14 May 2014
.first impressions of memphis.
Memphis has a bad rap. When I told people that I was coming to Memphis I got similar reactions to my choice "WHY?" or "It's so dangerous there" and talking with Memphian transplants they have similar stories. The truth is that Memphis has "bad neighborhoods" and extremely poor neighborhoods. Between fancy old southern neighborhoods with hip new "local" restaurants and big old mansions there are long stretches of empty buildings where business once were, condemned buildings, and a strong police presence.
But on the other hand, Memphis seems to putting a lot of energy into becoming a "happening place" with several festivals every weekend. Last weekend was the Beale St. Music Festival this weekend is the Bristerfest of local music and next weekend is the BBQ festival.
Memphis is also trying to encourage small business and artists through innovated grants that give them a storefront for 6 months alongside hours and hours of business counseling and all they have to do is play 3 months of discounted rent. wow.
It feels like the city of the haves and have nots. The rich old south with the forgotten remnants of a still present history.