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1. Last Word: Trader Joe's, Bredesen at Rhodes and Haslam on Memphis -

Here comes Trader Joe’s with a Friday opening in Germantown after lots of mystery and delays and changes for what is a pretty simple concept. For so many of us, this has been a long-hoped for goal. It’s kind of up there with smuggling in Coors beer from the west in the 70s before it became available everywhere and Coors had a brewery here.

2. A New Benchmark -

Shelby Farms Park is gearing up for the second annual Mempho Music Festival and another chance to showcase the country’s largest urban park to a diverse and wide-reaching audience.
Memphis’ newest music festival is expecting a crowd of 20,000 on Oct. 6 and 7, which is impressive for a park two years out from a $70 million renovation embarked upon in 2010 with a distant vision for such an event.
The master plan for the park was designed not only for people to recreate and relax, but as a place to build community, and a music festival can be a big part of that, said Jen Andrews, executive director of Shelby Farms Park. Andrews has always had a larger vision for the park as a place where the community could come together and take ownership and pride in the best that Memphis has to offer.
Enter another visionary, native Memphian Diego Winegardner, founder of Mempho Fest and CEO of Big River Presents, which is putting on the festival. Winegardner grew up in Memphis and now lives outside of New York City where his day job is in finance and investment management. A couple of years ago on a trip home to Memphis he met some old friends for a bike ride at Shelby Farms Park.
“I was completely blown away,” Winegardner said. “The sun was setting on Hyde Lake, and I had this lightning-bolt moment of how special it would be to bring a world-class music festival to this site.
I thought about Memphis’ place in the annals of American music as the birthplace of blues, soul and R&B and the hip hop scene that we have here.
“If you think about the labels … Sun, Stax, Royal…I was exposed to all of that growing up, and seeing B.B. King on Beale Street was just normal,” he said. “I didn’t appreciate it until I was gone. I started to get really nostalgic about my hometown.”
Winegardner is a music enthusiast who has been to most of the notable music festivals in the U.S. and many around the world. He had the resources and connections to realize his dream. Last year, the first Mempho Fest kicked off with great success with 10,000 in attendance for two days of concerts featuring a variety of bands from different music genres.
“I’ve always been a big fan of (Memphis) and its people and a big defender of the city and its history,” Winegardner said. “This music festival was born out of my passion for music and my passion for the city of Memphis.”
When Winegardner first met with Andrews two years ago to pitch his idea, she caught his vision right away.
He approached it cautiously and wanted to understand how to protect the park and still give people a good experience, she said. “We like working with Diego,” she said. “They care about the park, and like us, have a big, bold vision, and they hired a professional team who knew how to put on a safe and fun event.”
This year’s festival will feature two days of multi-genre music headlined by Grammy Award-winning artist and hip-hop superstar Post Malone as well as Beck, Phoenix, NAS and Janelle Monae. Local talent like Lucero and alternative Mac deMarco also will perform, and there will be a special tribute to Willie Mitchell’s Royal Studios featuring the label’s past and present stars.
Sunday will feature performances by crowd favorites like George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic and Stones Throw, Chuck Laevell’s Rolling Stones’ backer band.
The festival will not only expand in attendance, but will add a larger culinary and craft beer presence in addition to on-site camping and VIP and super-VIP experiences.
“We’re trying to create more than just music on a stage,” said Winegardner, who also created a nonprofit arm called Mempho Matters that will partner with organizations that line-up with the vision of the festival, such as Oceanic Global Foundation, #BringYourSoul, Learn to Rock and the Memphis Area Women’s Council’s “Memphis Says NO MORE” campaign.
As part of Mempho’s partnership with the Oceanic Global Foundation, the festival has a 100 percent waste-free goal, which will start with its no straw policy.
“A best practice environmental policy is important to help make sure the park is as pristine when we leave as when we showed up,” said Winegardner.
The partnership promoting the Memphis Area Women’s Council’s “NO MORE” campaign is to make sure that Mempho Fest’s female attendees feel safe. Winegardner, who has a teenage daughter, knows stories about the lack of safety for females at other events, prompting him to take up the cause.
“In this day and age, you really have to take a stand and make it an institutional part of our way of doing things,” he said.
Money raised through Mempho Matters will also benefit the Memphis community through contributions to musical education in the form of free tickets for students and teachers to attend the festival as well as instruments and money for music education in local schools.
Last year, Mempho Matters gave away 2,000 tickets to students and teachers.
“We want to build bridges into the community and be as inclusive as possible,” Winegardner said. “We want to educate the children and the youth of tomorrow about the history of Memphis musically and create a sense of pride for its citizens while also attracting new people and adding another chapter to Memphis’ long, rich history.”
Andrews is optimistic about the growth of Mempho Fest this year, projecting double the attendance in its second year as well as adding 400 weekend camping permits. Those include primitive camping, RV hookups and glamping.
“The camping option is an important part of festival culture, and one of the great benefits of the park is its tremendous scale, which can accommodate that,” Andrews said.
But the plan is to grow Mempho Fest slowly, she said.
“We learned a lot the first year, and we’re applying the learning to this year’s festival,” she said. “We have a strong plan for safely managing the crowd. We want this to be a world-class festival.”
Big River Productions and Winegardner have an undisclosed agreement with Shelby Farms Park, and both entities hope to continue the relationship.
“I’m hoping that Mempho Fest will become a long-term asset for the city of Memphis,” Winegardner said.
Music remains a big driver of visitors to Memphis — 56 percent of leisure visitors come to the city for something related to music, said Kevin Kane, president and CEO of Memphis Tourism, formerly called the Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau. “We’re supporters of (Mempho Fest),” he said. “We believe in it and want to see it grow. Music festivals have a big impact on the economy. The more events we have based in music the better, and we think it’s great to utilize Shelby Farms in this way.”

