Thur update: Gatsby Soiree, Radford Ellis, Chisca redevelopment, Thursday parties and events, beer/Obama, Facebook, and more

Tonight is the Great Gatsby Soiree at the Blind Bear, from 10 PM to 2 AM. If you dress in character, you don’t have to pay the $5 cover at the door. Photographer Joey Miller will be there to take your photo for the Bear’s dining room wall from 10 to midnight. There will also be a blackjack tournament played on real tables, with your entry fee going to St. Jude.

There will be a benefit show for Radford Ellis this Saturday, August 25, at Alfred’s from 3 to 6 PM. Radford is an Elvis impersonator who works in Memphis year-round. When I first moved Downtown in 2002, his Elvis show on the Black Diamond patio was possibly the first outdoor show I saw on Beale. Since then he has performed regular gigs at Club 152, The Pig on Beale, and other venues in the area. The benefit show this Saturday is for health reasons, and there will be performances by Pam & Terry, Zeno, and Jim Wilson. James Alfred Wilson will be the MC and DJ. No cover, free appetizers. Free food? Wonder if the Nuh-Uh Girl will show up.

The Daily News has a great story about the redevelopment of the Chisca Hotel. They are going to retain the motor hotel that was added on to the south side of the Chisca in the 1960s. At first my reaction was, “tear that addition down, it’s an eyesore,” but now I’m glad they’re saving it. It will mean even more apartments in the Downtown community, and the apartments in the motor hotel can be rented at a lower rate than those in the main hotel. I’ve said for years that there need to be more affordable apartments Downtown, so artists, teachers, those in the service industry, and others who have chosen a different path than corporate life can live here. A more diverse Downtown is a strong Downtown.

The Peabody rooftop season has ended, but the Madison rooftop continues this week with Deering & Down for its Thursday night party. $7 cover, small plates and cash bar available.

The Rebel on Beale concert series wraps up this evening with Sonia Leigh performing in Handy Park. No cover, all ages.

If you prefer to do your partying indoors, John Williams and A440 will play smooth grooves and soulful sounds in the lounge at Bleu this evening.

If you go to the Redbirds game tonight, be on the lookout for the Krispy Kreme tour bus. They will be handing out free donuts. Free donuts? Wonder if the Nuh-Uh Girl will show up.

Winners of sports trivia tonight at the Green Beetle will receive a really cool prize: A Coors Light tailgating/patio bar. Trivia starts at 8 PM.

Beer news: A Freedom of Information Act has been filed for the recipes of the beer President Obama drinks. There are three beers: White House Honey Ale, White House Honey Porter, and White House Honey Blonde Ale. All three are made with honey from Michelle Obama’s garden.

Do you get messages on Facebook Chat that you don’t feel like responding to? Facebook has a creepy way of letting senders of messages know that you’ve seen them (so they know you’re purposely not responding). You can block this with the Chat Undetected extension for Firefox, Chrome, and Internet Explorer.

That’ll wrap it up for now. I’ll be on South Main this evening.