Memphis Flyer 5/30/2024

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Stay Cool


got your summer covered with cool things to do, people to
and places to go.
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Managing Editor



Associate Editor


CHRIS MCCOY Film and TV Editor

ALEX GREENE Music Editor



Contributing Columnists


CARRIE BEASLEY Senior Art Director

CHRISTOPHER MYERS Advertising Art Director

NEIL WILLIAMS Graphic Designer



Warehouse and Delivery Manager


KENNETH NEILL Founding Publisher

JERRY D. SWIFT Advertising Director Emeritus

THE MEMPHIS FLYER is published weekly by Contemporary Media, Inc., P.O. Box 1738, Memphis, TN 38101 Phone: (901) 521-9000 Fax: (901) 521-0129


ANNA TRAVERSE FOGLE Chief Executive O cer

LYNN SPARAGOWSKI Controller/Circulation Manager

JEFFREY GOLDBERG Chief Revenue Officer

MARGIE NEAL Chief Operating Officer

KRISTIN PAWLOWSKI Digital Services Director


and Accounting Assistant

It didn’t behave like anything you had ever imagined. e wind tore at the trees, the rain fell for days slant and hard. e back of the hand to everything. I watched the trees bow and their leaves fall and crawl back into the earth. As though, that was that. is was one hurricane I lived through, the other one was of a di erent sort, and lasted longer. en

I felt my own leaves giving up and falling. e back of the hand to everything. But listen now to what happened to the actual trees; toward the end of that summer they pushed new leaves from their stubbed limbs. It was the wrong season, yes, but they couldn’t stop. ey looked like telephone poles and didn’t care. And a er the leaves came blossoms. For some things there are no wrong seasons. Which is what I dream of for me. — Mary Oliver, “Hurricane”

is summer won’t be shaping up to much for me. Still recovering from an April fall and subsequent broken bones, I’m aching and restless — and won’t be able to walk with both feet again for another month or more. I’ve learned to navigate the house in a rolling walker/chair — although my poor door frames have su ered. Any outings (once or twice a week for doctor appoint ments and/or my sanity) involve the use of a wheelchair, and people stare with the awkward, “Poor thing,” or the impatient, “Could you hurry up and get out of my way?” For the most part, recovery reminds me of the Covid lockdowns, stuck in my home for my safety — proper healing doesn’t happen standing up with such an injury. It’s given me an intimate look at life with a physical disability — the frustration of not being able to do certain tasks on your own, feeling helpless, trapped in your body with its limitations.

My 34-year-old brother KC has lived his life in a wheelchair, at the mercy of cerebral palsy — unable to do much for himself aside from grasping nger foods or a drink straw from his lap tray and pulling them to his mouth. Of course, I’ve thought about this through the years — when he asks what I’ve been up to, where I’ve gone, what I ate, who I saw. He’s always been deeply inquisitive and incredibly positive, but there’s always a strange guilt behind my answers knowing he’s not able to get up and experience the world in the ways that I can. Bound since birth to that life.

For the past 45 days, I’ve had a mere glimpse into it. And rain has fallen for me, blinding at times — my mind frantic and full with all the things I cannot do. Wasting away in bed — my leg elevated, required rest — waiting, waiting, waiting. A backhand to life as I knew it, knocked down by my own sort of hurricane. Fortunately, time will make me whole again, I remind myself. Not unlike the trees’ rebirth a er violent storms tear away their leaves and limbs — my own stubbed limb, my miraculous body which knows what to do, slowly mends. Toward the end of the summer, I, too, will blossom again — my cheeks wet with silver linings and dreams.

Shara Clark shara@memphis

National Newspaper Association Association of Alternative Newsmedia NEWS & OPINION THE FLY-BY - 4 POLITICS - 8 FINANCE - 9 AT LARGE - 11 COVER STORY “STAY COOL” BY FLYER STAFF - 12 WE RECOMMEND - 15 MUSIC - 16 AFTER DARK - 17 CALENDAR - 19 NY TIMES CROSSWORD - 21 WE SAW YOU - 22 ARTS - 23 BOOKS - 24 FOOD - 25 ASTROLOGY - 27 FILM - 28 CLASSIFIEDS - 30 LAST WORD - 31 OUR 1840TH ISSUE 05.30.24

THE fly-by

MEM ernet

Memphis on the internet.


e MEMernet buzzed about a guy walking around Crosstown with a mattress attached to his back. But no one really knew what was going on. Now we do!

Musician Nick Black dreamed up the mattress rig and took it for a spin to promote his new single “Future Me’s Problem.”


e Memphis subreddit piled on contempt for that weird investment company … or whatever … that tried and failed to sue Riley Keough … for something … in a move that would have put Graceland on the auction block. (Big h/t to e Daily Memphian for breaking the story.)

Top comment, however, goes to u/erichsommer, to whom it was clear that the investment rm “ain’t never caught a rabbit.”


Enigma Labs has launched an app to capture UFO/UAP sightings. With new reports from users and some publicly available data, the company shows 4,028 UFO sightings for Tennessee since 2018. Knoxville leads the way with 251 sightings reported. Memphis is a close second with 239.

Questions, Answers + Attitude


Zoo, Guns, & Level Up

A $250M glow-up at Memphis Zoo, teachers can’t pack heat, and a new bar/arcade for South Main.


e Memphis Zoo plans to invest $250 million over the next 20 years on a comprehensive campus plan to “fortify our reputation as a world-class zoo.”

Zoo president and CEO Matt ompson announced the plan in an email sent last Monday to zoo members and community stakeholders. at email came with a link to a survey seeking opinions to guide the planning process.

“As we look to the next twenty years and beyond, we seek to invest upwards of $250 million to reimagine this home for wildlife, to unlock opportunities for animal care and conservation, and strengthen our position as a community amenity through guest education and enhancement,” ompson wrote. “ is comprehensive campus plan aims to improve outdated priority areas across our campus and will create world-class animal exhibits and unforgettable family memories for decades to come.”


Ryan Marsh is owner/operator of Secret Level Up.

on the scope, leadership, timing, and key messaging of a potential major fundraising campaign for the rst phase of these e orts.


e plan calls for general infrastructure improvements but will focus on these exhibits: Great Lawn and Stingray (coming in 2025), Africa, Penguins, Oceans to Forests Journey, Nature Adventure and Ambassadors, Weird and Wonderful, and South America.

e rst exhibit set for improvement is the African Veldt, home to “some of our most iconic and loved species, the African elephants and gira es.” e plan could increase habitat space there by four times and cost $75 million.

“ e existing facilities are dated and the habitat provides insu cient space for new and improved levels of care for our elephants, gira es, rhinos, hyenas, and mixed hoofstock,” ompson said. “Our reimagined habitat will increase acreage by four times to improve naturalistic features by unlocking time-shared and mixed-species spaces.

“ e improved infrastructure will also provide the community with new ways to connect and learn about wildlife with a new Africa lodge and immersive guest experiences such as a new gira e feeding zone.”

Zoo o cials hired CCS Fundraising, a strategic fundraising consulting rm, to guide its campaign planning e orts.

e zoo said a “vital step” of their work will be to gather feedback and advice from leaders and friends of the zoo

A new bar/arcade owned and operated by Ryan Marsh is slated to open in the South Main Arts District. e opening date will be within three and six months, depending on permits and construction, said Marsh, who would not reveal the address last week

e restaurant will feature retro games, Skee-Ball, pinball, and multiple televisions for sport and gaming, including the biggest indoor TV screen Downtown.


Memphis-Shelby County Schools (MSCS) teachers will not be allowed to carry handguns or weapons in school.

is announcement came from the district last week, a month a er the Tennessee legislature passed a law that allows school faculty and sta to carry weapons on campus. Gov. Bill Lee signed the bill into law last month.

“ e Board does not believe that arming school sta is the most e ective approach for Memphis-Shelby County Schools,” says a resolution from the district. “ at is the expectation of the Board that school sta serve rst and foremost as trained, focused, and dedicated educators, not law enforcement and/or security o cers.”

Visit the News Blog at memphis for fuller versions of these stories and more local news.

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Driverless Future?



he University of Memphis is leading the way for the city’s future in autonomous trucks.

U of M will receive a $750K grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for phase one of its Center for Electri ed and Automated Trucking (CEAT), per an announcement from U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen (TN-9). e program will be under the direction of civil engineering professor Sabya Mishra.

“Electri ed vehicles are the future and it’s very encouraging that the University of Memphis will be contributing to the science that will be driving the trucking industry forward,” Cohen said in a statement.

e Center for Transportation Innovations, Education, and Research (CTIER) at the university was awarded a planning grant by NSF for an IndustryUniversity Cooperative Research Center (IUCRC) in 2022 for CEAT. e university will collaborate with Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

supply chain issue.

In his research, published in the journal Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review in tandem with Ahmadreza Talebian of Isfahan University of Technology, Mishra noted these vehicles already arrived “faster than initial expectations,” and the trucking industry could bene t from the use of this technology.

“One major user of the automated driving technology would be the trucking industry. e automated driving technology can impact the trucking industry and freight transportation system in a more revolutionary manner, compared to passenger car users,” the study said.

When this was announced, the university said it would “apply knowledge in emerging technologies in connected, electri ed and autonomous trucking and freight logistics networks for achieving e cient, safe, agile and sustainable supply chain systems.”

According to CEAT, it hopes to nd solutions to driver shortage and training, driver fatigue, supply chain delays, disruptions, and more.

“ e automation, electri cation, and connected operation of trucks can help resolve many current issues associated with the trucking industry, including driver shortage, supply-chain disruptions, delivery service delays, emissions, and road safety,” CEAT said. “As signi cant research e orts in vehicle automation and electrication are now enabling large commercial ventures, more focused research is needed on how freight transport and logistics providers can best utilize such technologies to modernize the trucking industry.”

research grant.

While the study acknowledges that these trucks would be able to surpass the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) regulations on how long a driver can drive (11 hours), this could potentially lead to increased levels in noise pollution and emissions. However they also note certain trucks “could have the same impact but probably to a lower extent” as highly automated trucks driven by a driver.

ese vehicles, while seemingly helpful, prompt questions about their safety. In March, AAA released a survey which stated 66 percent of U.S. drivers expressed “fear” regarding driverless technology.

When the university received the $5 million grant from NSF, Mishra said the freight transportation, supply chain, and logistic industries were seeing growth as a result of “new technological innovations,” and more, such as arti cial intelligence. ese advancements not only help vehicles to function without human operation, but could also make trucking safer and provide solutions to the country’s

While the National Highway Tra c Safety Administration (NHTSA) said there are currently no vehicles that are o cially “driverless,” they claim automation’s “biggest bene t” is safety.

“In some circumstances, automated technologies may be able to detect the threat of a crash and act faster than drivers,” NTSA said. “ ese technologies could greatly support drivers and reduce human errors and the resulting crashes, injuries, and economic tolls.”

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of Memphis revs up e
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A Visit from Gloria

Senator Marsha Blackburn’s opponent states her case in Memphis.

Back in April of 2023, state Representative Gloria Johnson of Knoxville got to be a known quantity, not only statewide but to the nation at large, as a member of the “Tennessee ree,” the trio of Democratic legislators whose zeal for gun reform made them targets for expulsion by the GOP House supermajority.

She survived the expulsion vote, as her cohorts did not, either because — as some believe — they were African-American and she was not or — as the Republican whose dissenting vote saved her maintained — because she di ered from them in not having challenged the “decorum” of the House quite as seriously.

Whatever the reality, Johnson fully shared the outrage of fellow protesters Justin Pearson of Memphis and Justin Jones of Nashville at Republican inaction following a lethal shooting rampage at Nashville’s Covenant School. And the lesser degree of her martyrdom would give her at least a measure of the national recognition earned by the two Justins, both of whom were immediately returned to o ce by their local legislative bodies.

Blackburn, whom she accused of being dishonest and a “fearmonger” in the senator’s speeches, press releases, and frequent blog postings in which Blackburn accuses Democrats of a multitude of sins, up to and including disloyalty.

“Instead of focusing on hate and division,” Johnson said, “we need to be focusing on bringing people together, keeping people healthy and educated and earning a living wage, with access to things like paid family leave and childcare infrastructure.”

As an example of the incumbent’s dishonesty, Johnson recalled having seen a video in which “Marsha Blackburn actually said that we’re in a cooling period, that here’s no such thing as global warming. She said that back when she ran in 2018. Bless her heart, science is real. Just to let y’all know, I believe in science and research and data and use it daily. Yes.”