3. Last Word: Jagger, Jerry Lee, Whalum & More and Harris' Plans on BTH -

Sir Mick Jagger and Jerry Lee Lewis walk into Sun Studio Wednesday. That’s not the start of a joke. Variety has reported that Jagger’s film company has signed on to the Elvis biopic being made from Peter Guralnick’s definitive two volume biography of the king. You connect the dots or don’t – who knows if there is a connection? Yes, but they aren’t talking.

4. Last Word: Police Surveillance on Trial, Elvis Alternatives and Firestone's Dilemma -

In Memphis Federal Court Monday morning, Memphis Police surveillance of protesters over the last two years is on the docket of U.S. District Judge Jon P. McCalla. McCalla ruled earlier this month in advance of the nonjury trial that police conducted “political surveillance” of protesters in violation of a 1978 federal court consent decree.

5. Last Word: Lee's Win, Harris' Way and Turnout Questions -

What to choose from now that the Aug. 2 election is tentatively in the books? First this is going to be an all-election Last Word because the sugar buzz from a bag that was full of jelly beans is starting to wane and I don’t want to be here when the sun rises in just a bit. Kind of a vampire thing, isn’t it?

6. Last Word: Early Voting Tea Leaves, More Sunflowers and Marketing the Airport -

The blitz is on to the last weekend of campaigning as early voting finishes up Saturday and election day awaits next Thursday. Some of the contenders on the ballot have their second wind. Others are waiting for their political sails to fill. All of them are still moving at various speeds in the Memphis summer of unrelenting heat, sun screen, three changes of campaign t-shirts per day, 100-foot markers at early voting sites, robo-calls, replaced yard signs, new direct mail pieces and voters who swear they voted for you even if they have no idea what you are running for.

7. Last Word: Storm and Early Voting Numbers, Frayser Revival and FCC at Baptist -

That was loud and wet. After the storms moved through the city Sunday evening, about 20,000 MLGW customers were without power. That was down to 5,000 by midnight. With that let’s begin with early voting turnout, shall we. Monday being the last day of early-early voting with five of the 27 sites across the county. The others open Tuesday with early voting running through July 28 and election day Aug. 2. Here is the list of early voting sites and their hours from the Shelby County Election Commission.

8. The Week Ahead: July 16-22 -

Good morning, Memphis! The popular Roundhouse Revival at the Mid-South Coliseum returns this weekend, along with a retro skate night against the scenic backdrop of the Mississippi River at sunset. Check out those events and more happenings you need to know about in The Week Ahead...

9. The Week Ahead: June 4-10 -

Good morning, Memphis. Or should we say, “Hush, y’all.” It’s time again for the annual FedEx St. Jude Classic golf tournament, a Memphis tradition that spans 60 years and has been funneling millions of dollars into the doors at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. 

10. Week Ahead: May 14-20 -

Go hog wild, Memphis! One of the most anticipated community events of the year kicks off this week when Tom Lee Park again becomes ground zero for the Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. Teams from around the world will try to win over judges with their savory renditions of all things pig. It will be a lip-smackin’ good time win or lose, though. 

11. AutoZone Expanding Downtown, One Commerce Square Hits Market -

40 S. Main St.

Memphis, TN 38103

Property: One Commerce Square Building 

Seller: Memphis Commerce Square Partners LLC

Details: One Commerce Square, the fourth-largest building in Memphis, has hit the market.

12. Last Word: Graceland Responds, The Hustle's First Season and Memphis Rent -

Sun Studio getting a fresh coat of paint Tuesday as city road crews were redoing some lines on Downtown streets including turning arrows in the left curb lane that always need pointing out to visitors baffled by the Memphis enigma that is one-way streets.

13. Last Word: 50 Years Ago, Skeleton Hotel in Court and New Moves on Forrest -

It was 50 years ago Thursday that the event that sparked the 1968 sanitation workers strike happened near Colonial and Sea Isle in East Memphis. City sanitation workers Robert Walker and Echol Cole were killed when the trash compactor on back of their city truck malfunctioned and crushed them.

