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VOL. 133 | NO. 100 | Friday, May 18, 2018


Bill Dries

Last Word: Bar-B-Foo, Grizz Draft Prospects and The Hampline

By Bill Dries

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Alleged sightings of Dave Grohl at the barbecue contest Thursday in Tom Lee Park and a photograph from a distance that might or might not be the head Foo Fighter. This does happen at the barbecue contest – celebrities quietly coming in with a team. Sometimes not so quietly as when Vice President Al Gore returned in the 1990s to a contest he had a booth at during his time as a U.S. Senator.

Day 3 of the Memphis In May International Barbecue Cooking Contest is Friday.

Of course, as Veep the Secret Service also came with him which made the contest a little different but not as much as one might think. So if Dave Grohl was at the barbecue contest, how many times did he hear Foo Fighters playing on the various sound systems for each booth. A reminder that the barbecue contest is just about one of the toughest live music gigs for any musician.

Here come the suburbs – well, most of the suburbs. Friday is the opening day to pull petitions for the five sets of suburban municipal elections on the Nov. 6 ballot. The Bartlett, Germantown and Lakeland municipal elections feature races for mayor along with races for aldermen and school board seats – substitute commissioners for aldermen in Lakeland’s case and voters in Lakeland pick two candidates from a single list of commission candidates with the top two winning the election. The Germantown mayor’s race between incumbent Mike Palazzolo and alderman John Barzizza is already underway. Collierville and Millington don’t have mayor’s races this time around. They each have races for aldermen and school board.

At Memphis City Hall, there are seven contenders at the noon Thursday deadline for the appointment to the open Super District council seat that the 12 remaining council members will fill Tuesday. And three of those who are seeking the appointment have also pulled petitions thus far to run in the August nonpartisan special election that goes to voters in Super District 9.

No decision this week by the EDGE board on proposed incentives to developers for sewage storage systems as the city works on increasing its sewer capacity over the next three to four years. The discussion is at the bottom of the story which also recaps the EDGE decisions on other incentives we recapped when last we met here.

There is lots of speculation that the Grizz may take Michael Porter Jr. with the fourth pick in next month's NBA draft. But there are a lot of ifs.

Now that the Grizz are shut-out of the top three NBA draft picks next month, it looks like Michael Porter Jr. seems to be the most likely candidate for a Grizz pick. That is if the front office doesn’t trade its #4 pick in the draft. But this is all on pretty shaky ground.

Don Wade on the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling that opens the door for legalize sports gambling outside Nevada and the questions of those inside the teams who have information that could affect those wagers.

Meanwhile, AP college sports writer Ralph D. Russo on the NCAA decision to at least temporarily lift its ban on NCAA tournaments being hosted in states that take single game betting action.

The return of Penny Hardaway to Tigers basketball and its larger impact on the city is covered in the new cover story of the weekly The Memphis News.

The cover story by Don Wade in our weekly, The Memphis News, is “Penny-mania” – the arrival of Penny Hardaway as the University of Memphis basketball head coach and the impact of that decision on the city’s longest running sports franchise and beyond.

The PDF of the new issue is up now 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.

A rendering of what the coming Hampline improvements will look like in the Broad Avenue Arts District.

The Hampline was such a hot topic several years ago that you can find some folks who assume it has been in place all this time between the western end of the Greenline on Tillman and the Overton Park bike gateway where Sam Cooper meets East Parkway. Some bicyclists may be using the route, but the actual work on the Hampline itself is about to begin. And it’s a pretty coordinated undertaking that takes in Broad where bike lanes began as a kind of DIY project. It will also be part of a changing landscape in other ways as residential development is waiting in the wings along the Sam Cooper-East Parkway part of this, across the parkway from the bike gate.

Dot Transportation is about to open a new truck terminal in West Memphis that is the newest part of a supply chain to a food chain.

A different kind of transportation in West Memphis where Dot Transportation is about to open a new truck terminal. Dot is part of Dot Foods Inc. – the largest food industry redistributor in North America.

Once upon a time Jack Lessenberry was a very important editor at The Commercial Appeal and much of his time there is covered in this Deadline Detroit piece from Thursday. Hours after this story was posted Lessenberry was suspended from his job as a columnist for The Metro Times in Detroit.

Billboard on NBC’s plan to reboot – for lack of a better term -- the Elvis 1968 Comeback Special next year.

The countywide universal prekindergarten campaign on “Behind The Headlines.” We will also talk about the opposition universal pre-K has drawn from three of the major contenders for Tennessee Governor in the August Republican primary with Kathy Buckman Gibson of Seeding Success, City Council member Kemp Conrad and Mike Carpenter of Tennesseans for Quality Early Education. You will also hear more of the discussion we previewed earlier this week about the county’s dollar commitment to this effort. And since this program was taped we’ve heard there is a proposal in the county budget deliberations to increase that amount by $1 million. No done deal or vote just yet. The show airs Friday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 8:30 a.m. on WKNO TV.

PROPERTY SALES 50 226 2,557
MORTGAGES 44 145 1,731
BUILDING PERMITS 204 569 5,701