Johnson, who is simultaneously running for re-election to her state House seat, included the GOP legislative supermajority in the General Assembly in her criticism, notably, for their refusal to accept Medicaid expansion.

e publicity generated by the expulsion incident doubtless was a factor in Johnson’s subsequent decision to seek the U.S. Senate seat currently held by the arch-conservative Republican Marsha Blackburn. But long before the bump in her statewide name recognition, the veteran legislator had earned respect in the House for her unstinting dedication to progressive principles.

Over the years, Johnson, a Knoxville special education teacher, had frequently gotten under the skin of Republican leaders, to the point that they had managed to reapportion her out of her seat, leaving her residence six blocks out of her home district. Undeterred, she sat out a session, moved, and was re-elected from a new, adjacent district.

Johnson’s campaign for the Senate brought her to Memphis over the Memorial Day weekend, and at one of her stops, a Saturday meet-and-greet a air at e Broom Closet on South Main, she undertook to explain both her own mission and the failings of Senator

“Literally, Tennesseans are dying, while we refuse to expand Medicaid. And, you know, it is fair to say that their policies are certainly putting women and girls at risk. ey’re putting the LGBTQ community at risk.”

She cited a recent Vanderbilt University poll which, she said, showed state voters favoring “not only medical cannabis, but recreational cannabis. ey favor Medicaid expansion. Protecting the public schools. ings like universal background checks and [gun] safe storage, and extreme risk-protection orders or red ag laws.”

e same poll, she said, had her edging out Blackburn with women voters, 49 percent to 43 percent, and close behind the incumbent with other demographic groups.

(It should be noted that the prospect of Johnson’s doing well in a general election race depends, of course, on her winning out in the August Democratic primary, where she is opposed by Marquita Bradshaw of Memphis, who derailed the senatorial hopes of Nashville’s James Mackler by upsetting him in the primary in 2018. Bradshaw was easily beaten in that year’s general election by Republican Bill Hagerty.)

8 May 30-June 5, 2024
PHOTO: JACKSON BAKER Gloria Johnson at e Broom Closet

are six tips to help you prepare for

common misconception is that if you’re not working outside the home, you’re not eligible to save for retirement. In reality, a stay-at-home spouse can have a significant impact on a couple’s retirement savings. Here are six tips to help you prepare for retirement as a stay-at-home spouse.

1. Establish a financial plan.

Establishing a financial plan should be the first step you take toward establishing financial goals and a savings strategy.

A comprehensive financial plan is essential to growing your wealth, avoiding potential pitfalls, and remaining on track toward achieving your goals. A plan can help increase your level of confidence in making financial decisions and ensure your family will be provided for in unexpected circumstances.

2. Focus on paying off debt.

High-interest debt, such as credit card balances, can make a big impact on your ability to save for the future. Interest charges and late fees can add up and quickly result in debt becoming unmanageable, so it’s important to pay these balances off before taking steps to save.

Two effective strategies for paying off debt include the snowball method, which involves paying off your smallest debt balance as quickly as possible, or the avalanche method, in which you begin paying on whatever loan has the highest interest rate. Once that loan is paid off, you move on to the loan with the next-highest interest rate until all loans are paid off.

3. Establish an emergency fund.

Often, high-interest debt results from unexpected expenses you’re unable to cover from normal cash flow, such as a job loss, medical expenses, or an emergency home repair. In a household with a stay-at-home spouse and only one income, it’s important to have at least three to six months of living expenses saved in a short-term, liquid emergency fund that’s available to cover any unexpected expenses. Having immediate access to funds can help you avoid taking out high-interest debt or tapping into your retirement savings in an emergency.

4. Save in a spousal IRA. Spousal IRAs are retirement savings vehicles specifically intended for non-working or part-time working spouses who would otherwise not have access to a qualified retirement account. A stay-at-home

spouse may have the ability to contribute to a spousal IRA if he or she files a joint tax return with a spouse that has taxable compensation. Both traditional and Roth spousal IRAs are available, and the 2024 annual contribution limits are the same: $7,000 for those under age 50 and $8,000 for those age 50 and older.

5. Increase contributions to the working spouse’s 401k.

Although retirement accounts are held in individual spouses’ names, funds contributed during the marriage are considered marital assets, meaning they’re generally considered the property of both spouses. Given this, it’s beneficial for couples with a stay-at-home spouse to maximize contributions to the working spouse’s employer-sponsored retirement plan.

In 2024, individuals who haven’t yet reached age 50 can contribute up to $23,000, and those age 50 and older can make an additional $7,500 catch-up contribution for a total contribution of $30,500. At a minimum, it’s important to contribute at a rate that allows you to qualify for the full employer matching contribution.

If cash flow doesn’t allow you to contribute the maximum to start, consider raising your deferrals by 1 percent to 2 percent each year. You probably won’t even feel the impact on your take home pay, yet these small increases can make a big difference in the balance you accumulate over the long run.

6. Save in a taxable account.

Once you’ve saved the maximum in your 401k and spousal IRA, consider saving additional funds in a taxable brokerage account. While 401k and IRA assets have limitations on withdrawals prior to retirement, funds in a taxable brokerage account are accessible at any time. In addition, saving in a variety of retirement accounts with different tax treatment (e.g., taxable, tax-deferred and tax-free) provides you with maximum flexibility to structure a tax-efficient withdrawal strategy in retirement.

Gene Gard, CFA, CFP, CFT-I, is a Partner and Private Wealth Manager with Creative Planning. Creative Planning is one of the nation’s largest Registered Investment Advisory firms providing comprehensive wealth management services to ensure all elements of a client’s financial life are working together, including investments, taxes, estate planning, and risk management. For more information or to request a free, no-obligation consultation, visit

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A Matter of Honor

“Fiddlin’ Fortas” o ers a lesson in integrity.

Maybe it’s an age thing, but I nd that when I’m alone, my internal monologue often turns into an external mutter-logue. e other day, for instance, I found myself muttering the name of Abe Fortas. Fortas, as you may or may not recall, was a Supreme Court justice from Memphis, appointed by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965. He was a Rhodes College (then called Southwestern College) graduate (like Justice Amy Coney Barrett) before going on to graduate second in his class from Yale Law School.

Known as “Fiddlin’ Fortas” for his prowess on the violin, old Abe had a brilliant career, rst as a law professor at Yale, then as an advisor to the Securities and Exchange Commission for President Roosevelt, and later as a delegate appointed by President Truman to help create the nascent United Nations. Fortas was an accomplished man. en, in 1969, just four years into his term at SCOTUS, Fortas was discovered to have accepted a $20,000 loan from nancier Louis Wolfson, who was being investigated by the Justice Department for possible insider trading. President Nixon, seeing a chance to gain a SCOTUS appointment and push the court in a more conservative direction, asked Fortas to resign. He did.

So why was I muttering this man’s name?

some sort of action. No one has yet shown the courage to demand that Alito resign, but at the least, Roberts could urge Alito to recuse himself from any cases related to January 6th. Even that seems unlikely, given that Justice Clarence omas has accepted literally millions of dollars worth of gi s and trips from billionaire Harlan Crow — who has had cases before the court — and has su ered absolutely no consequences. Additionally, omas’ wife, Ginni, was among those urging Trump administration o cials to overturn the 2020 election. Democrats have called for omas to recuse himself from electionrelated cases, a demand he has ignored. e recusal statute standard that applies to federal judges and justices is not limited to actual bias — it also includes the appearance of bias. For that reason, many legal experts have said that Alito and omas should recuse themselves from any January 6th-related cases. Recuse? Resign? Meh. at’s so … 1969.

Because I’d been reading about the brouhaha(s) surrounding Justice Samuel Alito’s ags ying at his house(s). You know, the upside-down American ag at his home in Washington, D.C., and the QAnon/January 6th conspiracist “Appeal to Heaven” ag at his vacation home in New Jersey. Alito blamed the rst ag on his wife, Martha Ann, who allegedly put it up while engaged in a dispute with a neighbor over yard signs. He refused to address the controversy about the second ag.

For the record, the U.S. ag code states that an upside-down American ag can be displayed only “as a signal of dire distress.” I’m not a legal scholar, but I’m thinking a pissing match over a neighbor’s yard sign doesn’t qualify. And I’m thinking Alito knew that.

At this writing, it appears that the Senate is about to stir itself and call Chief Justice Roberts into its chambers to demand

It’s all about expectations. Lower them far enough, and you can get away with anything. It was expected that Hillary Clinton would be fastidious about her emails. When it was discovered she was sloppy with some of them, the media outrage machine went into front-page overdrive for weeks, probably costing her the 2016 election (and three SCOTUS appointments). Trump’s hiding thousands of top-secret government documents a er leaving o ce? Not so much. at’s just Trump being Trump. In short, if we think someone “should” be acting with integrity and they don’t, it’s news. Otherwise, nah.

So here we are, 55 years a er Fortas’ resignation, with a Supreme Court majority mostly hand-picked by the conservative Federalist Society and put forth for Republican presidents to nominate. e justices are mostly Catholic (six of nine members), mostly anti-abortion, and mostly Neanderthal in their attitudes toward the rights of women and minority groups.

Back in 1969, it was expected that Supreme Court justices would avoid any appearance of impropriety. Abe Fortas recognized that what he’d done had irrevocably damaged his standing as a jurist and would become a distraction for the rest of his career at SCOTUS, so he did the honorable thing. Honor. What a concept. It’s a word that’s got me muttering.

AT LARGE By Bruce VanWyngarden

Stay Cool

The Flyer’s got your summer covered with cool things to do, people to see, and places to go.


We, the writers at the Flyer, know we’re cool. Our de nition of cool may vary from yours; it may even vary from writer to writer. But we know there’s a reason why you pick up a copy of our paper or click onto our website: It’s because we’re cool … right? Please say yes — our egos are fragile. We are sensitive journalists who hide behind the written word. But it is also because we are journalists that we are able to bring you the best ways to stay cool and, well, be cool this summer with the coolest things to do, people to see, and places to go. Read on, and keep your cool.

Cool Treats

You would think ice cream, rich in fats and sugar, would be bad for you. But numerous studies have pointed to the opposite conclusion. People who ate ice cream about twice a week have about a 10 percent lower rate of serious cardiovas-

cular disease, as well as lower rates of diabetes and fatty liver disease. Most doctors don’t believe it’s the ice cream (correlation is not causation, a er all), but it’s a result that won’t go away. Personally, I believe ice cream helps you live longer because ice cream gives

you something to live for. Memphis, as we all know, is hot as Hades in the summertime, so we’re a frozen treat town. e granddaddy of cool is Jerry’s Sno Cones. e Blu City landmark is famous for its decadent shaved ice creations, available in exotic avors like Hurricane Elvis and

Legit. e populace was shocked when owner David Acklin announced the closure of their original location on Wells Station in Berclair, but the Cordova location at 1601 Bonnie Lane is still going strong, and the owner is canvassing his patrons for suggestions as to where to open a new Jerry’s.

Mempops’ mobile unit is a familiar sight at concerts, games, and festivals. eir two locations, in the Crosstown Concourse and in East Memphis at 1243 Ridgeway, are the places to go for some chilled goodness. Mempops comes in

12 May 30-June 5, 2024
PHOTO (ABOVE): COURTESY METAL MUSEUM Whet ursdays PHOTO (LEFT): CHRIS MCCOY Zio Matto Gelato PHOTO: TERRIESE WILLIAMS Michael Donahue looks cool in a pair of Versace sunglasses from Sunglass Hut.

cream (keep it simple with the vanilla, or go with cookies-and-cream if you’re feeling uppity) or fruity sorbet (I’m a raspberry lemonade man, myself, but don’t sleep on the spicy pineapple) varieties.

Another pop option is La Michoacana, the Mexican ice cream shop at 4091 Summer Avenue. eir butter pecan pop is to die for, and they’ve got a wide selection of ice cream avors like tres leches and tequila.

e newest entry in the creamy game is Zio Matto Gelato. e Italian creamery’s products have been available all over town, from South Point Grocery to Villa Castrioti in Cordova, and you’ve probably seen their stand in the FedExForum. Now, they’ve opened a new home base in Central Station Downtown. If you’re a little sweaty from visiting Tom Lee Park, pop in for a bowl of the tiramisu gelato. Life is better when you keep it cool. — Chris McCoy

Cool Beats at Eight & Sand

In summer’s swelter, nothing spells relief like a tall drink on crushed ice in a chill bar. Eight & Sand, in the Central Station Hotel, has all that, and the fresh jams to keep you there. Hearing the unmuddied bass and pristine highs of the space’s custom EgglestonWorks speakers, any music lover is likely to exclaim “cooool.”

practically a temple to the art of DJ’ing, thanks to its towering shelves of vinyl records, ready to be spun in a deluxe DJ booth they’ve dubbed “Elmertha.” Elmertha’s a veritable pulpit of funk, especially considering that the vinyl amassed around her is packed with Memphis jams from all eras. Chad Weekley, Central Station Hotel’s music curator, says the focus on Memphis music was baked into the bar’s design from the start. “ ere’s probably 4,000 pieces of wax there, and it’s all connected to Memphis, some way, somehow. And we’re steadily adding to it.”

at collection alone, and the chance to play through an advanced hi- system, makes Eight & Sand an attractive venue to DJs from all over the city — and many from beyond. e bar has booked many world-class platter spinners, including Skratch Bastid and DJ Muggs of Cypress Hill (on 4/20, no less). eir international draw will be especially apparent on June 1st, when the featured DJ will be Rich Medina. His appearance will be a full-circle moment for Weekley and the bar, now in its h year.