14. Downtown Office Tower Reclaimed at Auction; Lafayette's to Expand -

100 N. Main St.

Memphis, TN 38103

Sale Amount: $1 million

Sale Date: Jan. 11, 2018

Buyer: THM Memphis Acquisitions

15. Downtown Office Tower Reclaimed at Auction; Lafayette's to Expand -

100 N. Main St.

Memphis, TN 38103

Sale Amount: $1 million

Sale Date: Jan. 11, 2018

Buyer: THM Memphis Acquisitions

16. 100 North Main Building Reclaimed at Auction; Lafayette’s Expanding -

100 N. Main St.

Memphis, TN 38103

Sale Amount: $1 million

Sale Date: Jan. 11, 2018

Buyer: THM Memphis Acquisitions

17. Lender Reclaims City’s Tallest Building, Lafayette’s Expanding -

100 N. Main St., Memphis, TN 38103 - THM Memphis Acquisitions LLC effectively bought the 100 North Main Building, a 37-story office tower, at a foreclosure auction on the courthouse steps after the property failed to receive any bids. A substitute trustee’s deed for the $1 million transaction was recorded with the Register’s Office Thursday, Jan. 11.

18. Last Word: Snow Week, Liberal Arts and Their Critics and Tunica Casinos -

Snow Day 3 as this becomes a snow week for many of us. Granted one of those days was a federal holiday in which the temperature was above freezing and the sun was out. During the second consecutive snow day Wednesday for Shelby County Schools students, Candous Brown, a teacher at Raleigh Egypt High School held class anyway via Facebook.

19. Lorenzen Wright’s Ex-Wife Agrees to Face Charges -

The ex-wife of former University of Memphis and NBA player Lorenzen Wright will not fight authorities’ attempt to send her from California to Tennessee, where she’s charged with killing him nearly eight years ago.

20. Lorenzen Wright’s Ex-Wife Agrees to Face Charges -

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (AP) – The ex-wife of former NBA player Lorenzen Wright will not fight authorities' attempt to send her from California to Tennessee, where she's charged with killing him nearly eight years ago.

21. Week Ahead: January 8-14 -

Happy Monday, Memphis! This week brings the first meetings of 2018 for the Memphis City Council and the Shelby County Commission, events celebrating Elvis’ birthday, a luncheon honoring the local PRSA chapter's Communicator of the Year, the Sozo Children’s Choir, business owner seminars, a full slate of sporting events to attend and more.

22. We’re No. 1! -

While tax law changes have some worried about the impact on charitable giving in 2018, Community Foundation of Greater Memphis president Robert Fockler points to Memphis’s historical standing as a generous city and his foundation’s own growth as reasons he is not worried as the calendar flips to a new year.

23. The Week Ahead: January 1-7 -

Brrrrrrrr! It’s been a while since the wind chill was below zero degrees in the Bluff City. Some events to kick off the new year that fortunately, are all inside. Happy New Year, Memphis!

24. Ex-Wife of Slain NBA Player Lorenzen Wright Fights Extradition -

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (AP) – The ex-wife of former NBA player Lorenzen Wright is fighting authorities' attempt to extradite her from California to Tennessee, where she is charged with killing him in 2010.

25. Memphis Fusion -

With more than 40 life science companies operating in the Greater Memphis area and Shelby County ranking second in the U.S. for orthopedic device manufacturing, the Mid-South can stake its claim as one of the top medical device markets in the world.

26. Last Word: The Bucc Falls, Lakeland Demolition and Crossing The Year Mark -

Late word Sunday that Bernal Smith II, the president and publisher of the New Tri-State Defender, died at his home Sunday. Smith was a part of the reporters roundtables we do from time to time on "Behind The Headlines." He brought back the city's legacy African-American-owned newspaper and in that role over the last seven years was a big voice in the reshaping of Memphis as a media market. He put reporters back on the streets of this city to cover Memphis and its issues in an independent way that make this a much richer and more competitive media market than it has been in quite some time. Editorially, he was a strong voice on numerous issues and he spoke from the experience of growing up in this city. He was 45 years old and here at The Daily News, those of us who came to know him and work with him on the show express our condolences to his family.

27. Last Word: The Chamber on Forrest, Different Amazon News & More 2018 Dominoes -

The Greater Memphis Chamber rolls out its part of the push by the city administration to get a state waiver for the removal of the Nathan Bedford Forrest statue. Next week is the meeting of the Tennessee Historical Commission with Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland showing up to make his pitch. That is even though the chairman of the body has told him the commission will not take up a waiver at the meeting.

28. Last Word: The Brooks Question, Boyd's Answer and Tigers In the Polls -

Art as a real estate consideration. One of the more unusual of many considerations as the Brooks search for a new site – a possible new site, I should add, becomes the city’s favorite topic. So from the CRE vantage point – here are two more possible sites to think about if you haven’t already – Cossitt Library and the Fairgrounds, as well as right where it has been for the last century.

29. Last Word: After The Eclipse, A Very Large Magnet and Cyber Insurance -

Back from the eclipse it would seem. Although I’m pretty sure some part of the moon is still obscuring me. Alas, I will just have to walk around with a crescent missing here or there. Just don’t look at me directly and we will both be okay. Although you might see me wearing the Seer Sucker this week seeing as how the same laws that govern looking at the sun during an eclipse apparently apply to wearing Seer Sucker after Labor Day. It's just not done. Famous last words.

