Memphis is known for throwing some pretty kick ass festivals. Don’t want to miss any of them? Here’s your guide to upcoming festivals in Memphis. See something missing? Let us know in the comments or send us an email.
- October 6 – Road to the Blues Biscuit Festival – 6pm – Free
In honor of the King Biscuit Blues Festival, Blues Week and Bridging the Blues, Beale Street will celebrate with the Road to the Biscuit, a collaborative event bridging local and King Biscuit Blues Festival artists in over 14 venues.
- October 7 – 9 – Moon River Festival – $60/GA, $200/VIP
Mark your calendars for the annual Moon River Festival in October! This year, the festival will last 2 days rather than a single day as has been the case the past two years. Additionally, rather than forcing their audience to endure the summer heat yet again, MRF has been moved to the fall for a more pleasant atmosphere. Presenter, Memphis-native, and beloved folk-singer Drew Holcomb has high expectations for the festival this year. Early Bird and VIP tickets are now on sale here.
- October 14 – 16 – Pink Palace Crafts Fair – 10am-6pm (Fri/Sat), 10am-5pm (Sun) – $9/adults, $7/seniors/military, $3/children 4-12, free/children 3 and under, $2/parking at Perkins Extended and Southern, free parking off Cherry Road
The 44th annual Pink Palace Crafts Fair is the largest juried arts and crafts fair in the Mid-South and will include plenty of shopping, demonstrations, food, entertainment, and family activities. Advance Tickets are available at the Pink Palace Box Office at discounted prices.
- Saturday, October 15 – Agricenter Harvest Festival – 10am-2pm – Free
This festival will have pumpkin-painting, kids activities, arts and crafts, hayrides, food and local entertainment. Located at the Big Red Barn at the Agricenter Farmer’s Market.
- Saturday, October 15 – Soulsville USA Festival – 11am-6pm – Free
This event takes place in the historic Soulsville USA district on College & McLemore. Enjoy live music, dance demos, kids activities, food and craft vendors, a rock climbing wall, face painting, and more.
- Saturday, October 15 – Memphis Food & Wine Festival – 6pm-10pm
Memphis is celebrating its culinary excellence by showcasing exceptional local chef talent and welcoming acclaimed regional and national chefs. Enhancing this lineup will be vintners, certified sommeliers and enlightening wine enthusiasts. While festival goers sip and sample from the best, they will also enjoy a buffet of blues, jazz and rock ‘n roll. This event will benefit the FedExFamilyHouse. The FedExFamilyHouse is truly a home away from home for out-of-town families with children receiving treatment at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital.
- October 21 – 23 – RiverArtsFest – Family Friendly – Prices vary
RiverArtsFest is a street celebration of original fine arts, real Memphis music and great southern food with attractions and activities for all ages. More than 170 fine artists from around the country gather to exhibit and sell their latest original works in what’s become the largest outdoors juried artists market and urban street festival in the Mid-South.
- October 22 – Big River Crossing Grand Opening – 1pm – Free
The bridge will open to the public at 1pm with food, music, and entertainment throughout the day. There will be a fireworks display at 7pm.
- Saturday, October 22 – Cooper Young Beerfest – 1pm-5pm
The Cooper Young Beerfest will have over 20 brews to try during its fourth year at Midtown Autowerks. Tickets go on sale starting September 1st. Each ticket comes with a mug and all you can drink beer samples. Every ticket holder must be 21 years of age or older with a valid ID. Designated drivers will get in for free, but must be 21 years or older with a photo ID. No pets or children will be allowed at the festival. Brewers from across the country will come to Memphis to serve beers to you alongside some local favorites.
- Saturday, October 29 – Aquatseli Bluegrass Festival – 10am-10pm – Free
The Aquatseli Bluegrass Festival take place at Meeman Shelby Forest in Millington, TN. There will be Bluegrass bands, open jams, buck dancing, square dancing, arts & crafts vendors, bonfire storytelling, a beer and wine garden and an official steak & chili cook off. This will be a family friendly event with a kids play area, costume contests, trick or treating and more.
See all the Halloween events here.