“Q-Tip from A Tribe Called Quest and Rich had a legendary DJ night in NYC in the early 2000s, and Rich now runs the

best vinyl bar in Miami, Dante’s HiFi,” says Weekley. “I de nitely modeled Eight & Sand a little bit o of Dante’s, for sure.” Other notable DJs appearing at the bar this summer will be DJ

DāM-FunK and house music giant Mark Farina. — Alex Greene

Global Cafe’s Fruity Cocktails

You know what’s cool in the summertime? A big, refreshing, ice-cold, fruity cocktail. You know what else is cool? Helping

continued on page 14


refugees and immigrants who are trying to acclimate to American culture and lawfully enter our society. And you know what is really, really cool? Doing both of those things at once.

at’s where the Global Cafe comes in. Located in Crosstown, it’s a business that pours all its proceeds back into its employees — paying them a living wage, o ering English lessons, free shoes, pro t-sharing, and helping to integrate them and their families into Memphis.

Now, about those cocktails. … Cafe manager Juan Viramontes, himself an immigrant from Mexico, specializes in cra ing Global Cafe’s famous fruit-based drinks, created using fresh seasonal fruit, including pineapple, kiwi, mango, peaches, and watermelon. “Whatever’s in season.”

e Global Cafe’s most famous — and most Instagrammed — drink is its “Mangorita,” which features an entire mango carved into a rose sitting atop 20 ounces of Juan’s Famous Margarita. ey are indeed terri c, but for something equally delicious but a little less over-the-top, I recommend the cafe’s Kiwi Lime Drop. It’s a variation on the classic lemon drop, but decidedly more complex and, yes, more delicious. e good news is that whichever drink you have, you can be assured that you’re helping immigrants and refugees while getting your drink on. What could be cooler? — Bruce VanWyngarden

Free, Free, Free

Money burning a hole in your wallet? Cool it with something free, and there’s always something that’s zero dollars and zero cents to do in the 901 in the summer.

Wanna get t? Baptist Health and Wellness Series at Overton Park Shell o ers yoga and pilates, Zumba, and more — all for free. Meanwhile, Shelby Farms Park’s Get Outside! Fitness series includes free yoga and Kidonetics for kids, free mat Pilates, free mental tness, and more. And Memphis River Parks Partnership has free tness classes popping up seemingly everywhere.

If you want to catch live music this summer, how about a free concert? ere’s Overton Park Shell’s Orion Free Concert Series and Overton Square Music Series, where you can bring a picnic blanket or lawn chairs and settle down for live music. Germantown Performing Arts Center has its Happy Hour in the Grove on Friday nights where you can enjoy free music, drink specials, deals on local beer, and $5 wine, and Bartlett Performing Arts & Conference Center has its Music by the Lake concert on Friday, June 14th.

If you’ve got a kid (K-12), sign them up for a 901 Student Passport at e passport gets students and a parent free admission during summer months (through August 2nd) to 12 cultural institutions including the National Civil Rights Museum, Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, and Stax

Museum of American Soul Music.

If you’re not a kid but like free admission to places, don’t you worry! e Dixon Garden & Gallery always has free admission. e Brooks has free admission (and sometimes art-making activities) on Saturdays at 10 a.m. to noon. Stax has its Free Family Day on the second Saturday of every month that o ers free admission plus activities. And for the summer the Metal Museum has brought back its Whet ursdays, which includes free admission, live demonstrations, and more a er-hours on the last ursday of the month.

And, get this, there’s still more free and very cool stu that I could go on about, but I’m at my word count, and my words, like Dickens’, aren’t free. So keep up with these organizations at their websites. Okay, cool?

DJ Nico

Your best bet at catching one of DJ Nico Hatchett’s legendary sets locally is a er TONE’s Juneteenth weekend. Hatchett is the chief event coordinator for TONE Gallery and helped book Erykah Badu for this year’s Juneteenth celebration. “I love that a lot of the local performers get to say, once they leave the stage, they were on the lineup with Erykah Badu in their city.” However, the fun doesn’t stop there for Hatchett, as she and her best friend, will keep the late night vibes going a erwards on the premises with a set a er Badu performs. “It’s going to be packed, and it’s going to be fun.”

cold one, head into a virtual golf bay and swing away. You can even ask sta ers to set you up on some iconic courses. Oh, and the food is great, too — tater tots, pretzels, chicken sandwiches, and more.

• Mary’s Bar of Tropical Escapism: Truly escape to the sandy shores of your beach fantasy right on South Cooper. Mary’s B.O.T.E. takes tiki drinks seriously with tons of tropical tipples to melt in your hand. e bar’s dra towers carry local cra , too, if a beer oats your boat. Escape at the amazing bar or to the great amingo-ed patio outside.

now, could be played au solitaire or as a group event. At a nickel per game, competitors took turns to see who could rack up the most points or, better yet, free games, which signaled themselves with a loud and mellow TONK sound that, to the usually adolescent devotees, was rewardingly orgasmic.

Momma’s: Roll down the truck window, hang your arm out, and get back to your roots at Momma’s. e “blue-collar diner’s destination” really is the rst and last bar in Memphis (if you’re traveling Crump or I-55). And Momma’s brags it’s the only trucker-themed bar in America. Drink laid-back beer. Sing along with Travis Tritt on the juke. Ain’t nobody gonna laugh at you. is is Momma’s. at food, tho. Momma’s nails Southern staples like chicken biscuits, smokestack chili, meatloaf, burgers, wings, and more. — Toby Sells

Sunglasses Are Cool

e classically trained musicianturned-DJ specializes in mixing house, techno, Jersey, and jungle music with sweet throwbacks featured in her set. “I play a lot of music that is nostalgically known, like R&B music or even church samples… stu that is uniquely Black.”

is summer presents a “Where’s DJ Nico” type of vibe as Hatchett will be leaving her mark on a number of cities. She recently made her Atlanta debut at BrainWorld on May 24th, and DJ’d at the renowned dance and night club, Le Bain, in New York the next day. On May 31st she’ll be at Poor Boys Bar in New Orleans. She’ll also be playing Los Angeles Pride on her birthday, June 7th.

“I’m surprised, but not surprised at my growth. I’ve been a musician my whole life so the way I apply myself and work with other people just makes sense,” she says. “I really try to build community, like it’s not just to get booked. It’s meant to be a continued, running, nurtured relationship.”

Pinball at Flip Side

e heyday of the pinball machine was the 1950s, when every decent dive or halfway sizeable corner drugstore had one of the jingle-jangle contraptions, usually located near its entrance or, maybe, a back exit.

For the players themselves, the machines were an indoor sport which, then as

All that is still the drill at Flip Side, the self-described pinball bar on Autumn Avenue in the neighborhood of Crosstown Concourse, where some 15 of the machines — with thematic names (and corresponding narrative structures) like “Foo Fighters,” “Jaws,” and “AC/DC” — line one long wall of the establishment. You pay for the games not with nickels but with reasonably inexpensive tokens, and the experience is still satisfyingly addictive.

Flip Side doubles as a sports bar, with ve big screens tuned to such athletic events or game shows or whatever as happen to be going on. ere are electronic dartboards, too, and a decent menu featuring pizza, burgers, mac-and-cheese, and beers, including some interesting sour varieties of the latter. Service is as good as you could ask for, given the crowds on hand, and conversations — at the bar, at the tables, or at the machines — are remarkably possible even amid the streaming background music of the place and the nonstop dings and dongs and bells and, hopefully, TONKs of the pinball action.

Cool. Way cool. — Jackson Baker

Cool O With a Cold One Vacation and beers go together like Memphis heat and humidity. But if you can’t get away, these three Memphis watering holes have vibes (and beers) dank enough to take you there even if it’s just for a little while.

• Birdie’s: Hit the links without that Memphis heat and humidity. Birdie’s o ers local cra in cans and on dra . Grab a

Everybody looks cool in sunglasses. Not just Jack Nicholson, Jackie Kennedy, Audrey Hepburn, and Morris the Cat. All you have to do is put on some shades, and you’ve become mysterious, sexy, interesting, and rebellious.

Sunglass Hut, which leases a space at Macy’s Oak Court, has hundreds of sunglasses in stock for sun worshippers or nightspot habitués. Brands include Versace, Gucci, Prada, Oakley, Balenciaga, Ray-Ban, and Maui Jim. “We have kids’ sunglasses also,” says Terriese Williams, manager of the Sunglass Hut at Macy’s. What’s the attraction of sunglasses? “ ey’re fashionable. Sunglasses are an accessory to your out t,” she says. With sunglasses, “You’re all put together.” Men’s and women’s sunglasses are not alike. “It’s the shapes and the cuts.”

A lot of women want cat-eye sunglasses, she says, as well as di erent colors of tortoiseshell. And, she says, “Women like big glasses. ey’re oversized.” e guys? “Men’s are more sleek and more neutral.”

If people don’t know what type of sunglasses they want, Williams provides some help. You can also try on sunglasses digitally before you buy them.

Sunglass Hut also carries polarized sunglasses, which provide extra protection from the sun’s glare. ose are popular with truck drivers, people working outside, or those who have light sensitivity.

Finally, if you want to look even cooler, you can invest in a pair of the new Ray-Ban Meta sunglasses, which Sunglass Hut exclusively carries. Sunglass Hut has six locations in Memphis, one in Collierville, and two in Southaven, Mississippi.

— Michael Donahue

14 May 30-June 5, 2024
continued from page 13

steppin’ out

We Recommend: Culture, News + Reviews


June, if you can imagine, is already here, and that means it’s time for Pride. is year’s Memphis Pride Fest, which bills itself as the largest gathering of LGBTQ people in the MidSouth, promises to be bigger and better than ever before, with a theme of “Embrace Your Story,” a celebration of diversity, strength, and unity.

Headlining the event organized by Mid-South Pride is Kornbread “ e Snack” Jeté, a fan-favorite from season 14 of RuPaul’s Drag Race, and 37 local drag entertainers and four local bands will join the lineup across two stages. e festival will also host over 175 booths, providing a wide array of activities suitable for all ages, from engaging games, to history and educational exhibits, to arts and cra s. Admission to the festival starts at $1.

Kicking o the day, of course, is the annual parade which starts at Fourth and Beale before making its way through the historic Beale Street Entertainment District. e procession features over 100 units with 2,500+ participants from myriad organizations. “ e energy that comes o of everyone at the parade is amazing, you can feel it in the air,” Vanessa Rodley, Mid-South Pride president and festival director, said in a press release. “It’s almost like it’s vibrating. It’s the most colorful weekend of the year and you can see it and feel it!”

But the celebrations don’t begin nor do they end with the festival. In fact, they start on ursday, May 30th, with the ever-popular Drag N Drive, which will feature a screening of Mean Girls (2004) followed by a drag/video showcase. On Friday, May 31st, Friends For All will host the Big Gay Dance Party, where attendees will enjoy music, dancing, drinks, and a safe, inclusive environment. e party will also have free HIV and STI testing, and Friends For All will debut its brand-new mobile care unit.

e weekend wraps up with the Grand Marshal Drag Brunch, a laid-back yet lively brunch with local drag performers on the Cossitt Library lawn.

For more information on all that’s happening this weekend and to purchase tickets to any of these events, visit




VARIOUS DAYS & TIMES May 30th - June 5th

Memphis Italian Festival Marquette Park, 4946 Alrose, ursday, May 30, 3-11 p.m. | Friday, May 31, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. | Saturday, June 1, 11 a.m.-11 p.m., $15-$20

When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that’s amore. When the world seems to shine like you’ve had too much wine, that’s just the consequence of the Memphis Italian Festival, “where everyone is Italian.”. ere are several events going on throughout the festival including bocce, grape stomping, wine races, face painting, and cooking demonstrations from local chefs. e festival will also have food and drink vendors, along with a variety of vendors and live music on two outdoor stages.

During the festival, over 40 cooking teams will be competing to discover who is the Best Spaghetti Gravy maker in Memphis.

