In today's new update, we have a bunch of Memphis bragging rights, plus plenty of news about everything from bar renovations to a bike-sharing program to a beer-naming contest.
Memphis in May was named "Best Southern Event" by USA Today's 10Best voters, beating out Bonnaroo and Washington D.C.'s Cherry Blossom Festival. In today's news update, we have tons of Memphis things to brag on, upcoming events, and some local news.
Horray for locally-made Pyramid vodka for winning Silver in the Vodka Category at both the Denver International Spirits Competition and the Los Angeles International Spirits Competition. Read more about Pyramid Vodka here.
Congrats to the Zoo for being ranked one of the top zoos in the country by Fodor's Travel.
Local musician Marshall Mulherin has been accepted into the prestigious Red Bull Music Academy. About 4,500 musicians from around the world applied, so props to Marshall for being one of the 61 accepted! Memphis represent.
Memphis Made is making a limited edition brew for the Cooper Young 4-Miler on September 18 and they need a clever, fun name for it. Just Tweet or Facebook your suggested name and use the hashtag #4milerbrew. Or, you can email your name to firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline to enter is June 25 at noon.
It's Yelp's Burger Binge week. Go here for details.
Attention downtowners: Cinemax will be in Memphis the week of August 1 to film some scenes for a new TV series called "Quarry". Why do you need to know this? Because they'll be clearing the streets on the night of August 1 and filming on August 2. You might have to move your vehicle or experience some delays for a few hours. Just a heads up.
If you're looking for a road trip this weekend, head to Catfish and Comedy in Savannah, Tennessee (about 2 hours away). Expect a full afternoon and evening of comedy and fried seafood, featuring headliner Sara Schaeffer (MTV, Jimmy Fallon, @Midnight, Best Week Ever, Inside Amy Schumer).
Have you signed up for Creative Works yet? It's a conference for designers, illustrators, and other creatives that will be held at Central Station in downtown Memphis on October 1-3. Last year was awesome – people came from all over the world to Memphis to meet Memphians and talk design. I'll be back again this year, and I hope to see you there, too.
Looking for a drink and a snack downtown? eighty3 offers a "Duet Al Fresco" special that changes monthly. June is Whiskey & Wings, July is Ribs & Rye, and August is Shrimp & Sangria. Specials are available only on the patio during lunch and dinner and are $8.
Internationally-known artist, U of M alum (and my former classmate!) Niki Johnson will return to Memphis this weekend for Preservatif, a new exhibit featuring the work of 22 artists; all of the art is made out of expired condoms. The opening takes place on National HIV Testing Day, June 27, from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Marshall Arts Gallery in the Edge District. There will be live music, art, and onsite HIV Testing.
Motown the Musical plays at the Orpheum from July 14 – 19 and tickets are on sale now.
The newest pedal bar/party bike in Memphis opened last weekend: Sprock 'n' Roll allows between 8 and 16 people to pedal around town while drinking. It's BYOB (beer and wine only), the tours are 2 hours long, and costs between $50 and $25 per person, depending on how many people you have.
Belly Acres is participating in the James Beard Foundation's Better Burger Project. From now until July 31, you can order their beef-and-mushroom burger and upload a photo of your burger to Instagram. The restaurants with the most uploads, wins. Go here for more info.
Memphis writer Michael Compton's mystery novel, "Gumshoe" is an entry in the Kindle Scout program, where folks vote for books that sound good, and the books with the most votes get published by Amazon. You can vote for Gumshoe here (you get a free e-book if you vote).
If your kid is a math whiz, you might want to take them to participate in the S.O.L.E. Math Scavenger Hunt this Saturday in Memphis. Go here to register and receive the first clue.
Celtic Crossing is closing its doors…but only for a few days as they remodel the interior and re-open this Friday, June 26 as a non-smoking establishment (smoking will still be allowed on the patio, though).
Agave Maria is being pretty sneaky about it, but there's a chance they're open for dinner this week (they were last night, but no confimration for tonight yet). Their Facebook page might provide some clues. They'll be open for lunch eventually, or at least that's the plan.
Have some news or bragging rights you'd like me to share? You can email me at email@example.com.