- November 1 through November 7th – Indie Memphis Film Festival
Indie Memphis connects and inspires indie filmmakers and film-lovers all over Memphis. The year-round organization is best known for its annual Indie Memphis Film Festival presented by Duncan-Williams, Inc., which transforms the city into a connecting point for filmmakers, musicians, artists, and audiences. This festival brings a broad range of independent features, documentaries and short films to Memphis from all corners of the country. More details to come.
- December 11th – Memphis Grilled Cheese Festival
Memphis’ massively successful Grilled Cheese Festival is returning for its second year with all proceeds benefiting ALIVE Memphis Rescue. The general admission ticket or donation gets you into the festival for plenty of samples and live music, and the HiTone will have two bars open, selling drinks for those 21+. Attendees will experience 24 teams of grilled cheese masters trying to win in one of five cheesy categories. Teams will compete for Most Ridiculous, Most Cheesiest, Best Tomato Soup, Fan Favorite, and Best All Around. The Fan Favorite will be decided by, of course, the fans. Each team will have a donation box at their table, and you are encouraged to give a donation to your favorite. The team with the most donations will win the award, but all of the money from each team’s donation box goes towards ALIVE Memphis Rescue.
- Thursday, March 17 – International Music Fest – 8pm – $10/$15
Occurring in 70 cities, with over 100 events, and featuring thousands of live music performers, the International Music Festival will provide one act with the chance to play an all expenses paid world tour through Europe and Africa. VIP tickets are available that include VIP line access, priority seating, and one drink ticket. See local musicians play for their chance to rock the globe while raising awareness for multiple, revolving non-profit partners.
- Saturday, March 19 – Sneakfest – 12pm – 5pm – $15
First appearing in Memphis in 2014, the SneakFest Expo is the perfect hub for lovers of fashion and footwear who seek to sell or trade their current footwear or add to their collection from vendor selections. In their first Memphis expo in March of 2014, SneakFest brought out over 60 vendors and over 700 attendees, and in their second Memphis expo in October of 2014, SneakFest brought out over 70 vendors and over 800 attendees. This year, SneakFest has the potential for over 100 clothing vendors, thousands of people, and multiple food truck vendors. Tickets will also be available at the door if you miss your opportunity to purchase a presale ticket online.
- Saturday, March 26 – MusliMeMfest – 10am-8pm – Free
The MusliMeMfest festival is a celebration of the community and seeks to foster an interest in building bridges and to start conversation among different communities in Memphis. Funded almost entirely by generous sponsors and supported by the City of Memphis, the MusliMeMfest is free to attend but RSVP is encouraged. MusliMeMfest welcomes vendors of all types. To become an official MusliMeMfest vendor go here.
- Saturday, March 26 – Great River Indoor Food Truck Festival & Marketplace – 10am – 6pm – $5
This spring, the Memphis Cook Convention Center and the Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau are partnering to host the inaugural Great River Indoor Food Truck Festival and Marketplace to benefit the Hospitality Hub of Memphis. There will be local food trucks, a craft beer garden featuring local and regional brews, an eclectic marketplace of local vendors selling vintage and handmade goods, and live music.
- Tuesday, March 29 – Indie Memphis Festival Kickoff – 5:30pm – Free
Join Indie Memphis and Greater Memphis Chamber’s Young Professional Council (SoundCheck) as they celebrate the upcoming 19th Annual Film Festival presented by Duncan-Williams, Inc. This happy hour event at Circuit Playhouse is a great way to learn more about the festival and mingle with filmmakers and supporters. They will announce the 2016 Fall dates, venues, and kickoff the “call-for-entries” for filmmakers in Memphis and around the world to submit their films for consideration. RSVPs required.
- March 31 – April 3 – Memphis Comedy Festival
The Memphis Comedy Festival (MCF) is a four-day celebration of stand-up comedy and the comedic arts. MCF hosts stand-up showcases, themed comedy shows, improv showcases, podcasts, informational seminars, comedy open-mics, and probably (definitely) a karaoke session. It spans a few neighborhoods and several venues and attracts thousands of Memphians.
