

AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018 | INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM |

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F R O M

T H E

E D I T O R

• • •

B Y

J O N

W.

S PA R K S

• • •

B Y

J O N

W.

S PA R K S

Getting Everybody Together

Need a place to have a meeting? We’ve got a few suggestions.

INSIDEMEMPHISBUSINESS.COM EDITOR

Jon W. Sparks

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Brian Groppe

MANAGING EDITOR

Frank Murtaugh

ASSOCIATE EDITOR

Samuel X. Cicci

COPY EDITOR

Michael Finger

EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTORS

ADVERTISING ART DIRECTOR PRODUCTION OPERATIONS DIRECTOR GRAPHIC DESIGNERS

Tom Jones, Emily Adams Keplinger, Andy Meek, David S. Waddell, Andrea Wiley, Cindy Wolff Christopher Myers Margie Neal Jeremiah Matthews, Bryan Rollins

PUBLISHED BY CONTEMPOR ARY MEDIA , INC . PUBLISHER EDITORIAL DIRECTOR CONTROLLER DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Kenneth Neill Bruce VanWyngarden Leila Zetchi Jeffrey A. Goldberg

DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC INITIATIVES

Anna Traverse

SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER

Matthew Preston

SPECIAL EVENTS DIRECTOR EMAIL MARKETING MANAGER

Molly Wilmott Britt Ervin

IT DIRECTOR

Joseph Carey

ACCOUNTING ASSISTANT

Celeste Dixon

RECEPTIONIST

If you’ve got places to go, people to see, and things to do, you’ll find this issue of Inside Memphis Business plenty useful. This is our annual venue edition, updating our list of places to convene, from big halls to back rooms of restaurants. If the boss has charged you with finding a place to have that mandatory presentation or if there’s a ceremony or special event on your to-do list, take a look at our Venue Menu for an array of places. Meanwhile, there’s an increasingly ambitious effort to get more people to come to Memphis for conventions and events. The built-in-1974 Cook Convention Center is overdue for a makeover. If things go as planned, Memphis Tourism (formerly the Convention and Visitors Bureau), which runs the convention center, will get bids later this year on a two-year construction project that will create a state-of-the-art facility where the existing one stands, making changes section by section. Pierre Landaiche, general manager of the center, gives us details on what to expect. Something the center has sorely needed is a large hotel. The long-vacant 100 North Main building may be turned into an

upscale Loews hotel that could do just that. Associate Editor Samuel X. Cicci talked to Jennifer Oswalt of the Downtown Memphis Commission to see what the possibilities are. Over at Graceland, we’ve taken a look at the big changes there in the last couple of years, the most significant upgrades since it opened to the public in 1982. Joel Weinshanker, who oversees the expansion, talks about why he made the commitment and where he hopes it will go in coming years. Also in this issue, we examine what’s been going on at Memphis International Airport since it was de-hubbed by Delta five years ago. Reporter Andy Meek gets the details of what happened after the

Delta-Northwest merger a decade ago and how the bottom dropped out. He also checks in with MEM airport authority CEO Scott Brockman on what’s being done to get back into the action. We’re pleased to introduce a new column, although it’s by someone you probably know already. Tom Jones, who leads Smart City Consulting and has written the City Journal column in Memphis magazine, is writing his Smart Business column for IMB. In this edition, he touts the virtues of starting fresh with an issue rather than tweaking it to death. And we have a vivid interview with venture capitalist Tim Smith who came back to Memphis this spring to check on the city’s entrepreneural spirit.

Kalena McKinney

Like a Boss? Inside Memphis Business is published six times a year by Contemporary Media, Inc., P.O. Box 1738, Memphis, TN 38101 © 2018, telephone: 901-521-9000. For subscription information, call 901-575-9470. All rights reserved. Periodicals postage paid at Memphis, TN. Postmaster: send address changes to Inside Memphis Business, P.O. Box 1738, Memphis, TN 38101. Opinions and perspectives expressed in the magazine are those of the authors, and do not necessarily represent the views of the ownership or management.

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Every year, Inside Memphis Business magazine honors four CEOs who have proven to be exemplary in their fields, leading their companies to success on local, regional, national, and international stages. Nominations for the 2019 CEO of the Year awards are open. Memphis is graced with tremendously talented, inspiring executives in charge of their companies and organizations, and we want to hear from you about the best in the business. Email your nomination to sparks@insidememphisbusiness.com and include the CEO’s resume and a description of why he or she should get the award: vision, achievements, business philosophy, employee relations, management style, special qualities. We give out four awards in categories according to the number of employees in the companies: 1-50, 50-200, 200-1,000, and 1,000 and up, so include that information as well. The deadline for CEO of the Year is November 16, 2018. When the nominations are in, an impartial panel will consider the nominees and pick one for each category. Each will be notified and interviewed for the February/March 2019 issue of IMB — and each will appear on the cover of the magazine. A breakfast in late January will honor the four CEOs.

INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM | AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018

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SMART BUSINESS

• • •

TO M

J O N E S

It is often the case that important discussions on critical issues break down around personalities rather than policies, and we’ve seen it again with the recent debate about economic development in Memphis and Shelby County. There were some who immediately sided with Richard Smith, who is chairman of the Greater Memphis Chamber and scion of the FedEx founder. Others promptly supported EDGE and its president/CEO Reid Dulberger. Many took sides before the discussion was seriously under way. Visionary downtown developer Henry Turley once wryly said: “In Memphis, we pay people a lot of money to tell us what we want to hear.” That’s why Smith, as head of the Chamber, was an unexpected person to shatter the normal veneer of positive spin to roll out suggestions for attracting higher value economic development targets to our community and to question the ROI for EDGE, the city-county agency that has eliminated local taxes of about $500 million over its seven-year existence as incentives for new and retained jobs. The controversy over Smith’s suggestions arose because of a feeling that they had arrived fully formed and were developed by a small group, which seemed to contribute to the unforced error of a proposal to change minority business from a mandate to an inducement in the PILOT program, an idea quickly abandoned because of an immediate firestorm of criticism. In the past 15 years, our community has launched multiple economic development plans; we’ve chased magic bullets and big projects; we have wrestled time and time again to get workforce development right; we have created a public entity, EDGE, that was supposed to accelerate and improve our economic results; and the Greater Memphis Chamber formed the Chairman’s Circle with much the same goal. Despite all this, for at least a decade, the regional economy has been underperforming when compared to peer cities that the Memphis region used to

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outpace on economic measurements that matter the most — jobs growth, GDP growth, income growth, and educational attainment. For example, it was not too many years ago that Memphis’ economy was

comparable to Jacksonville and Louisville. However, jobs growth in Memphis for 2017 was 0.63 percent, compared to 3.16 percent for Jacksonville and 1.26 percent for Louisville. The growth of the GDP over five years was 12.6 percent in Memphis, 26.8 percent in Jacksonville, and 29 percent for Louisville. Like many discussions here, everyone has opinions, but facts are sometimes few and far between. Because of it, Eric Robertson, president of Community LIFT (Leveraging Investments For Transformation), became a voice for a broader community conversation and hired Good Jobs First, which describes itself as a national policy resource center for

grassroots groups and public officials promoting corporate and government accountability in economic development, to report on “best practices” in economic development. That seems a step in the right direction, because now, the discussion focuses on tweaking an existing program, changing people in leadership roles, or fine-tuning a process. Maybe what we should do is take out a blank sheet of paper and map out

Rather than spending time taking sides, the priority would be on taking the time for a comprehensive look at what could supercharge the Memphis economy. what we think the optimal structure for a high-performing economic development system should be, and how the system can be measurable and transparent, have clearly defined strategies aimed at high wage targets, have tax freezes that are

incentives rather than entitlements, and include a report card for the public issued quarterly. In other words, rather than spending time taking sides, the priority would be on taking the time for a comprehensive look at what could supercharge the Memphis economy. The time spent on accusations and counter-accusations is merely time not spent on devising a system where roles and responsibilities are more clearly defined, goals and strategies are widely understood, and results are candidly and honestly evaluated and reported, free of the spin that accompanies announcements these days, particularly any time a PILOT shifts the tax burden from companies to homeowners and small business people. If this analysis concludes that the present economic development system in our community does not require structural changes, it should at the least be fine-tuned to clear up confusion that exists today about the respective roles of the Greater Memphis Chamber and EDGE — and Memphis and Shelby County governments — and to ensure that the proper checks and balances are in place. If all the projects announced in our community in recent months — the riverfront, South City, Convention Center expansion, Fairgrounds redevelopment, and a key downtown block to include a 34-story building and a 550-room Loew’s Hotel — come to pass in the next two to three years, it will be a time of exciting progress. If we can simultaneously get our economy firing on all cylinders, it is hard to imagine the transforming effect on Memphis and Shelby County. That’s reason enough to take out that blank sheet of paper and begin. Tom Jones leads Smart City Consulting and is the primary author of the Smart City Memphis blog, recognized by the Pew Partnership for Civic Change as “one of the most engaging” civic-minded blogs in the United States. You can reach him at tjones@smartcityconsulting.com.

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Enough squabbling — roll up your sleeves and get to work.

INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM | AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018

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CREATI V E COMMUNICATION FEB/MAR 2018 | VOLUME XII | NUMBER 3

AWARD WINNERS

• • •

B Y

A N D R E A

W I L E Y

Your brand exists — but does it have purpose?

1000+ EMPLOYEES

KARL SCHLEDWITZ MONOGRAM FOODS 200-1000 EMPLOYEES

KIM HEATHCOTT 50-200 EMPLOYEES

DANIEL WEICKENAND ORION FCU

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JENNIFER KRUCHTEN TRAVELENNIUM

Supplement to Memphis magazine

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A great business leader is dynamic, inspirational, resourceful, approachable, and creative. Memphis is teeming with them.

Who is your favorite?

We are now accepting nominations for our annual CEO of the Year Award!

For more information, or to nominate a CEO, please visit insidememphisbusiness.com or email editor Jon W. Sparks, sparks@insidememphisbusiness.com Deadline for nominations is November 16, 2018. And keep an eye out for the date and time of our CEO of the Year Awards banquet coming in early 2019.

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Afdhel Aziz is a brand-purpose, marketing innovation, and social entrepreneurship expert who is brimming with ideas. He recently spoke at an American Advertising Federation Memphis event at FedExForum to a crowd of marketing communications professionals about his book Good Is the New Cool – Market Like You Give a Damn, which he co-authored with Bobby Jones of Peace First. Aziz is the founder and chief purpose officer of Conspiracy of Love, a think-tank and idea incubator that helps Fortune 500 companies like Adidas, Sonos, Bacardi, and Mars use culture and technology as a force for good. Aziz and Jones believe that the world changers — innovators and provocateurs — have the power to use business and culture for good. Great marketing has the ability to optimize life, to go beyond just selling to consumers by engaging with citizens of the world. And it’s millennials and Gen Z who are driving this shift in marketing. Those generations expect social responsibility from their brands while still insisting on cutting-edge products with on-trend design. Brands still need to be cool, but now they need to be good, too. To capture the buying power of these millennials and Gen Z, companies need to address environmental, civic, and economic issues in a way that grows their brand and business, while giving back to society. Aziz introduced “purpose” as the fifth “P” to what is commonly known as the 4 P’s of marketing: price, product, place, and promotion. He emphasized that all companies should have a brand purpose. It’s the “why” of a company’s existence, the higher-order reason for being a brand or business beyond just making a profit or driving shareholder value. One company driven by its brand

INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM | AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018

purpose to do good is Airbnb. Its brand purpose is clear: “We help people belong anywhere.” Airbnb’s purpose-driven approach led to the launch of an initiative called Open Homes, making it easier to help people in need of housing due

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The world changers have the power to use business and culture for good. to disaster, conflict, or illness. After Hurricane Sandy in 2012, an Airbnb host asked if it was possible for her to house people left stranded by the storm for free. That was the beginning of Airbnb’s now global platform for connecting people in need with short-term shelter. Open Homes works much like a traditional Airbnb, but the price is set at $0 and Airbnb collects no fees. Open Homes makes it possible for anyone to help because hosts are not required to be signed up with Airbnb. Relief agencies and nonprofits make the bookings, not

the individuals who need help. To date, Open Homes hosts have offered temporary housing to more than 11,000 displaced people. Co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky set a goal in January 2017 for Airbnb to provide housing for 100,000 people in need by 2022. While many major tech firms have philanthropic arms or initiatives, Open Homes is different in that it is not tied to a foundation nor does it stand to help bring more revenue-generating customers on the platform. Airbnb co-founder and chief product officer Joe Gebbia told Fast Company that this is how he thinks twenty-first-century corporate philanthropy should look. “We’re writing the checks to help others solve the problems,” says Gebbia, whose company has agreed to donate $4 million to the International Rescue Committee, which responds to the worst humanitarian crises by helping people survive and rebuild their lives. “We’re actually applying our own talent and expertise to solve these issues.” Your company also has the ability to solve cultural problems, but it may require a shift in thinking. Think transformational, not transactional. And act on that transformation. Take this opportunity to build a better tomorrow by committing to your brand purpose and doing good. Andrea Wiley is director of account management at DCA Creative Communications Consulting, and is an adjunct professor teaching advertising at the University of Memphis. She was the 2015-2016 president of the American Advertising Federation, Memphis Chapter, and can be reached at awiley@ dcamemphis.com.

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••• BY DAVID S. WADDELL

Mapping Memphis to the World According to the World Travel and Tourism Council, the tourism industry contributes about 10 percent to global GDP and represents the world’s largest employer. While the size of the global travel industry may impress, it’s the growth rate and rapid change in its composition that truly amazes. Spending on global tourism has significantly outpaced global economic growth over the last decade. Three major forces are driving this expansion: increasing wealth in Asia, increasing curiosity among millennials, and an increasing appetite for authenticity and adventure. In 1975, 400 million Americans took to the skies alongside just 1 million Chinese. In 2016, 800 million Americans went aloft alongside 400 million Chinese. To put this passenger shift into proper perspective, Americans accounted for 47 percent of all commercial airline seats in 1975, falling to 22 percent today, while the Asian share has risen to 31 percent. In addition to traveling more, Asian travelers spend more. The Chinese alone spent twice as much on international travel last year as Americans and yet, amazingly, only 5 percent of Chinese citizens hold passports! The rise of the Asian traveler will dominate global travel trends for decades. It’s not just Asian wealth accumulation driving global tourism growth. Within the United States, 47 percent of baby boomers plan to travel this year compared with 64 percent of millennials. Additionally, millennials plan to spend more on travel than their boomer parents and are twice as likely to travel internationally. Millennials within the “gig economy” prefer lifestyles of flexibility and portability, with

INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM | AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018

shorter-term work assignments and on-demand leisure options. They are also the largest generation to date and are just now beginning to hit their peak earnings years. Finally, destination travel has

millennial generation, expect travel menus to get even more expensive and exotic over time. Can we capitalize on these travel trends in Memphis? According to Memphis Tourism (formerly the Convention and Visitors Bureau), the city had more than 11 million visitors last year, 1 million of which were foreign passport holders. Eighty percent of our international visitors (largely from Canada, Australia, and the UK) cited Memphis’ musical heritage as the primary draw. Therefore, packaging Memphis as the gateway for American musical tourism might attract lucrative Asian and millennial travel adventurers. Imagine Graceland hosting adventurous travel parties for local tours while also coordinating seamless tours, logistics, and lodging packages for America’s other top musical destinations.

Memphis could transform from a musical destination to America’s musical concierge. transformed into adventure travel. The world has become an accessible playground devoid of secrets. Travelers will pay premium rates to swim with whale sharks in the Maldives, track gorillas in Rwanda, or hike the Spanish “Coast of Death.” Why go to Epcot for Oktoberfest when you can go to Munich and pay just a little bit more? Given the size and appetites of the untethered

Memphis could transform from a musical destination to America’s musical concierge. We basically invented America’s music — why not curate it? David S. Waddell is CEO of Waddell and Associates. He has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Business Week, and other local, national, and global resources. Visit waddellandassociates.com

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The HOT Sheet 14 |

Advancement Fogelman Properties added Mike Aiken as vice president of acquisitions. Lindsey Faust joined Paragon Bank’s new Oxford Banking Center as mortgage consultant.

