Sat update: Dragon trolley, Big Scoop Ice Cream Festival, Does it Work?, possible new hotel site

Whoa! Almost left the apartment without hitting Publish again. I hate it when I do that.

There’s a new dragon trolley circling Downtown. Its purpose is to promote the dragon boat races that will happen on Mud Island October 5. I saw it last night and it looks really good. It’s actually not a new trolley, but one of the old trolleys that has been wrapped.

The 19th annual Big Scoop Ice Cream Festival will happen Saturday, September 28 from 11 AM to 4 PM at AutoZone Park. Your ticket, $7 in advance or $10 at the door, lets you eat all the ice cream you want while enjoying live entertainment. Needless to say, this event is kid-friendly.

Kooky Canuck’s own Shawn Danko was on WREG Channel 3’s Does it Work? segment this week. He tested the Head Blade, a new hand-held device for shaving one’s head.

The parking lot across Union from AutoZone Park has been sold and there is talk that a hotel may be built on that space.

Whew… after typing such a long post, I think I deserve a PBR. Time to go get one. Happy Saturday and be careful out there.

Fri update: Battledish promo code, CY Beerfest, traffic alert, massive Jersey Shore fire, Fall into Art at MFM, John Mayer @ FedExForum, Tigers, Animal House

I have a promo code to share with you. Enter promo code “ryburn” to get $10 off one of three tasting options at Battledish Memphis. This October 5 event (2-6 PM) has six Downtown chefs competing in a worldwide competition. You can choose from a “teaser” package where you get to sample some of the dishes, a larger package where you sample all of the dishes, or a VIP package including early admission at 1 PM.

I was asked to be a judge for Battledish, but I’m already committed to an engagement party two of my friends are having that day. I’d be interested in judging a future one for sure though!

Tickets are now on sale for October 19’s Cooper-Young Regional Beerfest, in my opinion Memphis’ best beer festival.

Watch out for heavy traffic tomorrow, in Midtown in the late afternoon/early evening and Downtown after 9 PM due to the Southern Heritage Classic. Traffic will also be congested in Midtown for the Cooper-Young Festival.

By the way, people have this idea that Downtown turns into a damn combat zone the night of the Southern Heritage Classic. Last year I went out to my favorite bars on Peabody Place and Main Street and everything was just fine. Beale may be different, but I normally don’t go to Beale Saturdays anyway. Point is, if you live in the core, don’t be afraid to walk to your regular hangouts.

In the news: Eight blocks of Jersey Shore boardwalk and businesses burned in a massive six-alarm fire yesterday in Seaside Park and Seaside Heights, New Jersey. The fire was about 3/4 a mile south of the famous house on the TV series Jersey Shore. Based on the addresses, I believe the bar where Snooki got punched in the face may have been among businesses that burned.

Tomorrow is Fall into Art day at Memphis Farmers Market. Patrons are asked to capture the spirit of the market on canvas. A People’s Choice vote of the finished artworks will be taken next Saturday, and the top 3 will be selected to be auctioned off at November 3’s Barnyard Ball. Music schedule for tomorrow’s market: Real McCoys 8-9:30; Megan McMillan 9:30-11; Rob Halford & Peter Himebrook 11-12:30.

The FedExForum announced that John Mayer will return Friday, November 29. Tickets on sale next Saturday.

ESPN has a blog post on the top 10 men’s basketball nonconference schedules. The Memphis Tigers come in at number 2, second only to Kansas.

Classic film Animal House plays on the Orpheum’s big screen tonight at 7.

That’ll wrap up this post for now. Still undecided between college football and Cooper-Young Fest tomorrow. Leaning slightly in the direction of football a little. At any rate, I’ll be out at the usual places about 5:30 tonight, with a possible trip south to Earnestine & Hazel’s to pay respect to Russell.

Thur update: E&H open tonight, Peabody rooftop party, yellow fever tour, Rumba Room Groupon, Memphis Made Brewery shirts, Memphis Most, beer bust @ Brass Door

It was confirmed yesterday that Karen and Keenon will have the doors open at Earnestine & Hazel’s at 5 PM today. It will be the first time the South Main dive bar has been open for business since proprietor Russell George was found dead there Monday morning. Come have some beers and a Soul Burger and support good Downtown friends.

