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Editorial Results (free)

1. ArtsMemphis Joins National Economic Impact Study -

As one of Tennessee’s leading arts organizations, ArtsMemphis will participate in a national study designed to reveal how nonprofit and cultural organizations impact the local economy.

In partnership with the Tennessee Arts Commission and Americans for the Arts, ArtsMemphis will spearhead the local effort to collect data from nonprofit arts and cultural organizations that will measure the impact of arts and culture spending on local jobs, income paid to local residents and revenue generated to local and state governments.

2. The Week Ahead: Feb. 8, 2016 -

Guys, there’s an important holiday coming up that forgetting about would mean immense trouble for you. Luckily, City & State is coming to the rescue. Head over to the Broad Avenue retailer on Friday, two days before Valentine’s Day, for “BYOB” (Bring your own Bailey’s).
Bring something like Bailey’s, Irish cream, whisky, whatever, and City & State will add it to any item you order over on the coffee side of the shop. Meanwhile, the shop has also invited the makers behind Paper & Clay and Question the Answer to be on hand with their wares to take some of the pressure off trying to decide what to buy your significant other for Valentine’s Day.

3. Memphis Gets Federal Recognition for Local Food Infrastructure -

Memphis has received national recognition as a site of entrepreneurship and innovation in the agriculture sector. Through the federal 2016 Local Foods, Local Places Initiative, Memphis will receive technical support to integrate local food into community development efforts, increase access to healthy goods and create economic opportunities for local farmers and food entrepreneurs.

4. Rallings Names Police Team -

Interim Memphis Police director Michael Rallings has named deputy chief Mike Ryall as his deputy director and has filled other vacancies in the ranks of deputy chiefs.

Rowena Adams has been named deputy chief over administrative services, while Frank Garrett and Terry Landrum are over uniform patrol. Sharonda Hampton is deputy chief investigative services, Clete Knight is deputy chief special operations, and Jim Harvey is deputy chief information technologies.

5. New Brass -

Just days before Toney Armstrong was off the city payroll, his successor as interim director of the Memphis Police Department, Michael Rallings, was getting used to the attention and ring kissing that comes with being the city’s top cop.

6. Rallings Names Police Team -

Interim Memphis Police director Michael Rallings has named deputy chief Mike Ryall as his deputy director and has filled other vacancies in the ranks of deputy chiefs.

Rowena Adams has been named deputy chief over administrative services, while Frank Garrett and Terry Landrum are over uniform patrol. Sharonda Hampton is deputy chief investigative services, Clete Knight is deputy chief special operations, and Jim Harvey is deputy chief information technologies.

7. Mike Norvell Era Starts with Optimism And a Raise-the-Bar Recruiting Class -

In a few minutes, first-year coach Mike Norvell would be standing behind a lectern providing assembled media a summary of his first recruiting class at the University of Memphis.

“Not a good class,” he would say, “a great class, a home-run-hitting class.”

8. EDGE Grants Development Loans to 4 Inner-City Businesses -

Memphis’ inner-city neighborhoods garnered $79,000 in business development loans at the Feb. 3 meeting of the Memphis-Shelby County Economic Development Growth Engine’s finance committee.

9. Cates Wants Detail on Downtown Agreements -

From Mud Island River Park across the Memphis harbor to The Pyramid and further east to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital – there are a lot of connections as the areas head toward a new incarnation.

10. Last Word: Post Caucus, Fincher's Exit, 1919 Handwriting and Your Rolodex -

That close (very little light between index finger and thumb) between Clinton and Sanders in Iowa Monday evening.
Both live to fight another day in another state—New Hampshire.
And because it is Iowa – they each get to declare victory as long as they don’t go into a lot of detail about the totals.
This is one of those cases where it is like horsehoes and hand grenades – close does count.

11. Haslam Touts New Spending On Teacher Raises, Urges Caution In Use of Reserve -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam told state legislators Monday, Feb. 1, that the state’s estimated $500 million surplus has to be balanced with a global economy that could change for the worse.

“Our approach is to realize that good times are not going to last forever,” Haslam said in his annual state of the state address on Capitol Hill in Nashville.

12. Playback Memphis Works to Expand Reach -

The Playback Memphis organization is looking to expand its reach this year and is preparing to host three training courses at the Pilgrim House Hostel and Retreat Center at First Congregational Church in Midtown later this month.

13. Planetarium Rings in New Era at Pink Palace -

When the AutoZone Dome at the Sharpe Planetarium reopened to the public Saturday, Jan. 30, it was an important step in the transformation of the Pink Palace Family of Museums’ campus.