The Peabody Hotel made five additions to its leadership team: April Dawn Flagg (national sales manager), Rachel Lackey (catering & outlet sales manager), Ashley Lewin (conference services manager), Chelsea Mogle (catering & conference manager), and Katie Williams (spa manager). Hillary Hill Bellan joined Shea, Moskovitz & McGhee as an attorney.

inferno hired Jesse Wilcox (junior account executive), Harvey Middleton (accounting clerk), and Katherine Faulk (digital marketing and advertising specialist). Pickering Firm, Inc. added Ryan Smith to its buildings and facility design team. Explore Bike Share named Denise Parnell as community engagement manager. Wesley Paraham joined DCA as PR and social media coordinator. Red Door Wealth Management hired brothers Carter & Cole Giovanetti (financial advisors) and Amy Hudson (client service associate). Hollywood Feed promoted Anne Ross to marketing director. LEO Events added Trent Bynum (video editor, Nashville), Madison Dunfield (business development coordinator), and Anna Dyer (communications coordinator). The company also promoted Airika Gigas (vice president, events), Kelly Hunt (producer), Jon Brown (manager, event operations), and Kasey Hunter (manager, event sales). Turner Construction hired Chris Chastain as business development manager. Sharonda Bealer joined HealthChoice as a certified medical assistant. Cory Lowery joined Allen & Hoshall as an architect.

Appointment Stites & Harbison, PLLC appointed Derek Halliburton as chief operating officer. UTHSC appointed Muneeza Khan as chair of the department of family medicine, and Scott Strome as Robert Kaplan executive dean of the College of Medicine and vice chancellor for health affairs. UT/Methodist Transplant Institute appointed Daniel G. Maluf as surgical director of liver transplantation. Dr. Richard A. Williams, orthodontic program director at UTHSC, was elected to the Board of Trustees of the American Association of Orthodontists.

Awards Griffin Elkington (Griffin Elkington Residential Construction and Development) was named to the 2018 40 Under 40 class in Professional Builder magazine. Agape Child & Family Services received a $50,000 grant for its homeless program from the Walmart Foundation. Looney Ricks Kiss’ work on Crosstown Concourse saw the firm honored with the grand prize at the Charter of the New Urbanism Charter Awards and the Governor’s Environmental Stewardship Award.

Junior Achievement of Memphis received a $9,000 donation from WDIA Goodwill Fund. The National Institute of Health awarded UTHSC professor Murali Yallapu a $439,818 Grant to continue drug development research for aggressive and late stage breast cancer. inferno found success at recent award shows, taking home 11 Communicator Awards and four Telly Awards. Shea Moskovitz & McGhee attorney Leigh-Taylor White was named as a finalist in the Memphis Business Journal’s Best of the Bar awards “Ace Attorney” category; founding partner Mitch Moskovitz was named a finalist in the “Private Firm” category for medium-sized law firms. Hope House received a grant from Gilead Sciences, Inc. for clinical outreach and prevention services for HIV-impacted individuals.

Inked Explore Bike Share launched it’s bike-share system with 60 stations and 600 bicycles. The Seam joined the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, the world’s largest open-source blockchain initiative. Paragon Bank expanded through a new banking center in Oxford, Mississippi. A collective of local banks have formed the Memphis Area Community Reinvestment Act Association. Ring Container Technologies partnered with Ventura Foods on glass-to-plastic conversion for 100 percent recyclable containers.

INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM | AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018

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If you find yourself wondering what items the longest serving film commisioner in the world has in her domain, step into Linn Sitler’s world at the Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commission. The office at 496 S. Main Street has walls covered with pictures, and shelves of memorabilia galore. Posters from highly acclaimed films are lined up neatly in rows. Hustle and Flow, The Firm, The People vs. Larry Flynt, and many others point to Sitler’s role in Memphis’ film industry. The Commission is not a trade group or an arts organization — it’s all about

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economic development. “We promote vendors and businesses that would be hired by local productions,” she says, “whether they are here from out of town or indigenous productions. Our online directory has all the categories of anything that might be needed, like crew. We don’t list actors, but we do list the talent agencies that represent them.” Sitler runs the Commission with Sharon O’Guin, the deputy commissioner. “We have a thriving independent film

community,” says Sitler, “and an expanded role working with the local indigenous community.” The Commission has developed a new set of grants for local filmmakers. “We’ve come up with a trial program that both city and county mayors have agreed to support. Then we worked with Reid Dulberger [president and CEO of the

Economic Development Growth Engine] to come up with this proposal, and had feedback from local filmmakers to see exactly what they wanted. For this incentive, you have a minimum spend of $30,000 and you have to hire 70 percent local. This is so we can drum up local business and allow our talent to develop their skills further.”

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(upper left) Linn Sitler: The Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commissioner has been working to bring films to Memphis for 30 years ever since Jim Jarmusch’s Mystery Train rolled into town. Her Main Street office is chock full of memorabilia, with much of the decor straight off the

movie sets. The space used to be the office of local director Craig Brewer, who had the art designer from his 2006 drama Black Snake Moan put in tin roof accents and funky, colorful decor. (left) Jerry Lee Lewis Director’s Chair: “Jerry Lee autographed and gave me this,” says Sitler, “his on-set chair for Great Balls of Fire.” She said she couldn’t keep it, so Jerry Lee’s then-wife Kerrie McCarver told her, “Promise me you’ll give it to my son one day.” As it happened, Sitler ran into their son, Jerry Lee Lewis III, on the set of Sun Records where he had a role. “So I told him, ‘I have something for you.’ Since then, we’ve been trying to arrange a ceremony because I want to give it to him in front of his father.” (above) Black Snake Moan Ad Board — and That Chain: Samuel L. Jackson headlines the advertisement for Black Snake Moan, also starring Justin Timberlake and Christina Ricci. On the chair is one of the chains famously used to keep Ricci’s character, Rae, from continuing on her journey of self destruction.

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• • •

The Memphis Airport’s de-hubbing broke a MEM Blues Airport’s de-hubbing broke a promise, promise, brought downsizing, and spurred an effort to recapture its mojo. brought downsizing, and spurred an effort to recapture its mojo.

INSET PHOTOGRAPH BY JON W. SPARKS | BACKGROUND PHOTOGRAPH BY ALEXFIODOROV | DREAMSTIME

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It’s been a little more than 10 years to the month now since an email popped up in the inbox of Northwest Airlines customers on a Monday evening announcing big news — something of a bombshell, in fact, that would cast a long shadow over the Memphis economy for years to come. Northwest, the note announced, would be merging with Delta Air Lines, a union that promised to serve more U.S. communities and connect to more worldwide destinations than any other global airline. “This is a merger by addition, not subtraction,” the email announcement went on to guarantee, “which means all of our hubs — both Northwest’s and Delta’s — will be retained. In addition, building on both airlines’ proud, decades-long history of serving small communities, we plan to enhance

global connections to small towns and cities across the U.S.” The reality, of course, didn’t align so neatly with that initial promise. Delta soon began slashing flights in Memphis to the point the carrier dehubbed Memphis International Airport altogether in 2014. Memphis had a little more than 8,300 departures a decade ago and lost 75 percent of them — according to planestats.com, more than any other U.S. airport. Delta, to be sure, also pulled way back in other smaller markets like Cincinnati, which

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“We went from having PHOTOGRAPH BY NEXUSPLEXUS | DREAMSTIME

83 gates on three concourses in 2008 — all 83 gates were leased, 69 of them by the hub carrier, whether it was Northwest or Delta when the hub was operating completely. has lost almost 60 percent of its departures since 2008. But in Memphis, of course, the changes especially stung. Far from a merger of addition, the daily flight count at MEM plummeted from 250 to the high teens. Local economic development officials at the time who blamed high fuel prices — officials who represented agencies like the Greater Memphis Chamber and city-county Airport Authority — came off sounding out-of-touch. Harder to accept still was the sense from flyers who were dealing with airfare sticker shock that leadership at all levels was playing a game of cognitive dissonance. Delta, for example, seemed to be using the consolidation to gouge flyers at the same 20 |

time then-Delta CEO Richard Anderson was telling analysts on a conference call the day after the Northwest announcement that the deal “is exactly right for all the constituencies.” Local leaders didn’t seem to have much to add beyond meekly pointing to industry trends that were bigger than Memphis. You don’t have to look far after all this time to still tap into an abiding sense of disaffection — that all is not as it once was. A New York Times reporter visiting the Memphis office of airport authority CEO Scott Brockman for a piece he wrote in May took note of 10 empty jet bridges and not a single airliner in sight. Barely a handful of people on a pair of moving walkways inside and three

We now have 17 gates leased. So that’s a big gap between 83 and 17. Which is why people say it’s like a ‘ghost town’ now.” cars dropping off passengers curbside in front of the terminal. The future of Memphis International that reporter laid out in his article “The Trouble With the Memphis Airport: No Crowds” is one of MEM trying to pull off a kind of calculated retreat. The airport is spending $214 million on a project that will close and renovate Concourse B and then essentially collapse

Concourses A and C into B. Over the next few years, B will get new amenities like high ceilings and glass outer walls while A and C are mothballed — kept up to a minimum standard in case they’re ever needed again, which the airport acknowledges they may not be. It’s a new way of approaching everything for the airport, after years of slow, painful decline. At the end of which comes the eventual realization, like that line in Bob Dylan’s “Things Have Changed” — “You can’t win with a losing hand.” “We went from having 83 gates on three concourses in 2008 — all 83 gates were leased, 69 of them by the hub carrier, whether it was Northwest or Delta when the hub was operating completely,” Brockman

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tells Inside Memphis Business. “We now have 17 gates leased. So that’s a big gap between 83 and 17. Which is why people say it’s like a ‘ghost town’ now. Because we have one million square feet of concourse space that’s being occupied at about a 20 percent utilization rate. Less than 20 percent, actually. “It became quite apparent we needed to downsize some. We needed to modernize. Because our existing facilities were not really built or suited for the size airplanes we currently have operating.” Thus, the B Concourse modernization effort, which is expected to be finished in 2021 at an estimated cost of $214 million in federal, state, and local funds. That modernization, it should be noted, also comes as Memphis International has shifted from an airport that once

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had a heavy flow of connecting passengers to one that, according to Brockman, is “99 percent-plus” origin and destination passengers, i.e. passengers who start and finish their travel in Memphis as opposed to passing through MEM on the way to someplace else. Brockman says another change that’s unfolded in the years since the de-hubbing is that MEM used to be dominated by planes with less than 50 seats. Today, with fewer flights, the airport is seeing planes that A decade on seat an average of 110. Perceptions, meanfrom the Delta while, remain hard drama, can to shake. That NYT article, for example, Memphis’ included photographs airport — in which people were conspicuously absent. which is The “ghost town” label that’s often heard estimated particularly grates to have a on Brockman, but it’s echoed by local multibillionfrequent flyers like Hamida Mandani — dollar she and her husband economic own City Market in Memphis — who impact on believes that prices and the selection the region — of routes at MEM recover some still aren’t where they need to be. of its mojo? “Businesses that want to invest in Memphis do look for things like these — convenience and affordability in travel,” she says. “It’s getting very tough these days to find flights at decent rates. I often have to travel for business, and a lot of times we choose to drive hundreds of miles to save. Especially if it’s two or three of us.” You can see that “tough to find” problem she refers to in some of the hard numbers at MEM, like the fact that the airport sees about 75 flights a day today, compared to more than 300 during the height of its Delta hub days. Which prompts the question: A decade on from the Delta drama, can Memphis’ airport — which is estimated to have a multibillion-dollar economic impact on the region — recover some of its mojo? It’s certainly trying. There are examples of that aplenty over the past year or two, such as the addition of new routes — among the most recent being Southwest’s early July announcement that its single daily nonstop flight between Memphis and Dallas will now be three such flights. New routes


PHOTOGRAPH BY JON W. SPARKS

Be the champion of your career. bring more destinations for travelers to get away to, and now that lower-cost carriers like Southwest, Frontier, and Allegiant are in the mix at MEM, there are alternatives to the pricey fares that reigned supreme around the start of the decade. That was back when unhappy flyers in Memphis coalesced around a Facebook group called “Delta Does Memphis.” The page built a community of thousands around what included horror stories of Delta fares from Memphis that were in many cases multiples of what it cost to buy a Delta fare from a different airport to those same cities. To get a sense of how things got to this point, and where we go next, one place you can turn to is some of those carriers themselves. Memphis began to look like an attractive market for Allegiant in the years following the post-Delta reshuffling, when local officials were scrambling behind the scenes to bring new carriers into the market. Particularly low-cost carriers who could do something about prices that were keeping flyers away. Allegiant spokeswoman Michelle Whaley lays out the case for why the carrier wanted to enter Memphis this way: “When we’re looking to start service at an airport, we look at several factors — what is the current market landscape, what traffic is already going in and out of the airport, what airlines are serving what routes, and then what could be potential route opportunities in markets that are lacking ultra-low-cost service.” After that’s done, the talks with airport officials begin. “Memphis is a unique market for us,” she continues, “because we see high traffic leaving Memphis to go on vacation, but we also see high traffic going into Memphis for vacationing … We’ve served the Memphis community for three years now — started in May 2015 — and we’ve seen more than 500,000 passengers.” Allegiant has nine nonstop routes out of Memphis. Southwest flights, meanwhile, first took

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off at MEM in November 2013, inaugurating something of a new chapter at the airport. Southwest spokesman Dan Landson says the carrier actually had Memphis on its radar a few years prior to that. It started with four daily flights from Memphis to three destinations and has since upped that to 11 departures a day to seven destinations including Denver, which will start in October. “We’re in constant communication with airports about the potential of bringing Southwest’s service to their respective cities or adding to our existing service,” Landson says. “We’re always evaluating things like overall economic conditions, travel patterns of local travelers, and whether we could operate profitability, and those data points help us with our tactful decisions about markets, routes, and frequencies.” Southwest, he continues, has We’re pursuing been pleased as many flights, with the response from Memphians [as much] and the carrier’s performance in competition and the city, offering a “flight schedule destinations [here] that allows us as we can, but to get travelers to virtually every part we also want of our network.” Of course, the to make it fact remains these affordable. aren’t replacements, not by a long shot, for what Memphis enjoyed during its hub status heyday. The airport is building back its collection of direct flights from Memphis to destinations around the country piecemeal, one win at a time. That there are still major gaps — with no offerings to the northwestern United States, for example, to cities like Seattle at the time of this writing — speaks to the size of the task at hand. And about Seattle specifically — by way of illustrating how the lack of direct flights puts a city at a competitive business disadvantage — well, having an airport with daily direct flights to Seattle was understood to be a criterion in Amazon’s search process for its second U.S. headquarters. You can regard recent route additions at MEM as either a glass half-full or a glass half-empty. Take Allegiant’s May 30th announcement of the launch of new nonstop service between MEM and Oakland International Airport. It’s a win, sure, for travelers here who’d love to have another direct to the West Coast.

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It doesn’t help travelers, though, who might want to get away for the weekend. The flight is currently not only seasonal, ending in mid-August, but it runs twice a week, only on Wednesday and Saturday. Other recent flight announcements out of MEM include Frontier expanding its nonstop offerings from Memphis with a direct flight to San Antonio International Airport starting August 13th that will run on Monday and Friday. Air Canada also earlier in May announced a second daily nonstop flight between Memphis and Toronto Pearson International Airport. “We have to make the economic case that Memphis — the airlines putting their aircraft here, whether it’s an additional flight or whether it’s starting service entirely — that it’s going to be a good profit move for them,” Brockman says. “They’re profited-oriented businesses.” Airport officials help package the economic data they believe will help make the case for Memphis winning a new route. It’s an analysis that includes an estimate of the number of passengers who will likely fly to that location on a daily basis — that key metric being referred to among industry officials as the PDEW: Passengers Daily Each Way. “One of the things that has helped us up to this point is — coming out of the transfer hub era, our airfares were pretty darn high,” Brockman continues. “Which meant that especially with low-cost carriers and ultra-low-cost carriers, they could come in and stimulate the market tremendously, which Southwest, Frontier, and Allegiant have done. We have people using this airport today that had never used this airport before. “We’re growing that origin and destination base from within our community. We’re pursuing as many flights, [as much] competition and destinations as we can, but we also want to make it affordable. I want Memphis International to be the airport of choice for the Mid-South. We’ve still got more headway to make, but I’m extremely proud of the accomplishments we’ve made.”

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The Party of the Century

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At Shelby Farms Event Center on June 23, 2018 • • •

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Michael Christoff purposely wore his 1980s Magic Johnson Converse Weapons athletic shoes to Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare’s Party of the Century. He knew Earvin Magic Johnson was the special guest at the event, which was held June 23 at Shelby Farms Event Center. He also knew the former NBA player wore the purple, yellow-and-white shoes during the 1986-’87 Los Angeles Lakers season, which is when Johnson won the Most Valuable Player award. “Magic Johnson and Larry Byrd were big rivals in the ‘80s and Converse launched a campaign where they had two versions of those shoes,” Christoff said. “One was Lakers colors, which are purple and gold, and the other was Celtics colors, which are green and white. The whole ad campaign was ‘choose your weapons’ - Magic vs. Larry.” Johnson immediately looked down at the shoes when they met at the party, Christoff said. “He said, ‘You’ve got those old Weapons on,’” said Christoff, who told Johnson he waited for years for the right time to again wear the shoes. Johnson gave him “two big hugs,” Christoff said. “It’s the greatest thing that ever happened to me.” Johnson, who spoke at the event, charmed guests who attended to commemorate Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare’s 100-year anniversary. The party, which drew 800 people, featured a silent disco, cocktails and gourmet food. Event proceeds will help further Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare for the next century.