Jeanne Seagle & Annabelle Meacham: “Of is Moment” Medicine Factory, 85 West Virginia, Friday, May 31, 5-8 p.m.

Join artists Jeanne Seagle and Annabelle Meacham for the opening of their show at the Medicine Factory.

“Of is Moment” will be on display through June 9th by appointment. Annabelle Meacham will give an artist talk on Saturday, June 1st, at 1 p.m., and Jeanne Seagle will give hers on Saturday, June 8th, at 1 p.m.

Shrek the Musical

Orpheum eatre, 203 South Main, Friday, May 31, 7:30 p.m. | Saturday, June 1, 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m. | Sunday, June 2, 1 p.m. | Sunday, June 2, 6:30 p.m., $29-$110

Your favorite ogre is back in the hilarious stage spectacle based on the Oscar-winning, smash-hit DreamWorks animated film.

Dragon Boat Festival Hyde Lake, Shelby Farms, 6931 Great View Drive North, Saturday, June 1, 8:15 a.m.-3 p.m. Boom! Boom! Boom! Boom! e drummer at the helm of the boat beats the drum to set the pace, as 20 team members heave in time with each beat, slicing their paddles into the water, propelling the 46-footlong dragon boat towards the nish line. e atmosphere is electric. e competition is heated. e boom of the drum, the glistening lake, the yell of the steerer’s commands to the team, the reworks, the food trucks, the children’s activities, the cheering of the crowd, and multiple brightly colored dragon-scaled boats neck and neck in erce pursuit of the nish line.

Proceeds go to Memphis Chinese Community Center. Admission to the festival is free.

PHOTO: COURTESY MID-SOUTH PRIDE Diversity, strength, and unity on parade

Bigger releases Broken Telephone Piano Man


Wyly Bigger plays just about every notable piano in town in his video, “Hello, Is at You?”, from his recently-released album, Broken Telephone

He tickles the ivories on the spinet at Earnestine & Hazel’s and at Sun Studio, and at the grand pianos at the Peabody Skyway and the Orpheum eatre, to name a few.

e rst piano he ever played, though, was a “just a little Fisher Price kid’s piano,” says Bigger, 26.

A native of Marion, Arkansas, Bigger began picking out songs on the piano by ear when he was three. e little piano was “just a plastic, bright, and colorful thing. It probably had 10 keys on it.”

It belonged to his sister, singer-songwriter Bailey Bigger, but “she didn’t take to it at all. She could care less about it. I kind of took it over.”

Wyly’s parents bought an old piano that their church wasn’t using and put Wyly in piano lessons.

“I … picture myself up in one of the live big band dances they had back in the ’40s.”

He began taking Suzuki-method piano lessons when he was 4 at the University of Memphis. “I wasn’t a huge fan of it. Just because I wanted to play by ear and I wanted to do more. Even from a long time ago I loved Elvis and Jerry Lee. at kind of music.”

Wyly even adopted the Elvis look. “For Halloween in rst grade I was

Elvis. My grandma sewed me a gold suit to wear like Elvis.”

He also began wearing gel in his hair. “I think we even got some temporary black hair dye from the party store to make it really look like Elvis.”

His next teacher made him learn music, but he also encouraged him to play by ear.

Wyly’s rst public performance was playing rock-and-roll on his keyboard at Big John’s Shake Shack (now Tacker’s Shake Shop) in Marion when he was 9 years old. He continued to play there every other week when he was in high school.


Wyly Bigger


He began writing instrumentals when he was about 14. “South Side of Southern,” which was “about growing up in Marion,” was his rst song with lyrics.

Wyly didn’t want to sing at rst. “I was terri ed to sing. I didn’t like it at all.”

His piano teacher encouraged him to start singing along while he played piano during lessons.“I kind of ripped the Band-Aid o .”

Wyly majored in marketing at Mississippi State University, but he continued to play piano at night at local watering holes.

A er he graduated, Wyly went to work for a marketing agency and, later, at Marion’s Sultana Disaster Museum.

But he continued to play music in public. Last July, he decided to quit his job and do nothing but music.

He began playing piano in the lobby at the Peabody, where he still plays on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays.

“Hello, Is at You?” music video

“ e Peabody is a lot of everything. Outside of rock-and-roll and ’50s soul and R&B stu , I also really love the old jazz standards. Like Cole Porter and George Gershwin-type songs.”

In 2020, Wyly recorded a self-titled EP of his songs. “Back in Love” — “just a story of unrequited love.” — got the most streams.

He describes the EP, which he and Bailey produced, as a “rock-and-roll Fats Domino-swing-type of thing. I had drums, bass, keys, guitar, and sax.” He recorded the EP at Memphis Magnetic Recording Co. with Scott McEwen doing the engineering and mixing.

Bailey, who sang background vocals on the EP, performed with Wyly on occa-

sion back in the day at their church and at the Shake Shack. ey’re both on the Madjack Records label.

He began recording his new album in May of 2023. “It took a while just ’cause we hired a team of musicians and we had to work around their schedules.” e album features Danny Banks on drums, Jim Spake on saxophone, Mark Edgar Stuart (who produced the album) on bass, and Matt Ross-Spang on guitar. e idea to have Wyly playing pianos all over Memphis “was all Landon Moore. He lmed, directed, and edited the whole video. He’s a bass player in town. He plays with Cyrena Wages and Marcella [Simien].”

One of Wyly’s favorite pianos is the grand piano at the Peabody Skyway. “I love to play that piano and picture myself up in one of the live big band dances they had back in the ’40s.”

He knocked all those piano pedals while wearing his black-and-white Royal Wind spectator shoes. “I bought those things at a thri store in Starkville when I was in college”

And, he says, “I tell you, they’re a conversation piece. I can’t wear them without somebody saying, ‘Man, where did you get those shoes? ose are amazing.’”

Wyly likes to wear the shoes at the Peabody. “It will turn heads and maybe get me tips. Anytime I dress up, I’m typically going to wear those.”

To view the “Hello, Is at You?” music video, go to Wyly Bigger will perform Friday, May 31st, 7 p.m., at Hernando’s Hideaway.

16 May 30-June 5, 2024

AFTER DARK: Live Music Schedule May 30 - June 5

Dinner & Music Cruise

Come enjoy a two-hour cruise on Ol’ Man River featuring live entertainment and a meal.

$50/general admission. ursday, May 30, 7:30-9:30 p.m. | Friday, May 31, 7:30-9:30 p.m.


DJ Hush

Friday, May 31, 9 p.m.


Live at The Lorraine:

Stefanie Bolton

Includes open bar and food by Big Momma’s and Granny’s.

$100. Saturday, June 1, 7 p.m.


Live at the Tracks:

Elevation Memphis

Every ursday for Live at the Tracks. ursday, May 30, 6:30-9:30 p.m.


Live & Local Music

Live and local music, every Wednesday night on the all-weather patio. Wednesday, June 5, 7-10 p.m.


Madaline Collins

Saturday, June 1, 7 p.m.


Megan Thee Stallion:

Hot Girl Summer Tour

With special guest GloRilla. ursday, May 30, 8 p.m.


Pride Parade After Party

No cover. Rainbow drink specials all night and DJ Space

Age will be spinning the hottest pride anthems. Saturday, June 1, 5 p.m.-midnight.


Rich Medina

World-class DJ fuses hip-hop, house, soul, Afrobeat, funk, breaks, and dance classics. Saturday, June 1, 9 p.m.


Samara Joy

Cultural Arts For Everyone presents three-time Grammy Award-winning jazz vocalist, Samara Joy. Monday, June 3, 7:30-10 p.m.


Shannon McNally

AllMusic says McNally’s a “Zen-like, post-Beat song poet” with a “mercurial, changeling roots aesthetic.”

$25. Friday, May 31, 7 p.m.


Alexis Grace

Appearing at the Memphis Italian Festival. Saturday, June 1, 7:30 p.m.


Almost Elton John Appearing at the Memphis Italian Festival. Saturday, June 1, 9:30 p.m.


Elmo and the Shades Elmo and the Shades with the great Eddie Harrison vocals and keys. Free. Wednesday, June 5, 7 p.m.


Landslide (Fleetwood Mac Tribute)

Appearing at the Memphis Italian Festival. Friday, May 31, 9:30 p.m.


Laser Taylor Swift 2: Bigger and Better!

A Taylor Swi playlist set to laser lights. Friday, May 31, 7 p.m.


Reba Russell Band

Appearing at the Memphis Italian Festival. ursday, May 30, 7 p.m.


Rice Drewry Collective

Appearing at the Memphis Italian Festival. Friday, May 31, 6 p.m.


The Bugaloos Appearing at the Memphis Italian Festival. Friday, May 31, 7:30 p.m.


The Deb Jam Band

The Deb Jam Band featuring Deb Jamison. Free. Tuesday, June 4, 6 p.m.


Van Duren

The singer/songwriter, a pioneer of indie pop in Memphis, performs solo.

Thursday, May 30, 6:308:30 p.m.


Wyly Bigger

Appearing at the Memphis Italian Festival. ursday, May 30, 9 p.m.



With Traitors, Not Enough Space, Notions. $25. Saturday, June 1, 6:30 p.m.


Benton Parker

Sunday, June 2, 8 p.m.


Black Opry Revue

Featuring a variety of Black country, blues, folk, and Americana music artists. Thursday, May 30, 7:30 p.m.



Featuring Hope Clayborn and Takuya Nakamura (New York), DJs Rmzi, DJ Blingg, plus Ross al Ghul. Friday, May 31, 7:30 p.m.


Bodywerk Presents:

Takuya Nakamura

The composer/producer/DJ/ multi-instrumentalist plays trumpet, keyboards, and various electronic instruments to fuse various styles.

Saturday, June 1, 7:30 p.m.


Boogie Nights!: A ’70s

Disco Funk Dance Party row on your best polyester suit, dance dress, big hair, bell-bottoms or any ’70s digs, and get lost in time to some of the best ’70s disco tracks, club hits, dance soul, and funk beats ever made. Friday, May 31, 9:30 p.m.-3 a.m.


Breeze Cayolle & New Orleans

is player’s rich and soulful saxophone style evokes the jazz, blues, and R&B of his hometown, New Orleans. Tuesday, June 4, 6 p.m.


Dead Soldiers EP listening event Also includes the “RIDE” music video premiere, directed by local lmmaker Josh Cannon. Wednesday, June 5, 6:30 p.m.


Devil Train

Bluegrass, roots, country, Delta, and ski e. ursday, May 30, 10 p.m.



All ages show. Saturday, June 1, 8 p.m.


Joe Restivo 4

Sunday, June 2, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.



With e Band Repent, Until ey Bleed, Murderachi [Small Room-Downstairs]. Wednesday, June 5, 8 p.m.


PRIZM International Chamber Music Festival: Imani Winds e Grammy-nominated ensemble Imani Winds has led both a revolution and an evolution of the wind quintet. $33/pre-concert general admission. Monday, June 3, 7 p.m.



With Crawldrawdiuqs, Big Shredder [Small RoomDownstairs]. Friday, May 31, 8 p.m.


Spectrum Wednesday, June 5, 6 p.m.


Stephen Lee Big Band

First Wednesdays in the Art Garden with Stephen Lee and a 17-piece big band. Wednesday, June 5, 5:30 p.m.


Steve Hopper Monday, June 3, 6 p.m.


The Eastwoods With Mummycats, Moxie and e Hollers. Friday, May 31, 9:30 p.m.


The Mummycats

With Mystic Light Casino, Moxie & e Hollers [Small Room-Downstairs]. Saturday, June 1, 9 p.m. HI TONE

Kirk Whalum: Epic Cool Album Release

Epic Cool is an electrifying collection of original grooves produced and composed by Whalum and co-producer Greg Manning. Sunday, June 2, 6 p.m.


Laura Denisse y Los Brillantes Country, Norteno, and Tejano music from Monterrey, Mexico. Saturday, June 1, 7:30 p.m.


Lucky 7 Brass Band

Friday, May 31, 8 p.m.


Memphis Mojo Sunday, June 2, 7 p.m.


Memphis Unplugged Stripped down and acoustic classic tunes, with a cool, laidback, and serene atmosphere. Friday, May 31, 6 p.m.


NXNE Showcase

Preview Party

Five Toronto-bound Music

Export Memphis artists, Jai Musiq, Raneem Imam, Deonna Sirod, Mak Ro, and Lukah, play sets they’re taking to the NXNE festival. Free, $25/VIP Bar Wristband. ursday, May 30, 6-9 p.m.



With Ruined God & Magnolia

Friday, May 31, 8 p.m.