- April 1 – April 10 – Midtown Opera Festival – Various times
Opera Memphis’ fourth annual Midtown Opera Festival takes place over ten days in April at Playhouse on the Square. It will feature two intimate chamber operas, family events, panel discussions, and a late-night cabaret in the heart of Memphis. The 2016 operas are Peter Brook’s The Tragedy of Carmen and Maurice Ravel’s L’Heure Espagnole. Additional programming is presented in partnership with local institutions includes New Ballet Ensemble’s festival-inspired Springloaded, the Rhodes College Brubeck Festival’s socially challenging and musically delightful The Real Ambassadors, and a fast-paced evening of informative talks with Ignite Memphis.
- April 8 – April 10 – Brubeck Festival – Various times – All event tickets sold separately
- Friday, April 8:
- 1:30 PM – “Brubecks Play Brubeck” Jazz Workshop with selected Shelby County School students, Evergreen (613 University St.), Free and open to the public
- 7:30 PM – Dave Brubeck’s “The Real Ambassadors”, A Jazz Musical by Dave Brubeck, Playhouse on the Square (66 Cooper St.), Sandra Franks, vocal music director, Gerald Stephens, instrumental director, Ben Smith, artistic director, Partnered with Opera Memphis, For tickets go here.
- Saturday, April 9
- 7:30 PM – “To Hope,” A Mass by Dave Brubeck, featuring Chris, Dan, and Darius with special guest Dave O’Higgins, Rhodes MasterSingers Chorale, Memphis Symphony Orchestra, Randal Rushing, tenor soloist, William Skoog, conductor – Cannon Center, 255 N Main St., For tickets go here.
- Sunday, April 10
- 2:00 PM Matinee – Dave Brubeck’s “The Real Ambassadors”, A Jazz Musical by Dave Brubeck – Playhouse on the Square (66 Cooper St.), Sandra Franks, vocal music director, Gerald Stephens, instrumental director, Ben Smith, artistic director, Partnered with Opera Memphis, For tickets go here.
- 4:30 PM – Student Time Out! – Rhodes Jazz Band and Shelby County Schools All-City Jazz Band with special guest appearances by Darius Brubeck and Dave O’Higgins – Playhouse on the Square (66 Cooper St.), Free and open to the public, Reception prior to and following the performance.
- Friday, April 8:
- Saturday, April 2 – Down to Earth Festival – 10am
Celebrate Earth Day with Shelby Farms during Down to Earth Festival where you can enjoy outdoor adventure, eco-friendly exhibitors, the Go Ape Treetop Ropes Course, and more.In addition to live music and food trucks, you can enjoy family hikes at 11 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm and a Shelby Farms Park Conservancy tour with Jimmy Ogle. The parking fee is $5 per vehicle. All proceeds help keep Shelby Farms Park and Shelby Farms Greenline clean and safe.
- Saturday, April 9 – Overton Square Crawfish Festival 2016 – 12pm-6pm – Free – Family friendly
Enjoy tons of crawfish, live bands all day, a kids area and great shopping in the vendor market.
- Saturday, April 9 – Memphis Arts Festival – 1pm – Free – Family friendly
Memphis Arts Festival is hosted by the American Muslim Intercultural Network (AMIN) and will showcase some of the Mid-South’s rich and diverse cultural expressions in a family friendly environment. It is open to all local artisans, visual and performance artists who want to share or merchandise their craft with the broader community. In addition to creative works, there will be children’s activities, informational tables and food vendors.
- April 13 – 17 – Africa in April Cultural Awareness Festival – Various times – $5
This year’s festival will be honoring the Republic of Tanzania with vendors, international music, and more.
- Saturday, April 16 – Bacon & Bourbon Festival – 6pm – $30
Get acquainted with two of the tastiest southern comforts during the Memphis Flyer’s Bacon & Bourbon Festival at Memphis Farmers Market on April 16 at 6 pm. With 20 of Memphis’ best restaurants, you can truly experience bacon, BBQ, and bourbon. With great music and great conversation, you can savor healthy portions of various bacon and pork inspired dishes while drinking delicious bourbons, whiskeys, and more. If your 15 samples don’t quench your taste buds, a cash bar will be available with proceeds benefitting Memphis Farmers Market.