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1 Annie and Michael Christoff 2 Julie and Dr. Fred Azar 3 Dr. Dane Malue and Dr. Valeria Mas, Laura and Dr. James Eason 4 Jana and John Pettey 5 Haley Rust and Michael Ugwueke 6 Magic Johnson 7 Ford and Sophia Canale, Dynisha Woods, Robin and Billy Orgel, Ken Moody, Kevin Woods, Andre Turner 8 Johnny and Merry Moore; Rodney and Denise Martin and Brooke and Dan Dishmon 6 7

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Say goodbye to the Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau. The name and logo, anyway, which are now superseded by Memphis Tourism and the slick new brand at left. Bigger changes are in store if plans gel to rock its Cook Convention Center with a makeover and convert the 100 North Main Building into

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a snazzy hotel. Read on to see where it’s all going. Meanwhile, conventions and events are rolling into the Guest House at Graceland hotel and Elvis Presley’s Memphis. We tell you how it’s going and where it’s headed.

A New Life for the Old Concrete Box By 2020, a new convention center is expected to emerge from the old. B Y

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Pierre Landaiche has a monumental task ahead of him. As vice president of Memphis Management Group LLC (MMG), he is the general manager of the Cook Convention Center and Cannon Center for the Performing Arts, in charge of booking, marketing, accounting, event services, and operations. And now, he’s got to build something new. Plans have been in the works for some time now to overhaul the aging Cook facility. Landaiche, who calls it “a 1974 Brutalist architecture concrete box,” will oversee its transformation to a state-of-the-art, flexible center that will remind visitors at every opportunity that they’re in Memphis. MMG is a nonprofit subsidiary of Memphis Tourism (memphistravel.com). Formerly the Convention and Visitors Bureau, Memphis Tourism was formed in 1978 to serve as the destination

marketing organization for the City of Memphis and Shelby County. Kevin Kane, president and CEO of Memphis Tourism, says that this arrangement lets his organization promote itself as a one-stop shop for events and groups and conferences that want to come here. The City of Memphis has allocated $175 million coming from the city’s hotel-motel tax and the Downtown Tourism Development Fund to give new life to the convention center. While that’s a fairly modest amount in the world of convention centers, it’s also one that the

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powers that be believe can do the job. “There are limits to what can be done,” Kane told Inside Memphis Business last year. “It’s not realistic to try to compete with the Nashville Music City Center, a 2.1 million-square-foot facility that opened in 2013 and, at $623 million, is the most expensive municipal-financed civic project in the state’s history.” For one thing, while the revamped Cook will be a new facility, it will be made over in the same space and retaining some of the virtues of the existing center. It has, for example, the largest ballroom in the Mid-South at 27,000 square feet

Cook Convention Center has, for example, the largest ballroom in the Mid-South at 27,000-squarefeet and the largest air-conditioned, covered main hall with 125,000-square-feet of column-free space. and the largest air-conditioned, covered main hall with 125,000 square-feet of column-free space. Landaiche says the project is in the final stages of design. “The Memphis Cook Convention Center commission selected a team of architects that consists of LRK locally and their partner is a design firm out of Atlanta, Georgia, TBS Design,” he says. “TBS Design is probably the country’s leading convention center architect but they’ve done several projects around the world. They designed the Nashville Convention Center, they’re working on the Las Vegas Convention Center, they’re 28 |

in the middle of designing the Javits Center in New York. We’re excited to have a team with that kind of local experience, but really the leading convention center architect in the country.” The design is expected to be completed in September with construction starting in November after the bids come in. It’s not the first time that bids have been made, however. In March, bids came in well above the $175 million budget and Mayor Jim Strickland said the project would have to be rebid. The project team has been looking at ways to cut costs, hence the continuing work on design plans.

The timeline The new and the old will have to coexist, so construction will be done in phases. First will be the ground lobby on the ground level from about this November to late next year. Changes to the South Hall will get going next spring and that will wrap up in September or October of next year. The exhibit hall and the loading dock construction will start around October 2019 and the project is scheduled to finish in September 2020.

So what will it be? Landaiche sums it up: “The new Cook Convention Center will be a state-of-the-art facility that has everything a twenty-first century meeting planner needs: flexibility, hotel quality, finishes, a sense of place, opportunities to go outside, natural light coming into it, the latest technology.” And he says it will be more hospitable. “We’ve asked the design team to make sure that the convention center, when you’re in it, you have a real sense of place” he says. “You’ll know you’re in Memphis.” It’s not really the case now.

A convention center visitor could be inside and have no particular sense that he’s in the Bluff City. “But when the building is finished, you can step inside any room and have an understanding of place, because of the type of finishes, maybe the color scheme, maybe the public art that’s on the wall that you are in Memphis, the home of the blues and the birthplace of rock-and-roll.”

Changes The ambience of the place is crucial, but even more critical is how well it gets down to business. In the 1970s, convention centers put a premium on exhibit space, but there’s less call for that now. “There’s a shift in how people are seeing products,” Landaiche says, “how people are experiencing products. With the internet it’s so easy to see a video of a tractor or see a presentation on a new medical device, so there’s less and less need to go to trade shows to see new products and new ideas. For a lot of companies they’re just cutting back on the amount of space they buy at a trade show because they’re putting more and more of their marketing and advertising dollars in other places.” In today’s market, flexibility is the key. “More and more of these conferences and trade shows and meetings are educational based,” Landaiche says, “and there are more breakout rooms. When we get a request for a proposal for any association or any corporate meeting today, it’s all about how many breakout meeting rooms you have, what size they are, are they flexible, can they meet the audio/visual, sound, and lighting needs. And are they modern, are they comfortable, can the temperature be adjusted precisely where the client wants it to be? Those

are the upgrades we’re going to see in the convention center.” In the transformation of spaces, current exhibit halls will be converted to breakout rooms. There are 32 such rooms now and the renovation will give it 52. Those rooms provide a lot of leeway to tailor to the needs of meeting planners. Air walls will be plentiful to configure spaces as needed. The current South Hall exhibit space will become changeable to up to 10 breakout rooms. But there remains a need for exhibit space and the exhibit hall will upgrade the floor boxes and lighting. More natural light will be in the hall as well. Additionally, load-ins will be improved. “We currently have two docks, but on two levels below the hall,” Landaiche says. “This is an elevated space which allows it to be column free, a huge asset for us, very attractive to meeting planners and trade show producers around the country. However, it’s very difficult for them to load in their shows or their meetings or their trade shows into this particular hall.” The problem is, again, that time has passed the convention center by. Landaiche says there are two ways to get up to the hall: an 85,000-pound truck that doesn’t always work, and a ramp built in 1974 when trucks weren’t as large or long as they are today. Those limitations require a complete reconfiguration of the loading dock layout with a new ramp as well as four loading docks on the same level as the exhibit hall rather than two levels below. “What that will mean to a trade show organizer,” he says, “is that it’s going to ease access, cut the time to load in the show, and save on expenses. It’s a huge selling point for us and it’s going to open up a whole other

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market for us to go after new trade shows and conventions.”

Tech Technology is driving many of the changes that will be implemented. “We’re not using overhead projectors anymore,” he says. “We’re using large screens with ceiling-mounted projectors that drop down. Because of the size of the screens and the size of the technology, ceiling heights are getting larger; it’s more open air, it feels better. So we will increase ceiling heights. We’re currently dealing with the bulk of our meeting rooms being eight- to nine-foot-tall ceilings.”

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The River One of the things the current building has — or doesn’t have — is an appreciation of the Mississippi River. That’s going to change. “We’re going to experience the outside,” Landaiche says, “to have views of the river, our greatest asset. We’re expanding that, allowing more natural light into the space. We’re blowing out walls on the west side and creating new concourses to provide new pre-function areas for our guests and receptions or registration. The idea is we’re taking advantage even more of the river

views that we have.” And there’s a particularly unattractive stretch of Front Street that goes underneath the convention center and its forbidding design. Even that will get a facelift. “It’s an outdoor space with columns now but we’re converting it to five additional meeting rooms overlooking the river,” he says.

Parking Landaiche says the parking garage will not be expanded, but that it will be improved. “There will be more light; we’re going to add sound, the Memphis sound to the garage,” he says. “It’s due for a paint up, fix up, new stripes, new signage, better feel, more secure. We’re going to improve the 1,000 spaces we have currently in the garage.” The size of the parking area has generally been adequate. Some shows have sold out the garage, but there are enough spaces that some city and county employees can use it.

The Cannon Center The performing arts auditorium, built in 2003, remains a solid facility that looks and sounds good and makes the Memphis Symphony Orchestra happy. It will remain open during the convention center’s rebuild, Landaiche says, and will get

some slight improvements. “We’re shifting a lot of events to the Cannon Center that otherwise would have had to happen at the convention center,” he says. “It’s proving to be a huge asset for us during the project.”

Hotels The 600-room Sheraton next door is the convention center’s headquarters hotel, but, Landaiche says, more full-service hotels within walking distance are needed. Another 500- to 600-room property close by would greatly help in marketing. “What a new full-service hotel does for this building is it allows us to put a group of 1,500 to 2,000 in really just a couple of properties rather than 12,” he says. “We’ve got some groups that continue to meet in the convention center in Memphis despite having to put 2,000 people in 12 to 15 hotels. There are other groups around the country that we want and that we’re going to go after but they tell us their minimum is two or three hotels for their attendees.”

The Local Market If the changes will be well-received by meeting planners, they should also appeal to more local organizations. “It’s going to be a meeting and community

center for the entire MidSouth,” Landaiche says. “We’re going to make sure we open the building to the community and the neighborhoods and drive more investment in not just the downtown area, but we think in the whole region.” He envisions the potential of more boat shows, RV shows, comic cons, bridal shows, and the like. There could also be community events hosted by the convention center to expose the building to the city.

The Competition When the new Cook facility is completed, Landaiche says, new markets will become available. The footprint stays the same but the space will be significantly improved. “There are highly rated meetings, trade shows, and conventions that have a certain standard that we currently don’t meet. There are Memphis-based companies that tell us, ‘We would love to stay in town, we would love to be in our hometown, but we can’t because our attendees expect a better experience.’ They go to Orlando or New Orleans or Nashville or Charlotte.” He says Memphis will be able to compete more effectively when it can pitch to some of the larger associations and Fortune 500 companies.

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Proposed hotel at Memphis’ tallest building set to boost local tourism. • • •

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What do you do with the city’s tallest building? If the powers that be have their way, the empty 100 North Main Building will transform into a high-end hotel that will serve the Cook Convention Center just steps away. With downtown Memphis seeing significant growth over the past few years, the 600-room Sheraton Memphis Downtown, currently the go-to hotel for the convention center, can’t meet the need of the increasingly large number of tourists and business folks who travel to Memphis. Plenty of smaller hotels are located downtown, but convention planners around the world prefer not to book attendees in several hotels. Jennifer Oswalt

property, New York-based THM purchased it outright earlier this year and looked to expand further. In addition to the tower, it bought the 12,000-square-foot 80 North Main property along with 86 North Main and 88 North Main. “When they came to town, they said that just rebuilding the property wasn’t enough,” says Jennifer Oswalt, president and CEO of the Downtown Memphis Commission. “So, they began to acquire other properties. While they were accumulating that, we were also soliciting firms to propose a convention center hotel to go along with the renovation. 30 |

We told THM that if they had a hotel partner, that could be an option for the property.” THM was intrigued by the idea and reached out to a family company it had a long history with, Loews Hotels, which expressed interest in the project. The hotel group owns or operates 26 highend properties around the country and has a proven track record. “They don’t do a lot of deals,” says Oswalt. “They make larger investments in fewer cities and actually own all of their investments instead of just being an operator like typical hotels; that’s one thing that set them apart.” When the city began the process of evaluat-

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY DOWNTOWN MEMPHIS COMMISSION

High Hopes FOR 100 N. Main

While there have been previous plans to revitalize 100 North Main, the current plan has behind it a large investment by the property owner, Townhouse Management Memphis Acquisitions LLC (THM). It has partnered with Loews Hotels and signed a letter of intent with the Downtown Memphis Commission and Memphis Tourism to use some portion of THM’s North Main landholdings to build a specific convention hotel. The building was foreclosed on when previous owner, IHM Memphis LLC, defaulted on its loan. When no one else bid on the

ing options for the hotel, Loews was chosen to lead the project. While there won’t be any ducks involved with the new development, the project extends far beyond simply hotel space. “Loews’ model is that they don’t want to be a hotel on an island amidst nothing, so they like to include a lot of food and beverage options around it,” Oswalt says. With the property on the trolley line, she wants the venture to be a connector between Beale Street, the Convention Center, and South Main. “People already walk that route, but having this vitality right in the middle of that walk will be

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TOP VENUES

obviously it is a significant project and very tied to the convention center,” Oswalt says. To improve mobility, the DMC is looking at making the block between 100 North Main and the Convention Center much more pedestrian friendly. “It already has a trolley, but we’re looking at all the

While big changes are on the horizon for the site, specifics are sparse since planning is

PHOTOGRAPH BY JON W. SPARKS

still in the early stages.

The 100 North Main Building

tremendous. We’re very excited by the additional impact.” Restaurants will certainly be a part of the expansion, but other things may be considered as well, including a mixture of residential areas, office spaces, and extended-stay corporate-style apartments. The ground floor will be populated by retail bays, or at least some type of active space. After extensive research and feedback, Memphis Tourism (formerly the Convention and Visitors Bureau) decided that the city needed another large 500-plus-room hotel to

accommodate bigger conventions. The new hotel will capitalize on the investment that the city is currently making in the Convention Center. The final arrangement, however, has yet to be determined. The plaza area at 170 North Main remains open, and the nearby parking lot could be used with a new tower. The state has given tentative approval to the project, but a concrete location for the hotel needs to be set before any official decision. While there have been numerous failed attempts to use the 100 North Main Building for new projects, the current venture

appears to be much more realistic. “THM has actually acquired other properties adjacent to it,” says Oswalt, “which is an investment on their part. Plus, the city and the Downtown Memphis Commission have worked hard to get an additional incentive passed through the state.” The letter of intent calls for a 20-year PILOT program, a 5 percent tax surcharge on the project, and a Memphis Tourism Zone designation, which would utilize all sales taxes received by the hotel to pay off construction loans. “That incentive allows for the plan to work, because

ways we can make it a shorter walk; in many cities, you walk about that distance between a convention center and a hotel.” While big changes are on the horizon for the site, specifics are sparse since planning is still in the early stages. “It will take about a year to get through construction and design, but we’ll know probably by the end of the summer exactly where everything will go,” says Oswalt. “And it has to open by the end of 2022. We’re aiming for earlier that year.” Despite being a few years out, the Loews brand has already attracted attention, with interested parties pre-booking space. The revitalization of Memphis’ tallest building is a big step in downtown’s ongoing resurgence. With North Main now poised to make a big leap forward, Oswalt believes that the right team is in place to have a huge effect on the area. “Both Loews and THM have really embraced Memphis and are two great partners who want to do what’s best for the city. They’ve been very open to having discussions and are willing to be flexible about their plans. We’re looking forward to this partnership.”

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RENDERING COURTESY GRACELAND HOLDINGS

The new Elvis Presley’s Memphis complex.