The museum, 3050 Central Ave., is undergoing a multi-year master plan that saw work begin in 2013. When complete in 2021, the property will be transformed with a completely renovated museum building and mansion to go along with other features.

14. Memphis Gets Federal Recognition for Local Food Infrastructure -

Memphis has received national recognition as a site of entrepreneurship and innovation in the agriculture sector. Through the federal 2016 Local Foods, Local Places Initiative, Memphis will receive technical support to integrate local food into community development efforts, increase access to healthy goods and create economic opportunities for local farmers and food entrepreneurs.

15. Editorial: Not Even One Percent -

The new figure is 0.83 percent.

That is the percentage of Memphis’ total business revenue that is earned by African-American establishments – a sad fact in a city where 63 percent of residents are African-American and 56 percent of businesses are black-owned.

16. Fenced Out -

There’s a major problem in Memphis when it comes to minorities: African-Americans make up 63 percent of the population but garner less than 1 percent of total business receipts within Memphis, according to the most recent U.S. Census data.

17. 50-Year Star Trek Voyage Docks at Orpheum -

In the beginning there was Star Trek – a mid-1960s television series that didn’t make a five-year run ideal for syndication before it got cancelled. Then came a syndicated after-life anyway and five movies as well as four spin-off television series.

18. Matriculating Down the Field Of History to Super Bowl 50 -

For sports fans of my generation, there is something very personal about the Super Bowl. My earliest television sports memory is from Super Bowl I, which wasn’t even originally called the Super Bowl and retroactively introduced me to Roman numerals.

19. US Pending Home Sales Inch Up in December -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people signing contracts to purchase homes managed to inch up last month, thanks to unseasonably warm weather in the Northeast.

The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that its seasonally adjusted pending home sales index crept up 0.1 percent to 106.8. Signed contracts jumped 6.1 percent in the Northeast, while they declined in the other three major U.S. regions.

20. Last Word: Out of Time, Brian Collins and Fear of Heights & A Different No Gang Zone -

I have a confession. Hillary Clinton is not happy with me.
I’ve seen the signs in recent weeks but didn’t want to accept the truth.
Then Wednesday evening, as I was about to put this column together, I got an email from the former First Lady and Secretary of State and Democratic presidential contender.
The subject line cut to the chase: “We’re running out of time, Bill.”
The message itself, on a backdrop of Blue State blue read:

21. Wal-Mart's Shutdown Creates New Food Deserts -

FAIRFIELD, Ala. (AP) — Wal-Mart's decision to shutter 154 stores across the country means that, starting Thursday, residents without cars in a neighborhood near a historically black college outside Birmingham, Alabama, will have to cross dangerous roadways on foot to get fresh produce and meat. Come Friday, folks in Coal Hill, Arkansas, will need to drive 15 miles to get to the nearest supermarket and pharmacy. Low-income neighbors of Wichita State University in Kansas, too, will be losing quick access to fresh groceries.

22. Let’s Hear It for Christine and Patrick! -

This column should be running in late January. Ten years ago, Susan and I flew out to Park City, Utah, for our first (and probably only) Sundance Film Festival. Where “Wordplay,” the award-winning documentary about the crossword puzzle industry, had its world premiere on Jan. 21, 2006.

23. US Home Prices Rise in November; All-Time Highs in 4 Cities -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. home prices increased at a faster clip in November, the gains fueled by solid hiring growth, historically low mortgage rates and a shortage of houses on the market.

24. Last Word: Kroger Disses Clarence Saunders, Mud Island Plans and The Australians -

What is old has become new again. And judging by your reaction to Andy Meek’s story on the Kroger plans for online ordering of groceries, what is old has gone viral as well.
Here are the basics:
You order from a list of items and Kroger fills the order and has it waiting for you to pick up.
When you think about the idea of supermarkets, which originated here in Memphis with Piggly Wiggly, it’s enough to make the Piggly Wiggly founder himself, Clarence Saunders, spin in his grave.
Before he came up with the idea of taking store shelves from behind the counter and putting them out there for you to get your own stuff from them, you would tell your grocer what you wanted and he would write it down on a paper bag and get it for you, wrap it up and present it to you.
Saunders changed all of that as you know if you’ve seen the Pink Palace’s child-sized replica of a Piggly Wiggly store from the start of the 20th century.
A century later, no paper bags and you can still walk among the shelves if you wish.
Perhaps this isn’t that extreme. Maybe this is simply a swing of the pendulum, back toward the middle ground.
Saunders tried to push it even further with his Keedoozle stores that followed Piggly Wiggly. In those stores, the items were lined up in what amounted to vending machines with shoppers releasing an item from the vertical row with a key.
Here Saunders went too far. He mashed the bread.