30. The Week Ahead: Aug. 21-27 -

Hello, Memphis! Are you ready for the (almost-)total eclipse that sweeps over the city Monday? Check out our master list of eclipse-viewing parties, plus more happenings you need to know about – like, say, a performance by Samurai Elvis – in The Week Ahead... 

31. Last Word: The Orange Mound Way, Midtown Apartments and 'I Am A Man' Plaza -

First day of school redux on Tuesday for students in Memphis Catholic Schools and it is a half-day. The first day of classes in most of the county’s other schools Monday went smoothly. Shelby County Schools reports more than 6,000 students registered on the first day of school despite another concerted effort at numerous events to register students in advance. That’s in a school system of approximately 96,000 students.

32. Last Word: School Days, MLGW Moves Off Beale and Room For Peter Pan To Fly -

The K-12 school year begins Monday for most of Shelby County including the state’s largest public school system right here. Some schools have started earlier and some start later. So remember that in your daily travels going forward even if you don’t have school age children.

33. The Week Ahead: August 7-13 -

Hello, Memphis! While many local kids head back to school, plenty of Elvis fans are flocking to the city to celebrate The King’s life and legacy. Check out what else you need to know about in The Week Ahead…

34. Last Word: Fifth Wave, Hidden Gem in OB and the Freeze Filibuster -

There is one less contender in the crowded field of potential and declared candidates for the Republican nomination for Governor in 2018. State Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris of Collierville was nominated for federal court judge Thursday by President Donald Trump who also nominated Memphis attorney and former federal prosecutor Tommy Parker to the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee as well. Both are part of what The White House described as a “fifth wave” of judicial nominees.

35. Last Word: Corporate Musical Chairs, Another Dollar General and Ronnie Grisanti -

The three-way deal by which Memphis-based Fred’s was to buy hundreds of Rite-Aid stores from Walgreens just keeps getting worse for Fred’s even though the deal happened last week without Fred’s. An analyst says Fred’s got cut out because of questions about the corporation’s viability to enter into what is an ambitious change of course for the company on a large scale.

36. Last Word: No Deal, Ivan Rabb and Intermodals in Overton Park -

And the winner is … not Fred’s. After months of speculation about the Memphis-based discount retail store’s transformation into a pharmacy-based enterprise with the purchase of hundreds of Rite Aid stores in a third-party divestment move, Fred’s was nowhere to be found when Walgreens announced a deal Thursday to buy the Rite Aid stores. The corporation told investors it will still pursue its strategy but acknowledged its trajectory is “stunted” – that as Fred’s got hammered on Wall Street.

37. ‘Great Streets’ Experiment Opens Between River and FedExForum -

The sun umbrellas are on the way for the tables and chairs on the northern side of Peabody Place between Front and Main streets, and so is a temporary mural wall and some kiosks for a marketplace.

A Times Square-meets-Broad Avenue experiment at the southern end of Downtown’s Main Street Mall got underway this week with reggae music, popsicles and, of course, bicycles.

38. Ole Miss Buys Baptist Hospital in $22 Million Deal -

2301 S. Lamar Blvd.
Oxford, MS 38655

Sale Amount: $22 million

Sale Date: June 15, 2017

39. Last Word: Wahlburgers, CA For Sale and Council Day -

We really go for hot food brands around here – whether its restaurants or supermarkets. And it makes us suckers to some degree. I don’t mean that in a bad way. Memphis without being open to all possibilities and what others see as impossible is just not Memphis. But when it comes to the business of brands sometimes you start to wonder. We may be guilty of putting too much weight on a brand to solve problems that no brand anywhere can solve.

40. Winds of Change -

Humans have been harnessing the power of the wind since the first Egyptians began to use sails to move their boats along the Nile. More than 7,000 years later, wind power capacity in the U.S. alone has surpassed 82 gigawatts, or enough energy to power 20 million homes, making it the largest renewable generation capacity in the country.

41. Last Word: Food Changes, Tax Breaks and 'The Big Bang' -

Late hours in Washington for another night Wednesday with word of the appointment of former FBI director Robert Mueller as special prosecutor in the Trump-Russia investigation. Here is all of the reaction we had as of late Wednesday from our folks in D.C.

42. Last Word: "A Downward Spiral", Outdoors Pop-Up and Haslam in Raleigh -

At the end of another day of alarming news and denials from the White House, U.S. Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee used a new phrase that has significance in a cycle of action and reaction and more action in which many of us gauge reaction by whether the person speaking has an R or a D after their name. The lines are that clearly drawn.

43. Last Word: Deeper on Beale, End of Session and Johnny Mathis -

Beale Street keeps its cover charge on Saturday nights during its Memphis In May peak. But the district has some complex questions to resolve about its future and who controls that future. If that wasn’t evident before, it became apparent at City Hall Tuesday. It wasn’t the council action on the Beale Street Bucks program that was significant as much as it was the council’s discussion.