Graceland redux

Resolute Weinshanker: Damn the city’s torpedoes — full speed ahead! • • •

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Joel Weinshanker is the very definition of tenacious — and pugnacious. The managing partner of Graceland Holdings is a believer in Elvis Presley and in making money, so five years ago he found a way to put it all together. In November 2013, he took over management of Graceland operations and from the get-go, he was mapping a plan to get visitors to stay longer by providing better hotel facilities and more things to see. Weinshanker’s arrangement is with Authentic Brand Group, LLC and the Presley family as partners. ABG develops and markets brands, and their inventory is impressive, including, along with Elvis, Muhammad Ali, Marilyn Monroe, Shaquille O’Neal, Nine West, Nautica, and several others. Weinshanker is president and CEO of New Jersey-based National Entertainment Collectibles Association, Inc., which markets pop culture licensed clothing, prop replicas, Head Knockers, Body Knockers, giftware, and more, from Groot to Godzilla, Seinfeld to Chucky,

Wonder Woman to Weird Al. When he turned his attention to Elvis, Weinshanker saw the possibilities for bringing in new fans while keeping old fans happy. The result was the most significant overhaul of the Graceland complex since the mansion opened to the public in 1982. Replacing Graceland Plaza and Graceland Crossing across the street from the mansion is an entertainment complex called Elvis Presley’s Memphis, which opened in 2017. The $45 million, 200,000-squarefoot, state-of-the-art facility houses the definitive Elvis

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PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY GRACELAND HOLDINGS

TOP VENUES

museum: Elvis The Entertainer Career Museum. Also there is an automobile museum (Presley Motors), restaurants, exhibits, and a soundstage. The other major endeavor was building the $92 million Guest House at Graceland on the east side of Elvis Presley Boulevard, a 450-room full-service hotel. With two restaurants, spaces for meetings and special events, and a 464-seat theater for live performances and movies, it is well positioned to handle conventions and special events. An expansion of this magnitude required serious commitment and Weinshanker was prepared to do it. “There’s only one place like Graceland and it’s the place that Elvis made his home and kept his home,” he says. “Elvis could’ve lived anywhere in the world and he always wanted to go back home to Graceland. So I take a real responsibility into wanting to do what Elvis would want to do. We still get so many people and so many young people, whose only reason for coming to Memphis is Graceland.” Weinshanker points out that there’s no major attraction or entertainment/sporting event anywhere that doesn’t draw out-of-towners. “You know this is really the driver for Memphis tourists,” he says. “In the twenty-first century you have two choices: you can get bigger or you can go away. I don’t think Graceland would ever go away, but I feel a responsibility to the people of Memphis to try to make Graceland bigger and better, and give it facilities that a new and different level of people would expect to have when they come.” With a hotel the size of the Guest House, the Graceland operation is going after meetings and conventions like it never did

The 450-room Guest House at Graceland

before. “There are conventions and we’re actually creating a lot of our own events,” Weinshanker says. “So what you’re going to see out of Graceland in the next year or two are several events a month — large events that are going to draw people from all over the country, that are still pop culture events but aren’t necessarily tied to Graceland. So we’re going to be doing a lot of the heavy lifting ourselves.” The day that Inside Memphis Business interviewed Weinshanker, Elvis Presley Enterprises had just filed a complaint in Shelby County Chancery Court against the city, the county, and the Memphis Grizzlies. The June filing was the third lawsuit in a dispute that centers on EPE’s desire to continue its expansion by building a $40 million performance arena and convention center. The arena was initially proposed to be 6,000 seats, a number that has risen and fallen in the last year with different plans being considered. It now stands at 6,200 seats. There’s support for the plan and in April, the Memphis and Shelby County Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) unanimously approved the convention center and tentatively authorized the arena, pending judicial review. The Shelby County Commission is also on board. But there is a question

whether the arena would run afoul of the noncompete agreement that city and county governments have with FedExForum. The June lawsuit hopes to resolve that. Public funds are not to be used to build a competing arena and EPE has benefitted from getting a percentage of tax revenue generated in the Graceland tax increment financing (TIF) district. But Weinshanker says Graceland isn’t using public funds and there is no conflict with the Grizzlies agreement. In April, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland responded to comments by Weinshanker who says the city was unresponsive to Graceland’s expansion plans. Strickland says City Hall had met with him but says that Weinshanker “wants to build it with your money — cash that would have to come out of our operating budget. All told, that amounts to about $3 million.” Weinshanker continues the sparring match. “The mayor seems to have done everything he can to stop the jobs,” he says. “It’s very rare that you find a mayor that’s trying to stop jobs.” Strickland, though, has said, “We want him to build whatever entertainment complex he wants to build. We’re excited to see it happen, in fact. But he wants to build it with your money.” Also in the mix is a proposed manufacturing facility in Whitehaven for apparel and

collectibles. It was proposed late last year by EPE and would supposedly bring up to 1,000 new jobs. Weinshanker has put the idea on hold in hopes that the arena/convention site project will get traction, but he blames Bruce McMullen, city attorney for the city of Memphis, for casting doubt on the manufacturing facility project. McMullen, in a story in the Memphis Business Journal, is quoted as saying he hadn’t seen any such plans and that he was “suspicious EPE is trying to use the media and the court systems to help in negotiations with the original arena proposal that they had put forth.” Weinshanker says, “We were ready to bring the first 300 jobs to Memphis. Those jobs are now going elsewhere, because we can’t even get a response from the mayor. Additionally, we’re now going out to other municipalities in Tennessee because we do want to try to stay in Tennessee because the state government has been very, very cooperative with us. We’re actually now having to look at other municipalities, some in Shelby County, some outside of Shelby County, where those jobs may end up getting placed.” The entrepreneur is pushing ahead wherever he can. Weinshanker’s looking to eventually expand the Guest House with an addition of 150 rooms and more convention and conference space. In 2016, the hotel earned a four-diamond rating from AAA and he is quick to tout its value. “It doesn’t do anyone any good if it’s not affordable,” he says. “So we’re doing all the things Elvis would do. We may be making a little less money by making it so affordable but that’s really the responsibility we feel for the community.” He also says that conventions and conferences

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Special events at Graceland ◗ Nike ◗ Williams Sonoma TV Shows • Columns • Radio Show • Books • Podcast

◗ FedEx ◗ iQor ◗ International Paper ◗ Memphis Fashion Week ◗ Association of Junior Leagues International ◗ Boys & Girls Clubs of Memphis ◗ Grundfos ◗ Mid-South Minority Business Council ◗ Volkswagen ◗ nexAir ◗ National Cotton Council ◗ National Cartoonists Society

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PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY GRACELAND HOLDINGS

Memphis Fashion Week last April at Graceland’s Car Museum

are less expensive than comparable venues. The filmed-in-Memphis movie Christmas at Graceland shooting this summer is also part of the plan, says Weinshanker, who is an executive producer on the film. “We’re trying to bring substantial television and film production to Graceland, to build sound stages and bring high-paying jobs and keep them in Memphis.” In April, the EDGE board approved an 80,000-square-foot exhibition and convention center housing two 20,000-squarefoot exhibition halls on each side with a lobby in the middle for food and beverage services. Weinshanker says it will be opening in March “and that’s going to provide a substantial number of new jobs and we’re going to have world-class exhibitions.” He said when it opens, they’ll be announcing what he calls impressive exhibitions, including one about Muhammad Ali. “It’s great for the community. It’s a great connection to the National Civil Rights Museum. We feel a great responsibility to do things So what you’re for the community as well.” Whitehaven has certainly been going to see out a beneficiary of the Graceland of Graceland in expansion. “We’ve already brought hundreds of new jobs,” the next year or Weinshanker says, “a majority of which come from Whitehaven. two are several There’s a lot of people without events a month — cars, without vehicles, who live in Whitehaven, who have to large events that travel to find any real job. And are going to draw as we all know, the Memphis public transit system is not what people from all over it should be. So you have people spending an hour and a half the country. each way for a job, and we’ve been trying to, as much as we can, make that not a necessity. I love the fact that people can walk five blocks to their job.” The mix of activities, the growth, the possibilities, and the allure of Memphis fuel the mover and shaker from New Jersey. “I’m going to do everything I can, even if it doesn’t make exact financial sense because I believe in Memphis long-term.”

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THE BEST LOCATIONS FOR YOUR NE XT CORPOR ATE FUNCTION

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CASINOS Gold Strike Casino Resort Meetings and special events. 30,000 sq. ft., 15-1,170 guests. 662-357-1373; Kjordan@mgmresorts.com. 1010 Casino Center Dr., Casino Center, MS goldstrike.com Horseshoe Casino and Hotel Meetings, weddings, and special events. Banquet rooms and live entertainment spaces. 840-10,000 sq. ft., 301,400 guests. 855-633-8238; meet@caesars.com. 1021 Casino Center Dr, Robinsonville, MS caesarsmeansbusiness.com Southland Park Meetings and large corporate events. 16,000 sq. ft., 30600 guests. 870-400-4855. 1550 Ingram Blvd, West Memphis, AR southlandpark.com Tunica Roadhouse Meetings and corporate events. 3,300 available sq. ft., 24-300 guests. 855-633-8238; meet@caesars.com. 1107 Casino Center Dr, Robinsonville, MS caesars.com/tunica-roadhouse

CHURCHES AND TEMPLES Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Corporate events and meetings. Parish office: (901) 7252700. 1695 Central Avenue iccathedral.org

Temple Israel Corporate events and meetings. Small conference rooms and large auditoriums for up to 1,500 guests. 901-937-2797; sharonn@timemphis.org. 1376 E. Massey Rd. timemphis.org

COLLEGES Christian Brothers University Meetings and events. Classroom, banquet rooms, and auditorium space for 25-500 guests. 901-321-3525; events@cbu.edu. 650 E. Pkwy S. cbu.edu Rhodes College Meetings, lectures, and special events. Scheduling and College Events Office: 901-843-3888. 2000 N Parkway. rhodes.edu University of Memphis Conferences and events. 210,000 available sq. ft., up to 1,000 guests. Conference and event services: 901-678-5000; conferences@memphis.edu. 365 Innovation Dr. memphis.edu

EVENT VENUES Annesdale Mansion Corporate events. Up to 9,000 available sq. ft., 250-300 guests. Val Bledsoe: 901-490-9460; val@annesdalemansion.com. 1325 Lamar Ave. annesdalemansion.com

Anthony’s Classic Hall Corporate events. Multiple rooms for 130-150 guests. Office: 901-388-6468; anthonysclassichall@aol.com. 2828 Stage Center Drive, Bartlett, TN anthonysclassichall.com The Atrium at Overton Square Corporate events and meetings. Space for 175 seated guests, up to 250 standing. Catering kitchen available. 901-213-4514; events@memphiseventgroup.com. 2105 Madison Ave. theatriummemphis.com Balinese Ballroom Corporate and formal events. Up to 4,300 sq. ft., 250 guests. 901-552-1144; balineseballroom@yahoo.com; 330 N. Main St. balineseballroom.com Cadre Building Corporate, formal, and non-profit events. 36,000 sq. ft., 150-1,000 guests. 901-779-1501; betsy.mckay@cadrebuilding.com. 149 Monroe Ave cadrebuilding.com Cedar Hall Corporate events. Indoor and outdoor spaces for up to 300 guests. 901-377-4099; info@cedarhall.com. 3712 Broadway Rd., Bartlett, TN cedarhall.com The Columns Corporate events. Up to 20,000 sq. ft., 200-800 guests. 901-552-4732; elizabeth@resourceentertainment. com. 40 S. Main St. resourceentertainment.com

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Elvis Presley’s Memphis Corporate events. Up to 200,000 sq. ft. available for up to 3,000 guests. 901-332-3322. Elvis Presley Blvd. graceland.com Esplanade Corporate events and conferences. 10,000 available sq. ft., 30-700 guests. 901-753-3333; info@ esplanadememphis.com. 901 Cordova Station Ave. esplanadememphis.com FedEx Event Center Corporate Events. From 272-7,700 sq. ft., 20-800 guests. 901-222-7275; info@shelbyfarmspark.org. 6903 Great View Dr. N. shelbyfarmspark.org Fogelman Executive Conference Center & Hotel Corporate events and conferences. Up to 35,000 available sq. ft., 24-1,000 guests. 901-678-5410; fecsales@ memphis.edu. 330 Innovation Dr. (Conference Center); 3700 Central Ave (Hotel). bf.memphis.edu The Great Hall & Conference Center Corporate events and conferences. Up to 8,675 sq. ft. available. 60-800 guests. 901-757-7373; ianslinger@ germantown-tn.gov. 1900 S. Germantown Rd. thegreathallevents.com La Place Ballroom Corporate and special events. Up to 5,500 sq. ft. available. 10-650 guests. Catering available. Tarmeckla Douglas: 901-340-0144; tarmeckladouglas@yahoo.com. 4970 Raleigh Lagrange Rd. laplaceballroom.com The Meeting Center of Collierville Meetings and conferences. Variety of room options. Seating for up to 15 guests. 901-861-6304; info@ tmccollierville.com. 340 Poplar View Ln. E. #1 tmccollierville.com Minglewood Hall Corporate events and fundraisers. Up to 13,000 sq. ft. available. 100-1,500 guests. 901-312-6058 Ext #: 1107; paula.davis@minglewoodhall.com. 1555 Madison Ave. minglewoodhall.com New Daisy Corporate and special events, fundraisers, and trade shows. Full theater setup for 500-1,100 guests. 901-525-8981; info@newdaisy.com. 330 Beale St. newdaisy.com Noah’s Event Venue Corporate events. Conference and event rooms for 8-250 people. 901-606-4240. 3243 Players Club Circle. noahseventvenue.com Premiere Palace Ballroom Corporate events. 2,500 sq. ft. ballroom for up to 400 guests. 901-725-5625; info@premierepalace.com. 629 Monroe Ave. premierepalace.com Propcellar Corporate events. Large, versatile warehouse space for between 50-400 guests. 901-654-6737; hello@propcellar.com. 2585 Summer Ave. propcellar.com 36 |

Rumba Room Small corporate events. Tables and private rooms available on a limited basis. 901-523-0020; edgarmendez71@gmail.com. 303 S. Main St. memphisrumba.com Tower Center Conferences, meetings, and events. Up to 10,000 available sq. ft., 6-600 guests. 901-767-8776; celkins@ towercentermemphis.com. 5100 Poplar Ave. #3300. towercentermemphis.com Woodland Hills Event Center Corporate events. Multiple room options, with 50-1,000 guests. 901-754-2000. 10000 Woodland Hills. Dr., Cordova. woodlandhillseventcenter.com Woodruff-Fontaine House Weddings and special and corporate events. Variety of room options for 30-150 guests. 901-526-1469; contact@ woodruff-fontaine.org. 680 Adams Ave. woodruff-fontaine.org

HOTELS Big Cypress Lodge Corporate events, conferences, and meetings. Variety of room and outdoor options for 10-800 guests. 901-6204652; concierge@big-cypress.com. 1 Bass Pro Dr. big-cypress.com Crowne Plaza Downtown Corporate events and meetings. 8,686 available sq. ft., up to 257 guests. 901-525-1800; info@cphotelsmemphis. com. 300 N. Second St. ihg.com/crowneplaza Crowne Plaza East Memphis Corporate events and meetings. 528-8,448 sq. ft., 121400 guests. 901-362-6200; hnelson@cphmemphis.com. 2625 Thousand Oaks Blvd. ihg.com/crowneplaza Doubletree Hilton (Sanderlin) Corporate events and meetings. 5,500 sq. ft., 8-300 guests. 901-767-6666; 5069 Sanderlin Ave. doubletree3.hilton.com Embassy Suites Memphis Corporate events and meetings. Up to 3,000 sq. ft., 16250 guests. 901-684-1777. 1022 S. Shady Grove Rd. embassysuites3.hilton.com Guest House at Graceland Corporate events and conferences. 403-10,681 sq. ft., 16-1,345 guests. 1-800-238-2000; GHAGsales@ guesthousegraceland.com. 3600 Elvis Presley Blvd. guesthousegraceland.com Hilton (Ridge Lake Blvd.) Corporate events and meetings. Up to 36,000 available sq. ft. for up to 1,600 guests. 901-684-6664. 939 Ridge Lake Blvd. www3.hilton.com Holiday Inn (Downtown) Corporate events and meetings. 425-3,456 sq. ft., 12-500 guests. 901-525-5491. 160 Union Ave. hisdowntownmemphis.com

Holiday Inn (University of Memphis) Social and corporate events and conferences. 52810,150 sq. ft., 15-1,500 guests. 901-678-5423; paustin@ memphis.edu. 3700 Central Ave. ihg.com Hu. Hotel Corporate events and meetings. 405-1,665 sq. ft., 14-200 guests. 901-333-1200; info@huhotelmemphis.com. 79 Madison Ave. huhotelmemphis.com Hyatt Place Memphis (Primacy Pkwy.) Meetings. Up to 1,170 sq. ft., 20-50 guests. 901-214-9993; mark.smisor@hyatt.com. 1220 Primacy Pkwy. memphisprimacyparkway.memphis.hyatt.com Marriott Memphis East Corporate events and meetings. 7,800 sq. ft., 12-400 guests. 901-682-0080. 5795 Poplar Ave. marriott.com Peabody Hotel Corporate events, meetings, and conferences. 300-16,000 sq. ft. 10 to 2,100 guests. 901-529-4000. 149 Union Ave. peabodymemphis.com River Inn - River Hall Corporate events and meetings. Banquet hall and terrace options for up to 120 guests. 901-260-3333 ext. 2105; events@riverinnmemphis.com. 50 Harbor Town Sq. riverinnmemphis.com Sheraton Memphis (Downtown) Corporate events and meetings. 276-4,600 sq. ft., 10-414 guests. 901-527-7300. 250 N. Main St. starwoodhotels.com Staybridge Suites SSmall meetings. 800 sq. ft. available for small business meetings. 901-682-1722. 1070 Ridge Lake Blvd. ihg.com Westin Memphis Beale Street Corporate events and meetings. 320-3,030 sq. ft. 8-300 guests. 901-334-5900. 170 Lt. George W. Lee Ave. starwoodhotels.com