25. In the Game -

Way back in the 1990s, perhaps before the Grizzlies and FedExForum were even a twinkle in anyone’s eye, Chris Wallace came to Memphis and The Pyramid for a preseason NBA game featuring Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls.

26. Last Word: Winter Pre-Game Show, The Zoo Goes To Court And Hotel Fever -

You wouldn’t call this the eye of the storm, would you? We’ll go with calling this the pre-game show for the winter storm that is supposed to show up in Memphis at around 7 a.m. Friday morning. Think Super Bowl pre-game.
There is so much that’s been said in advance of this that whatever happens, it might be hard to live up to the preparation.
Much of the rest of this is like an arms race of sorts.
Consider the equipment list from Memphis International Airport.
10 snow brooms, 12 plow trucks, four de-icing trucks each with 40,000 gallons of deicer, four 2-ton salt spreaders and four tractors to keep the runways clear.
The city of Memphis Public Works division has eight snow plows ready to roll on major thoroughfares if the snow gets within the three-inch mark. A set of 16 salt trucks were to load up at 11 p.m. Thursday evening to begin applying salt and sand when needed, with continual inspections of road conditions. And that includes some pre-treated priority areas.
And then there was this truly unusual announcement from Shelby County Schools: the optional school parent camp-out was suspended Thursday evening because of the weather.
This is the camp out the school system tries its best to discourage each and every year at this time. That includes bar-coded applications and repeatedly emphasizing that 99.9 percent of those with the bar-coded applications get their first choice of optional schools, making the camp-out unnecessary. The applications are handed out over several days and are then time-stamped when they are turned in for consideration.
Nevertheless, the tents go up each year and voices are raised in the debate about whether this is parents who care more or parents who are carried away.
This year, the school system, while emphasizing that it “does not authorize or direct” the camp-out, says the line will resume Sunday at 7 a.m.
The school system also adds: “The current process being managed by parents will be recognized due to potential health and safety risks related to forecasted inclement weather.”
But is there a line to get back in line? And when does that start?

27. Strickland Names Interim Memphis Police Director -

Mayor Jim Strickland has chosen an interim Memphis Police director from inside the ranks, naming his pick two weeks to the day after current director Toney Armstrong announced he’s retiring from the role.

28. Butch Jones Builds for Championship Run With Staff Tweaks -

Tennessee football coach Butch Jones got serious about taking the next step with his football program not long after his team’s 45-6 victory over Northwestern in the Jan. 1 Outback Bowl.

Jones fired defensive coordinator John Jancek on Jan. 6, and three days later hired his top candidate for the opening, Bob Shoop of Penn State.

29. Last Word: Time and The Greensward, Crosstown High and Race and Sports -

Remember how the schools merger story of about five years ago would change by the hour at times? That story has met its equal in what is becoming the first major challenge of the new Strickland administration at City Hall – the Overton Park Greensward.
So much happened before noon Tuesday on the first day of the short work week that it required waiting for the dust to settle on several fronts.
Here is the latest on a very fluid and volatile situation that could very well change as you are reading this.
Luckily we report at a time when you can change stories on line to keep up with such changes.
Zoos and parks and protests featuring brass bands suggest to a casual observer that this is not very serious as controversies go.
And maybe that was the case about a year and a half ago when a group of high school students decided to block the gravel driveway from the zoo parking lot onto the greensward.
But consider this:
The Memphis Zoo is working toward a March 1 opening of its new exhibit, Zambezi River Hippo Camp, a $22-million attraction that from what we saw just a few months ago will likely draw big crowds to the zoo in the spring.
The zoo was preparing for that starting with the removal of 27 trees from the north end of the greensward.
The best Mayor Jim Strickland could get from both sides – the zoo and Overton Park Conservancy – at his meeting with them Tuesday was a commitment to take his proposal for mediation to their respective boards.
The zoo board has authorized its leaders to file a lawsuit in Chancery Court over the greensward and it’s very likely the zoo would go to court before the March 1 opening because of the crowds on their way.
If the work to come by the zoo in advance of the March 1 opening involves heavy machinery, the reaction is likely to draw a much bigger protest than the ones Memphis Police have so far watched from a distance without making arrests.
As in all pressing political dramas, this controversy has the accelerant of timing.

30. Events -

World Series of Poker returns to Horseshoe Tunica, 1021 Casino Center Drive, from Thursday, Jan. 21, to Feb. 1. The schedule features 12 official WSOP Circuit events. The winner of the main event (Jan. 29-30) will earn a free entry into the 2016 WSOP National Championship. Visit wsop.com for details and entry fees.

