I created a new Facebook group called “Downtown Memphis Core” Saturday. If you’re on Facebook, and you live, work, or play in the core (which is approximately bounded by the river on the west, Danny Thomas on the east, I-40 on the north, and Linden on the south), please feel free to join.
For almost 7 years I’ve said that the most urban part of Memphis, Downtown, is the friendliest part of the city. However, Downtown has grown so much that individual neighborhoods now have their own identities. Mud Island now has its own sense of community with a grocery store, coffee shop, movie and pizza place, boutique hotel, and a neighborhood hangout in Tug’s. Uptown has a vibrant neighborhood association that plans a lot of parties and family-friendly events, and TJ Mulligan’s and Westy’s draw good crowds. South Main has perhaps developed the strongest sense of community, with the monthly Trolley Tours, and beloved spots such as Calhoun’s, Bluff City Coffee, and the Blue Monkey.
The Downtown core, however, hasn’t developed such a strong identity yet. So I figured starting a Downtown Memphis Core Facebook group might help with that. What will happen on the group? Whatever the members want. Here are a few ideas to get us started:
- I notice we already have a group member who rides a scooter, and he’s certainly welcome to tell people about the Memphis scooter club that meets in the core. Same for other clubs/groups that meet in the area.
- I notice we have a member of FreeWorld who has already joined. His band plays Sunday nights at Blues City, and that’s long been known as a place where Downtowners can listen to good music and finish off the weekend. He’s welcome to post about that if he wants, and other bands that play Downtown are welcome as well.
- Down in South Main, residents organize a lot of informal events where neighbors can get to know each other. For example, they recently had a Thanksgiving potluck at Calhoun’s, and in October they had a Downtown Olympics. Maybe we can organize cool, fun events like those to allow neighbors in the core to interact.
- Here’s a good question to discuss on the group: What are options for New Year’s Eve? I’m constantly on the lookout for something laid-back and easy to do on NYE, away from the noise and crowds and expense of the big parties like the Peabody, Beale Street, Saucer, Rooster, etc.
- Maybe the group will be a place where people can post requests like, “I have to change a light bulb in a 12-foot ceiling and need a ladder to reach it. Does anyone have one I can borrow?”
- I recently talked several times to people who run one of the largest apartment buildings in the Core. They think their building has turned into one of the nicest places to live. They’re welcome to tell the group why. Everyone’s invited to discuss the places they live.
- A place where people can ask for restaurant suggestions. Where should I take my co-workers to lunch? Where’s a good place for a romantic dinner date? Who has the best burger, wings, etc.?
- A place where people can discuss their favorite places to hang out. For the past several years you’ve been treated to a heaping helping of my favorites (currently Saucer and Bardog) on this blog, and why I like them. Now let’s hear yours! There are bar crowds at Circa and Huey’s; the Tap Room is popular among some Downtowners, as is the Black Diamond. Then there’s 88 Sports Bar. Where do you like to go, and why?
- A place where people can exchange tickets to Redbirds, Grizzlies, Tigers, concerts, Orpheum shows, etc.
- A place where organizations looking for volunteers (Downtown holiday lights, Center for Southern Folklore, Orpheum, etc.) can find them.
- … And whatever else you want it to be. This is OUR group, not my group. It is the first time I’ve created a Facebook group, so I’d welcome advice from more experienced users on anything I can do to make the group better.
Again, you don’t have to live in the Downtown core to join… you just have to love the Downtown core. Let’s have some fun and see where this group takes us!