The first event of the Peabody’s fall rooftop party season happens tonight. Hollywood will perform live, and there will be a buffet of assorted pizzas, BBQ meatballs and sauce. The drink special will be Cruzan rum with choice of mixer for $4. VIP card holders will have a second buffet of a nacho bar, Southern fried chicken drummettes, and chicken cheesesteak. $10 cover includes your first drink, doors open at 6, ladies free before 7.

Here’s an event for history fans. Saturday at 10:30 AM, Elmwood Cemetery will host a 90-minute walking tour entitled “Yellow Fever – A Tour of the Plague.” It will cover the yellow fever epidemics of 1873, 1878, and 1879, discussing the Howard Association, the Citizens’ Relief Committee, the Sisters of St. Mary’s, and individuals who fought the spread of the disease. Registration is required; 901-774-3212 to register. $15 per person.

There’s a Groupon for the Rumba Room on South Main. Two options: $7 for $14 worth of Latin-fusion food for parties of two or more, or $15 for $30 worth of Latin-fusion food for parties of four or more.

Like beer? Going to Cooper-Young Fest Saturday? Memphis Made Brewery will have T-shirts for sale at their 768 S. Cooper location. Here’s a photo of the shirts.

I love this Memphis Que post about Germantown Commissary. It’s not the food review itself that I love (although the review is very well written). It’s the first paragraph, which discusses the Commerical Appeal’s Memphis Most poll. “The Memphis Most poll is a shameless copy of the Best of Memphis poll published annually in the Memphis Flyer newspaper. Along with being the original, the Best of Memphis poll in the Flyer is generally considered the more credible guide to the city.” YES YES YES. I do not vote in the Memphis Most poll and I do not care who wins. It’s a cheap imitation. Well said, Craig.

Yesterday I blogged about the Brass Door’s 2nd anniversary/halfway to St. Pat’s celebration this weekend. I have now learned of an additional event on the schedule. Saturday from 5 to 10 PM there will be a $10 beer bust as part of the alley party.

That’s it for now. I’ll lead off at the Silly Goose today after work, and I promise I’ll be in a better mood than I was yesterday.

Wed update: Russell George service & celebration, MFM 7th best in US, Brass Door party, FreeWorld @ Double J, Beatles weekend brunch, Oskar Blues can beer comes to Memphis

Funeral service for Russell George of Earnestine & Hazel’s has been set. Service will be Friday at 11 at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church Downtown. Afterward there will be a celebration in Russell’s memory at E&H.

The Memphis Farmers Market has been named the 7th best Farmers Market in the U.S. Congratulations to all those who organize the market. Well deserved!

The Brass Door is having a second anniversary party and “Halfway to St. Pat’s” weekend Friday-Sunday. Friday they will have The Pistol and the Queen in the Cavern at 9 PM. Saturday they will open at 6:30 AM for EPL, and at 5 there will be an alley party with drink specials and costume contests, followed by a 9 PM party in the Cavern. Sunday there will be a jazz brunch with Stand By for Mars.

Double J will have the entire FreeWorld band play their parking lot Saturday night from 8:30 to 12.

Here’s something different for weekend brunch: Twilight Sky Terrace atop the Madison is doing “Beatles Sunrise Weekends” Saturdays and Sundays from 6:30 to 11:30 AM. You can enjoy the sounds of John, Paul, George and Ringo while dining from a Beatles-themed menu.

Oskar Blues, a Longmont, Colorado brewery that was the first to can craft beer, has brought their product to Memphis. Last night they had a roll-out at the Flying Saucer. Beers include Dale’s Pale Ale, the first canned craft beer; Old Chub, an 8% Scotch ale brewed with seven different malts including crystal and chocolate malts; and Ten FIDY, a 10% imperial stout. They started their canning process in a barn in 2002. Since then over 150 craft breweries have joined the canning revolution.

Shout-out to all the firefighters, police officers, and emergency responders keeping us safe this 12th anniversary of 9/11. Much thanks and respect to you.

Tue update: Twitter, Sunday Ticket, Pera vs. TA, soccer, free cab rides, road closing and more

You know what Twitter needs? A “temporarily block news sources live-tweeting the County Commission meetings” widget. For about 3 hours yesterday my timeline was all crapped up with detailed accounts of the commissioners’ bickering. If I wanted to know what clowns were doing, I’d buy a ticket to the circus.

I’ve learned of two more places that have NFL Sunday ticket: The Green Beetle has the package and has added a new TV. Also, George Paul’s Last Call, the back bar of Blues City Cafe, has the package and five TVs. Those are in addition to Max’s, Double J, and Mad Earl that I reported yesterday.