- Saturday, April 16 – Memphis Brewfest – 4pm – $44
The 7th Annual Memphis Brewfest celebrates great American craft beer, and the finest, most exotic beers in the world. Beers, Breweries and Beer enthusiasts from the region will gather near the bluffs of the Mississippi River on a Spring afternoon for a sampling of fresh beers of all colors, styles and tastes. Memphis Brewfest will be held outdoors at the beautiful courtyard of AutoZone Park (200 Union Avenue, the corner of Third St. and Union Ave). All net proceeds from the festival will go to benefit Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy.
- Saturday, April 16 – East Buntyn ArtWalk – 1pm – 7pm – Free – Family and Pet Friendly
Each spring, the East Buntyn ArtWalk celebrates local artists and musicians with an open-air bazaar of galleries set up in the front yards and porches of the historic east Memphis neighborhood. This unique arts fair offers visitors the opportunity to visit and engage with local artists while enjoying the hospitality of East Buntyn residents. There will be a silent auction tent featuring special items from the artists, local food trucks, live music, and more. Rain date is April 17th.
- Saturday, April 16 – Harbor Town Crawfish Festival – 12pm-8pm
The Harbor Town Crawfish Festival benefits The Mid-South Food Bank. Enjoy 1000 lbs of crawfish, music, giveaways, and beer specials all day long.
- Saturday, April 16 – Healthy Memphis Festival – Family friendly
Healthy Memphis Food Festival features local, diverse, and ethnic cuisines. Vendors offer specialty food items, farmer’s market items, arts and crafts, fine art, commercial goods, home and lifestyle goods and services, and quality imports. Bouncy houses, games, face painting, balloon artists and smaller attractions will be available for kids as well as live music for all.
- Sunday, April 17 – Rajun Cajun Crawfish Festival – 11am
One of Memphis’ most popular events returns Sunday, April 17, 2016 with something for everyone. In addition to over 18,000 pounds of crawfish, the event hosts a variety of vendors selling food, drinks, art and more. This year, they’re adding a new item: spicy boiled shrimp. A special thanks to the Riverfront Development Corporation for hosting the Festival again this year. As usual, no pets, coolers, tents, handouts, or parking inside the festival area.
- Sunday, April 17 – Hear 901 Festival – 6:30pm – $5/advance, $8/door, $20/VIP
The University of Memphis’ student run record label, Blue Tom, is presenting their second annual Hear 901 music festival at the New Daisy Theatre downtown. The new and noteworthy acts being featured include instrumental fusion band Bluff City Soul Collective, the punk rock band Sleepwlkrs, harmony-heavy duo Zuster, pop virtuoso Lauren Moscato, hip-hop whiz Early, and indie rockers The Band Camino.
- Friday, April 22 – Broad Avenue Spring Artwalk – 6pm-9pm – Free
Enjoy unique and local artwork, vendors, food trucks, beer, and live music to benefit the Broad Avenue Arts District. More details to come.
- Saturday, April 23 – Southern Hot Wing Festival – 11am
The Southern Hot Wing Festival is a celebration of the chicken hot wing, the drummie, the flat, flap, and everything in between. Established in 2003 by a local Memphain who felt that the South had more to offer than just amazingly great BBQ, the Southern Hot Wing festival has become a staple event each April bringing with it the warmth and the fire to usher in the Spring. The festival will be located just south of the Tennessee Visitors Center on Riverside Drive between Jefferson and Union Avenue. Jefferson Davis Park (Jefferson and Riverside) will provide lots of green space to relax and enjoy some great music while you feast on your wings.
- Saturday, April 23 – Lucero Family Block Party – 12pm/Doors, 4pm/music – $26-$61 – Family friendly
Minglewood Hall will be hosting a big giant block party featuring Lucero w/ St. Paul and The Broken Bones. More bands, food trucks, and vendors announced soon.