44. Last Word: BSMF, Budget Books and Milli Vanilli -

Three days of sun and mild temperatures for the Beale Street Music Festival. Not to be all “Dawn Lazarus” about the weather. Of course, it wasn’t just that way over Tom Lee Park. And many of us continue to find there is life outside after you have determined your festival days may be behind you. We were all over the place this weekend including Tom Lee Park and Shelby Farms Park and backyards and trails and on a rising river. Can you still claim you were at BSMF if you were within earshot of it?

45. Last Word: Gasol on Gasol, Detroit's Riverfront and Governor's Race Shifts -

Gasol on Gasol in San Antonio this Easter weekend where the Spurs ran away with game one Saturday of the first round playoff matchup 111 – 82. Game 2 and vengeance is Monday in San Antonio with a Thursday evening game on Beale.

46. The Week Ahead: March 27-April 1 -

Happy Monday, Memphis! The Bluff City plays host to several big names this week, from acclaimed country musician Margo Price and influential feminist Dolores Huerta to the always-popular St. Louis Cardinals. Plus, Midtown celebrates its mojo and Germantown goes to the dogs, all in The Week Ahead… 

47. Last Word: James Cotton, A Quiet Jackson Day in Memphis and 'A Football School' -

When you think of the blues and harmonica – James Cotton probably comes to mind – Sonny Boy Williamson too, who taught Cotton how to play.

48. How Cool is That? -

COOL ON CAMERA. In an earlier column, I recalled that Meg Ryan once walked by my house when I was on the porch and waved. After all, she and Dennis Quaid lived right down the street.

49. Last Word: Changes on EP Boulevard, March Madness at Rhodes and Cheffies -

I don’t think it worked out this way on purpose – but the $45 million, 200,000 square foot entertainment complex “Elvis Presley’s Memphis” opens the same day that episode two of “Sun Records” airs on CMT.

50. Robinson Chosen to Lead Cancer Society’s Hope House -

Maria Robinson has been named senior manager for the American Cancer Society’s Harrah’s Hope Lodge in Memphis. In that role, she oversees day-to-day lodge operations, including guest services, volunteer engagement and community involvement.
Robinson, who is an eight-year cancer survivor herself, joined the American Cancer Society in 2012 as community manager for Relay For Life. Prior to that, she worked in the finance, real estate and restaurant industries. 

51. Last Word: 'Sun Records,' Ole Miss's Lack of Control and Haslam in 2018 -

I am not going to be one of those people who at this late date in the history of television dramas based on real people points out every departure from reality. The first episode of the CMT television series “Sun Records” Thursday was a scene-setter and introduction of sorts to an ensemble cast with plenty of opportunities to name that place in Memphis. That usually means a pretty complex story line to come and there are more than enough memorable characters in the story of Sun.

52. TVA’s Nearly $1B Natural Gas Plant 70 Percent Complete -

The view is breathtaking. The Memphis skyline glints and gleams in the midday sun. The Pyramid casts its own unique light across the distance, and the Hernando DeSoto Bridge superstructure is an elegant silver set of curves to the west, filtered through bare trees. It’s a view you need a hard hat to see from the top of the massive heat recovery steam generator at the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Allen Steam Plant, under construction in southwest Memphis.

53. The Week Ahead: February 20-26 -

Enjoying that spring-like weather, Memphis? It’s another week of politics and music in the Bluff City, highlighted by the anticipated announcement Wednesday of acts that will be playing the Beale Street Music Festival in May. Here are some other highlights:

54. Last Word: Impasse Flashback, Pot Alliances in Nashville and The Age of Etsy -

The late 1970s – bell bottoms, punk rock, disco, that perpetual haze floating over those lucky enough to get the most expensive concert seats for as much as $10 each on the floor of the Mid-South Coliseum… and yes, the impasse ordinance.

55. Last Word: Immigration Order React, State of State Preview and The Haven -

Lots of reaction from state and local leaders Sunday to President Trump’s Friday executive order on immigration that will likely dominate the action this week on Capitol Hill in Washington after a weekend of action and reaction.

56. Last Word: Connecting Downtown, Tranquil Treasure and Gas Tax Complexities -

Temple over the Tigers Wednesday in Philadelphia 77-66. East Carolina at the Forum is coming up Saturday. Grizz and Raptors at the Forum Wednesday evening and the Grizz win 101 – 99. The Grizz are on the road starting Friday against the Trail Blazers.

57. Downtown Church Ready to Rise From the Ashes -

204 N. Second St.
Memphis, TN 38105 
Permit Amount: $2.6 million

Application Date: January 2017 

Owner: First United Methodist Church

58. Planet Fitness Seeks $3.8M Permit for Imperial Lanes Site -

The vacant Imperial Lanes bowling alley on Summer Avenue is moving closer to redevelopment as a Planet Fitness gym.

A $3.8 million building permit application has been filed with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement for a new building at 4700 Summer Ave., the site of the former bowling alley. The permit lists PF Arkansas as the property owner and Planet Fitness as the tenant.

59. Planet Fitness Seeks $3.8M Permit for Former Imperial Lanes Site -

The vacant Imperial Lanes bowling alley on Summer Avenue is moving closer to redevelopment as a Planet Fitness gym.