Come hear DJs from one of America’s nest indie community radio stations. Friday, May 31, 8 p.m.


Year Of October

With Mothcat, Stay Fashionable [Small Room-Downstairs]. Monday, June 3, 8 p.m.


1-900 Band

Saturday, June 1, 4 p.m.


Celebrity Cypher

Southern Soul and Blues

Southern soul and blues to come together in an open mic hosted by recording artist Marqee of Soul. Friday, May 31, 7 p.m.


Clancy Jones

With HEELS. Saturday, June 1, 8 p.m.


Corey Lou & DaVillage

At the first Whet Thursday of the season with extended hours. Thursday, May 30, 5-8 p.m.


Ryan & Friends

ursday, May 30, 8 p.m.



Saturday, June 1, 9 p.m.


The ShotGunBillys

High energy Southern rock with a firm country handshake. Thursday, May 30, 7 p.m.


Third Coast Saturday, June 1, 8 p.m.



In the big room-upstairs. Friday, May 31, 10 p.m.


Twin Soul

One of the premier rockand-roll party bands in the Mid-South area. Friday, May 31, 10 p.m.


Vinyl Happy Hour

With Guest DJs every ursday. ursday, May 30, 3-5 p.m.



Classic alternative/college rock by the likes of REM, INXS, Guadalcanal Diary, and e Replacements. Saturday, June 1, 9 p.m.


Whisky South

A Memphis-based country band with some blues in uences. Saturday, June 1, 5 p.m.


Wyly Bigger Album

Release Show

Friday, May 31, 7 p.m.


Germantown Symphony Orchestra’s Pops

Concert in the Grove

Featuring jazz and jazzinspired music from ragtime, swing, and Latin to modern. $7. Thursday, May 30, 6:30-8 p.m.



Josh Threlkeld with Graham Winchester and Brian Blake

Happy Hour in e Grove. Friday, May 31, 5 p.m.



Memphis Blues Society

Weekly Jam

Hosted by Jackie Flora & Friends. ursday, May 30, 7:30 p.m.


Singer Songwriter


Enjoy some of the area’s best local musicians every Sunday. Sunday, June 2, 4-6 p.m.


18 May 30-June 5, 2024 C M Y CM MY CY CMY K May 2 LATG MECH flyer copy.pdf 1 5/13/24 12:59 PM

CALENDAR of EVENTS: May 30 - June 5


“Between Heaven and Earth, We Build Our Home” emes of ancestry, immigration, and homemaking mark this show featuring AAPI artists from Memphis and the South. rough June 20.


“Branching Out”

Discover intricate connections between students, teachers, and casting communities, which branch out much like a family tree. rough Sept. 8.


CBU: 2024 Spring BFA


esis exhibition for graduating seniors in the department of visual arts at Christian Brothers University. rough June 30.


“China Blues: The World of Blue and White Ceramics”

e collection includes a range of objects from the Ming and Qing dynasties in a wide array of materials, including beautifully carved jades, paintings, textiles, and ceramics. rough May 31.


Dr. Gopal Murti:

“Finding Beauty in Everything I See”

Once a researcher at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Murti’s art is eclectic in terms of style, subject, medium, and substrate. Saturday, June 1-July 1.


“Everyday People:

Snapshots of The Black Experience”

A photography exhibition showcasing Memphis artist Eric Echols’ photo collection of 20th-century African Americans. rough July 14.



Bruce Brainard is well known for meditative, allegorical landscapes of in nite skies, elds, and oceans. rough June 1.


“It’s All Relative”

Sicilian/Puerto Rican postsurrealist sculptor Morgan Lugo uses permanent materials, such as bronze, to speak to the lasting e ects of past experiences. rough July 7.


Jeanne Seagle & Annabelle Meacham:

“Of This Moment” Exhibition of work by Jeanne Seagle and Annabelle Meacham. ursday, May 30-June 9.


“Made in Dixon | Hecho en Dixon”

“Made In Dixon” features artwork from more than 300 program participants of all ages, diverse cultural backgrounds, and interests. rough June 2.


Maritza Davila-Irizarry: “Homage to the Human Heart”

Maritza Davila-Irizarry’s large format accordion-style book she created using printmaking techniques honed over decades embodies an homage to all of the people who have crossed paths with the artist. rough May 31.


“Memphis 2024” Experience visual art in various genres and media from artists across Memphis. rough June 30.


“No Place Like Home” Perspectives, techniques, and themes from queer artists in the metals community. rough June 2.


“People Are People” is exhibition honors famed American designer Christian Siriano’s electrifying contributions to fashion. rough Aug. 4.


Rivertown Artists Spring Fling Exhibition

Works by Shirlee Clark, Babs Feibelman, Jane Fulmer, Sharon Grinspan, Meg Jones, Vicki Less, Mary K. VanGieson, Elizabeth Williams, and Renee Wilson. rough May 30.


Sowgand Sheikholeslami:

“Progression” is show features works encapsulating a diverse range of subjects, from enigmatic gures set within interior spaces to boldly painted still lifes and abstract landscapes. rough July 7.


“Sow”: Works by Emily Leonard Emily Leonard is known for sublime representations of landscapes and wildlife. rough June 8.


Summer Art Garden:

“Creatures of Paradise” Memphis-based duo Banana Plastik present an environment lled with vibrant and whimsical beings entitled “Creatures of Paradise.” rough Oct. 26.


“The Real & Imagined” New work from Erin Harmon and Kong Wee Pang delving into imaginary environments and creations. rough June 22.


Send the date, time, place, cost, info, phone number, a brief description, and photos — two weeks in advance — to


“Understory” New paintings by Alicja Trout. rough June 2.


“Whimsy & Wonder”: Bartlett Art Association Exhibition ere will be a reception on June 2 from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 1-June 29.



901 Comics 8 Year

Anniversary Celebration with Javier Saltares Saltares, the co-creator of Danny Ketch the Ghost Rider, will be signing comics and doing sketches. Saturday, June 1, 10 a.m.


“Are You Having Fun?“ New work by Adam Farmer

Adam Farmer’s solo exhibition investigating the signi cance of play in art-making and our human experience, featuring a live mid-show performance.

Friday, May 31, 6-10 p.m.


Gallery Evenings at The Memphian

Discover captivating art by local creators this season. Sunday, June 2, 4-7 p.m.


Jeanne Seagle & Annabelle Meacham:

“Of This Moment”

Opening Reception for “Of is Moment.” Friday, May 31, 5-8 p.m.


Munch and Learn

Presentations by local artists, scholars, and Dixon sta sharing their knowledge on a variety of topics. Wednesday, June 5, noon-1 p.m.


“Threading Legacies”: Exhibition Opening Showcasing magni cent quilts and the collective spirit of the Black community. Saturday, June 1, 3-6 p.m.


Works by Wanda Bradley

Opening reception bene ting the Wounded Warrior Project for injured veterans. Saturday, June 1, 2 p.m.



David Dennis Jr.: The Movement Made Us e author speaks with his father, David Dennis Sr., a core architect of the civil rights movement. Saturday, June 1, 2 p.m.


Henry Wise: Holy City Henry Wise celebrates his new novel Holy City. Sunday, June 2, 2 p.m. NOVEL

Kathy Izard: Trust the Whisper New book explores God’s quiet work in our lives. Tuesday, June 4, 6 p.m. NOVEL


Colorcopia: DIY Flower Prints

With Dixon Gardens and Gallery’s Shawna White. ursday, May 30, 2 p.m.


Foundry Invitational & River Exhibition (F.I.R.E.)

A conference for metal casting with specialized workshops and a pop-up exhibition. rough June 2.


Lunchtime Meditations

Looking for something relaxing to do to clear your mind and improve your overall


Collage Youth Ensemble

health? Head to the Dixon for our free meditation sessions every Friday. Friday, May 31, noon-12:45 p.m.


Rose Care for Beginners Rose Garden horticulturist

Joey Mayes discusses beginner rose care. $12. Saturday, June 1, 10 a.m.


Free Sana Yoga at Comeback Coffee

Find your glow and fuel your soul with free yoga. is all-levels ow class will surely leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. Tuesday, June 4, 11-11:45 a.m.


Sunday Argentine Tango Mini-Lesson & Practica

Mariallan and James will be conducting a short tango class directed at beginning dancers (5:30-6:15 p.m.), followed by a guided practica (6:15-7:30 p.m.). $15/lesson and practica, $10/practica. Sunday, June 2, 5:30 p.m.



Comedy Open Mic

Hosted by John Miller. $10. Tuesday, June 4, 8 p.m. HI TONE

Friday Night Laughs: Henry Coleman

As seen on BET, All Def Comedy Jam, HBO Laugh Factory, and more. $20. Friday, May 31, 8 p.m.


Nate Bargatze: The Be Funny Tour

Hailed as “ e Nicest Man in Stand-Up,” by e Atlantic magazine. Friday, May 31, 7 p.m. FEDEXFORUM

Saturday Night Showcase is underground comedy show, hosted by Tylon Monger, boasts a diverse and interesting line up each week

that cracks smiles, shakes heads, and causes uproarious laughter. $15. Saturday, June 1, 7 p.m.



5th Raleigh Community Health Wellness and Safety Resource Fair

With CPR demonstrations, health screenings, entertainment, food and prizes, this fair teaches people about monitoring your health and taking safety precautions. Saturday, June 1, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.


The Mystic Live at the Green Room rough music, story, silence and dialogue, we hope to strengthen our attachment to hopes and dreams. e Mystic is hosted by a rotating panel that includes Rabbi Micah Greenstein, Dr. Scott Morris, Rev. Joshua Narcisse, Dr. Rev. Lillian Lammers, and Kirk Whalum. e goal of e Mystic is to not feel better but to get better at feeling. Tuesday, June 4, 6-7 p.m. THE GREEN ROOM AT CROSSTOWN ARTS

Volunteer Day at Lichterman Nature Center

Work on a variety of projects to help conserve and maintain this unique property. Saturday, June 1, 9 a.m.-noon.



Boogie Nights!: A ’70s Disco Funk Dance Party row on your best polyester suit, dance dress, big hair, bell-bottoms, or any ’70s digs and get lost in time to some of the best ’70s disco tracks, club hits, dance soul, and funk beats ever made. Friday, May 31, 9:30 p.m.-3 a.m.


Collage Dance: The Fifth Element

A highly anticipated culminating performance which features more than 300 students from the Collage Dance Conservatory who train in ballet, tap, jazz, and West African dance. is performance is an awe-inspiring opportunity to witness and invest in the promise of Memphis area youth. Sunday, June 2, 3 p.m.


Free Beginner Salsa Class Anyone can learn to dance salsa. Saturday, June 1, 7-8 p.m. FOURTH BLUFF PARK

Line Dancing with Q Line dancing lessons, Tuesdays with “Q.” 21+. Tuesday, June 4, 6 p.m. DRU’S PLACE

continued on page 20


continued from page 19

Swing for Spring

New beginner swing dance series. Try just one type or learn all four. $80/general admission. Tuesday, June 4, 6-7 p.m.



Drop-In Family Day: Dairy & Agriculture

Try your hand at making butter, carding cotton, and designing a seed mosaic. Wednesday, June 5, 10:30 a.m.


Kaleidoscope Club (ages 5-9)

Each week, participants will enjoy an art or horticulture project that sparks creativity and

critical thinking. Wednesday, June 5, 4 p.m.


Kids on the Block puppet show Puppeteer Les Passees’ mission is to educate children aged 12 and under about social concerns. Saturday, June 1, 3 p.m.


Mini Masters (ages 2-4)

Introduce your little ones to the arts and nature with crafts, movement, and more. $8. Tuesday, June 4, 10:30-11:15 a.m.


Monthly Member Mornings Free with zoo membership. Includes a presentation on butterflies. Saturday, June 1, 8-10 a.m.


Project Pop-up!

Explore the Dixon with an inspiring project for all ages. Supplies are provided. Saturday, June 1, 10 a.m.-noon.


Story Time

Enjoy stories, songs, art activities, and creative play that connect with Collierville history. Friday, May 31, 10:30 a.m.


Story Time at Novel

Recommended for children up to 5 years, Story Time at Novel includes songs and stories, featuring brand-new books in addition to well-loved favorites. Saturday, June 1, 10:30 a.m.; Wednesday, June 5, 10:30 a.m.


Super Saturday - Design and Decorate

Explore fashion as an art form with your family at Memphis’ art museum. Free. Saturday, June 1, 10 a.m.-noon.



Dragon Boat Festival

Boat racing, music, dance, and multicultural foods galore. Saturday, June 1, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.


Memphis Italian Festival

With bocce, grape stomping, wine races, face painting, cooking demonstrations, food vendors, and live music. Thursday, May 30-June 1.