- Saturday, April 23 – V&E Artwalk – 11am-6pm – Free – Family Friendly
The fifth annual V&E Artwalk will raise money and awareness for the V&E Greenline community owned trail which travels through the heart of Midtown and the Vollintine Evergreen Community. The event will feature the work of artists from all over the Greater Memphis area. Artists will be selling their creations at affordable prices and there will be a silent auction from items donated by the artists. There will be a children’s area with art activities and bounce houses. Music by local artists will be a special treat. Several types of craft beer from a Memphis micro brewery, along with a variety of wines will be available. Food offered will include grilled sausages, side items, walking tacos, barbecue smoked for this event, hot dogs and hamburgers, and vegetarian items. All proceeds from the event will go to the V&E Greenline to keep the V&E Greenline attractive and useful for all to enjoy. Rain date is April 24th.
- Sunday, April 24 – Latin Food and Tequila Festival – 12pm-7pm – $11/advance, $21/door
Enjoy a fun-filled day of Latin food from area restaurants, a tequila-tasting station, a margarita station with area bartenders competing for “Best Margarita” bragging right and prizes, cultural activities, music from around Latin America, dancing for fest goers and presentations from professionals.
- April 29 – May 1 – Memphis in May Beale Street Music Festival
Beale Street Music Festival returns for another jam-packed 3 days of music. Stay tuned for the full lineup announcement THIS Wednesday.
- May 6 – 7 – Memphis Greek Festival
This two-day annual Greek Festival offers a unique opportunity to enjoy traditional food and marketplace items, sanctuary tours, live Greek music and traditional Greek dancing. Free Greek dance lessons are available. Advance tickets include a Greek meal and are available at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church and other locations.
- Saturday, May 7 – Party for the Century at Brooks Museum – 12pm-7pm – Free
Celebrate the Brooks Museum’s 100th birthday with a day-long celebration of this historic milestone, kicking off a year of innovative and engaging programming. The museum will be open and free to all for live music, art-making, tours, and surprises – all highlighting their renowned world art collection and creative year-round programming.
- Saturday, May 7 – Latino Memphis Festival celebrating Brasil– 9am-4pm – Free
Visit the Brazilian pavilion and be introduced to the largest Portuguese-speaking & Latin American nation on Earth. Experience the many cultural influences that make this amazing country Latin-Brazilian, with a unique blend of Indigenous, African, & multi-ethnic roots. Prepare your taste buds for a culinary adventure with authentic Latin as well as southern favorites from local vendors and food trucks. This is no day for a diet with Brazilian BBQ, tacos, burritos, funnel cakes and more. Interested in becoming a vendor? Please contact April Steele email@example.com. Kids will enjoy fun interactive activities, arts and crafts, plus it wouldn’t be festival without piñatas, hula hoops, and a bounce house. Stop by the face painting booth and put your esta face on. From sizzling samba, breath-taking Brazilian martial arts Capoeira to festive Mariachis, Memphians will enjoy a rich mosaic of cultural performances on stage and strolling throughout the festival grounds. Do you perform? Are you from Brazil? Please contact Claudia Towell at firstname.lastname@example.org. Soccer fanatics can show off their skills and tricks while participating in action-packed play and some friendly competition. This festival hosts the only salsa-making competition in Memphis where teams make their recipe live and from scratch. Competition categories include Best Spicy, Best Mild and Best Decorated Table.
- May 12 – 14 – Memphis in May BBQ Fest
The World Championship Barbecue Fest attracts hundreds of guests every year who come to celebrate all things barbecue. Teams grill and smoke to compete for a chance at winning over $110,000 in prizes and bragging rights. Aside from the competition itself, guests can witness the popular Ms. Piggie Idol, a singing contest where participants can show off their vocal talents.
- Saturday, May 14 – UpRise Memphis Arts Fest – 2pm
The UpRise Arts Festival seeks to enhance the quality of life of Memphians by promoting greater appreciation of the arts through exposure and education; as well as build greater synergy throughout Memphis’ arts, business and residential communities.
- May 21 – Taste the Rarity Festival – 3pm-7pm – $53.74
TASTE the RARITY will feature the release of UNICORNUCOPIA 2016 – a gin barrel aged Double IPA. Live Music from Mighty Souls Brass Band, Big Barton, and more with backyard games and food trucks, and a commemorative taster glass. Event is Rain or Shine and will move inside the brewery if there is inclement weather.