Grizzlies owner Robert Pera has challenged guard Tony Allen to a game of one-on-one before fall camp gets started. If Allen wins, Pera will donate $100,000 to a charity of TA’s choice.

The Brass Door will show two soccer matches today: England vs. Ukraine at 1:45 and USA vs. Mexico at 7.

Randomly-selected Yellow Cab and Checker Cab passengers will be treated to free rides as a way to say thanks. Passengers won’t know until they reach their destination, when they will be told, “Your ride is on us.”

Adams Avenue will be closed from Front to Third tomorrow during the daytime. The reason will be a September 11 rememberance of fallen firefighters.

Unexpectedly entertaining Monday last night. I started off at the Silly Goose for a few celebratory beers with a friend. Then I walked next door to the Flying Saucer for Pint Nite, where I watched someone complete Level 289 of the game of Stupid. I was not aware there were more than 200 levels. It’s funny how some people don’t understand GO AWAY but we didn’t have an English-to-dumbass translator.

It’s Tuesday and that means I’ll be at Blind Bear poker at 8. It’s free to play and the PBR is cold.

Mon update: Kooky MNF special, Sunday Ticket bars, Orpheum family schedule, archer > malmo gets bike garage, Rodman/Kim, trying to figure out plan for Saturday

BREAKING: A body was found inside Earnestine & Hazel’s this morning. Police are investigating. The Flyer reported that the cause of death, according to MPD, appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. It is not yet known if the victim was male or female. Employees Miss Karen and Peewee have been seen outside the building this morning so they are alive and safe. (Edit 1:37 PM: The CA is now reporting that they bod found was Russell George, longtime proprietor of E&H.)

Tonight is the first night of regular-season Monday Night Football. Kooky Canuck does an NFL special on Monday and Thursday nights: $4 34-ounce Bud Light draft, and 50-cent wings (minimum 10). The specials are during the game only and are dine-in only. Any other restaurants or bars Downtown doing MNF specials? Probably won’t have time to post before tonight’s game but I can get them up next Monday.

I’m also making a list of bars Downtown that carry NFL Sunday Ticket. The three I know of are Mad Earl, Max’s Sports Bar, and Double J. Any others? Shoot me an email at or hit me up on social media if you know of any. Does that bar inside the Holiday Inn on Union still have it?

If you’re looking for fun stuff to do with kids Downtown, tickets for the 2013-2014 Orpheum Family Series went on sale today. The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Sid the Science Kid, and Frogz! are among the season’s highlights.

This is very cool: archer > malmo has built a bike garage for employees. Many people who work there live Downtown or Midtown and bike to work. They also have a communal bike employees can borrow for errands. Way to encourage environmentally-friendly commuting! Great job!

In “what are the crazy people up to” news, Kim Jong-un has asked Dennis Rodman to train North Korea’s basketball team for the 2016 Summer Olympics. Rodman hopes to bring some of his old teammates over in December for a game against the locals, and Kim has given Rodman permission to write a book about him.

The weekend just ended, but I’m already looking ahead to next Saturday. There are two good options for Saturday morning and I’m trying to decide which to do. Option A is to watch the Arkansas-Southern Miss game at Max’s Sports Bar. It’s an 11:21 kickoff. Morning games are a lot of fun at Max’s and I haven’t had the experience yet this season.

Option B is the Cooper-Young Festival, a huge half-mile long festival in Midtown’s Cooper-Young neighborhood with live music, vendors, and food. This is one of the best festivals of the year. Weather looks ideal. The only problem is, I don’t drink and drive so I would have to deal with taxis there and back. Given that the Southern Heritage Classic is the same day, it may be harder than usual to get a cab in Memphis.

Yeah, I know that I could watch the game at Max’s and then cab it to Cooper-Young, but that’s not how I work. If I park myself at Max’s it’s very unlikely that I will get up and leave when the Arkansas game is over, unless it’s to go to another bar Downtown. Besides, Cooper-Young Fest is best in the 11 AM-1 PM time period before it gets super busy.

Anyway, I have five days to figure it out. Tonight I’ll do Pint Nite at the Saucer, then decide whether to stay there or relocate to Blind Bear for MNF. If I hear anything more about the situation at E&H I may do an update post after work.