Memphis Pride Fest Weekend

Immerse yourself in Memphis Pride Fest Weekend, a four-day celebration that vividly embodies the spirit of the Mid-South’s LGBTQ community. Renowned for its soulful ambiance and grandeur, Memphis Pride Fest is a vibrant testament to the beauty of diversity and a beloved highlight of the city’s cultural calendar. Thursday, May 30-June 1.



Enroll today and Soar to Excellence!

•Extended School Hours & Days

•Extended School Hours & Days

•Advanced placement (AP) Classes

•Advanced placement (AP) Classes

•FLL & Underwater Robotics Program

•FLL & Underwater Robotics Program

•National Honor Society

•National Honor Society

•College Counseling & Planning

•College Counseling & Planning

•Extracurricular Activities

•Extracurricular Activities

•After-School Clubs

•After-School Clubs

• Early Emphasis on STEM Classes: Science, Technology, Engineering & Math

Overton Square Movie Series: Guardians of the Galaxy Blankets and folding chairs welcome; no outside alcoholic beverages. Free. Thursday, May 30, 6 p.m.


Space: The New Frontier 2D

From self-assembling habitats, commercial space stations, and rockets without fuel to the Lunar Gateway to deep space. Through May 23, 2025.


The Commandant’s Shadow Eight decades after Auschwitz, two Holocaust survivors come face to face. Thursday, May 30, 7 p.m.


The Muppet Movie: 40th Anniversary Screening Blankets and folding chairs welcome; no outside alcoholic beverages. Sunday, June 2, 1 p.m.; Monday, June 3, 7 p.m.



Canoes + Cocktails

A guided sunset paddle on the lake followed by specialty cocktails, snacks from Cheffie’s, yard games, and music. Friday, May 31, 7 p.m.


Cooper-Young Community Farmers Market

A weekly outdoor market featuring local farmers (no resellers), artisans, and live music. Saturday, June 1, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.


Food Truck Fridays

Grab a bite from a local food truck and enjoy lunch in the beautiful Dixon gardens. Friday, May 31, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.


Memphis Farmers Market

A weekly outdoor market featuring local farmers and artisans, live music, and fun activities. Saturday, June 1, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.


Memphis Margarita Festival 2024 Calling all Margarita lovers. Sample from the city’s best margarita-makers, vote on your favorite, and crown an audience winner at the end of this best ’rita fest! Saturday, June 1, 3-6 p.m.


20 May 30-June 5, 2024
MSE, SCS & TN Average Comparison Chart
Early Emphasis on STEM Classes: Science, Technology, Engineering & Math Mendenhall K-8 • 4450 S. Mendenhall, Memphis TN 38141 • 901.367.7814 Winchester 9-12 • 4921 Winchester Road, Memphis TN 38118 • 901.452.2932 Cordova K-5 • 8350 Macon Road, Cordova, TN 38018 • 901.707.8146 Cordova 6-12 • 8360 Macon Road, Cordova, TN 38018 • 901.367.7814 98 % COLLEGE ACCEP T ANCE R A TE! TUITION-FREE EXEMPLARY COLLEGE PREP SCHOOL Excellence & Equity in STEM & Education Tennessee STEM School Designation Proud to be a Memphis School of Excellence 79% Shelby County Schools54% Tennessee Average 63% Memphis School of Excellence 97% Shelby County Schools 80% Tennessee Average 90% Graduation Rate College Enrollment Rate W A T C H M E ! MSE, SCS & TN Average Comparison Chart Soaring to Excellence. ARE YOU READY TO JOIN THE MSE FAMILY?
today and Soar to Excellence!
Mendenhall K-8 • 4450 S. Mendenhall, Memphis TN 38141 • 901.367.7814 Winchester 9-12 • 4921 Winchester Road, Memphis TN 38118 • 901.452.2932 Cordova K-5 • 8350 Macon Road, Cordova, TN 38018 • 901.707.8146 Cordova 6-12 • 8360 Macon Road, Cordova, TN 38018 • 901.367.7814 98 % COLLEGE ACCEP T ANCE R A TE! TUITION-FREE EXEMPLARY COLLEGE PREP SCHOOL Excellence & Equity in STEM & Education Tennessee STEM School Designation Proud to be a Memphis School of Excellence 79% Shelby County Schools54% Tennessee Average 63% Memphis School of Excellence 97% Shelby County Schools 80% Tennessee Average 90% Graduation Rate College Enrollment Rate W A T C H M E ! Soaring to Excellence.



Stroller Strides and Stroller Barre workouts. Thursday, May 30, 9:30 a.m.


Hustle & Flow Step

Free hip-hop step aerobics led by instructor Ayanna. Bring your own stepper, borrow one, or get steppin’ without one. Free. Wednesday, June 5, 6-7 p.m.


Slow Your Roll | Saturday Morning Meditation

A serene start to your Saturday with some morning mindfulness, led by the experienced mindfulness educator Greg Graber. Free. Saturday, June 1, 8-8:30 a.m.


Taijiquan with Milan Vigil

Led by Milan Vigil, this Chinese martial art promotes relaxation, improves balance, and provides no-impact aerobic benefits. Ages 16 and older. Free. Saturday, June 1, 10:30-11:30 a.m.



Strengthen your yoga practice and enjoy the health benefits of light exercise with yoga instructors Laura Gray McCann. Free. Thursday, May 30, 6-6:45 p.m.


Yoga in the Park

Stretch, strengthen, and unwind after your work day with a free yoga class. Free. Thursday, May 30, 5:30-6:15 p.m.; Wednesday, June 5, 5:30-6:15 p.m.


Yoga on the River

Join us for Yoga on the River as Candace guides your yoga journey along the mighty Mississippi. Free. Tuesday, June 4, 6-7 p.m.



Monday Night Poetry Set by Perform901

An immersive celebration of the written word, where the beauty of language comes alive.

Monday, June 3, 7:30 p.m.


Pride Bingo with Imagene Azengraber

With Wednesday Moss, King Playtonic, Zoloft, Pat McCooter, and Fantasia Bordeaux. Sunday, June 2, 3 p.m.


The Starlight Cabaret

With Tony Stone, Wednesday Moss, Aubrey Ombre, JR Stone, Demonica Santangilo, & Anita Mann. Friday, May 31, 11:30 p.m.


Trolley Night with DJ Alpha Whiskey

Drink specials start flowing at 5 p.m. and DJ Alpha Whiskey brings the party vibes from 8 p.m. to close. Friday, May 31, 5 p.m.-midnight.



Lamplighter Bazaar

A unique market in the historic Lamplighter Lounge. Saturday, June 1, 2-6 p.m.


Midsouth Derby and Ales - Adult Pinewood Derby

Race like a kid again, drink like an adult. Saturday, June 1, 6-9 p.m.


Morrighan’s Bluff, Amtgard of Memphis

Meet Saturdays at noon for medieval/fantasy live action roleplay game. Saturday, June 1, noon.



Memphis Redbirds

Versus the Nashville Sounds. $13-$86. Thursday, May 30, 7 p.m. | Friday, May 31, 7 p.m. | Saturday, June 1, 6:30 p.m. | Sunday, June 2, 1 p.m.


Open Water Swim Clinics

Get tips and training from professional swim and triathlon coaches. Sunday, June 2, 6:30 a.m.


Race: Buffalo Run

With a 5K, a one mile dash, and a special 100-yard dash for the kids. Saturday, June 1, 8:30 a.m.


Ranch Horse Congress

Celebrate the heritage of the ranch horse through competition. Wednesday, June 5-June 12.



Legally Blonde the Musical at GCT America’s favorite blond, Elle Woods, is ready to prove who’s in charge in the ultimate Broadway tribute to girl power. $26/adult, $21/senior 60+, $16/student/teacher, $16/ military, $16/wheelchair space, $10/sensory friendly performance. Friday, May 31, 7:30-10 p.m. | Saturday, June 1, 7:30-10 p.m. | Sunday, June 2, 2:30-5 p.m.


Shrek the Musical Broadway’s Tony Award-winning fairy-tale adventure comes to Memphis. Friday, May 31, 7:30 p.m. | Saturday, June 1, 2 p.m. | Saturday, June 1, 7:30 p.m. | Sunday, June 2, 1 p.m. | Sunday, June 2, 6:30 p.m.


The Hot Wing King

Katori Hall’s searing new comedy, The Hot Wing King follows a group of friends as they prepare for the “Hot Wang Festival” in Memphis. Through June 2.



After Hours Tour

A walk through the cemetery after the gates have closed. Friday, May 31, 5:30 p.m.


First Saturday Wolf River Paddle River guides lead you along over eight miles of river section from Germantown Parkway to Kennedy Park. Saturday, June 1, 9 a.m.


Haunted Pub Crawl

Visit three local bars for ghost stories, dark history, and tales of the paranormal. Friday, May 31, 7:30-10 p.m.

The Original Memphis Brew Bus

The Memphis Brew Bus is a Saturday afternoon trip into the amazing Memphis craft brewing scene. Visit three local breweries for tours, talks with the brewers, and of course beer. $59. Saturday, June 1, 2-5:30 p.m. THE

MAY 30 - JUNE 5
ACROSS 1 Rum drink popular at beach bars 11 Cold ___ 15 Hawaii landmark featuring four seven-ton clocks 16 Modern entertainment device 17 It’s no cause for alarm 18 Patent prerequisite 19 Cry after doing something impressive 20 Bridge position 21 Run 22 List maker 24 Hawk 25 Animal associated with Palm Sunday 28 Wear for a queen 31 “Knock that off!” 33 Oratorio opener, often 36 Doesn’t measure up 37 Fill out 38 A resident might carry one 39 Flip, as a top 41 In spite of 42 1981 novel that introduced the character Hannibal Lecter 44 Loaf at a bakery 45 Rid of some pests 47 Ship with a prophetic prow 49 Parts 50 “Grand”
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side 7 Rita who was awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004 8 Floors 9 Tenderizer target 10 “All ___ is a kind of confession, more or less oblique”: James Baldwin 11 Temple, for one 12 Source of empty calories 13 Bessemer process output 14 Get by 21 Popular drinking game 23 Installments 24 Season opener? 25 Ophidian menaces 26 Getz who was nicknamed “The Sound” 27 Phenomenon that emits X-rays 29 2016 hit animated film 30 It might have bonus features 32 Cartoon Casanova 34 Hinge (on) 35 First name in court fiction 37 In accordance with 40 Hand-held organizer, briefly 41 The biblical cubit was based on its length 43 Boot covering 45 Video store category 46 Dye used in some ballpoint ink 48 “Without a doubt!” 50 Derby car material 51 River to the Arctic Ocean 53 Interjection of dejection 54 Some curtain trim 55 Gimmers are young ones 57 Hubbub 58 Oldest tech school in the U.S.
Jeanne Seagle, Into Dark Woods
to fall back on?
side to
Online subscriptions: Today’s puzzle and more than 7,000 past puzzles, ($39.95 a year). Read about and comment on each puzzle: ANSWER TO PREVIOUS PUZZLE 1234567891011121314 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 2223 24 25262728 2930 31 32 33 3435 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 4546 47 48 49 5051 52535455 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 RAGSWWIHEHE ALEUTIANPORES PATRICKSTEWART IMSEKEONESEED DEWARSDASIRA ODICJUDIDENCH ATTUNEDERR HUGOWEAVING AGRTHEBEAN WILLSMITHSMOG ECOAREHATETO TECHBROJONRAP CHARACTERACTOR ATREEITALIANO PEERXESAGES The New York Times Syndication Sales Corporation 620 Eighth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10018 For Information Call: 1-800-972-3550 For Release Friday, March 29, 2019
Edited by Will Shortz No. 0222 Crossword

We Saw You.


Two barbecue contests held at the same time in the same city. Only in Memphis. Right?

Fi y-seven teams participated in the inaugural SmokeSlam in Tom Lee Park, May 16th through 18th. And 16,697 people (not counting teams) attended, says Lindsay Stevens, public relations for SmokeSlam.“We were just overwhelmed with the positivity we had from so many people,” she says. “I don’t think we could have been happier with the outcome.”

e 46th edition of the Memphis in May (MIM) World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest, held May 15th through May 18th in Liberty Park, also was a success, says Randy Blevins with MIM. He had no estimate yet about attendance, but a total of 129 competition cooking teams from 22 states and four foreign countries took part. “Yet again during the third weekend in May, the Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest became the biggest backyard in Memphis right in the heart of the city at Liberty Park,” Blevins says.

