Saturday update: Construction clarification and lots of Feelin’ Memphis gift shop pics

Before we get on to photos – a lot of them – I want to post a clarification. The construction noise that kept many of my neighbors and me awake Friday morning was not coming from Residence Inn by Marriott at Main and Monroe. A representative of the hotel contacted me to let me know that although they do have construction going on there, contractors are only on site between 8 AM and 6 PM. The construction noise was from farther east down Monroe, around the buildings next to McEwen’s that are being renovated.

As for the Residence Inn renovation, they have upgraded the rooms and have only about 20 left to complete. The lobby will be finished next week and the rest of the rooms by Thanksgiving. Sounds great! Apologies to the hotel for mistakenly blaming them for the noise.

Now – I don’t normally post 19 hi-res photos all at once outside of BBQ Fest, but today it is going to be SO worth it! Yesterday afternoon I stopped by Tawanda Pirtle’s new gift shop Feelin’ Memphis at 509 S. Main. The store is absolutely loaded to the gills with all things Memphis. You simply MUST check it out!

Click any photo below to view in a higher resolution.


“Like” the gift shop on Facebook to keep up with the latest news. I forgot to ask Tawanda the hours. Typically gift shops in South Main are open 10 to 6.

As I got done snapping photos, I looked at my watch and saw that it was 4:28. That was perfect, since Max’s Sports Bar opens at 4:30. I walked around the corner onto G.E. Patterson for my first visit since February.

They have COVID-19 best practices down to a science at Max’s. When you walk in, Mike takes your temperature and has you scan a QR code. That brings up a Google Form on your phone, where you put in your name and number for contact tracing, record your temperature, and answer the COVID-19 questions that Health Directive No. 13 requires restaurants to ask. Since Mike knows what most of his regulars want, he’ll start pouring once you fill out the form, but your ass has to be in a seat before he’ll hand you a drink. Of course bar seating is closed because that’s where the health department thinks COVID hangs out.

As for indoor seating, the two tables nearest the door are open – the table by the outdoor serving window and the Jurassic Park corner table next to the group photos. The next two tables against the wall are taped off for social distancing, then there’s a 2-top, then most of the rail opposite the bar is taped off except for 2 stools at the end. If groups of 6 sit at the corner tables, that allows for an indoor capacity of about 16, with tons more room for additional guests outside. Although they’re not needed right now, Max has misting fans for the hot months and heat lamps for the cool ones.

To satisfy the incredibly stupid health department requirement that I must purchase food to order alcohol. I ordered queso and chips. I will repeat my statement that Max’s ranks up there with Maciel’s for best queso Downtown.

On to the news… next Thursday, October 15, Mighty Lights on the Hernando de Soto and Big River Crossing bridges will go pink and blue in observance of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Day. The lights will be brought to you by the Helen James Foundation.

Loflin Yard has announced its college football watch party schedule for today.

11:00 AM:

  • Texas vs. Oklahoma (with sound)
  • Florida vs. Texas A&M
  • South Carolina vs. Vanderbilt

3:00 PM:

  • Tennesse vs. Georgia (with sound. Go Dawgs!)
  • Arkansas vs. Auburn
  • LSU vs. Missouri

6:30 PM:

  • Alabama vs. Ole Miss (with sound)
  • Florida State vs. Notre Dame
  • Mississippi State vs. Kentucky

The Memphis Made Brewing Co. taproom is back open! The hours are

  • Wednesday 4-7
  • Thursday 4-7
  • Friday 4-10
  • Saturday 1-10
  • Sunday 1-7

Here are the things they are doing to keep patrons safe:

  • You must wear a mask anytime you’re not seated (ordering a beer, going to the restroom, etc.) Employees will wear masks at all times.
  • I’m going to quote this next one directly from their blog post: “No one under 21. This includes children.”
  • No parties larger than six.
  • They ask that you not move tables, which have been spaced out for proper social distance.
  • No sitting at the bar.
  • They ask that you remain seated as much as possible.
  • They will sanitize between seatings.
  • They will have compostable cups that you can recycle.

Hmmm… just thought of something… brewery taprooms aren’t restaurants. Does that mean you can consume beer there without the ridiculously stupid health department requirement that food must be purchased along with alcohol? If so, taprooms just moved up considerably on my priority list.

The latest prediction map has Tropical Depression Delta practically right on top of Oxford at 7 PM, having just been downgraded from a tropical storm and with the threat to spawn off tornadoes. Is the Bama-Ole Miss game really going to happen?

The folks at Rumba Room and Havana Mix were interviewed by Local Memphis on the Share the Tab program that will award $10,000 grants to restaurants affected by the pandemic.

Nashville artist SixForty1 plays Tin Roof tonight.

The Memphis Farmers Market has its fall fundraiser under the pavilion at Front and G.E. Patterson, behind Malco Powerhouse, today from 8 AM to 1 PM. Purchase a Bounty Bag from the MFM table, then walk around and spend the gift cards in your bag. The fundraiser is presented in conjunction with Felicia Suzanne Restaurant.

Georgia flipped back to red in RealClearPolitics’ no toss-up states electoral map, reducing Biden’s advantage to 358-180.

That’s the news for today. Back tomorrow.