31. Father Don’s Legacy: Planting Seeds of Hope -

It is said that the future belongs to those who give the next generation reason to hope. This saying rings true in the life of Rev. Donald Mowery, and is lived out through his decades of commitment to youth in Memphis and across the country.

32. NCRM Forum on Sports and Race Features Lively Dialogue -

Professional athletes pay a price when they speak out on issues outside of or larger than the games they play.

And ESPN commentator and retired NBA player Jalen Rose draws a distinction between the way players in Major League Baseball and players in “black sports” are treated by their teams.

33. Grizzlies Notebook: Conley ‘In Rhythm’ In 1st Game Back -

Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley had a simple goal for his first game back: “I just wanted to not mess up anything, to keep everybody involved and still pick and choose my spots to be aggressive.”

34. Last Word: No Bern, Say No More and The Daily Mail Comes For A Visit -

Democratic presidential contender and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders didn’t make it the city after all following the weekend’s debate among the Democratic presidential contenders.

35. Last Word: Tri-State's Deal With First Tennessee, Matt Barnes' Fine and The Grind -

It sounds strange to refer to this as a holiday weekend – the anniversary of the birth of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Holidays suggest something different than the rededication to purpose so many of us stress as our definition of this day honoring the memory of a leader whose life made it difficult to imagine what our society would be like without his presence.
That we feel compelled to express the meaning of the day through actions and a recommitment to principles buffeted by reality reflects a hope that we wish to retain as first-hand memories of King’s life fade and his legacy endures.

36. The Week Ahead: Jan. 18, 2016 -

How was your weekend Memphis? Here are some local events to keep on your radar this week, from a full slate of MLK activities to a David Bowie tribute to a Marco Rubio fundraiser…

37. Ioby Secures $33K Grant From Livable Memphis -

The Memphis chapter of ioby, a national crowd-resourcing platform, has received a $33,000 grant through Livable Memphis to support neighborhood leaders and grassroots groups in activating public parks and green spaces.

38. Saban Is Tops, Busch Upgrades, Grizz 100-1 -

I really don’t like the debates about the greatest player or coach. But it was unavoidable this past week after Alabama won its fourth national championship under Nick Saban (his fifth, having also won as coach at LSU).

39. School Guide Helps Parents Navigate Choices -

After five years of historic change in Shelby County public education, the traditional labels of “public” and “private” schools don’t adequately describe the range of options available to parents.

40. Last Word: Secrets In A Small Town, Bullard Bounce and Beale & Mud Island -

Munford! A winning Powerball ticket for the largest jackpot ever was sold in Munford and that warrants a rare exclamation mark.
Possibly two when you consider that small towns are supposed to be places where it is nearly impossible to keep a secret – at least from the other folks in the town.
The fact that it was sold at Naifeh’s, a long-standing Tipton County business institution adds to the story.
The person who bought the ticket in Munford holds one of three winning tickets which comes out to about $582 million for that ticket.
That is roughly the size of the city of Memphis operating budget.
There was a similar mystery underway Thursday in Dyersburg where someone bought a Powerball ticket worth a paltry $2 million. Probably worth an exclamation mark if I wasn’t over the limit and already feeling the unspoken disdain of my reporting brethren who are judging me harshly as you read this.

41. Ioby Secures $33K Grant From Livable Memphis -

The Memphis chapter of ioby, a national crowd-resourcing platform, has received a $33,000 grant through Livable Memphis to support neighborhood leaders and grassroots groups in activating public parks and green spaces.

42. Last Word: Overton Park's Restless Winter, Across The Harahan and Higher Ed -

It may be chilly outside, but it might as well be July on the Overton Park greensward with all of the political heat that is building.
The thermometer spiked when more than two dozen trees donated to the Overton Park Conservancy in 2012 were removed this week by the Memphis Zoo which is preparing for large crowds in March.
That’s when its new Zambezi Hippo River Camp exhibit opens to much anticipation and much fanfare.
That and the New Year’s Eve legal opinion favoring the zoo’s position on its use of the greensward for overflow parking set the stage for a dispute the administration of Mayor Jim Strickland has had to mediate at less than two weeks in office.

43. Tourism Goes Beyond Graceland, Beale Street -

This week, hundreds of investors, community builders and federal leaders gathered at the third annual Rural Opportunity Investment Conference, which ended with a discussion of spurring economic development through tourism.