- Saturday, May 28 – 901Fest – 3pm – Family friendly
Memphis in May is adding a brand new festival to their annual celebration that will focus on all things local! This festival will include local performers on multiple stages, locals artists, local vendors, local food and beverages, and local merchants. An airshow will take place as well as a fireworks show over the Mississippi River. Go here for the full lineup.
- June 2nd – 4th – Memphis Italian Festival – Family friendly
Bring a blanket, take a seat on the lawn, visit with friends, listen to outstanding musical entertainment, enjoy the food, beverages and all around good time. Enjoy a little taste of Italy, right here in Memphis. Have dinner in the air conditioned comfort of Luigi’s Café while overlooking the park and enjoying the music and people. You could also grab a picnic basket from Luigi’s Market and have your supper out in the field. Baskets are new this year. They will have numerous vendors serving everything from toasted ravioli to cannoli, along with classic festival fair from funnel cakes to Pronto Pups. Looking for a more interactive dining experience? Join one of many area restaurants conducting cooking demos in an air-conditioned Riceland Cooking Tent. The Cooking Demo tent is free to the public and you can come, sit down, watch a demo, and then sample the food.
- June 4 – A Day of Merrymaking in Overton Park – 10am – Free
It’s back! For the fourth year, A Day of Merrymaking in Overton Park brings food, art, music, and fun for families (and dogs!) to the Greensward. The hot air balloon will be returning, and they’ll be announcing other entertainment and activities in the coming weeks. Want to be a vendor at this year’s event? They’re looking for food trucks, artists, crafters, and small businesses who want to reach thousands of park-loving Memphians! You can learn more and sign up here.
- June 16th – 19th – Juneteenth Urban Music Festival – Free
From its Galveston, Texas origin in 1865, the observance of June 19th as the African American Emancipation Day has spread across the United States and beyond. Today Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom and emphasizes education and achievement. It is a day, a week, and in some areas a month marked with celebrations, guest speakers, picnics and family gatherings. It is a time for reflection and rejoicing. It is a time for assessment, self-improvement and for planning the future. There will be arts and crafts exhibitors, a car show, a kids zone, an entertainment stage, food, and more.
- June 18 – Memphis Flyer’s Margarita Festival – 3pm-6pm – $25
Sample from the city’s best margarita-makers, vote on your favorite, and they’ll crown a winner at the end of this second annual best ‘rita fest. Your ticket gets you entry to the event and 15 margarita samples from your favorite restaurants, with awesome entertainment. Food will be available for purchase. There will also be a cash bar with full-sized drinks available. This festival, held in the Memphis’ Overton Park Greensward, is guaranteed to be awesome squared, rimmed with salt and served up chill! This is a 21+ event, and it’s rain or shine.
- July 10 – 16 – Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis – Various times
The Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis will be held in the Midtown Theatre District of Memphis, TN at Hattiloo Theatre. The festival is designed to highlight and award the contributions of women in theatre arts and showcase theatrical productions. For 3 days audiences are invited from all over the world to West Tennessee to enjoy quality theatrical performances written by women, directed by women and about women at the third biennial Women’s Theatre Festival of Memphis.
- July 16 – Memphis Caribbean Jerk Festival – 12pm-9pm – $11.54
The inaugural Caribbean Jerk Festival is a family friendly event that will take place at the Water Tower Pavilion Space at 2532 Broad Ave. There will be a variety of jerk and Caribbean foods available, live entertainment, a domino tournament, and more.
- July 23 – 28th Annual WEVL Blues on the Bluff – More info TBA
Bring your chairs and blankets and celebrate years of fun on the bluffs of the Mississippi River in a beautiful park-like setting. Enjoy live music, bbq, drinks, beer, a silent auction, and more. All proceeds go to benefit WEVL. More details to come.
- Saturday, August 6 – 2nd Annual FOMOfest – 2pm-10pm
- August 11-14 – On Location: Film Festival – Various times
On Location: Memphis is a unique film festival showcasing both local and global independent films. The competitive film exhibit culminates in the awarding of multiple awards in categories including Live Action Short, Feature, Music Video, Documentary and Animated Short. Special events include music showcases at local venues.