LARGE VENUES Agricenter International Corporate events and trade shows. Variety of small and large venues, ranging from 4,800-86,000 sq. ft. 901-7577777; info@agricenter.org. 7777 Walnut Grove Rd. agricenter.org Beale Street Landing Large corporate events. Large outdoor space, with capacity up to 5,000+ guests. 901-312-9190. 251 Riverside Dr. memphisriverfront.com Cannon Center for the Performing Arts Large corporate events and conferences. Large theater-capacity events with 2,100 seats. 901-576-1203; tthompson@thecannoncenter.com or plandaiche@ thecannoncenter.com. 255 N. Main St. thecannoncenter.com FedExForum Large corporate events and meetings. Large stadium with variety of venue options for 30-17,500 guests. 901-2051522; jolson@grizzlies.com. 191 Beale St. fedexforum.com

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Landers Center Large corporate events and conferences. Multiple venue options, from 468-17,010 sq. ft., 30-1,888 guests. 662280-9120. 4560 Venture Dr., Southaven, MS. landerscenter.com Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium Large corporate events. Large stadium and fairgrounds with variety of venue options for 125-58,325 guests. 901729-4344; thomas_carrier@comcastspectacor.com. 335 S. Hollywood St. thelibertybowlstadium.com Memphis Cook Convention Center Large corporate events, meetings, conferences, and trade shows. Large hall with over 125,000 available sq. ft. 901576-1200. 255 N. Main St. memphistravel.com

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AutoZone Park Corporate events and meetings. Indoor and outdoor venues available. Capacity depends on venue. 901-7220257; stuohy@memphisredbirds.com. 200 Union Ave. memphisredbirds.com Bartlett Performing Arts & Conference Center Corporate events and small meetings. Smaller room option or auditorium for 75-350 guests. 901-385-6440. 3663 Appling Rd., Bartlett, TN. bpacc.org Blues Hall of Fame Corporate events. Entry level and ground level spaces for 100-300 guests. 901-527-2583 ext. 13. 421 S. Main St. blues.org Brooks Museum Corporate events and meetings. Meeting and reception options for 20-400 guests. 901-544-6222; nikki.lekhy@ brooksmuseum.org. 1934 Poplar Ave. brooksmuseum.org Cotton Museum Corporate events. 3,200 sq. ft. for up to 150 guests. 901-531-7826; rentals@memphiscottonmuseum. org. 65 Union Ave. memphiscottonmuseum.org Dixon Gallery and Gardens Corporate events and meetings. Pavilion and auditorium options for up to 250 guests. 901-761-5250 ext. 101. scatmur@dixon.org. 4339 Park Ave. dixon.org Halloran Center for the Performing Arts Corporate events, meetings, private parties, special events. 1,011-3,500 sq. ft., 40-361 guests. 901-529-4276; adams@orpheum-memphis.org. 225 S. Main St. orpheum-memphis.com Memphis Botanic Garden Corporate events. Variety of indoor and outdoor spaces for 2-600 guests. 901-636-4106; rentals@ memphisbotanicgarden.com. 750 Cherry Rd. mbgrentals.com Memphis Zoo Corporate and special events and weddings. Indoor and outdoor spaces for up to 3,000 guests. 901-333-6571. 2000 Prentiss Pl. memphiszoo.org

Mirimichi Corporate events. Indoor and outdoor venues for 10300 guests. 901-259-3800. 6129 Woodstock Cuba Rd., Millington, TN. mirimichi.com National Civil Rights Museum Corporate events and meetings. Conference rooms and auditorium for up to 300 guests. 901-521-9699 ext.2439; cmbaye@civilrightsmuseum.org. 450 Mulberry St. civilrightsmuseum.org National Ornamental Metal Museum Corporate events. 4,200 sq. ft. terrace. 300-500 guests. 901-774-6380; rentals@metalmuseum.org. 374 Metal Museum Dr. metalmuseum.org Opera Memphis Corporate events.1,450-5,400 sq. ft. lobby and hall spaces. 901-202-4536; jonathan@operamemphis.org. 6745 Wolf River Pkwy. operamemphis.org The Orpheum Theater Corporate events. Small rooms and main auditorium available, for 70-2,300 guests. 901-529-4234; brown@ orpheum-memphis.com. 203 S. Main St. orpheum-memphis.com Playhouse on the Square Corporate events and meetings. Auditorium and meeting facilities for 12-347 guests. 901-937-6473; jody@ playhouseonthesquare.org. 66 S. Cooper St. playhouseonthesquare.org Rock n Soul Museum Corporate events and conferences. Museum exhibit included. 850-8,500 sq. ft., 60-300 guests. 901-205-2526; info@memphisrocknsoul.org. 191 Beale St. Also offer Memphis Music Hall of Fame Museum for receptions and corporate events. 2,500 sq. ft. 30-100 guests. memphisrocknsoul.org Stax Museum Corporate events. Museum space available for 10-450 guests. 901-942-7685; lisa.allen@soulsvillefoundation. org. 926 E. McLemore Ave. staxmuseum.com West Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau Corporate events and meetings. Meeting rooms available for up to 500 guests. 870-732-7598. 212 West Polk Ave., West Memphis, AR. memphistravel.com

LIVE FRIDAY SEPT 7 8|7C S TA N D U P T O C A N C E R . O R G

PRIVATE Crescent Club Corporate events and meetings. 540-1,500 sq. ft., 12-200 guests. 901-684-1010 ext. 224. 6075 Poplar Ave., Suite 909. clubcorp.com Kroc Center Corporate events and meetings. Conference and hall space for between 12-100 guests. 901-729-8031; events@krocmemphis.org. 800 E. Pkwy. S. krocmemphis.org

American Lung Association’s LUNG FORCE, Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Canadian Cancer Society, Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Cancer Stem Cell Consortium, Farrah Fawcett Foundation, Genome Canada, Laura Ziskin Family Trust, LUNGevity Foundation, National Ovarian Cancer Coalition, Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, Ovarian Cancer Research Fund Alliance, Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer STAND UP TO CANCER IS A DIVISION OF THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY FOUNDATION, A 501(C)(3) CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION. IMAGES ARE FROM STAND UP TO CANCER TELECASTS AND EVENTS. THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR CANCER RESEARCH (AACR) IS STAND UP TO CANCER’S SCIENTIFIC PARTNER.

AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018 | INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM |

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One low price,

ALL-YOU-CAN-MEET. Tables, chairs, AV equipment, and configurable space, all included. So you can meet off site, and stay on budget.

thegreathallevents.com

1900 S. Germantown Road | Germantown, TN | 901-757-7373

©2016 The Great Hall and Conference Center. Photography by Amy Hutchinson.

Racquet Club Corporate events and meetings. Membership not required for events. 456-4,320 sq. ft. 20-600 guests. 901-765-4456; ssmith@racquetclubofmemphis.com. 5111 Sanderlin Ave. rcofmemphis.com Ridgeway Country Club Corporate events. Indoor and outdoor spaces for between 200-350 guests. 901-853-2247 ext. 106; bernadetteslavin@ridgewaycountryclub.com. 9800 Poplar Ave. ridgewaycountryclub.com TPC Southwind Corporate events and meetings. Membership not required for events. 580-1,952 sq. ft. 30-130 guests. 901-259-1835; juliesmith@pgatourtpc.com. 3325 Club at Southwind. tpc.com University Club of Memphis Corporate events and meetings. Variety of indoor and outdoor spaces for 12-450 guests. 901-772-3716; banquets@ucmem.com. 1346 Central Ave. ucmem.com Victory Ranch Corporate events. Outdoor team building experiences for businesses. 901-338-7093; harrison@victoryranch. org. 4330 Mecklinburg, Bolivar, TN. victoryranch.org

RESTAURANTS

Grand Events & Meetings since 1869 The Peabody’s facilities offer 80,000 square feet of elegant ballrooms and meeting spaces that can accommodate groups from 10 to 2,000. From The Peabody Grand Ballroom to the historic mezzanine meeting spaces, an event at The Peabody guarantees meeting planners and their clients memorable, flawless meetings.

B.B. King’s Blues Club Corporate events. Club available for rent, with room for 25-400 guests. 901-202-9114. 143 Beale St. bbkings.com Capital Grille Corporate events. Private dining rooms for 12-42 guests. 901-683-9291. 6065 Poplar Ave. thecapitalgrille.com Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar Corporate events. Private rooms available for 25-65. 901-761-6200. 6245 Poplar Ave. flemingssteakhouse.com Folk’s Folly Prime Steak House Corporate events. Private dining and event rooms for 2-120 guests. 901-762-8200. 551 S. Mendenhall. folksfolly.com The Grove Grill Corporate events. Private rooms available for up to 60 guests. 901-818-9951. 4550 Poplar Ave. thegrovegrill.com Loflin Yard Corporate events. Indoor bar and outdoor private and semi-private areas available. 901-614-4589; info@loflinyard.com. 7 W. Carolina Ave. loflinyard.com

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P R E M IE R M E E T IN G & E V E N T FAC IL I T IE S

SPECIAL PROMOTION

PREMIER MEETING & EVENT FACILITIES 2018

Memphis is home to a number of exceptional meeting and event facilities. Whether you’re looking for space to accommodate a large business conference or a room for a private reception, there’s a perfect place for your gathering right here in the Bluff City. With amenities to satisfy your technological, lighting, audio, catering, entertainment needs, and more, the facilities highlighted in this special advertising section from Inside Memphis Business have everything you require to host a seamless event for groups large or small. On the following pages, you’ll find additional details and contact information for some of our city’s best meeting spaces; contact them today to help plan your perfect event.

Christen Jones Photography


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BASS PRO SHOPS AT THE PYRAMID Located in the heart of Memphis is one of the region’s most iconic structures: Bass Pro Shops at The Pyramid. Inside this one-of-a-kind facility, an unforgettable group getaway awaits at Big Cypress Lodge. Overnight accommodations in this wilderness-inspired rustic retreat range from vintage duck hunting cabins to treehouse suites. Many of these spectacular accommodations overlook a remarkable indoor cypress swamp. You can host your guests in an array of meeting spaces, including a large banquet room that holds 350 guests, breakout spaces seating between 40 and 60 guests and a boardroom that will accommodate 10. For larger groups, events can be hosted outdoors on the beautiful Mississippi Terrace, and for extra special occasions The Lookout at the Pyramid can also be reserved. The Lookout is at the peak of The Pyramid and can be accessed via the country’s tallest free-standing elevator. Once at the top, you and your group can take in views of Memphis from glass balconies 300 feet in the air. 4

Activities and team-building adventures abound. On the ground level you won’t want to miss one of the most immersive retail experiences in the world at Bass Pro Shops. Here you and your team can also enjoy some friendly competition at Uncle Buck’s Fishbowl and Grill, an underwater-themed bowling alley and restaurant. Regardless the size or style of your group, Big Cypress inside the Pyramid offers a world-class getaway your team is sure to never forget. Call 901-620-4652 or visit bigcypress.com to start planning your next group gathering!

“Big Cypress at the Bass Pro Shops Pyramid is the most unique off-site location your group could experience. From oneof-a-kind dining to truly beautiful meeting spaces, the combination of amenities and offerings in one singular location makes Big Cypress a standout in the marketplace.”

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ROOM BRE AKDOWN AND SPECS:

• Cattail Boardroom: 294 sq. ft • Delta Room: 754 sq. ft. • Gator Room: 745 sq. ft. • Delta + Gator Rooms: 1,508 sq. ft. • Flyway Room: 1,508 sq. ft. • Ducks Unlimited Gallery: 1,400 sq. ft. • Waterfowl Gallery: 1,400 sq. ft. • Waterfowl + Ducks Unlimited: 2,800 sq. ft. • Waterfowl + Ducks Unlimited + Mississippi Terrace: 10,530 sq. ft. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Big Cypress Group Sales: 901.620.4652 WEBSITE: Big-Cypress.com

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1. Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid: Camp out in the Pyramid and experience Big Cypress Lodge. 2. Meeting Space: Big Cypress has multiple meeting rooms for groups of all sizes.

3. Mississippi Terrace: Take advantage of the large outdoor space of the Terrace. 4. Uncle Buck’s Bowling: Enjoy fun team building activities like bowling at Uncle Buck’s Fishbowl and Grill.

5. Duck Cabin: Big Cypress offers inviting accommodations for relaxing in rustic comfort. 6. The Lookout Dining and Balconies: Enjoy a delicious meal and the spectacular views of the Mississippi River and downtown Memphis.

7. Sky High Ride: Take the nation’s tallest free-standing elevator 28 stories up and enjoy the breathtaking views of Memphis.

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BB KING’S BLUES CLUB Named after the late reigning King of the Blues and recording artist for more than a half-century, B.B. King’s Blues Club is a supper club-style restaurant with live music nightly featuring The B.B. King’s Blues Club All-Star Band, delivering energy and excitement to keep your guests moving! This is the original, iconic B.B. King’s Blues Club, located at the top of world famous Beale Street. We’re more than the Blues. We’re classic soul, rock and roll, great barbeque, and signature drinks that will fill you to the brim.

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The club’s unique layout offers private and semi-private event spaces, including our mezzanine, with a great view of our concert quality stage equipped with a state-of-the-art sound system. Named Top 100 Hottest Restaurants in 2016 by

OpenTable, B.B. King’s Blues Club offers the South’s most delicious flavors including BB’s Famous Lip Smacking Ribs, Born on the Bayou Shrimp and Grits and more. Our menu doesn’t stop there, our chefs are prepared to customize menus 2

and set-ups from buffet-style to seated dinners and chefattended carving stations. B.B. King’s Blues Club has earned a stellar reputation for hosting parties of 15 up to 500 guests.

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SPECIFICATIONS CAPACITY: Customizable floor plan that can accommodate groups up to 500

guests CATERING: All catering provided in-house, our dedicated private events team,

alongside our skilled chefs, will work with you to customize the perfect menu for your guests to enjoy. BARTENDERS: Three full-service bars PRESENTATIONS: Audio & Video setup and services available.

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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION EVENT SALES DIRECTOR: Ansley Smith

asmith@bealestreetbluescompany.com (901) 202-9114 WEBSITE: bbkings.com

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1. The iconic B.B. King’s Blues Club located at the top Beale Street 2. BB’s Famous Lip-Smacking Ribs 3. Right Mezzanine — Excellent view of our concert quality stage

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and perfect for parties of 25-40 4. Crowd favorite BBQ Pork Street Tacos   5. Lucille dining area on the main floor. Great option for groups of

50-60, along with a buffet, and easy access to the dance floor! 6. Enjoy one of our signature cocktails while enjoying the best bands in Memphis including The

BB King’s Blues Club All-Star Band (view from our mezzanine)


LAFAYETTE’S MUSIC ROOM The original Lafayette’s Music Room is still vividly remembered. During the 1970s, Lafayette’s was a key stop on the showcase circuit for up-and-coming touring artists. Lafayette’s played a significant role in launching the careers of such music superstars as Billy Joel, Big Star, KISS, Barry Manilow, J.J Cale and Leon Russell, to name a few. Today, Lafayette’s Music Room evokes that storied past to commemorate a gem of a bygone era with the best live music, delectable Southern dishes, and history entrenched in music. Lafayette’s talked-about party vibe has earned its spot in the top party venues in Memphis. Lafayette’s features a mezzanine, patio, balcony, four full-service bars, open-concept wood-oven pizza station, and a concert quality stage with state-of-the-art

light and sound system. Whether you are looking to host a small group outing or a large reception, we can customize our floor plan to best accommodate your needs. Choose from a variety of spaces and experiences from tableside views of our pizza

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chefs at work, your own private balcony overlooking the best views of Madison Avenue, to full venue buyouts where the stage is all yours. Lafayette’s private and semi-private event spaces can accommodate parties of all sizes, up to 350 guests.

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Customizable floor plan that can accommodate groups up to 350 guests All catering provided in-house, our dedicated private events team, alongside our skilled chefs, will work with you to customize the perfect menu for your guests to enjoy. BARTENDERS: Four full-service bars PRESENTATIONS Audio & Video setup and services available, along with stateof-the-art lighting. CAPACITY:

CATERING:

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION EVENT SALES DIRECTOR: Ansley Smith

asmith@bealestreetbluescompany.com (901) 202-9114 WEBSITE: Lafayettes.com

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1. The music lives on at Lafayette’s Music Room 2. Historic Lafayette’s Music Room in the heart of Overton Square just minutes from all major attractions — (Cook Convention Center, FedEx Forum, World Famous Beale Street,

National Civil Rights Museum, Sun Studios, Memphis Zoo, just to name a few!) 3. Wrap-around mezzanine with an excellent view of our concert quality stage and easy access to two full-service bars, balcony and

open-concept wood oven. 4. We are known for great music but it is best enjoyed with one of our many delicious southern-inspired offerings. You can’t go wrong with our wood-fired pizzas, the Cajun Crawdad and Wild Mush-

room & Duck are both fan favorites. 5. Balcony with a full-service bar overlooking Madison Avenue 6. Get up close and personal with the best local and touring bands in our main dining room.