44. Last Word: SOTU React, OPEB Comeback and NFL Nostalgia -

The day after the last State of the Union address by President Barack Obama here's a breakdown of the reaction from our delegation to Washington.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen emphasized Obama's references to criminal justice reform.
"I know he is also committed to criminal justice reform and I hope my colleagues will work together to put meaningful reform on his desk," Cohen said.
Republican U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher tweeted, "We need a plan to keep America safe and make America strong. I did not hear that from the President tonight."
Republican U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander: "If Pres. Obama focuses on what he agrees on with Congress instead of what we disagree on, there's quite a bit we could get done in 2016."
Republican U.S. Senator Bob Corker urged the "swift release" of U.S sailors being held overnight by Iran in a border dispute just before the speech.

45. Hughes Promoted at Harris Shelton -

Brett Hughes has been promoted to managing member at Harris Shelton Hanover Walsh PLLC law firm. In his new role, Hughes will provide managerial support to the firm’s three offices. His primary responsibility will be to manage the firm’s administration and committees, particularly on issues that impact client service, as well as the morale, compensation, growth and development of the firm.

46. Last Word: Legislature's Return, Uber Pilot, Minivan Comeback and Bowie's Exit -

The gavel falls in Nashville.
The Tennessee legislature is back in session Tuesday. This is an election year session for the legislature. So it will be short – likely an early April adjournment. But that doesn’t mean the session is without expectations from outside Nashville.

47. Spillway of Swollen Mississippi River Open Near New Orleans -

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers opened a major spillway Sunday near New Orleans for the first time in nearly five years, seeking to decrease the vast flow of the swollen Mississippi River as a safeguard to the low-lying city.

48. Helping Memphis Make the Shift to Startups -

It’s been quite a year! We saw Memphis’ first joint Demo Day with Start Co. and Zeroto510, graduated 18 startups from accelerator programming and hosted several investors and startup enthusiasts from all over the country here for the Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. However, on a national scale, our startup community still has plenty of work to do.

49. Last Word: El Chapo and Memphis, First Filers for August and Origins in Graffiti -

The Mississippi River at Memphis crested and then it rained.
The weekend rain added about two-tenths of an inch by Saturday to Friday’s crest.
But by Sunday, the river had dropped to 39.12 feet, which is still more than five feet above flood stage.

50. Tunica Casino Union Vote Delayed On Worker Pressure Charges -

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – A vote on unionization by dealers at the MGM Gold Strike Casino in Tunica County has been put off amid charges that MGM Resorts International broke federal law while campaigning against union representation.

51. Innova’s Bouten Talks Growing Health Care Hub -

When Jan Bouten looks out his office window at 20 S. Dudley St., he can count no less than five medical institutions in his field of view.

52. The Week Ahead: Jan. 11, 2016 -

How was your weekend, Memphis? Here’s our weekly rundown of local happenings you need to know about, from drones and robot research to the Grizzlies’ annual MLK symposium at the National Civil Rights Museum...

53. Last Word: The Crest, OPEB Fever, Armstrong Leaves and An Elvis Warning -

The crest is here and it is not quite 40 feet on the Mississippi River gauge. The projections Thursday evening going into Friday’s crest of the river at Memphis changed a bit from the 40.3 foot level. The crest is 39.8 feet.
No reports of major damage anywhere in Shelby County, according to the Shelby County Office of Prepardness.
But the river’s high water is still a sight to behold.

54. SEC Still Overrated? Wrap Your Head Around SEC West, Says Bielema -

That an Arkansas team played its best football at season’s end, coming into Memphis and defeating Kansas State 45-23 in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl, hardly qualifies as a surprise.

But the Southeastern Conference’s eight bowl wins – the most by a conference in a season – did seem to shake up some folks.

55. Armstrong Leaves MPD After Five Years of Change -

In five years as Memphis Police Department director, Toney Armstrong has seen more changes in law enforcement culture and how officers are perceived than most of his predecessors in the position ever saw.

56. Armstrong Leaving Memphis Police Dept. for St. Jude -

Memphis Police Department director Toney Armstrong has taken a job at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

Armstrong, who has worked in various roles at MPD for nearly three decades, will step down from his post Jan. 31 to become St. Jude's director of security, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland announced Thursday, Jan. 7.

57. Last Word: The River, Miss Cordelia's, OPEB and the Kumbaya Council -

Here comes the river. Not quite at 40 feet on the Mississippi River gauge at Memphis overnight but getting there
For those who weren’t around in 2011 when the river crested at 48.3 feet, the second highest level ever recorded at Memphis, this is the part of the program where lots of people begin to gather at the river.
For some it will be to compare what they've seen before. For others it will be their first look and experience with the concept that nature is bigger than we are.
The smaller those first-time river visitors are, the easier it is for them to accept that. After all, when you are always looking up at the world everything is bigger than you are.
In Tom Lee Park you see them step onto the park's grass, their eyes riveted on the west, perhaps not seeing much beyond the grass at first, a small hand poking out of a coat sleeve shielding their eyes from the sun. And then their first glimpse of the running brown water. And the walk inevitably becomes a run and then a quick halt as the immensity of the river kicks in. Always the two together even when the river is just being eternal.