A $3.8 million building permit application has been filed with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement for a new building at 4700 Summer Ave., the site of the former bowling alley. The permit lists PF Arkansas as the property owner and Planet Fitness as the tenant.

60. Planet Fitness Seeks $3.8M Permit for Former Imperial Lanes Site -

The vacant Imperial Lanes bowling alley on Summer Avenue is moving closer to redevelopment as a Planet Fitness gym.

A $3.8 million building permit application has been filed with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement for a new building at 4700 Summer Ave., the site of the former bowling alley. The permit lists PF Arkansas as the property owner and Planet Fitness as the tenant.

61. Last Word: The March & Crowd Estimates and Country Records in Memphis -

Twice now in the last six months, very different protests have drawn thousands of people to the streets in the largest demonstrations we’ve seen since the 1970s – and more importantly, demonstrations that are an entry point for a new generation to many of these issues.

62. Last Word: Haslam To Talk Gas Tax, Rallings Talks Protesters and Beale Street -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam talks gas tax Wednesday in Nashville. Actually, he will be rolling out his full list of legislative priorities in the capitol. But much of the attention will be on what he proposes in the way of the state’s gas tax – something he’s talked about but not committed a specific position to for the last two years.

63. Last Word: Humes Next, Top ZIPs in Residential and Payback in the Legislature -

Add Dave & Buster’s to the list of "it" retail hot spots. The restaurant-arcade has inked a lease in Cordova by Wolfchase Galeria with plans to open later this year, probably fourth quarter.

64. Last Word: Opening Day in Nashville, Parking Pass or Parking Space and Ell Persons -

Lots of formalities Tuesday in Nashville where the 2017 session of the Tennessee Legislature begins. And that’s what this first week back will be about on the floors of the state House and the state Senate. Away from the floors, the real business of speculation and vote counting and drafting language is already well underway.

65. Last Word: The Elvis Tradition, Cordova Brewery and Parkside Path -

For about three decades now, there has been a cultural and political tradition around the birthday of Elvis Presley. It used to be a proclamation by the Shelby County Mayor and the Memphis Mayor on the steps of Graceland with a birthday cake.

66. Last Word: A Rainbow's Tale, The Two Holiday Peaks and Crosstown High Plans -

I saw it all so clearly on a very cloudy and very rainy Monday in the city. A strong rainbow with bold colors across town from the setting sun on the river. Not some play rainbow that you create with a garden hose or some alleged double rainbow that depends on where you stand. As we were fond of saying in these parts in the 1980s and the 1990s – this was a “world class” rainbow.

67. Last Word: Ceasefire, Art and Memphis 3.0 and Giving Jazz Its Due In Memphis -

Grizz on the road the day after Christmas in Orlando where they got beat by the Magic 112– 102. They are in Boston Tuesday for the Celtics.

The Tigers are at the Forum Tuesday against SMU

68. Memphis Adopts Version of Ceasefire -

A gun and gang violence program pioneered in Boston 20 years ago is coming to Memphis in the wake of a record year for homicides.

What is known nationally as Operation Ceasefire will be called the “Group Violence Initiative” in Memphis, said Memphis-Shelby Crime Commission president Bill Gibbons on the WKNO/Channel 10 program “Behind The Headlines.”

69. Last Word: Boca Ends Badly, Fred's Deal Still Moving and The Couch Dylan Sat On -

Z Bo ejected and the Grizz fall to the Celtics 112 – 109 Tuesday at the Forum. Post game, Fizdale says the team has a leadership problem.

The Tigers at the Forum Wednesday, playing the Incarnate Word Cardinals.

70. Last Word: Last Council Session of 2016, Minority Business and Frugal Growth -

Winter's first day is behind us and has taken down another Monday at the same time. For some of us, this week before Christmas means Tuesday is time for a bowl game, the Boca Raton Bowl where the University of Memphis Tigers are playing far from the cold winds that blow at home. Ah, but they still think of home even if its only when the ice cubes clink against the sides of the glass of whatever they are having poolside. Never think you are beyond the reach of home.

71. Last Word: ASD Changes & TNReady Scores, Fred's For Sale? and Cinnabon & Ikea -

The day after the TNReady reports cards for school districts were released, Tennessee Education Commissioner Candice McQueen was in Douglass Wednesday with word of some changes in how the Achievement School District operates.

72. Last Word: TNReady Scores, Ikea Day and 901REnews -

Snap goes the streak. Cavs over the Grizz in Cleveland Tuesday 103-86. The Cavs are here Wednesday without LeBron James, Kevin Love or Kyrie Irving. For the Grizz, we shall see about Deyonta Davis who came out of Tuesday’s game with a left foot injury.

73. Last Word: MemphisWorks App, Tyler Talks and Millington Home Sales -

A busy annual Greater Memphis Chamber Chairman’s Circle luncheon Wednesday topped by the debut of a jobs app that is more than ye olde classified ads reformatted on a digital device.