Both competitions are slated to return to their same locations in 2025.

above: Ben Colar, Denzel Alexander, and Michael Butler Jr. at SmokeSlam; below: (le to right) Ryan Marsh and Elizabeth Sullivan at World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest; Nick Black at World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest; John Montgomery and Carol Coletta at SmokeSlam; Mia Townsend and Abby Neal at SmokeSlam bottom: (le to right) Colin Ross, John McArthur, Cannon Smith, and Clark Schifani at World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest; Dudley Knowlton, Trenten McCarty, and Drew Ybos at SmokeSlam

22 May 30-June 5, 2024



Ron Jewell grabs a paintbrush and nds a new avenue of expression.

It’s hard out there for an impresario.

For years, Ron Jewell has been all in on the performing arts. In the 1980s and 1990s he was director of marketing for the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, and a er that he joined the city of Bartlett to put together and run the Bartlett Performing Arts & Conference Center. As director of the facility, he booked the programming and turned it into a venue that drew healthy attendance. A er 21 years there, he went over to the Orpheum eatre Group where he was director of operations for the Halloran Centre for eight years.

But he wasn’t just behind the scenes in the performing arena — he’s had a yearslong run with his one-man show “Mark Twain At-Large” that he’s performed all over the country. He could run a show on either side of the curtain.

As happens with people of a certain age, however, he sensed change was afoot. “I began to prepare myself for retirement,” he said. “ e whole concept of leaving a long career in the perform-

ing arts seemed like giving in somehow.”

He had the nances to retire, but he just wasn’t sure what he’d do. “I just didn’t have any direction for what to look forward to. I wasn’t ready.”

And yet, something was already bubbling up. “About 10 years ago, I asked my daughter, on a lark, to get me a starter painting kit,” he said. “I began to push paint around a canvas without any instruction, playing all over the pallet with great folly, while watching a variety of video demonstrations and tutorials on techniques and style.”

He nally found his direction. And he’s well aware of how an artist’s initial explorations can go o in any number of ways. “As I discovered new paths for

expression, the exhibit may seem, at times, a little tangential,” he said. “But the randomness in styles re ects the search for my own voice. I’ve found a new sense of purpose and rely on my creative energies to navigate what I call the ‘Second Winds.’”

Jewell’s explorations go far and wide, and that suits him just ne.

“I paint for myself, but I’m ready to

include my circle of friends. You will excuse my amateurish attempts, but I hope you will also celebrate the never-ending power of an inspired imagination.”

Ron Jewell’s exhibition “Second Winds” is at Gallery Ten Ninety-One at WKNO, 7151 Cherry Farms Road, Cordova. e show runs from June 3rd to June 29th, with an opening reception Monday, June 3rd, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

“I’ve found a new sense of purpose and rely on my creative energies to navigate what I call the ‘Second Winds.’”
PHOTOS COURTESY RON JEWELL (clockwise from above) Guitar, 18” x 24” acrylic; Broken Heart, 12” x 36” enamel on palm wood; Wetland, 18” x 24” acrylic; Combustion, 11” x 14” acrylic.

Summer Reading

Your favorite local booksellers share their recommendations on what to read this month.

Books are and always will be the best part of summer. Assigned summer reading? No, never. But when you get to choose, ah, there’s the sweet spot … until you realize there are just too many books to read and not enough time. That’s why we put the question to Memphis’ booksellers to see what they’re recommending to help make those choices a little easier.

Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop by Alice Faye Duncan (Children)

A historical picture book for students by local award-winning author Alice Faye Duncan, Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop focuses on the 1968 sanitation strike that took place here in Memphis. — Jeremee DeMoir, DeMoir Books & Things

Blood at the Root by LaDarrion Williams (YA)


Blood at the Root is a new release that’s taking over TikTok and seems to be an instant book of interest. Its author says it is his version of “If Harry Potter was Black and went to an HBCU.” The book explores the supernatural and the roots and secrets that connect us in an unforgettable contemporary setting. This heartpounding fantasy series opener is a rich tapestry of atmosphere, intrigue, and emotion. — Jeremee DeMoir

Black Shield Maiden by Willow Smith

around and then at book’s end, you are left howling and wanting more.

Funny, tragic, unreal yet real simultaneously, crazy, and savory, every bit of this book is delicious. — Sheri Bancroft, Novel

Ripe by Sarah Rose Etter dread (n,v): from the Old English drædan, to shrink from in apprehension or expectation; to fear very much.

One of the definitions used in the book. You don’t have to read horror to get dread. If you don’t have enough home made on your own, here it is storebought. Etter captures that feeling when you have existential burnout in your work, but it turns your senses off enough to not be able to quit.

This chronicling of the Believers (a perfectly apt name) in the tech world is all too accurate. Having worked in corporate America (though not tech, science, or engineering, but tech-adjacent), this is exactly how it feels to be surrounded by the brand attire-wearing masses who are more company cult than culture.

The singer of “Whip My Hair” is back with new music and a book for fans of mythology, high fantasy, and historical fiction. The newly released title follows Yafeu, a defiant yet fiercely compassionate young warrior who is stolen from her home in the flourishing Ghanaian Empire and taken as a slave to a distant kingdom in the North. — Jeremee DeMoir

Shit Cassandra Saw by Gwen E. Kirby

A wild ride of 21 short stories from the unbridled imagination of writer Gwen E. Kirby. Anchored by bold female badassery, each story instantly demands the reader’s attention.

The whole journey of reading this collection is like a food processor. You are chopped, stirred, pulsed, and crushed. You are shaken up and down and all

— Dianna Dalton, Novel

Two Minds: Poems by Callie Siskel

Callie Siskel doesn’t miss a beat. Her debut volume, Two Minds, masterfully weaves a thoughtprovoking exploration of the human psyche, while discreetly grieving her father’s early death. This pulchritudinous elegy delves into the intricate dance between creativity and criticism, and the delicate balance between self-expression and self-doubt. Siskel crafts a narrative that is both deeply personal and universally relatable. Two Minds is a triumph of storytelling, a testament to authenticity, and a shining example of the transformative potential of contemporary poetry.

— Blake Helis, Burke’s Book Store

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn / James / The Audacity

My summer reading assignment is to reread Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (not read since 7th grade) and then Percival Everett’s James, a retelling of Twain’s novel from Jim’s point of view. Currently I am reading The Audacity by Ryan Chapman, a comic novel about the implosion of an Elizabeth Holmes Theranos-type company.

— Cheryl Mesler, Burke’s Book Store

24 May 30-June 5, 2024 PREVENT OPIOID
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Putting on the Hog

Louisiana “meats” Tennessee at World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest.

’ve sampled many variations of ribs and shoulders at barbecue competitions, but I never tried a “Craw sh Boudin King Cake” at a contest until I recently devoured the one made by Richard Briseno of Metairie, Louisiana.

Briseno, 40, owner of Lovie Enterprises LLC, which makes “Lovie Sauce” barbecue sauce, was on the “Rub Me Tender” team at the Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest.

e team won 10th place in whole hog. Briseno’s Craw sh Boudin King Cake came in near the top third in the seafood category. And his Lovie Sauce came in third place in the vinegar category for barbecue sauce.

When I visited their booth, Briseno let me try one of these “King Cakes.” Honestly, it’s one of the most delicious things I’ve ever eaten.

Briseno says these savory king cakes can be made with di erent types of meat, which are ground up and put in a casing and grilled. In this case, it was craw sh, seasonings, and rice all ground up, which comprise boudin, Briseno says.

He uses Pillsbury Crescent Roll mix to make his dough. He then folds in his stu ng, puts egg wash on it “to give it a little shine,” and bakes it. He adds pepper jelly and lump craw sh tails on top a er he takes it o the grill to give it the “sweet and savory pro le.” And he adds thinly sliced green onions “just to add a little bit of color to it.”

“Lovie Sauce” is how Briseno became a member of the “Rub Me Tender” barbecue team. “I joined the team in 2022. I came on as ‘the sauce guy.’”

e “Rub Me Tender” team was founded by Wes Angel of Memphis. Ninety- ve percent of the team is composed of physicians, Briseno says. “ ey all went to medical school together and they live throughout the Memphis and Nashville area.

“My mom doesn’t have a cooking background other than what she was taught by her mom.”

“One of my best friends’ wife went to med school with everybody. ey invited me to join a couple of years ago. I thought it would be fun.”

e Lovie Sauce recipe came from Briseno’s mother, Karen Lambert, who, like Briseno, is a realtor. “We’re a

mother-son real estate team in the New Orleans area.”

Lambert came up with the sauce a er visiting some friends in South Carolina. She wasn’t impressed with the barbecue sauce they were using at a backyard cookout she attended. She said, “I could make a barbecue sauce that was better.”

She began experimenting with sauces a er she returned home. On her next visit to South Carolina, her barbecue sauce was “very well received.”

A er years of people asking them to get the sauce in stores, owners Briseno, Lambert, and her husband, Jack Lambert, now have Lovie Sauce in about 40 stores throughout New Orleans and the metro area.

Lovie Sauce is a vinegar-based sweet and tangy “multi-functional” sauce, Briseno says. It’s good for “dipping if you want to dip your meats in it, cooking, basting your ribs or pork butt or even chicken. It does well with everything. So,

it’s sweet and tangy on the front end. On the back end, right before it goes down you get a little bit of heat.”

His mother is a good cook, but Lambert says, “My mom doesn’t have a cooking background other than what she was taught by her mom. She did her thing and I learned from her.”

Briseno is “not so much in the kitchen. I do a lot on the pit. I have this smoker, so I do barbecue shrimp. I boil tons of craw sh.”

In addition to pork butts and sh, Briseno also smoked cream cheese. He scores the cream cheese, puts a little bit of seasoning on it, and cooks it low and slow in aluminum foil at 225 degrees and drizzles Lovie Sauce over it.

Briseno enjoys his annual visits to Memphis. In addition to hanging out with the team at the festival, he loves “to check out some of the restaurants.”

As for future plans for Lovie Sauce, Briseno says, “A lot of people have

reached out who want a spicy version. So, we’ll see what happens.”

People can’t buy Lovie Sauce on the web. “We are not online yet as we are not set up for shopping. Currently, it’s just store-bought.”

Being able to purchase it online someday “is a possibility. People can follow us on Instagram @loviesaucebbq or on Facebook at Lovie Sauce.”

Briseno would like to see the sauce hit the states “that are closest to Louisiana. And see how it’s received in other parts of the country.”

What about Memphis? “Well, it did win an award in Memphis, so that could be a possibility.”

Also, Briseno says, “Since we were so well received this past weekend, I’ve already reached out to a co-packer. We are interested in possibly bringing the sauce to stores across the nation one day. It got such great feedback. We think we really have a great product here.”

PHOTOS: (LEFT) MICHAEL DONAHUE; (RIGHT) COURTESY RICHARD BRISENO (le ) Richard Briseno with his Craw sh Boudin King Cakes; (right) Briseno and Wes Angel with their 2024 “Rub Me Tender” trophies

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26 May 30-June 5, 2024

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Welcome to the future of your education, Aries! Here are actions you can take to ensure you are exposed to all the lush lessons you need and deserve in the coming months.

