Posted: Jul 24, 2007 9:30 am
Eric, please make this topic stick. We get asked alot. I've been updating the other thread for the past hour, and am re-posting here. I'm sure TONS of other folks here have cool stuff and tips for visitors.
From the other thread:
When visitors come to town, I tell them to go down to Main and Calhoun and put their foot on the train rail at the top of the hill.
Tell them EXACTLY what they put their foot on, and the history involved.
They freak out. Seriously. People in Chicago and New Orleans can do the same thing, but it's what ties these awesome cities together, travel, freight, and music-wise.
Speaking of trains, drive over to the old iron train bridge. Dare them to walk across as far as they can before a train comes down. Do this with care, and not on a weekend. Mid-morning weekday is best as to not get busted/killed.
Put them in one of those Rock n'Roll car tours. Walk them down Main and tell them about whore houses and suicides. Stand on the fucking cobble stones (will we be able to do that when they re-do the riverfront? Anybody?). Drive them down North Parkway/Summer. Take them to the end of Sam Cooper at E. Parkway, and explain to them WHY I-40 stops right there (only place in the US). Go to the Metal Museum and show them the secret Battery entrance across the street (and how Memphis rolled over pretty quickly during it's battle in the Civil War, unlike the rest of TN). Then tell them, "Hey, you're standing on an Indian Burial Mound." Point out Tom Lee Park, and tell them the story of Tom Lee, and "there's a sunken steamboat, right over there." You can also tell them, "Jeff Buckley thought swimming was a good idea over there." And while you're standing there next to the River, tell them, "Oh, yeah. See this giant expanse of water moving that way (point south)? It ran backwards one time. And it probably will again. And all these buildings and high-rises to our east will come crumbling down. And the Pyramid will sink into the River, because it's built on sand. Cool, huh?"
Then drive them to West Memphis. Take them past the soybeans and the truck plazas, into the cotton. They'll be bored at first, and ask "What the hell are we doing?". Then turn around so they can get the cool ass view coming back into town over the bridge. Preferably at the end of the afternoon. Park back on the riverside; maybe on that tiny park at the top of the hill going south down Front St. as the sun is going down. They'll be glad you did.
Also, as lame as the rest of the park is, Mud Island's topographical, walking/wading map of the Mississippi is cool as fuck, too.
I gotta go to bed.