58. Homewood Suites Proposed For Vance Area of South Main -

A six-story Homewood Suites hotel is the latest new development proposed in the South Main Historic District.

The application to the Land Use Control Board for the hotel at 139 Vance Ave., between Mulberry and Second streets, is from NPH Investments on a lot owned by Henry and Cheri Rudner. The proposed site sits two blocks north of the National Civil Rights Museum and three blocks south of FedExForum.

59. Last Word: Council Round-Up, One Beale's Third Tower and the Battle Over the ASD -

On a clear day, the song goes, you can see forever.
In Memphis though, it seems that no two politicians will see exactly the same thing or have precisely the same opinion.
On a somewhat sunny but not necessarily clear Tuesday in our fair city there was a lot to see.

60. Sutherland Named HR Manager At CDS -

Renee’ Sutherland has joined Central Defense Staffing as the human resource manager. In her role, she is responsible for conducting recruitment efforts, training and development of employees, employee relations, conflict resolution and workers’ compensation. She has a team that consists of recruiters, coordinators and administrative support workers.

61. Council’s First Meeting of 2016 Includes 2015 Leftovers -

Memphis City Council members begin their first council day of the year Tuesday, Jan. 5, with a slate of a dozen appointments by Mayor Jim Strickland.

62. Tri-State Bank HQ Sale Heightens Speculation -

The northeast corner of Main and Beale streets is more than prime real estate; it’s historic ground with a direct connection to ongoing racial and economic issues.

Tri-State Bank, the city’s 70-year old black-owned bank, and Belz Investco announced Thursday, Dec. 31, that the bank was selling its headquarters, 180 S. Main St., to Belz Investco GP in a $3 million deal.

63. Last Word: The River, The New Mayor and Explaining Boll Weevils -

Hello, 2016. What’s your hurry?

First things first – the Mississippi River at our doorstep is above flood stage. But the crest is now predicted to come Friday and will be just over 40 feet – lower than predicted last week.
We will be posting web stories on the forecasts and other announcement from the county’s Office of Preparedness each evening to work with their schedule for summarizing where we are.
Floods are a slower moving cause for concern because we know what is happening upriver from us where the river is narrower. But this is also the Mississippi River, which is the definition of unpredictable.

64. Mississippi River At Memphis Above Flood Stage, Projected Crest Lowered -

The Mississippi River at Memphis was a foot and a half above flood stage Sunday, Jan. 3, with the muddy waters of the Mississippi just a few feet away from Tom Lee Park and Greenbelt Park on Mud Island.

65. Mississippi River at Memphis Approaches Flood Stage -

As the Mississippi River was nearing flood stage at Memphis Saturday, Jan. 2, Memphis firefighters were preparing to go door-to-door in Harbor Town on Mud Island.

The visits are not an evacuation. They are “to notify residents about the high water threat,” said Dale Lane, director of the Shelby County Office of Preparedness.

66. The Week Ahead: Jan. 4, 2016 -

How was your weekend, Memphis? 2016 has kicked off with a full calendar – from an Elvis birthday celebration to a haunted pub crawl. So whether you’re still making your New Year’s resolutions or already have broken a few, here’s our weekly rundown of local happenings you need to know about...

67. Strickland Takes Office Promising Change -

Things move quickly once it is decided the incumbent mayor will not be returning to City Hall.

The political spotlight shifts quickly to the new mayor who has about two months and two weeks to make some important decisions about his inner circle, set some priorities and figure out what needs to wait for more deliberation.

68. Memorable Events of 2015 will Spill Into 2016 -

When you really get down to it, history is a collection of moments, moments that, when they fall one after the other over the long arc of time, eventually form the tapestry representing who we are.

69. New Laws in 2016 Show States are Diverging on Guns, Voting -

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) – Laws taking effect at the start of the new year show states diverging on some hot-button issues.

Restrictions on carrying guns will ease in Texas, for example, but will get tighter in California. It will be easier to register to vote in Oregon, but there will be another step to take at the polls in North Carolina.

70. Last Word: Drones, Haslam's Year and Bygone Sports Logos -

Drones. Yes, drones -- which seem to be an odd match for a column called Last Word since there will be many more words written about them and their technological impact.