1. Identify three subjects you would be excited to learn more about. 2. Shed dogmas and fixed theories that interfere with your receptivity to new information. 3. Vow to be alert for new guides or mentors. 4. Formulate a three-year plan to get the training and teachings you need most. 5. Be avidly curious.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Poet Emily Dickinson was skillful at invoking and managing deep feelings. One scholar described her emotions as being profoundly erotic, outlandish, sensuous, flagrant, and nuanced. Another scholar said she needed and sought regular doses of ecstasy. Yet even she, maestro of passions, got overwhelmed. In one poem, she wondered, “Why Floods be served to us in Bowls?” I suspect you may be having a similar experience, Taurus. It’s fun, though sometimes a bit too much. The good news is that metaphorically speaking, you will soon be in possession of a voluminous new bowl that can accommodate the floods.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): Bold predictions: 1. Whatever treasure you have lost or are losing will ultimately be reborn in a beautiful form. 2. Any purposeful surrender you make will hone your understanding of exactly what your soul needs next to thrive. 3. A helpful influence may fade away, but its disappearance will clear the path for new helpful influences that serve your future in ways you can’t imagine yet. 4. Wandering around without a precise sense of where you’re going will arouse a robust new understanding of what home means to you.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Denmark’s King Canute IV (1042–1086) wasn’t bashful about asserting his power. He claimed ownership of all the land. He insisted on the right to inherit the possessions of all foreigners and people without families. Goods from shipwrecks were automatically his property. But once, his efforts to extend his authority failed. He had his servants move his throne to a beach as the tide came in. Seated and facing the North Sea, he commanded, “Halt your advance!” The surf did not obey. “You must surrender to my superior will!” he exclaimed, but the waters did not recede. Soon, his throne was engulfed by water. Humbled, Canute departed. I bring this up not to discourage you, Leo. I believe you can and should expand your influence and clout in the coming weeks. Just be sure you know when to stop.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Virgo-born Irène Joliot-Curie craved more attention than she got from her mother, Marie

Curie. Mom was zealously devoted to her career as a chemist and physicist, which is one reason why she won Nobel Prizes in both fields. But she didn’t spend sufficient time with her daughter. Fortunately, Irène’s grandfather Eugène became his granddaughter’s best friend and teacher. With his encouragement, she grew into a formidable scientist and eventually won a Nobel Prize in chemistry herself. Even if you’re not a kid, Virgo, I suspect there may be a mentor and guide akin to Eugène in your future. Go looking! To expedite the process, define what activity or skill you want help in developing.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): I have a fantasy that sometime in the coming months, you will slip away to a sanctuary in a pastoral paradise. There you will enjoy long hikes and immerse yourself in healing music and savor books you’ve been wanting to read. Maybe you will write your memoirs or compose deep messages to dear old friends. Here’s the title of what I hope will be a future chapter of your life story: “A Thrillingly Relaxing Getaway.” Have you been envisioning an adventure like this, Libra? Or is your imagination more inclined to yearn for a trip to an exciting city where you will exult in high culture? I like that alternative, too. Maybe you will consider doing both.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): An Instagrammer named @sketchesbyboze advises us, “Re-enchant your life by making the mundane exciting. You are not ‘going to the drugstore.’ You are visiting the apothecary to buy potions. You are not ‘running an errand.’ You are undertaking an unpredictable adventure. You are not ‘feeding the birds.’ You are making an alliance with the crow queen.” I endorse this counsel for your use, Scorpio. You now have the right and duty to infuse your daily rhythm with magic and fantasy. To attract life’s best blessings, you should be epic and majestic. Treat your life as a mythic quest.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): I invite you to invite new muses into your life in the coming months. Give them auditions. Interview them. Figure out which are most likely to boost your creativity, stimulate your imagination, and rouse your inspiration in every area of your life, not just your art form. Tell them you’re ready to deal with unpredictable departures from the routine as long as these alternate paths lead to rich teachings. And what form might these muses take? Could be actual humans. Could be animals or spirits. Might be ancestral voices, exciting teachings, or pilgrimages to sacred sanctuaries. Expand your concept of what a muse might be so you can get as much muse-like input as possible.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): The Japanese have a word for a problem that

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): All of us periodically enjoy phases I call “Freedom from Cosmic Compul sion.” During these times, the Fates have a reduced power to shape our destinies. Our willpower has more spaciousness to work with. Our intentions get less resistance from karmic pressures that at other times might narrow our options. As I meditated on you, dear Gemini, I realized you are now in a phase of Freedom from Cosmic Compulsion. I also saw that you will have more of these phases than anyone else during the next 11 months. It might be time for you to get a “LIBERATION” tattoo or an equivalent new accessory.

plagues other countries as well as theirs: karoshi, or death from working too hard and too much. No matter how highminded our motivations might be, no matter how interesting our jobs are, most of us cannot safely devote long hours to intense labor week after week, month after month. It’s too stressful on the mind and body. I will ask you to monitor yourself for such proclivities in the coming months. You can accomplish wonders as long as you work diligently but don’t overwork. (PS: You won’t literally expire if you relentlessly push yourself with nonstop hard exertion, but you will risk compromising your mental health. So don’t do it!)

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Typically, human fertility is strongest when the temperature is 64 degrees Fahrenheit. But I suspect you will be an exception to the rule in the coming months. Whether it’s 10 below or 90 in the shade, your fertility will be extra robust — literally as well as psychologically and spiritually. If you are a heterosexual who would rather make great art or business than new babies, be very attentive to your birth control measures. No matter what your gender or sexual preference is, I advise you to formulate very clear intentions about how you want to direct all that lush fecundity. Identify which creative outlets are most likely to serve your long-term health and happiness.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Here’s a key assignment in the coming months: Enjoy fantasizing about your dream home. Imagine the comfortable sanctuary that would inspire you to feel utterly at home in your body, your life, and the world. Even if you can’t afford to buy this ultimate haven, you will benefit from visualizing it. As you do, your subconscious mind will suggest ways you can enhance your security and stability. You may also attract influences and resources that will eventually help you live in your dream home.

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Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga

It doesn’t get more epic than this.

When Praetorian Jack (Tom Burke) sizes up Furiosa (Anya Taylor-Joy) for the rst time, she’s standing alone in the middle of the wasteland, bloodied and bruised. ey are the only two survivors of a brutal desert battle which has le the road behind them littered with twisted steel and broken bodies. Furiosa has “a purposeful savagery,” which makes her an ideal candidate for promotion to Imperator in the army of Immortan Joe (Lachy Hulme). Jack o ers to take her under his wing — she’s just killed most of his crew, so he needs the help driving the War Rig.

To hear Dementus tell it, Furiosa’s problem is that she has hope.

By the time she gets her eld promotion, Furiosa has already lived four lives. She was a carefree youth, privileged to live in the Green Place, a matriarchal society that retained a high level of technology in a sheltered secret valley. At age 10 (Alyla Browne plays Youngest Furiosa), she is taken captive by raiders from the Biker Horde of Dementus (Chris Hemsworth) and forced to live in a cage as his “daughter.” When Dementus makes a play for Wasteland dominance by taking on Immortan Joe, Furiosa is traded, along with a doctor (Angus Sampson), as part of an armistice deal. She is sent to the vault where Immortan keeps his harem, where she rst shaves her head as part

of an elaborate escape plan.

With sons like Rictus Erectus (Nathan Jones) and his slightly brighter brother, Scrotus (Josh Helman), it’s easy to see why Immortan Joe would need Furiosa, who is always the smartest person in the room, to breed future “Warlord Juniors.” Furiosa escapes the rape chamber to live for a while disguised as a War Boy while she bides her time and plots her ultimate escape back to the Green Place.

We rst met Furiosa in 2015’s Mad Max: Fury Road, where she staged a high-octane escape from the Immortal Man’s Citadel and took his ve perfect wives with her. It was the fourth installment in director George Miller’s Mad Max series, which began as gonzo Australian Oz-sploitation in 1979 and broke into the American popular imagination in 1981 with e Road Warrior. Max, a former Aussie highway patrolman turned wasteland legend, was played in the rst three lms by Mel Gibson, then by Tom Hardy in Fury Road. Even though his name was in the title, Hardy’s Max was utterly upstaged in Fury Road by Charlize eron’s Furiosa. Her indelible performance elevated the lm from one of the best action lms ever made to one of the best lms ever made, period.

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga began life as an anime series intended to accompany Fury Road if it had been made as planned in the mid-’00s. Furiosa retains the episodic structure, with cards announcing chapter titles. It is framed as the remembrance of the History Man (George Shevtsov), who shared Dementus’ cage with Furiosa. Miller has said the Mad Max lms are folk legends of the future

told by those who are trying to rebuild human society a er the combination of ecological collapse and nuclear war have laid waste to the planet.

Fury Road is told in close-up, zoomed in on three hard days in the wasteland. Furiosa begins with a zoom in from space onto the Australian outback, signaling that Miller is working in a di erent register. e

intricate chase scenes, which Miller does better than anyone ever has, still pop. “Chapter 3: Stowaway,” which reportedly took ve years to plan and six months to lm, rises to Fury Road’s heights.

But Miller is more concerned with the people in the wasteland. Fury Road bore the mark of silent stunt genius Buster Keaton. Furiosa’s bildungsroman, the story of how the child became the woman, and the woman became the hero, is in the mode of an Akira Kurosawa samurai epic. at’s why the 15-year story’s

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By Chris McCoy
(top) Anya Taylor-Joy as Furiosa; (bottom) Chris Hemsworth as Dementus

climax, the 40 Day Wasteland War, takes place largely off-screen. Furiosa both starts the war and finishes it. The piles of burning corpses tell you everything to you need to know about what happened in between.

To hear Dementus tell it, Furiosa’s problem is that she has hope. She saw the Green Place. She knows life doesn’t have to be a brutal scramble for survival, where your first instinct is to loot your buddy’s corpse. Hemsworth is deliciously unhinged on the surface, but he is, like Hamlet, “mad in craft.” At least at first. As the years go by, the level of brutality needed to control a hoard of cannibalistic bikers starts to take its toll. This is by far the best performance of Hemsworth’s career. He almost, but not quite, upstages

the Furiosas. Anya Taylor-Joy has the unenviable assignment of following a titan like Charlize Theron. Fortunately, she has help from Alyla Browne, a 14-year-old newcomer who is completely at home chewing through a motorcycle fuel line. As the traumas pile up, and the flamethrowers roar, she slowly comes into focus. Will she be a monster, like Dementus, or a protector, like her mother? Then, in one epic moment on the top of a speeding war rig, Taylor-Joy looks into the camera, and there she is, our Furiosa, ready to fight the whole rotten world.

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Immigrant Stories: María Bracho

e Venezuelan immigrant’s journey brings hope and cultural connection.

Editor’s note: is is part three in a ve-part series focusing on immigrant contributions to our nation and city.

In 1825, the town of Bolivar, Tennessee, was founded 70 miles east of here, named a er the Venezuelan “liberator” of much of South America, Simón Bolívar. Presently, a bust of the Venezuelan leader sits in front of the town’s courthouse as a gi , “from the government and the people of the Republic of Venezuela … to the city of Bolivar on the celebration of the bicentennial of the birth of e Liberator, 1783-1983.”

e exuberance and goodwill between the Republic of Venezuela and our state of Tennessee in 1983 has, by 2024, completely collapsed. Venezuela, a traditional exporter of cacao, co ee, and petroleum, now exports its citizens: About one-quarter of the population of 28 million has le the nation over the past 10 or 20 years, and there seems to be no end in sight to this ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.

Many factors — economic, political, and global — help explain this mass exodus from a once wealthy and in uential South American nation. María Bracho’s arrival here in Memphis is directly related to the economic and political chaos of her native Venezuela.

Bracho grew up on a farm outside the city of Maracaibo, which is the petroleum capital of the nation. Venezuela, it should be noted, sits on the largest known oil deposits in the world, and about 90 percent of the national GDP is tied to oil. Nine years ago, Bracho decided to come to the USA to join her eldest daughter who had relocated here. Her siblings now call Jacksonville, Florida, home.

“We decided to move here for good about nine years ago,” she says. “We had the property of our business — a mini food market in Maracaibo — expropriated so the government could build a metro that has yet to be built.” e expropriation was followed by threats and extortion. María was forced to ee. Eventually, the family chose Memphis as their permanent home.

e daughters, Arianna Iskeif (age 27) and Orianna Bracho (age 23), are thriving here. Arianna is married with three children and is a homemaker. Orianna works at Independent Bank in the city. María settled in Germantown, and the family has lived there since.

“I love it here in Memphis — the city reminds me of my hometown, Maracaibo; it’s small and friendly,” she says. “I’d love to return to my country, but it’s impossible right now. … ere is no electricity and no gasoline in a country whose leading export is petroleum!”

María lives in an apartment on Farmington Road and works full-time in Midtown at Global Café. ere she sells and serves arepas — the traditional Venezuelan corn cake that de nes and anchors Venezuelan cuisine. She’s worked as a cashier at a Mexican grocery store here and at TruckPro, but enjoys working with the public in the food service industry.

“I work long hours, and the commute is long, but everything I’ve done here has been for the well-being of my family, and I’ve been very lucky here.” María is negotiating to buy a house and plans to sign papers in the next few months.

Food — especially traditional cuisine from home — has always animated María, and she prepares for customers a traditional Venezuelan tamal called a hallaca. She also prepares desserts and other Venezuelan fare on her own. María has obtained residency status in the USA and in about two years’ time will be able to apply for citizenship.

María is grateful for the opportunity to work at Global Café, but her long-term dream is to build a business related to her work there. “I’d like to make and distribute traditional foods and desserts for local Hispanic markets/stores, and I think I’d be good at that type of work,” she says. Chef María is the kitchen manager at the café, a position that puts her at the heart of everything cooked and sold there. “I was so lucky to nd Global Café here in Memphis and owe so much to that restaurant … that organization.”

e bust of the great Venezuelan Liberator sits far away from Memphis in a town that history seems to have forgotten — his dream of a uni ed America unrealized. But the determination and dignity of people like María Bracho connect us culturally and bring hope for peace and opportunity for all Americans.

Bryce W. Ashby is an attorney at Donati Law, PLLC. Michael J. LaRosa is an associate professor of history at Rhodes College.

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