Sunday update: Little Tea Shop, office space, Oktoberfest, tube top news and more

OK, I want to start this blog post off with a question for my readers. Last night there was a party on my rooftop. The hosts were serving some booze but invited guests to bring their drink of choice. My drink of choice, of course, is PBR. I surveyed my fridge yesterday afternoon and determined there were enough cans that a run to City Market was not necessary. So about 9:00 I grabbed a can and rode the elevator up there. I popped it open and took a few sips. “This doesn’t taste right,” I thought. I examined the bottom of the can and read “AUG1511.” Well that’s why.

I have several more of these cans with a similar expiration date. How does one dispose of PBR? It’s like an American flag that has lived out its useful life. You don’t just dump it in the garbage with the morning’s coffee grounds. You dispose of it with respect. What’s a respectful way to get rid of PBR?

From The Daily News: The Little Tea Shop has earned its “institution” tag. Yes, it has. Those of you moving into the One Commerce Square building, please take a walk down Monroe and get to know “Miss Su” at lunchtime.

Speaking of the move: Paul Morris who runs DMC wants the building the state is leaving, the Civic Center Plaza Hill building, occupied soon. City officials are looking at the space as a possible way to centralize employees scattered about the city, and/or to stop paying rent for two floors of 201 Poplar.

Insider tip about the Flying Saucer’s Oktoberfest, which I mentioned in yesterday’s post: Admission will be $15 but for the next few days you can buy a ticket at the Downtown Saucer for only $10. I got mine yesterday. I’ll have to hope that Arkansas-Texas A&M is not the 5:00 game.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the City of New York declared last Wednesday to be Elie Tahari Day. Tahari invented the tube top in 1973.

More tube top news: Which sexy reality star is popping out of her tube top?

Skipping brunch at the Majestic this morning… the 10:30 start time just didn’t work with my sleep schedule. I’ll hit the Blind Bear at noon now that it’s opening early for NFL.

Sat update: WhatWasThere, new bar at Felicia’s, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, two Oktoberfest parties, new TVs coming to Local, One Commerce Square, wine ice cream

Sorry there was no post yesterday. A friend came in town unexpectedly and I had to go met up with him. I’ll make up for it in today’s post, which is loaded with good stuff.

I happened upon a very cool website yesterday: WhatWasThere. You can see what modern streets looked like 20, 30, 60 years ago. Coverage is best in San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis, Chicago, Detroit, and the Northeast, but there are some photos of Memphis. Anyone got more photos they want to add of our city? There’s an iPhone app too.

Felicia Suzanne’s is adding a new outside bar and is asking for your help to name it. Suggest a name between now and September 13, and then they will let Facebook vote on the top three names. The person who suggests the winning name will receive dinner for two.

The Trans-Siberian Orchestra will debut their new performance “The Lost Christmas Eve” in Memphis at the FedExForum. The show will be Friday, December 6 at 8 PM, and tickets will go on sale next Saturday.

The South Main Association is bringing back one of its best parties, Oktoberfest, on Sunday, September 29 from 3-7 PM. G.E. Patterson Avenue will be closed from Main to Mulberry for the event, and there will be music by Pam & Terry. Free to SMA members, $20 for non-members. Catering, beer and wine will be provided by the SMA.

That’s not the only Oktoberfest party happening that weekend, though. The day before, on Saturday the 28th, the Flying Saucer will host Memphis Oktoberfest from 5 to 10 PM. There will be live music by the “Oom-Pah-Stars,” as well as specialty beers, a beer brat eating contest, and a souvenir glass. $15 cover. The party will support Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy.

Local Gastropub has announced that two new flat screens have been ordered and will be installed on the Downtown patio soon, for those who want to watch football while dining outdoors.

The state has picked One Commerce Square for 900 workers who are moving out of their Civic Center Plaza office. Excellent choice. If any state workers are reading this, you are going to love working in the heart of the Downtown core, I can promise you that.

Wine ice cream is the newest food fad these days. South of Beale has had it for a while. This morning I went on my Mountain Dew run to City Market, and I noticed this display:

2013-09-07 07.34.06

(Click the image to view in a larger size) City Market has six flavors of wine ice cream in its freezer. Since I’m not a big wine drinker I didn’t take any home. I wonder if anyone makes PBR-flavored ice cream?

Getting ready for my usual visit to Panda’s bar at Bardog at 11 AM. Tonight I’m going to a party in one of my favorite locations that should be a lot of fun. Happy Saturday, Go Tigers, and IT’S TIME TO CALL THOSE HOGS!!!