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LET YOUR EVENT SOAR WITH THE COLUMNS AT ONE COMMERCE SQUARE. Located in the heart of Downtown Memphis, The Columns offers a unique Memphis flavor to events both large and small. For large events, this former bank lobby offers 20,000 square feet and 22 breathtaking Ionic-style marble columns soaring 35 feet into its open atrium in a space that can accommodate up to 1,000 guests. For smaller events, the downstairs level of The Columns offers great spaces for meetings, dinners, and breakout sessions, including the former bank’s original boardroom, which has been restored to its 1930s grandeur. The original bank vault has even been rebuilt into a meeting space. With full wi-fi service provided, The Vault and The Columns can bring a great Memphis twist to dinners and meetings. And the two rooms combine beautifully when the downstairs is used for smaller VIP or cocktail events to support a large event in the ballroom. Our venue management team will assist you along the way to ensure you have the perfect Columns experience. We offer support services including full production and A/V support, even dance floors and staging. Bar and banquet staff can

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1. Grand Ballroom 2. Vault Reception: Amy Hutchinson Photography 3. Vault Lobby: Amy Hutchinson Photography 4. Vault Door: Brook Dees Photography 5. Grand Ballroom

be at your service through our preferred caterer list. Our client list includes ALSAC-St. Jude, American Cancer Society, Memphis Apartment Association, AutoZone, The Exchange Club of Memphis, Hooks Institute, Memphis Police Association, Teach for America, and the Women’s Foundation for a Greater Memphis. We would love to be a part of your monumental event at The Columns. Call Elizabeth Baker at 901552-4732 or email at elizabeth@ resourceentertainment.com for booking information. “The Columns is the most unique downtown venue and can be transformed for any event. The dramatic columns and open space make it a perfect choice for private events and corporate events. I love planning events at The Columns because of the endless possibilities.”

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SPECIFICATIONS

2 spaces to accommodate up to 1,000 guests — Main Ballroom, Downstairs Vault, Vault Lobby, and Boardroom. CATERING: Preferred catering list from which to choose. BAR: You may provide your own alcohol for the event but must be dispensed by ABC licensed bartenders LIGHTING: 10 of the Ionic Columns have LED up-lighting with full spectrum color CAPACITY:

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION CONTACT: Elizabeth Baker, elizabeth@resourceentertainment.com or 901.552.4732 WEBSITE: TheColumnsMemphis.com

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6. Boardroom: Amy Hutchinson Photography 7. Ballroom Corporate Event

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Elvis Presley’s Memphis offers multiple event spaces to have your next special event: 1. The new Elvis Presley’s Memphis complex offers 200,000 square feet of indoor space for live music, movies, conferences, and trade shows. You can also rent the

SPECIAL PROMOTION

entire complex, including outdoor space, for an unforgettable block party feel. 2. The Grand Ballroom at The Guest House at Graceland features 10,000 square-feet of flexible meeting space. 3. The new Graceland Soundstage

allows you to create your own event setting with 20,000 square feet of space for luncheons, conferences, receptions, trade shows, live concerts, and more. 4. The Guest House Theater offers seating for 464 and features the perfect stage for live performances,


ELVIS PRESLEY’S GRACELAND AND THE GUEST HOUSE AT GRACELAND RESORT HOTEL Following the greatest expansion since it opened to the public 35 years ago, Elvis Presley’s Graceland® now offers all-new, one-of-a-kind event venues that will create a unique and unforgettable experience for your guests. Elvis Presley’s Memphis™ at Graceland, our new entertainment and exhibit complex, features 12 new Elvis exhibits and attractions which can serve as private event spaces, allowing your guests to experience Elvis’ life and career like never before. Guests can enjoy dinner and live music at Presley Motors Automobile Museum, surrounded by Elvis’ incredible collection of cars, including his iconic pink Cadillac, or enjoy drinks and views of Elvis’ legendary jumpsuits and gold and platinum awards at Elvis: The Entertainer Career Museum. Our Graceland Soundstage allows you to create your own event setting with 20,000 square feet of space for luncheons, conferences, receptions, trade shows, live concerts, and more. Enhance your guests’ experience by incorporating a private, afterhours tour of Elvis’ beloved Graceland Mansion, where guests can learn more about the personal side of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll™. 6

speakers, and movies. 5. At Presley Motors in Elvis Presley’s Memphis, guests can dine among Elvis’ automobiles, including his Stutz Blackhawk, Dino Ferrari, and his iconic Pink Cadillac. 6. Gladys’ Diner in Elvis Presley’s

The Guest House at Graceland, Graceland’s new AAA Four-Diamond resort hotel, offers extraordinary meeting, banquet, and entertainment space just steps away from Graceland Mansion and across the street from the Elvis Presley’s Memphis entertainment complex. Inspired by the same warm Southern hospitality that Elvis Presley always showed his guests, The Guest House offers more than 25,000 square feet of event space — ample room to accommodate groups of up to 1,000. Our Grand Ballroom is our largest meeting and special events space and is divisible into five separate meeting rooms that range from 4,578 square feet to a more intimate 918 square feet. In addition, we offer four additional meeting and breakout rooms, including an Executive Board Room complete with all of the tech amenities needed for presentations or brainstorming sessions — plus a 464-seat state-of-the-art theater for keynote addresses, signature presentations, private entertainment, or ceremonies.

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SPECIFICATIONS CAPACITY: Elvis Presley’s Memphis entertainment complex is 200,000 square

feet and can accommodate up to 3,000 guests. The Guest House at Graceland resort hotel offers more than 25,000 square feet of meeting and function space and can host up to 1,000. CATERING: Elvis Presley’s Memphis offers in-house catering as well as a list of approved outside caterers. The Guest House of Graceland provides in-house catering with a wide range of specialty food and beverage options. BARTENDERS: Full bar services available. PRESENTATIONS: Full-service audio and video setup and services available. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ELVIS PRESLEY’S GRACELAND: Betty Johnson, Special Events Manager,

800.238.2000, specialevents@graceland.com WEBSITE: PartyWithElvis.com THE GUEST HOUSE AT GRACELAND: Jerry Jensen, Vice President of Sales &

Marketing, 901.473.6016, jjensen@guesthousegraceland.com WEBSITE: GuestHouseGraceland.com

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Memphis offers a classic American diner experience where guests can enjoy Elvis’ favorite – peanut butter and banana sandwiches. 7. Vernon’s Smokehouse in Elvis Presley’s Memphis features authentic Memphis BBQ and classic southern home cooking.

8. If your guests need overnight accommodations, our 430 guest rooms and 20 suites provide an extraordinary hotel experience. 9. The Rock Meeting Room at The Guest House is one of four private meeting rooms available for smaller meetings or events.

© EPE. Graceland and its marks are trademarks of EPE. All Rights Reserved. Elvis Presley™ © 2017 ABG EPE IP LLC

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1. Hardin Hall Photograph: Christen Jones Photography

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2. Visitor Center Lobby Photograph: Creation Studios

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MEMPHIS BOTANIC GARDEN

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A cornerstone of our city, the Memphis Botanic Garden boasts 96 acres of breathtaking garden space. With versatile venues both large and small, the Garden can accommodate groups of 2 to 600. Whether you’re planning a team building retreat, corporate meeting, trade show, seminar, holiday party, wedding reception, or rehearsal dinner, we have a venue that fits your needs! Centrally located in the heart of East Memphis, the Memphis Botanic Garden has the perfect venue to comfortably cater to you and your guests. For larger groups and conferences, Hardin Hall can accommodate 350 guests seated at round tables with a dance floor (400 without a dance floor) and over 600 for a conference or seminar. This spacious hall has direct garden access to our Four Seasons Garden and the Hardin Hall Terrace, which can be utilized during your event. For midsized events, the Goldsmith Room can accommodate up to 150 people seated at round tables or 250 theater style. This hall has direct garden access to our stunning Sculpture Garden,

filled with locally created and donated sculptures, which can be utilized during your event. For more intimate parties and gatherings, Sara’s Place, our newest facility, is located in the heart of the Garden. Whether you are planning a meeting, seminar, or dinner parties, Sara’s place provides the perfect setting. This venue can accommodate 125 people seated at round tables and has access to the garden, allowing outdoor event flexibility. Whether your event is designed for large conferences or intimate gatherings, our rental staff will work with you to bring your vision to life, all within our scenic 96 acres of pristine gardens.

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SPECIFICATIONS HARDIN HALL

5,500 square feet

CAPACITY: 600 PRESENTATIONS: Wifi, sound system, podium, mic. GOLDSMITH

3,304 square feet

CAPACITY: 250 PRESENTATIONS: Wifi, sound system, podium, mic, 2 screens, 2 projectors. SARA’S PL ACE

2,574 square feet

CAPACITY: 125 PRESENTATIONS: Wifi, sound system, podium, mic, 1 screen, 1 projector ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: LOCATION: 750 Cherry Road, Memphis, TN 38117 CONTACT: Jennifer Savage: 901.636.4125

Katie Lipscomb: 901.636.4109 Rentals Line: 901.636.4016 EMAIL: rentals@memphisbotanicgarden.com WEBSITE: memphisbotanicgarden.com/rentals 5

3. The Four Season Lobby - Photograph: Creation Studios 4. The Visitor Center - Image courtesy of Kevin Barré Photography 5. The Live Garden - Photograph: Creation Studios

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1. Founders Park 2. Grassy Knoll 3. Legacy Building 4. Lorraine Lobby 5. Hooks-Hyde Hall (auditorium seating)

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6. Links Education & Cultural Center 7. Hooks-Hyde Hall (social event) 8. Ford Motor Company Theatre


THE NATIONAL CIVIL RIGHTS MUSEUM The National Civil Rights Museum is a national treasure which brings to life some of the most significant episodes in American history. This beautiful and historic site offers an elegant and stimulating environment for special events. The Museum is available for use by nonprofits, corporations, small businesses, organizations and individuals. The museum offers a selection of spaces to suit small to large events. Whether business, social, educational or informational, the museum is an ideal setting that resonates with guests on any occasion. Coupled with a group tour, the museum experience offers a distinctly authentic backdrop for diversity training and human resource workshops or enlightenment for educational or social organizations. Hooks-Hyde Hall is a multipurpose area that can be configured to accommodate up to 340 guests. This immaculate room is large enough to host a conference, have a lively reception, a film screening, performance, town hall, panel or a special consciousness-raising program. It can be divided with moveable walls for smaller, private groups. This room is well lit with great recessed lighting and windows for a beautiful natural light. The State-of-the-art audiovisual capabilities include two full retractable screens for any digital presentations or film screenings. The Links Education & Cultural Center and Library is a fully carpeted, colorful space with a modern design that seats up to 100 people with 20 in the library. It’s the ideal space for school groups in a classroom setting, but can also be the best fit for special events such as small parties, group meetings or private greenroom during outdoor events. It includes flat screens and AV capabilities. The ideal place for an intimate f ilm screening, lecture or discussion is the 130-seat Ford Motor Company Theater. The theater has an 18’ x 8’ accessible

stage and is fully equipped with AV capabilities and a large, floorto-ceiling screen. The museum’s State of Tennesseee Gallery typically houses its changing exhibits. At times, it is available for a special experience within an exhibit. The Atrium, in the heart of the Lorraine entrance, is not only a transitional space but a welcoming sight to behold with the monumental “Movement to Overcome” sculpture. It provides an ideal space for welcoming guests, socializing at highboys and small bars, or enjoying musical combos and hors d’oeuvres. Add some depth to any occasion by hosting an event on any of the three levels of the Legacy Building, the former boarding house. Surrounded by facts and artifacts, this historic space will add that unique touch to an event while stimulating curiosity and conversation. Looking for a beautifully meaningful space for an outdoor event? The museum façade is staged in the retro 1960s era so that it viscerally transports guests to a period of powerful change and enlightenment. Used for large- and small-scale outdoor events, the Courtyard, Founders Park and Grassy Knoll areas can accommodate thousands of event-goers and can be outfitted to match many event needs. Guests can appreciate both the downtown neighborhood vibe and the iconic backdrop of the museum. Whether during the day or under the stars at night, this area can add wonder and excitement to a concert, festival, reception, meal function and/or public forum.

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9. Open Courtyard

SPECIFICATIONS HOOKS HYDE HALL

7,500 square feet

CAPACITY: 340 PRESENTATIONS: Large, flexible floor plan, presentation A/V, staging, kitchen/prep. FEDE X ATRIUM & LOBBY

10,000 square feet

CAPACITY: 100 PRESENTATIONS: Open floorplan plus alcove. FORD MOTOR THE ATRE

10,000 square feet

CAPACITY: 130 PRESENTATIONS: Stage (8’ x 18’) full A/V with projector. LINKS EDUCATION CENTER

10,000 square feet

CAPACITY: 60 PRESENTATIONS: Classroom seating up to 50. LEGACY BUILDING

2,345 square feet

CAPACITY: 200 PRESENTATIONS: Classrooms seating. VISITOR PARKING LOT

29,700 square feet

PRESENTATIONS: 118 parking spaces or custom seating configuration. FOUNDERS PARK

9,234 square feet

PRESENTATIONS: Custom seating configuration for large event, A/V, stage rental. COURT YARD (IN FRONT OF BALCONY)

5,100 square feet

PRESENTATIONS: Custom seating configuration for large event, A/V, stage rental. GRASSY KNOLL (ABOVE LEGACY TUNNEL)

2,640 square feet

PRESENTATIONS: Custom seating configuration for medium event, A/V, stage rental. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION LOCATION: 450 Mulberry Street, Memphis, TN 38103 CONTACT: uniquespaces@civilrightsmuseum.org or 901.521.9699 WEBSITE: civilrightsmuseum.org

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1. Halloran Centre: The Halloran Centre offers more than 39,000 square feet of space to accommodate gatherings of various sizes. 2. Orpheum Theatre: Infuse your event with a dash of Broadway glamor in one of the Orpheum’s historic, elegant spaces. 3. Orpheum Theatre Auditorium: Host an unforgettable event on the very stage where generations of stars have performed. 4. Halloran Centre Lobby: The Gerber Taylor Capital Advisors Lobby offers bright modern fixtures and sleek open space, perfect for any event. 5. Orpheum Theatre Lobby: With its crystal chandeliers and sconces, antique mirrors, and an ornate cathedral ceiling, the Orpheum Theatre’s Grand Lobby exudes vintage glamour. 2

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THE ORPHEUM THEATRE AND THE HALLORAN CENTRE P ut your event center st age w it h t he Orpheum Theatre Group’s beautiful venues: the Orpheum Theatre and the Halloran Centre. Just steps away from some of Downtown’s finest hotels and attractions, the historic Orpheum Theatre is one of the Mid-South’s most celebrated venues. Your event will be timeless, complemented by ornate detail, crystal chandeliers, and gold-leaf accents. The Orpheum Theatre offers a variety of spaces for an event of any size, each with distinct 1920s appeal. From an intimate gathering of 50 to 100 in the Broadway Club to the high-ceilinged elegance of the 2300-seat auditorium, the Orpheum Theatre captures classic Memphis charm. Next door to the Orpheum, the Halloran Centre is among the newest additions to Downtown Memphis. With sleek architecture and

contemporary accents, this facility offers modern character that can’t be replicated. Let your imagination take over using flexible floor plans that can be easily adapted to suit your needs. The Halloran Centre caters to events of any size, from a 40-seat meeting in the luxurious Board Room overlooking South Main to a lavish reception for 350 in the Gerber Taylor Capital Advisors Lobby. You can also seamlessly combine rooms to maximize your guest count. Both venues offer state-ofthe-art audio/visual equipment, flexible catering options, and can arrange bar service and housekeeping on your behalf. Make your vision a reality. Explore the Orpheum Theatre Group’s event spaces online at Orpheum-Memphis.com.

“For 90 years, guests have been making memories at the corner of Main and Beale. Let us help shape yours.”

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SPECIFICATIONS CAPACITY: 10 flexible spaces available can handle from 10 to 2,300 guests PRESENTATIONS: State-of-the-art sound and lighting available ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ORPHEUM THEATRE: Joy Brown, brown@orpheum-memphis.com or

901.529.4234 HALLORAN CENTRE: Sara Adams, adams@orpheum-memphis.com or

901.238.7062 WEBSITE: Orpheum-Memphis.com

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1. The Westin Memphis Beale Street is located right in the heart of Downtown, across from the FedEx Forum, Gibson’s Guitar Factory & backs right up to the World Famous Beale Street. The Westin offers restaurants, shopping and nightlife all within walking distance.

