Fri update: Good burger, Max’s opens early for Cards, Irish festival, Oktoberfest, FreeWorld gets their note, Pride festival & parade on Beale

Yesterday afternoon after work, I looked at Twitter. Seth, the organizer of the Best Memphis Burger Festival, was talking about a burger he had Sunday that was one of the best things he ever ate. What was really surprising was that it was a burger cooked by a chain restaurant, BGR The Burger Joint. Knowing that Seth usually prefers to eat local, I thought to myself, that burger must have been amazing.

So I went to BGR’s menu page and looked up the burger he mentioned, the Wellington. I read the list of toppings – roasted mushrooms, caramelized onions, garlic with a touch of mustard seed and blue cheese – and thought to myself, “hey, I judged that burger on Sunday!” Remember how I said two of the burgers were average, one was very very good, and one was possibly the juiciest, tastiest burger I’ve ever had? I’m just about positive the one that got my highest marks was the Wellington. If that’s the case, then that burger is absolutely worth a trip to East Memphis. I cannot praise it enough.

Speaking of the burger fest, Seth emailed all the judges this morning and told us that $5500 was raised for Mid-South Spay & Neuter Services! Great job to all who participated!

In Downtown news, Max’s Sports Bar will open early this afternoon, at 3:30, for the Cardinals game. Max’s has $3 shots of Fireball and $1 dogs every Friday for happy hour until 7 PM.

Several things going on outdoors tomorrow on what will be a chilly 60-degree day. First of all, there’s an Irish festival in the Pinch. Celtic band Reel McCoy will perform, as will the Swamp Katz. Irish menu at Mulligan’s and Westy’s. Opportunities to learn about the Pinch’s Irish history, including a free walking tour by historian Jimmy Ogle. The Grizzlies street team will be there, and prizes will be given away including tickets to a pre-season game. 2-8 PM. The Pinch is the portion of North Main north of the I-40 overpass.

Over on the island, Tug’s will have an Oktoberfest celebration Saturday and Sunday, with German food and beer under the big tent.

At noon Saturday, popular jam band FreeWorld will get their note on historic Beale Street. FreeWorld recently celebrated their 25th anniversary, and they jam all over town including their weekly Sunday night gig at Blues City. Happy to see the band receiving this much-deserved honor.

The Mid-South Pride Festival and Parade will happen all day Saturday at Robert Church Park, on Beale just east of Fourth. This is the largest gay/lesbian event of the year. The parade marches down Beale at 4 PM.

Time for a trip to hell – well, not really hell, but Walmart, almost the same thing. I’ll be out about 6 after work. Will probably start at the Saucer, then figure out the plan for the evening as I go along.