The FedEx Institute of Technology at the University of Memphis has funding for 11 research projects that will includes drones as well as robotics and autonomous vehicles.

71. US Home Prices Climb in October, Helped By Solid Job Market -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Steady job growth, low mortgage rates and tight inventories helped fuel rising U.S. home prices in October.

The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index rose 5.5 percent in the 12 months ending in October, up from a 5.4 percent pace in September, according to a report released Tuesday.

72. Last Word: Watching The River, The Clerk's Inner Circle and Universal Bankers -

The Mississippi River is on the rise here and elsewhere which means for many of us the New Year will include a look at the river and memories of 2011 when the river at Memphis was the highest it had been since the record 1937 flooding.

73. Corefire App Could Bring Real Change to Memphis -

The numbers are startling: Only 43 percent of African-American males in Memphis graduate from high school, and the city’s poverty rate for families with children younger than 18 is 44.3 percent, double the national average.

74. Last Word: Recovery in North Mississippi, Opera in 2016 and Uptown North of Chelsea -

It’s been a holiday season of challenged hopes and muted emotions in our corner of the world.
The beginning of the series of storms and tornadoes they spawned killed eight people in North Mississippi where recovery is still a fact of life in this last week of 2015.
This will be a week of funerals and damage assessments for federal disaster aid throughout our region.
And you will hear more stories of escapes and new beginnings after losing everything of any material value.
But even in our spared city, our thoughts will return instinctively to the young lives taken so suddenly and so close to the family gatherings in which our youngest give so much more in the way of hope than they will realize at this tender age.

75. Opera Memphis General Director Reflects on Challenges, Storytelling -

Even though he’ll have reached the five-year mark as general director at Opera Memphis in January, Ned Canty says there are some days when it feels like he’s still just getting started.

In a recent conversation with The Daily News, he was by turns philosophical and as optimistic as ever about the nature of his work and about the task of making one of the oldest musical forms relevant in the city where rock ’n’ roll was born.

76. Last Word: Santa's Bag, Google at Hemlock and the 20 Percent Threshold -

Last Word is a new daily online column that offers an overview of what’s happened at the end of shift, so to speak. Picture a dimly lit newsroom in the Downtown night and the last person in the place leaving a memo for the morning shift and you have a pretty good idea of what we are aiming for.

77. Winter Heat Wave to Bring Threat of Tornadoes to Deep South -

ATLANTA (AP) — A heat wave that could deliver the warmest Christmas ever recorded to cities across the South may also fuel tornadoes and storms featuring golf ball-sized hail and damaging winds of up to 70 mph, forecasters say.

78. Delavega Joins Hooks Institute Leadership Team -

Dr. Elena Delavega, assistant professor in the University of Memphis’ Department of Social Work, has been named associate director of the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change at the U of M. A former policy fellow at the institute, Delavega specializes in the study of poverty and economic development.

79. University of Memphis Promotes Health Through Architecture -

Five departments of the University of Memphis are now members of the American Institute of Architects’ Design & Health Research Consortium.

The partnership works to improve public health by drawing out its connections to lived environment and architecture.

80. Last Word: The Force Reawakens, Methodist Expands and Setting Up 2016 -

Last Word is a new daily online column that offers an overview of what’s happened at the end of shift, so to speak. Picture a dimly lit newsroom in the Downtown night and the last person in the place leaving a memo for the morning shift and you have a pretty good idea of what we are aiming for.

81. The Truth, Whole Truth, Nothing But the Truth -

THE INS AND UNS OF OUR TRUTH. Truth is the truth. It isn’t inconvenient, inconsistent or incomplete. It isn’t uncomfortable or unpleasant and certainly not untrue.

But what we’ve made of the truth is all of those things.

82. Events -

The Center City Development Corp. board will meet Wednesday, Dec. 16, at 9 a.m. in the Downtown Memphis Commission conference room, 114 N. Main St. Visit downtownmemphiscommission.com.

83. Memphis Lessons That Follow You Home -

Every now and then events occur that seem small, routine, just part of the job until they collide with such force that they explode with meaning, renewing your work with a sense of purpose and change a job into a mission.

84. Council Approves $4M Loan for Belz’s Midtown Market -

The mixed-use project at Union Avenue and McLean Boulevard got a $4 million federal boost with a proposal from developers Belz Enterprises and Harbor Retail Partners clearing the Memphis City Council Tuesday, Dec. 15.

