Saturday, December 12, 2009

Memphis - April 2009

I finally got Carla to go to Memphis with me, and as I expected, she loved it. Any hard core music lover should find some fun in Memphis. She wasn't a big Elvis fan going in, but now she's the proud owner of some Elvis luggage, lol. We only did a 3 day weekend, and busted butt to do as much as possible in the limited time we
had. On Friday, we flew in and got settled. Did a little shopping and had dinner, catching part of an Elvis impersonator show. I tried to get us a room at the Heartbreak Hotel in order to make it a full-on music themed trip, but they were booked and we had to stay at the Marriott Courtyard, which was very nice. On our first full day (Saturday), we started out at the Gibson Factory. Our tour guide was very cool. I wasn't allowed to take pictures inside the factory, but we saw step by step how a Gibson semi-hollow electric guitar is created. It was very interesting. And at the end, our wonderful guide showed us his mad skills on one of Gibsons newest 'self-tuning' guitars. It was well worth the effort and if anyone heads to Memphis, I highly recommend this tour.
After the Gibson Factory, we worked our over to Sun Studios, where Rock n Roll was born. I've done the tour a number of times, but Carla hadn't, so it was fun.

After Sun Studios we hit Beale Street where we indulged on World Famous BBQ (I had a BBQ bologna sandwhich on Wonderbread - the restaurant special.) Then headed over to the National Ornamental Metal Museum where we saw very cool works of art, watched a couple of people pounding out some metal, and made 'pencil' plans to head back to take their Introduction to Blacksmithing classes. Time and money will probably prevent us from following up, but it still stands out in my mind as something fun that I'd like to try.

On our 3rd day (Sunday), we did the Graceland tours. A day in Memphis isn't complete without a little tribute to the King. There have been a few changes since the last time I did a Graceland Tour, but the core of the tour is pretty similar. They are charging an extra price to see 'personal' items that used to be on display with the regular Platonium Ticket - but now it's a part of the VIP tour and requires an extra $30.00. I was a little disappointed, but in reality, there is enough Elvis in the core part of the tour to satisfy the average consumer. The lighting inside Graceland is not ideal for photography, and flash isn't allowed - so my pictures suck. But I took them anyways, like I always do :)

We did the tour that included the car
museum and the airplanes, which is always interesting. Then round the day off with going across the street and checking out the gate and the heavily graffitied wall. We added our own graffiti then headed off to find the best steak in Memphis. We finally decided on The Butcher Shop, where I indulged in a Gorgonzola & Portabella Mushroom Stuffed Filet, and Carla decided to 'cook her own' Filet Mignon. The eating was very good.


Robert said...

Great post. I'd love to get back to Memphis soon. The Gibson tour sounds like fun. Love the photo at the gate...those gates are the coolest.

I remember how cold it was when we went the one year. Made for an empty zoo though. Gotta remember to check out those pics.

World of Kris said...

The Gibson Factory was very cool. You should definately make an effort the next time you are there. Beale Street during the daytime was a blast too - before the craziness starts.