» Subscribe Today!
More of what you want to know.
The Daily News

Forgot your password?
TDN Services
Research millions of people and properties [+]
Monitor any person, property or company [+]

Skip Navigation LinksHome >
VOL. 132 | NO. 189 | Friday, September 22, 2017


Bill Dries

Last Word: GPAC's Grove, Fairgrounds Tea Leaves and Grizz Money Matters

By Bill Dries

Print | Front Page | Email this story | Email reporter | Comments ()

The Germantown Performing Arts Center has plans for an open-air performance center to be called “The Grove at GPAC” – the latest consideration in what is becoming a vibrant discussion about the capacity for concerts within Shelby County. And it is also a discussion about concert venues that can do other things like festival and movies.

The announcement comes at the end of a week that has certainly been a lively one for such considerations from the abrupt change in plans by Graceland of its concert venue because of objections from the Grizz front office to what would have been an arena over 5,000 seats to city council members vocal in their dissatisfaction with the lack of concerts at the Liberty Bowl and other issues with the firm that currently manages not just the stadium but much of the rest of the Fairgrounds.

Thursday evening at the Fairgrounds, the second of three public meetings by the Strickland administration on its still-forming Fairgrounds redevelopment plan featured a new cost estimate for a full restoration of the mothballed Mid-South Coliseum -- $37 million – up from the city’s previous estimate of $30 million. And the city says the estimate from Allen and Hoshall reflects “a more intensive” rehab job. The Coliseum Coalition promoting its plan for a lower cost rehabbed mixed-use Coliseum with a seating capacity of 4,999 seats – just under the 5,000 seat limit that we now know the Grizz are paying very close attention to when it comes to city-funded venues. And among the possibilities the city has added to its list of what could happen is a “junkyard museum” – a kind of junkyard as an interactive art installation that has surfaced before in this discussion. The museum got its own placard at the session. And there was another listing some of the drawbacks or challenges of a water park. Yes, there is a certain amount of tea-leaf reading involved in this.

Those are the basics, more to come on the larger picture.

The Memphis City Council member whose district includes Overton Park, Worth Morgan, on the Brooks considering a move elsewhere in town and out of its current location.

From concert spaces and museum dimensions to the much smaller space of a voting booth. Here are the complete yet unofficial results from Thursday’s elections in Arlington where two aldermen were re-elected and another upset while an outgoing alderman got elected to the school board – all with a turnout just over 13 percent.

Some stories write themselves. That is the case with our Friday centerpiece on the latest anti-gun violence ad campaign from Operation Safe Community and the Memphis-Shelby Crime Commission. The face and voice of that campaign is not an actor. Jerald Trotter served 12 years and nine months in prison for killing a man in 2000 in a bar room brawl over a televised NFL game. The story is about – as he says in the ad – watching men enter prison over a lot of years because like him they shot someone. It’s also the story about how the series of ads have been created including a gravelly off-screen voice in the early ads from an unlikely source.

Trotter’s story is an intense one that is at the heart of the city’s historic problem with violence and it comes at a point in the 14-year run of the set of anti-gun violence ads that is much different than where we were as a city in 2003. There is much more discussion and debate now about whether the criminal justice system locally is part of the problem or a solution to the problem that has a much longer arc requiring more patience.

A few notes not in the story… Trotter is not a fan of for-profit prisons after some time within one – one of four Tennessee prisons in which he served his sentence. “Those things are horrible,” he told us. “Please write that down. They shouldn’t exist.”… And the harsh reception that often awaits outside prison when a job interview inevitably gets to that topic – “While you are in there (prison), part of their deal is to break you down. And so every word you say is a lie. Every intention you have is dishonorable. So they are always watching you. They are always doubting you. So you get out here and you try to get your self-esteem up and you do what you are supposed to do and a guy rips up a thing (job application) in front of you.”

In our Friday Sports Section:

Tigers football coach Mike Norvell says he’s not focused on rankings in polls going into Saturday’s Southern Illinois game at the Liberty Bowl.

And a look at Stubby Clapp’s return to AutoZone Park as manager of the Redbirds at the end of a championship season.

Here is the Grizz broadcast schedule, which includes four games on national television including the MLK Day game in January and a preseason Oct. 11 home game against the Houston Rockets.

On the front office side of the Grizz, majority owner Robert Pera’s net worth took a tumble this week, according to Fortune, after a short seller’s research company made an unproven fraud claim against Pera independent of his role with the team.

Also at week’s end, ESPN’s magazine got a copy of a confidential NBA report showing about half of the NBA’s 30 teams – including the Grizz – lost money last season before revenue sharing payments. The ESPN story takes a look specifically as what it describes as “a tough season financially” for the Grizz.

David Climer on Alabama coming to Vanderbilt Saturday.

Dave Link in Knoxville looks for a road back for UT which plays Massachusetts Saturday at Neyland and then Georgia a week later.

Terry McCormick on the Titan’s choice – Henry or Murray?

Who's hungry? The encore of the first Memphis Food & Wine Festival is coming next month.

DACA – Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals – and other immigration issues is the topic on Behind The Headlines with our guests John Smarrelli of Christian Brothers University and Mauricio Calvo of Latino Memphis. The show airs Friday at 7 p.m. on WKNO TV.

The cover story by Don Wade in our weekly, The Memphis News, is about LITE Memphis – a new effort on what has been a very busy effort in the last three years to grow minority business in a city that is majority African-American. In this case the growth includes growing black businesses in terms of their workforces and payrolls. The PDF of the new issue is already up on this website. The hard copies are on the street Friday morning and the online version of the cover story goes up here Friday afternoon.

PROPERTY SALES 69 163 12,921
MORTGAGES 35 85 8,088
BUILDING PERMITS 109 531 30,465
BANKRUPTCIES 18 85 6,149