85. Events -

Attorney J. Anthony Bradley will host a free seminar for World War II, Korea and Vietnam wartime veterans and spouses Tuesday, Dec. 15, at 6 p.m. at Legacy Estates at Lenox Park, 6551 Knight Arnold Road. The seminar will cover VA Aid and Attendance Improved Pension benefits. Visit bradley-law.com.

86. Sarah Cronk Brings 'Sparkling' Nonprofit Resume to Varsity Spirit, Memphis -

Sarah Cronk is 22 years old and a recent graduate of Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington. She’s also new to the Bluff City, making the move to Memphis in September to begin a career in marketing at Varsity Spirit.

87. Events -

Touchdown Club of Memphis will meet Monday, Dec. 14, from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Chickasaw Country Club, 3395 Galloway Ave. University of Alabama wide receivers coach Billy Napier is the guest speaker. Cost is $60. Visit tdcmemphis.com.

88. University of Memphis Promotes Health Through Architecture -

Five departments of the University of Memphis are now members of the American Institute of Architects’ Design & Health Research Consortium.

The partnership works to improve public health by drawing out its connections to lived environment and architecture.

89. A List of Mayor-Elect Jim Strickland’s Appointments So Far -

Memphis Mayor elect Jim Strickland still has some appointments to make, but he is methodically filling key positions in his administration ahead of taking office Jan. 1.

90. Interstate Numbers Fuel Mississippi Economic Development -

Highway, routes and interstates can be a numbers game when they show up on maps.

And it is common for the same stretch of road to have several numbers and designations.

But in October, the part of U.S. 78 between New Albany, Miss., and the Alabama state line became Interstate 22.

91. The Right Fit -

It was the middle of the season and the Tigers were rolling along at 7-0. They had climbed to No. 16 in the national polls and Paxton Lynch was being talked about as potentially the best quarterback in next spring’s NFL Draft.

92. Main Event’s ‘Eat. Bowl. Play’ Opens -

Main Event Entertainment looks at dozens of metrics when deciding where to bring its sprawling family entertainment centers next – everything from an area’s growth trajectory to the mix of households with children as well as young singles.

93. Autonomy Comes With Risk for State’s Universities -

Tennessee officials are lauding Gov. Bill Haslam’s plan to restructure higher education in an effort to meet his goals for the Drive to 55.

The FOCUS Act proposed recently by the Republican governor to make sure 55 percent of Tennesseans hold a degree or postsecondary certificate by 2025 promises to launch a new era for the state’s colleges and universities.

94. Expert Says Changes to University Governance Take Years -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A higher education expert told lawmakers on Tuesday that big changes such as those Gov. Bill Haslam is proposing for six state universities take years to implement effectively.

95. A Bowl Game, By Any Name, Is a Chance for Another Victory -

Once upon a time, all you needed was a tuft of Cotton, a taste of Orange, a simple Rose and a cup of Sugar. That was your college football bowl season.

But the 2015-16 bowl season is full of often long, usually corporate, and frequently wacky college bowl names given to games with sometimes questionable purpose.

96. Obama Signs 5-Year Infrastructure Spending Bill -

WASHINGTON (AP) – A 5-year, $305-billion bill to address the nation's aging and congested transportation systems was signed into law Friday by President Barack Obama, who said it will put Americans to work and provide states with the federal help they need to commit to long-term projects.

97. Memphis to Host Back-to-Back Transportation Conferences -

On Thursday, Dec. 10, Memphis’ status as a logistics hub and its future in inner-city transportation will be debated.

The University of Memphis will be hosting two back-to-back free conferences at the FedEx Institute of Technology. The Intermodal Freight Transportation Institute will host its ninth annual conference, dubbed The State of Freight, from 7:30 a.m. to noon, and the newly established University of Memphis Design Collaborative will host the Workforce to Work Transportation Summit from noon to 4:30 p.m.

98. Memphis' Grocery Wars -

After Sprouts became one of the newest grocery chains to enter the Memphis market by opening stores in Lakeland and Germantown earlier this year, company spokesman Diego Romero described the chain’s arrival as practically a no-brainer.

99. Fed’s Scarboro Says Interest Rate Hike Will Be Gradual -

Their comments don’t move markets the way Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen can.

But regional leaders of the Fed system, including its Memphis branch regional executive Douglas Scarboro, are reinforcing the idea that the Fed board probably will raise interest rates for the first time in seven years at its Dec. 15-16 session.

100. Events -

ULI Memphis, the local Urban Land Institute chapter, will present its annual Emerging Trends in Real Estate event Thursday, Dec. 3, from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at Memphis Botanic Garden, 750 Cherry Road. National and local speakers will discuss a variety of emerging real estate trends. Visit memphis.uli.org/events to register.