SPECIAL PROMOTION

2. The Mississippi Ballroom (3,030 sq. ft.) set in rounds. 3. Bleu Private Wine Room is the perfect setting for rehearsal dinners, graduation parties, birthday parties and/or board meetings. 4. The Delta Boardroom overlooks the FedEx Forum and Gibson’s Guitar

Factory 5. Bleu Restaurant & Lounge offers American Fusion Cuisine with flavors from around the world. 6. Westin Guestroom overlooking the FedEx Forum 7. CHECK IN AND ROCK OUT, being the Birthplace of Rock and Roll


WESTIN MEMPHIS BEALE STREET With state-of-the-art event space offering comfort and service, The Westin Memphis Beale Street can accommodate groups of any size. Our flexible meeting facilities are made up of nine separate meeting rooms. From grand receptions in the Mississippi Ballroom to more intimate meetings in the Delta Boardroom, our expert staff will assist you with every aspect of planning. Perfect for larger corporate or social functions, the 3,000 squarefoot Mississippi Ballroom is an elegant and versatile facility. Up to 300 guests can gather inside for a seminar with large projection screens or a multi-course dinner. For smaller events, the ballroom can be divided into three separate sections, and a spacious prefunction space allows guests to mingle before the doors open. The smaller, more intimate 1,400 square-foot Tennessee Ballroom is outfitted in neutral tones and floor-to-ceiling windows that allow ample sunlight. The balcony looks out over Downtown Memphis. The Delta Boardroom is ideal for executive meetings and intimate functions. A wall of windows lets in light while affording inspiring views of the FedEx Forum and the Gibson

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Guitar Factory. Comfortable leather chairs surround a rich wood table, while a private antechamber is a convenient spot for a quick break. The Westin Memphis Beale Street at 170 Lt. George W. Lee Avenue, has 203 guest rooms and one unique form of room service: Check In and Rock Out. Guests can call the front desk and order a Gibson Custom Shop electric guitar delivered to their room with a virtual amp and headphones. You can rock out in the privacy of your hotel room and then visit the Gibson Factory and the Gibson Beale Street Showcase directly across the street. For dining, the Westin Memphis Beale Street’s chic, sophisticated ambience of Bleu Restaurant & Lounge blends with the accommodating and welcoming Memphis vibe.

SPECIFICATIONS

4 Diamond Rated, all catering provided in house offering a wide range of appetizers, entrees, and dessert options available. Our amazing chef is happy to customize a menu perfect for any event. BARTENDERS: Full Bar and or Beer/Wine options available PRESENTATIONS: Full sound mixing capabilities, include lighting and stage setups; outside vendors permitted CATERING:

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION CONTACT:

Group Sales at 901.334.5920, lorraine.chatman@westinmemphis.com

WEBSITE: Westin.com/BealeStreet

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we offer a whole new kind of room service, courtesy of Gibson Guitar. Guests can call the front desk and order a Gibson Guitar of their choice to play in their room during their stay. 8. The Mississippi Ballroom (3,030 sq. ft.) set classroom style 9. The Tennessee Ballroom (1,400

sq. ft.) offers floor to ceiling windows and a balcony overlooking the FedEx Forum and Beale Street. 10. The Tennessee Ballroom (1,400 sq. ft.) is perfect for meetings, receptions, rehearsal dinners and/or brunch. 11. Bleu Lounge is where locals come

to meet friends, where professionals come for a drink after work, and where visitors go to take a break from the fast pace of Beale Street.

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V E N T U R E

C A P I T A L

Mr. Smith Comes to Town

Memphis-born biz whiz looks to boost local enterprises. B Y

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Get Tim Smith wound up and his thoughts will come tumbling out — he’s a self-confessed rambler — but stay with him, because his musings are purposeful and intriguing. That’s one reason he was a hit at a recent Start Co. entrepreneurial networking event. The Memphis-born, San Francisco-based venture expert huddled with startup hopefuls downtown in a series of speed-dating consults, dispensing the savvy he’s picked up from, as he says, “eight hard-won companies and a couple of good exits,” plus an entrepreneur’s passion for accelerating accelerators. Smith is with Bee Partners, a venture capital team that offers investment and mentoring to entrepreneurs. The “Bee” signifies how the partners work collectively. But to really stretch a metaphor, it also describes Smith who, in his endeavors over the years, has collected enough pollen and nectar to give an entrepreneurial hive enough honey for success. He comes back to Memphis regularly to see his parents, Dolph and Jesse Smith, but hadn’t really been involved in local business ventures until he connected with Start Co. CEO and founder Eric Mathews and president 56 |

Andre Fowlkes when they were visiting in California. “I was hugely impressed with what they were doing here,” Smith says, and that counts for something since for six years he’s been involved with SkyDeck, created by the University of California, Berkeley (his alma mater), which is a campus startup accelerator for innovative companies. So Smith knows a thing or two about starting and sustaining businesses. But then it was always meant to be. “I was fated to be an entrepreneur kind of genetically,” he says. “When I left Memphis a million

years ago, the plan was to go to a real school and come back and take over Memphis. My Central High School GPA was less than 2.0 — I was the worst student on the planet because I was already starting companies at 15, selling kites of all things. I got into Berkeley, and I’m still not sure how I did that, but it was an amazing experience, as you can imagine, for this hometown boy. I fully expected to come back here and be a Henry Turley or whatever, but it didn’t work out, ’cause I got so transfixed by what was the eco-system out on the West Coast. It was so strong, everything there in place to do whatever you wanted. That was 30 years ago.” He put together companies that dealt with tech design, development, marketing, large-scale data center management, and interactivity before interactivity was cool. So was Smith a genius at the right place at the right time? He was no genius and he’ll tell you why: “Most entrepreneurs seek others that are smarter than them,” he says. “That’s why I tout that 2.0 GPA, right? ’Cause I’m a great cheerleader, but I ain’t the brightest light in the room. But I love putting those people together and buying the beer and the pizza, and making them talk, and translating, and saying, ‘What can we build?’ And encouraging them to think bigger.” These, you see, are his people. Smith got involved volunteering at SkyDeck because he wanted to say thank you. “Entrepreneurs could come right off campus from engineering, from

PHOTOGRAPH BY JON W. SPARKS

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the labs, from Haas Business School, and they can go into this accelerator,” he says. “We have something like 120 advisors there now who work pro-bono, like I did. I was doing a little angel investing, meeting companies that are kind of looking for deals, but it was really about giving back to the school. And I just loved it ’cause it’s a constant stream of absolutely fascinating, brilliant people. My people. Not the people who work all their life as the Senior VP in the bank. Or management consulting. That all seemed a little too predictable for me. These are the crazy ones, as Steve Jobs says. The ones that really screw things up, put a dent in the universe.” And then he got to thinking where else he might mine for talent. “Is there anything we could do in Memphis, I wondered? I wanted to go home a little bit and I’ve got more energy, I can give back, ’cause I look at Memphis as another SkyDeck opportunity.” He cultivated his contact with Mat hews a nd ”If you can build Fowlkes, getting loyalty in your team, involved, meeting more people, you can make miracles. and looking at a They don’t teach that couple of investin business school.” ments relatively closely. “So long story short,” Smith says, “I don’t know what I’m doing here, except fishing around.” But he chooses where he fishes carefully. “Who’s investing in what here?,” he asks. “What are the big power hitters doing strategically? What’s FedEx doing? What is AutoZone doing? Where are they placing their bets? And is this an eco-system that we can potentially play in? It’s only been the past three or four years I’ve been coming back looking at Memphis through a different lens, right? What I’m starting to see is investors, startups, entrepreneurial, accelerator, eco-system. I see so much potential as we see in the Bay Area in a corporate support entrepreneurship either through funding or in kind. Or pilot programs, or something like that has been so effective in general, I think, that I’d love to learn more about how that’s happening here.” Smith was talking and listening at Start Co.’s “Start-Q” that put founders and business leaders with startup teams. And what did he find out? First of all, the power of symbiosis:

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“Every team I talked to, it was about, ‘Man, there’s three companies in my portfolio I’d like to hook you up with ’cause the two of you working together would be incredible.” He finds a huge benefit of going to accelerators like Start-Q is pattern recognition, crucial to investing. “There’s a tendency for these teams to go off in their corner — this happens at SkyDeck and I rail against this — you go and you burnish, and you burnish, and you build up this soft cost of your investment, and how beautiful your little toy is, and you come out on demo day and reveal it to the world after this gestation period, and you’re horrified that no one believes, no one “You just have to figure gets it. I teach a out how to inspire rapid prototyping class at Cal people, give them and at SkyDeck. permission to break Build it, make something, the things, and not punish roughest thing them for that. And if you can. Minimal you can build loyalty viable product prototype. Get it in your team, you can out on the street, make miracles.” and start getting the ‘no’s’ daily. That’s the hardest thing in the world to do because entrepreneurship is a thousand no’s. And maybe a yes. If I came here and worked, one of the first things I would do is, we’re gonna start making stuff day one.” Smith also teaches how to build out a team, motivate it, and be a resource magnet. “I’ve hired hundreds of people accidentally,” he says. “And there’s no art to that. There’s no science. You just have to figure out how to inspire people, give them permission to break things, and not punish them for that. And if you can build loyalty in your team, you can make miracles. They don’t teach that in business school.” Much of what he wants emerging entrepreneurs to understand is to think bigger. “What’s your dream here?” he’ll ask. “If it’s a $15 million or $20 million company, you’re not looking hard enough. You’re not thinking big enough. You’re not busting out of this territory. How do you become a hundred million dollar company? What would that take? And they’re like, ‘Oh, that’s just crazy.’ No, that’s what you need to be thinking about. And you should think about it. Let’s make this exciting.” Likewise, Smith wants Memphis to think bigger. “You have permission to think bigger, permission to raise more, and we’re a little bit tentative and cautious here. Now if there’s anything I could change here it’s to make Memphis like Atlanta or Austin, much more aggressive on the domestic world stage. Let’s just get out there.”

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C O M M U N I T Y

P A R T N E R S H I P

Animal Instincts Hollywood Feed collaborates with All 4s Rescue League

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Hollywood Feed’s Kayla McKeown holds Pippa, a 6-month-old Boston Terrier she rescued. A partnership between the retail chain and the nonprofit All 4s Rescue League, founded by Suzy Hollenbach (right), allows pets like Pippa to get doghouses, food, and supplies.

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY HOLLYWOOD FEED

Successful partnerships between nonprofit organizations and for-profit businesses are based on mutual benefit. Sometimes the connection between nonprofit and company is perfectly natural, as is the case with Hollywood Feed and All 4s Rescue League. Both organizations have a passion for animals and exist to improve their well-being. “The missions were very much aligned,” says Kayla McKeown, event and rescue group coordinator for Hollywood Feed. “Both organizations focus on community outreach in order to make a difference in the lives of animals.” Hollywood Feed offers a wide selection of natural and holistic, American-made pet food and premium pet products. The company supports local rescues and the partnership with All 4s Rescue League came out of the rescue group being a customer of Hollywood Feed. In February 2017, All 4s became an official 501(c)(3) organization and Hollywood Feed formalized

animal rescue organizations. We’re always doing our best to assist in specific rescue needs when necessary, like flea and tick control, as well as providing bedding, doghouses, and food.” “Our collaborative efforts include working on behalf of the homeless animal population, as well as addressing overpopa partnership with them by ulation and hunger,” says Suzy supporting the rescue organiHollenbach, founder and direczation with in-store adoption tor of All 4s. “These endeavors events, food and supply donaare ongoing, year-round. Unlike tions, and event sponsorships.  many rescue “Animals groups, All 4s is are not just our not an intake resbusiness, they We go to all parts of cue organization, have our hearts town to offer assistance meaning we are and they are our not foster based. passion,” says through our doghouse through a McKeown. “We program, which provides Instead, grass-roots, neighhave approxifree doghouses, flea and borhood-based mately 70 stores initiative we offer across the tick medications, food, support to pet Southeast, and and other pet supplies. owners. For examwork with more ple, we go to all parts of town than 170 animal rescue groups to offer assistance through companywide. In the Greater our doghouse program, which Memphis area, that’s at least 10

provides free doghouses, flea and tick medications, food, and other pet supplies. Also, we offer no-cost spay and neuter procedures for qualifying low-income pet owners, and we assist with transportation to participating veterinary clinics.” The nonprofit also educates pet owners about local ordinances regarding pet ownership. Hollenbach says, “We are also able to hold in-store adoptions and other events that contribute to our fundraising efforts. Some of those proceeds support our TNR [Trap, Neuter, and Release] program for feral cats to impact the problem of overpopulation.” Since this collaboration began, Hollenbach says about 200 dogs and cats have been spayed or neutered, and more than 30 pet owners have been provided with doghouses, straw for winter insulation, and pet supplies. “We believe that philanthropy is essential to building and sustaining our place in our communities,” says McKeown. “Our goal is to help people help animals, and that also includes educating others about the need for support for our outreach efforts. Through our collaborative efforts, Hollywood Feed and All 4s hope to lead by example and educate people in Memphis about the plight of the animals in need so that we can continue to expand our community outreach.” For more information: hollywoodfeed.com and all4srescue.com.

AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018 | INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM |

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S M A L L

B U S I N E S S

One and Only BBQ

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Katzen takes this little piggy to market. B Y

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Alan Katzen

The waitress clinked ceramic plates of pork shoulder, smoked turkey, brisket, potato salad, and three smoked jumbo chicken wings on the table. Alan Katzen, co-owner of One and Only BBQ, and his director of operations, Mike Corder, cast their eyes over the feast, both stopping at the wing plate. One wing looked big enough to fit the “jumbo” billing, but the other two looked like skinny, distant cousins. How could this happen? Were all the chicken wings in the delivery this small? This wouldn’t do. They would have to double up and give customers two for one to honor the commitment to “jumbo.” A staff member went to check. She quickly brought out a couple of plump wings and said the rest of them were like these two. 60 |

The smaller wings were an anomaly. Whew. The feast resumed. It’s part of the “guests first” culture that One and Only owners believe shows they live up to their name. When it rained recently, Corder stood at the door with four umbrellas. When a car pulled up he rushed out to give everyone an umbrella. Others were escorted back. When a customer wrote a negative complaint on Yelp about her experience, Katzen contacted her within minutes to apologize and sent a gift card. When a customer called after his drive-through order was incorrect, the restaurant refunded his money and an employee delivered the entire order

to the customer’s house. poor in a barbecue city?” In six years, Katzen and his Katzen remembered that about partner Joel Banes turned a a year earlier his wife, Millie, told struggling four-table barbecue him he should buy One and Only. restaurant on Kirby Parkway into Katzen laughed. But not this time. a three-restaurant, powerhouse “They weren’t doing very well,” chain that runs and ranks with Katzen says. “They were trying to survive. If you want to be a the big hogs of the locally competgrowing successful business, you itive barbecue restaurant indushave to manage that business try. With smartphones and social to thrive.” media, reviews are instantaneous He a n d B a n e s — sometimes while bought the assets, the a meal is being eaten. most valuable being Opinions on apps such “Our guests pay a handful of recipes as Yelp or TripAdvisor our bills,” he handwritten on index can impact the traffic cards. It included a to a restaurant or put says. “They are sauce with a base of them on the map. Katwhy we do our Heinz 57. Katzen says zen constantly watchthey convinced one of es to see how One and jobs. Everything the previous owners, Only ranks, which he is about them.” Charles Quarles, to says is consistently in stay on as the restaurant manager the top five with mostly 4.5 star and to help decipher the recipes. ratings. That puts him squarely “Charles was our ace in the into the market share of the reignhole,” Katzen says. “He was part ing barbecue restaurants such as of the ownership team that creCorky’s, Rendezvous, Bar-B-Q ated the recipes. We had no inShop, Germantown Commissary, terest in anything but how they Central, Payne’s, and Interstate. prepped, smoked, and prepared “We’re like the fly that keeps landing on his food,” Katzen their food.” They eventually broke jokes about Corky’s co-owner down the ingredients of Heinz Barry Pelts. 57 and got the mix right so they But allegiance to other restaucould have their own ingredients made for their restaurants. rants didn’t stop Katzen from seeing room at the table for One and They renovated the 987-squareOnly. He says the original owners foot restaurant, created a logo created a great menu, but they that looks like a tattoo, doubled didn’t have a lot of capital. The the number of tables to eight, and business struggled with a small added a few items to a menu such staff that seemed to be always as Brunswick stew and green overwhelmed. beans. And they added a dessert Katzen and Banes experienced to the menu: Millie’s Banana Pudthat firsthand as customers. It ding. He talked his wife into uswas a poker game that Katzen ing her family recipe. polled his friends to find out “I made eight of them a day,” their favorite barbecue restauMillie says. “Four in the mornrants. All the heavy hitters were ing, four at night.” Last year, the named. Katzen and Banes chose chain sold 7,000 bowls of Millie’s One and Only. Banana Pudding. “I thought these guys had the Just like the ingredients for the best ribs in the city,” Banes said. pudding, everything that can be “But their service was really poor. is processed fresh in house. LetHow could they have something tuce and strawberries for the salso good and their service be so ads are chopped daily. The shoul-

PHOTOGRAPH BY JON W. SPARKS

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ders smoke for 12 hours a day. The business at 1779 Kirby exploded. A year later, One and Only opened its second location at 567 Perkins Extended. About a year ago, the owners constructed a freestanding building at 163 Timber Creek in Cordova. A few months ago, Costco began carrying One and Only gift cards. Katzen says in addition to a menu that stretches well beyond pulled pork, the success can also be attributed to the “guests first” philosophy that he and the managers created six years ago. “Our guests pay our bills,” he says. “They are why we do our jobs. Everything is about them.” It’s something he learned in a lifetime in the restaurant industry. A native Memphian, Katzen, 65, got his first job at age 14 as a dishwasher for Cafe St. Clair on Old Summer Avenue. He worked at Steak & Ale, where he met Corder. After college, Katzen was recruited to work for a company on the West Coast. He was in charge of opening new restaurants around the country, including Alaska, and getting them operating smoothly. “I worked in 22 cities in 21 years,” Katzen says. He moved back to Memphis to be closer to his mother who was in her 70s. He spent the next 18 years as the general manager of American Cafe in Germantown, leaving shortly before it closed in 2012. With that two decades of experience, Katzen also learned the importance of paying employees well (there are 175 of them) and finding ways to make them appreciate their jobs. One and Only pays managers a high wage, Katzen says. They get two days off a week and work around 47 hours a week. Most restaurant managers work 60 to 70 hours a week and may get one day off, Katzen says. Employees who work 30 hours a week are provided health, dental, and vision insurance. The company accommodates all requests for time off before the schedule is written. One and Only also provides an app that staff can use if they can’t work their shift. Other staff members can pick it up or swap with them. “If no one can work it, then I will,” Corder says. “We’ll make it work.” As for the future, Katzen is pondering opening a restaurant in Southaven eventually. But he doesn’t have plans to ship his barbecue. “As soon as it leaves the heat, it goes straight on to a plate and out to a customer,” Katzen says. “That’s when it’s best.”