MemphisWorks is several parts of the jobs search and filling jobs all put together.

74. Last Word: Boca, Poe Killed by Politics and Embedding In The Real Memphis -

BOCA BOWL – As expected, the University of Memphis Tigers football team is going south for the post season. They got and accepted Sunday the formal invitation to play in the Boca Raton Bowl on Dec. 20 against Western Kentucky. Ticket information should be forthcoming Monday for those of you who didn’t get enough during the Emerald Coast Classic with the basketball Tigers not too long ago.

75. Last Word: About Last Night, The Long Vote Count and New Homeowner Numbers -

If you followed John Podesta’s lead and called it a day sometime around midnight expecting this whole Presidential thing would get wrapped up later in the day Wednesday, you have some catching up to do.

76. Last Word: The Politics of Animal Welfare, SCS On Gestalt and Chandler Numbers -

It’s not that the Memphis Animal Shelter would change as much as services outside the shelter would change and their relationship to the shelter would change. That’s what two consultants from the national nonprofit Target Zero told about 80 Memphians at the Central Library this week.

77. A Greener Memphis Requires More Connectivity -

It sounds simple enough, the idea that, as Wolf River Conservancy executive director Keith Cole puts it, “One of the basic premises of connectivity is you never want to build a bridge to nowhere.”

78. Bursting the Bubble -

Graceland is in Memphis. But the two have tended to coexist, rather than being part of each other, since Elvis Presley’s home opened as a commercial enterprise in 1982.

That is starting to change as a $137 million expansion of Graceland – a $92 million hotel resort opening in October and a $45 million, 200,000-square-foot entertainment complex west of the mansion to open in the spring of 2017 – begins to overlap with a renewed emphasis on Whitehaven as the home of many of the city’s middle class.

79. Last Word: The Sound of Dominoes, Brexit Anxiety and Schilling Farms Backstory -

The Memphis Newspaper Guild makes it official – filing grievances against Gannett, the new owner of The Commercial Appeal, over the first significant changes in how the paper is put out. Those changes involve abolishing copy editing positions and making them part of the new job of digital producers.

80. Last Word: A Robust 2nd Quarter, Marshall and Union and the Code Crew -

Last Word is more like First Word because of a blink of the computer overnight at around 11 p.m. that left us able to create and report but not to post. But not to worry, we will resume our night owl habits Sunday into Monday after this brief reminder of the way things used to be when the deadline was when the presses stopped.

81. Last Word: Highlander, Aretha's House and When The Old Daisy Was New -

There is Highland Row and Highland Strip and they do not meet, although they are just a short walk from one another near the University of Memphis.

That is going to be a handy point of reference because the area in general – called the University District – is coming along so well that you are going to be reading more about it.

82. Last Word: The Untouchable Compromise, Go West and World Series in August -

Shelby County Commissioner Heidi Shafer actually brought a suitcase with her to Wednesday’s commission budget session and special meeting.

83. Last Word: Democrats Settle, Scotty Moore and the Top Cop Search -

Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Mary Mancini ordered the Shelby County Democratic Party to settle its differences with former local party chairman Bryan Carson Tuesday and accept his offer to repay the party $6,000 at $100 a month..

84. Born in the Projects, Norman Fights for Social Justice -

Keith Norman makes a habit of rising before the sun – and no wonder. As vice president of government affairs at Baptist Memorial Health Care and president of the Memphis branch of the NAACP, he’s got a lot on his plate. But if you want to see him in his element, stop by First Baptist Church on Broad, Sunday morning at 7:45 a.m.

85. Last Word: Back On, EDGE and Diversity and Jungle Room Sessions -

Are your lights on yet? How is your air conditioning? First came the rain Wednesday night and then came the power outages that stretched into Thursday.

So the last Twitter update from Memphis Light Gas and Water at 8 p.m. Thursday shows 248 outages in the MLGW service area with 2,746 customers still in the dark and the worst heat of the year so far. Those numbers translate to 95 percent of the customers impacted having their power restored Thursday evening.

86. Last Word: Chips Moman, ServiceMaster Incentives and Crosstown High -

Chips Moman has died. Word of his death Monday at a hospice in Georgia came two years after Moman was honored for his contributions to Memphis music and the city's history.

Those contributions were substantial and for quite a while they were overlooked – even while he was running the definition of a hit factory at American Sound Studios, a non-descript recording studio on Danny Thomas Boulevard at Chelsea Avenue in North Memphis.

87. Station to Station -

Even now, Explore Bike Share founder Doug Carpenter does not try to pretend that the initiative will cure all that ails Memphis. 

It won’t wipe out poverty. It can’t cure cancer. It won’t eliminate diabetes and obesity, solve all of the city’s transportation problems or totally bridge cultural and racial gaps that predate the bicycle’s invention.

88. Last Word: Mud Island Money, Elvis Mystery and Beyond Barbecue -

It looks like the dry rub will be in order for Memphis in May's barbecue weekend with a shower or two keeping the dust down in Tom Lee Park Wednesday.

If you can see it through the smoke, Mud Island might strike a first-tme observer as a marked contrast to all of the activity in Tom Lee Park that goes right up to the bluff's edge.