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P O W E R

P L A Y E R S

Medical: Healthcare Administration Doctors and nurses aren’t the only ones keeping our hospitals running, and the people in the business of saving lives aren’t always the ones wearing stethoscopes. The following POWER PLAYERS are responsible for making healthcare delivery run smoothly, so that doctors can do their jobs and you can get the care you need. Administrators make sure hospitals and clinics operate efficiently and provide appropriate medical care to patients. While doctors strive to keep the blood flowing and the heart beating, the hospital administrator is doing his or her job keeping the hospital alive and healthy. These individuals also have their fingers on the pulse of change and growth in the healthcare industry and the need to expand, raise money for such expansions, and purchase the most state-of-the-art equipment for every area of the hospital. MERI ARMOUR President, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital. M.S.N. and M.B.A., Case Western Reserve University Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing and CWRU Weatherhead School of Management. Led Le Bonheur to become one of the nation’s Best Children’s Hospitals as named by U.S. News & World Report. Board member, Urban Child Institute, Tennessee Women’s Association, UTHSC Research and Technology Development, Hospital Wing, Children’s Hospital Alliance of Tennessee, Memphis Research Consortium. KIM AVERY Administrator and general counsel, Mid-South Pulmonary Specialists, P.C. B.B.A., International Business and Economics; M.B.A. Healthcare Economics, J.D., U of M. Clinic one of largest pulmonary and critical care practices in the Southeast, specializing in the treatment of patients with respiratory illnesses as well as sleep medicine and intensivist services. With practice for 18 years. Also consults for primary care, other specialties. KENNARD BROWN Executive vice chancellor and COO, UTHSC. Assistant professor, College of Pharmacy; Department of Surgery, College of Medicine; chief administrative officer, UTHSC campus. Ph.D., Health Science Administration, UTHSC; J.D., U of M. Fellow, American College of Healthcare Executives. Previous director, Office of Equity and Diversity, Office of Employee Relations, Center on Health Disparities.

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REGINALD COOPWOOD President and CEO, Regional One Health. Board-certified surgeon. Immediate past chair, Tennessee Hospital Association Board, American Hospital Association’s Governing Council on Metropolitan Hospitals. Chair, MidSouth e-Health Alliance, Memphis Division, March of Dimes. Member, March of Dimes Tennessee State Chapter, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Board. Recipient, 2010 Individual Leader in Health, Community Health Charities of Tennessee; 2013 Tennessee Hospital Association Diversity Champion; 2014 CEO of the Year Award, Inside Memphis Business. PAUL DEPRIEST Executive vice president and COO, Baptist Memorial Health Care. B.S., Eastern Kentucky University; M.D., University of Kentucky College of Medicine; completed residency in obstetrics and gynecology, fellowship in gynecological oncology at University of Kentucky Medical Center. Master’s, healthcare management, Harvard School of Public Health. Named one of the five “Top Doctors for Women” in the South by Women’s Health magazine. Board member, MERI (Medical Education and Research Institute), Select Health Alliance. JAMES DOWNING President and CEO, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Research focused on improving treatment of childhood cancers. Instrumental in launching Pediatric Cancer Genome Project—made TIME’s 2012 list of top 10 medical breakthroughs. 2013 finalist on TIME’s 100 most influential people in the world list. Elected to Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. Architect of six-year plan to expand St. Jude clinical care and research programs in Memphis and around the world.

DEBBIE EDDLESTONE CEO, Stern Cardiovascular Foundation. B.A., Education, LSU. Practice offers comprehensive approach to wellness and preventive medicine with 11 MidSouth locations. Partnered with Baptist Memorial Health Care in 2011; 2012 merged with Memphis Heart Clinic. Board member, American Heart Association, MGMA, National Association for Professional Women, Medaxiom. Named to Memphis Business Journal’s Superwomen in Business. 2017 CEO of the Year, Inside Memphis Business. AUDREY GREGORY CEO, St. Francis Healthcare. Responsible for overseeing all areas of operations at Saint Francis Hospital-Memphis, Saint Francis Hospital-Bartlett. Master’s and bachelor’s, nursing; Master’s, Healthcare Administration, Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah, Georgia; Ph.D., Global Leadership, concentrating in corporate and organizational management, Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida. BILL GRIFFIN Executive vice president and CFO, Baptist Memorial Health Care. Bachelor of Accountancy, University of Mississippi. CPA; chartered global management accountant. Fellow, Healthcare Financial Management Association; HFMA-certified healthcare financial professional. Board member, Christ Community Health Services, Medical Education Research Institute, Mississippi True. JOHN GROSS Practice administrator, Shea Clinic. B.A., LSU. Comprehensive ENT medical practice and surgery center specializing in treatment of chronic hearing and balance disorders. Member, Leadership Council, Association of Otolaryngology Administrators. Elected National Program chairperson, AOA Annual Institute in San Francisco. Starkey Foundation 2013 Director’s Award for providing outstanding help to the hearing impaired within the Memphis community. Starkey Foundation 2014 Millennium Award in recognition of those whose lives embody their mission of “So the World May Hear.”

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DAVID HARANO CEO, Gastro One. B.B.A., Finance, Emory University. M.B.A. and M.H.A., Georgia State. Former chair, Medical Group Management Association’s Gastroenterology Administration Assembly. Board member, Preventing Colorectal Cancer. Chairman, Colorectal Cancer Committee, Tennessee Cancer Coalition. Member, Tennessee Group Practice Coalition, Memphis Medical Group Management Association, Baptist Healthcare Services Group Advisory Board, MetroCare Physicians Practice Advisory Forum. ALISA R. HAUSHALTER Named director of Shelby County Health Department in 2016. Leads local public health efforts to promote, protect, and improve health in Shelby County. The department provides public health services including environmental, laboratory, infectious disease, immunization, child health, health promotion and public health emergency response. SCHD is responsible for inmate health and providing medical examiner services. Alumna and faculty member of University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Nursing. On boards of the United Way of the Mid-South, Community Foundation, and ACE Awareness Task Force. Received 2017 John W. Runyan Jr. Community Nursing Leader Award, the 2015 Nemours’ Leonard L. Berry Award for Service Excellence Finalist, the 2014 Nemours Transformational Nursing Leader Award, and the 2012 Middle Tennessee March of Dimes Public Health Nurse of the Year Award. GEORGE HERNANDEZ CEO, Campbell Clinic Orthopaedics; executive director, The Campbell Foundation. 2012 Large Business of the Year, Germantown Area Chamber of Commerce. Board member, Germantown Area Chamber of Commerce. Member, City of Germantown Planning Commission. Germantown Police Department Reserve. Committee chairman, American Academy of Orthopaedic Executives. Member, Board of Examiners, Healthcare Financial Management Association. JOHN A LEWIS CEO, Semmes-Murphey Clinic, which offers neurosurgery, neurology, physiatry, pain management; serves all major medical centers in the Memphis area. M.B.A., Christian Brothers University. CPA, CITP, Certified IT Project Manager; fellow, American College of Medical Practice Executives. Member,

Tennessee Association of CPAs, American Institute of CPAs, Medical Group Management Association. Memphis Heart Ball chair. Senior Warden, Church of the Holy Communion. Board member, American Heart Association, Shelby County Books from Birth (Imagination Library), Neurosurgery Executives Resource Value & Education Society. JASON LITTLE President and CEO, Baptist Memorial Health Care. Former executive vice president and COO, Baptist; CEO Baptist Memphis, Baptist Golden Triangle, Baptist Collierville. Recipient, Early Career Healthcare Executive Award, American College of Healthcare Executives. Board member, Greater Memphis Chamber, Healthcare Institute, Memphis Tomorrow, Tennessee Hospital Association, New Memphis. Industry Council, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. BETTY SUE MCGARVEY President, Baptist College of Health Sciences. Ph.D., Nursing, University of Alabama at Birmingham. Recipient, Distinguished Alumni Award, UTHSC School of Nursing, U of M Lowenberg School of Nursing, Baptist College of Health Sciences. Member, Memphis Rotary Club. Board member, Leadership Memphis. ERICH MOUNCE CEO, The West Clinic and West Cancer Center. B.S., Business, University of Southern California. B.S. and M.H.A. in Health Administration, California State University, Northridge. Previously, CEO of Lakeside Systems/ Lakeside Comprehensive Healthcare in Glendale, California. Developed DC Healthcare Alliance, a public-private partnership to provide care for the underserved Washington, D.C., population. Helped to formulate a three-way collaboration between Methodist, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, and The West Clinic to create the West Cancer Center, an innovative effort to combine expertise and provide new research and access to Phase I through Phase III clinical trials.

LEWIS REICH President, Southern College of Optometry. Graduate, University of California at Berkeley. Completed residency in low vision rehabilitation, Pennsylvania College of Optometry. Vice chair, Memphis Medical District Collaborative. Secretary, Board of Directors, National Board of Examiners in Optometry. Chair, Academy’s Maintenance of Fellowship Committee. Fellow, American Academy of Optometry. Former chair, Optometry Admissions Test Committee, Chief Academic Officers, OptomCAS committee. Research funded by National Eye Institute, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. STEVE SCHWAB Chancellor, University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC). Internationally recognized physician and researcher in kidney disease. Led UTHSC to position as one of region’s largest healthcare providers and state’s largest healthcare educator with major campus and practice locations in Memphis, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Nashville. Board member, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, UT Medical Center (Knoxville), Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, Saint Thomas Health System (Nashville). MARK SWANSON CEO, Baptist Medical Group/Baptist Memorial Healthcare. B.S., Old Dominion University; M.D., Eastern Virginia Medical School. M.S., Healthcare Management, Harvard School of Public Health. Pediatric residency training at U.S. Naval Hospital in Portsmouth, VA. Formerly served Baptist as chief quality officer after joining in 2014. MICHAEL O. UGWUEKE President and CEO, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare. B.S., Shaw University; M.P.H., Emory; D.H.A., South Carolina. 2012 Modern Healthcare “Top 25 Minority Executives.” Fellow, American College of Healthcare Executives. Member, National Association of Health Services Executives. Former board member, Memphis Academy of Health Sciences, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Memphis, American Heart Association Greater Southeast Area.

AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018 | INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM |

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F R O M

T H E

A R C H I V E S

The Crane Company

A former plumbing firm’s “sub-branch” gets new life as Class-A office space downtown. • • • B Y

VA N C E

L A U D E R D A L E

This sturdy but handsome building at 254 Court Avenue began life more than a century ago as the “sub-branch” of a national heating and plumbing supply company. That firm, as you probably surmised, was the Crane Company, still in business today (though not in Memphis), producing residential and commercial plumbing products. In fact, thanks to my pal, Julie Ray, who loaned me a rare book, The Autobiography of Richard Teller Crane, published in 1912, I know a good deal about the early days of this company. I won’t give away the whole story here — you’ll have to find your own copy of Crane’s book for that — but Crane was born in 1832 in Paterson, New Jersey. At a young age, he writes, “I possessed considerable natural mechanical tendency, for I found much pleasure in devising mechanical contrivances, such as simple machines operated by water wheels, and I also made sleds, boats, balls, and bats.” Crane never mentions attending school. At age 9 he began working in a cotton mill and later at a tobacco factory. As a teenager, he gained employment in a brass foundry owned by his uncle in Brooklyn, and from there he took a succession of other jobs that allowed him to employ his skills as 64 |

a mechanic and machinist. In 1855, he formed his own company in New York, the R.T. Crane Brass and Bell Foundry. Within a few years, the company expanded to include the manufacture of all sorts of things: pipes, pumps, tools, fans, fire hydrants, radiators, even elevators. In the late 1880s, Crane began the construction of various regional sales “sub-branch” offices around the country. The first opened in 1886 in Los Angeles, followed by San Francisco (1891), Oakland (1898), Portland (1894), and almost 40 more. The Memphis branch was established in 1904, and the Autobiography contains a nice illustration of the building when it opened, along with these details: “The store is a fireproof building precisely 87 feet frontage by 100 feet deep. The remainder of this lot is occupied by a one-story annex. This branch also has another lot 74 x 74 feet, on which is a warehouse.” Richard Crane died in 1912. In his Autobiography, he admits that he had only a “fairly good knowledge of brass foundry

Group, based in Montreal, Canawork, knew something of the da, purchased the dormant propbrass finishing trade, and was erty and began a top-to-bottom only a fair machinist. I had a very renovation, replacing the lightlimited education, possessed no ing, HVAC, and elevabusiness experience, and was quite defitors, and repairing the cient in the qualities old brickwork. The inof a good salesman.” terior has been transNevertheless, he formed into modern succeeded, he wrote, offices, which have because “I did, howbeen leased to lawever, possess considyers, designers, artists, erable foresight and and other small firms. ingenuity as well as Many of these offices reasoning power, and share common spaces was full of enthusilike conference rooms asm, energy, and deand breakrooms. In 1855, Richard termination.” So much “We try to idenlike the Lauderdales tify companies that Teller Crane in that regard! we think will work formed his own As you can see, well together,” says company, the R.T. Adam Cutler, compathe building has survived more than 100 Crane Brass and ny president. “There’s years and still looks a g reat v ibrancy Bell Foundry. The here right now.” as good as new. It ser ved the Crane The building even Memphis branch Company until 1982, includes a full-scale was established when Crane closed mock trial room, for in 1904. many of its branchuse by attorneys and es. After that, 254 Court became film production companies. Anhome to Memphis Hospital Serother special feature is the Cutler vice and Surgical Association, Crane Gallery, operated by Adand later the Golden Shield Life am’s wife, Marina Cutler. “The Insurance Company moved in. In idea is to enrich the tenants’ enrecent years, it stood empty, and vironment,” he says, “while profollowing a 2001 renovation, the moting and introducing artists to 50,000-square-foot building was people who might not otherwise taken over by creditors. visit a gallery or art show.” In 2017, the Cutler Property The building has been “under the radar” far too long, says Cutler. “We are proud to bring it back into the spotlight, making it a downtown destination for tenants and visitors alike.”

The Crane branch as it looked in 1904.

INSIDE MEMPHIS BUSINESS.COM | AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018

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Inside Memphis Business, Aug/Sept 2018  

On the Convention Center's future, Graceland Revisited, 2018 Meeting Guide, new directions at MEM.

Inside Memphis Business, Aug/Sept 2018  

On the Convention Center's future, Graceland Revisited, 2018 Meeting Guide, new directions at MEM.