89. Last Word: A Dog Named Elvis, Soulville's Change and Highlander Politics -

For those who stopped watching in the fourth quarter, The Grizzlies lost to the Spurs 106-74 in San Antonio Sunday to open the NBA's second season. If you put together the second and fourth quarters it would have been close. But oh the first and third quarters.

90. Last Word: Pastner's Georgia Tech Post-Season, Who Filed and Greensward Invitations -

Not so fast with the off-season. There is a Memphis post-season after all.

And the Grizz found it Thursday like a light at the end of a long-tunnel where a lot of people slipped and fell and can’t get up.
The light was Houston flaming out at home to Phoenix without the Grizzlies having to make a basket.
It’s all about the math. Stay in school, young people.

91. Last Word: Greensward Truce, Connor Schilling Retires and MEMFix Goes East -

You’ve heard of the mediation process surrounding the long-term use of the Overton Park Greensward by the Memphis Zoo for its overflow parking.
It appears there is now a less formal mediation process underway when it comes to the use of the greensward during the park’s spring peak season which is now underway.

92. Last Word: Deannexation, Pastner Past the Season and Chewing Gum and Walking -

The much-discussed deannexation bill in the Tennessee Legislature always had the votes Monday evening in the House with Memphis Democrats succeeding only in delaying the outcome in Nashville by about two hours.
The bill passed by a wide margin after a debate that was for the most part Memphis against the rest of the state starting just outside the city limits with Republicans in the Shelby County legislative delegation.
And there is some dispute between the bill’s sponsor from the Chattanooga area and Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland. Strickland puts the potential loss of tax revenue to the city at $80 million. Rep. Mike Carter says it is more like $27 million.

93. Judicial Council Nominates 3 Appeals Court Finalists -

JACKSON, Tenn. (AP) – Three candidates, including two from Shelby County, have been nominated to fill an empty seat on the West Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals.

The Jackson Sun reports (http://bit.ly/1pgku91) the Governor's Council for Judicial Appointments nominated Shelby County Division III Judge Bobby Carter, Shelby County Attorney Ross Dyer and Assistant District Attorney Bobby Gray Jr., from Adamsville.

94. Allegiant Adds Two New Memphis Flights -

Allegiant has announced new summer service from Memphis International Airport to two sun-drenched locations.

The airline will begin offering twice-weekly seasonal service to both Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport (VPS) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in the coming months, with tickets already on sale at allegiant.com.

95. Last Word: Hedgepeth Speaks, Josh Pastner's Future and Big Box Liquor -

Where else is there to begin but the Greensward controversy.
And we start with an email from Memphis City Council member Reid Hedgepeth in what is rapidly becoming a Last Word tradition and institution – the email in full.

96. Luttrell Declares for Congressional Bid -

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell announced Monday, Feb. 29, that he will be a candidate in the August Republican primary for the 8th Congressional District.

97. Urban Treasure -

They were at the 2007 National Recreation and Park Association conference in Indianapolis and they had been dutifully attending the seminars and taking notes. But one day this two-woman contingent from Memphis and the newly formed Shelby Farms Park Conservancy skipped out of the afternoon workshops.

98. Tenn. Approves Incentives for TV Series Production in Memphis -

The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development has approved a grant of up to $4.3 million to support production of a TV series that will be shot in Memphis this spring.

The series will be an eight-episode, Memphis-themed scripted drama that Viacom’s CMT network is adapting from the Tony Award-winning musical “Million Dollar Quartet.”

99. Last Word: Rallings Meets the Council, Million Dollar Auditions & A Pinch Plan Emerges -

His second day on the job, the new Memphis Police Director, Michael Rallings, met the Memphis City Council and discovered just what a huge issue police body cameras are – if he didn’t know that already.
His answers to some pointed questions about when police can turn off those cameras and why made this an uneven first encounter.
Council members told him they got an earful from constituents over the weekend in the wake of the fatal police shooting of Johnathan Bratcher in South Memphis. And some of the reaction they got was to reports that a police dispatcher ordered police trying out the body cameras to turn them off as they arrived at the scene of the shooting.
There are three cameras being tested. And one of the officers with them showed up after the shooting, according to police.
Meanwhile, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland still didn’t have a timetable for the roll-out of the cameras but did offer some specifics including hiring by the MPD of 10 new personnel to deal with the handling of what the camera records.
And Strickland’s intention is to pay for it out of the existing MPD budget.

100. Last Word: Groundhog Day's Long Shadow, Minority Percentage & The Value of Sports -

After the January into February weekend we had with its outbreak of spring fever, you might wonder if groundhogs are allowed to change their minds or if shadows that are the result of television lights count as a prediction on the winter’s length.
Or maybe it would be appropriate to have a weather map that includes the Groundhog Day immunity zones – areas where the long shadow of the groundhog does not venture.
Note to television meteorologists: This would in no way interfere with your right to declare large parts of your viewing areas as places of "potentially severe weather" far into the future. But you will need a different color for the Groundhog Immunity Zones.