- Saturday, August 13 – Southern Salsa Festival – Noon – $10
The 98.5 New Mix FM Southern Salsa Festival fundraiser returns to the Broad Avenue Water Tower Pavilion with a salsa cook-off to Salsa Memphis dance lessons. Local restaurants and contestants will have booths set up to showcase their salsa for free. Food and drinks will be available to purchase from food trucks and regional vendors as well as alcoholic beverages.
- August 20, 21, 27 & 28 – 2nd Annual Mid-South Renaissance Faire – $15/adults, $8/kids, free/5 and under – Family friendly
Join in the Queen’s entertainment and revelry and celebrate Her Majesty’s visit. Shout Huzzah as the jousters enter into combat, join musicians in a merry song, test yourself with games of skill and chance, find familiar and exotic foods, join the nobles in courtly dance, pillage with the pirates, laugh at the jesters, be amazed by magicians, and more. Location: Shelby Farms Park Conservancy in Memphis, TN on the Mullins Station Rd. side of the park between Gates 8 and 9. Parking entrance is Gate 10.
- Sunday, August 28 – Best Memphis Burger Fest – 6pm
Best Memphis Burger Fest is the annual fundraising event for Memphis Paws, Inc., a 501c3 non-profit dedicated to creating responsible pet owners and supporting rescues and animal care organizations around Memphis. Enjoy some of the best burgers in town and vote on your favorites in several categories. More info coming to the website soon.
- September 2 – Rock For Love 10 – Various times
The annual Church Health Center benefit concert is host to lots of local music, food,
- September 3 – 4 – Memphis Music and Heritage Festival
Each Labor Day Weekend the Center for Southern Folklore produces the Memphis Music & Heritage Festival. It is the Center’s signature event. With urban Memphis as the backdrop, they showcase and celebrate the music, culture, arts, and rhythms of the Memphis/Delta region. More info to come.
- Sunday, September 4 – Pianos in the Park – 6pm-9pm – Free – Family friendly
Jazz lovers can enjoy the 7th Annual “Pianos in the Park Jazz Fest” presented by Strictly Jazz Entertainment. It takes place at W.C. Handy Park on historic Beale Street in downtown Memphis. Gates open at 5pm. Pianos in the Park is a family affair so feel free to bring some lawn chairs, and be ready to spend an evening enjoying smooth jazz in the great outdoors.
- September 7th-11th – Outflix Film Festival
Outflix is a program created by the Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center to encourage high quality LGBT+ cinema with accurate representations of their lives on screen in order to educate the Mid-South on what the LGBT+ community truly is. The program features an annual film festival in September with year-round events leading up to it. For those familiar with the festival, a few changes have been made to the schedule by Harwood and co-director Whitney Hardy, along with a staff of over 10 volunteers, in order to improve its atmosphere as well as prepare for their 20th anniversary next year. This year’s festival will last eight days, and rather than screening films back-to-back as they have in years past, there will be breaks between films to socialize and attend other events, such as community panels. One major addition that Harwood is particularly looking forward to is the Outflix Regional LGBT Short Film Competition. The competition is now open and will close 5/31. Go here for more info. Festival details coming soon.
- September 7 – 11 – Mid-South Book Festival
The Mid-South Book Festival is taking over Cooper Street for a literary street fair. Shop for books, mingle with authors, enjoy the kid’s tent, and visit the festival vendors in between panels. Food trucks will be on site, and the festival is mere steps from Overton Square. The festival will kick off on Wednesday, September 7th with a Literacy Summit (a conference for nonprofit employees, parents, grandparents, and teachers.) Other events include a Well Read Reception to kick off the weekend on Friday, the free Street Fair on Saturday, and the Mid-South Book Festival Writers Conference and Student Writers Conference on Sunday.
- September 8 – 10 – Southern Heritage Classic Cultural Celebration
Thousands come back annually to Memphis to cheer for Tennessee State University and Jackson State University, lively tailgate parties, to tee off in the celebrity golf tournament, for a glimpse at women’s fall fashions, and to experience music made in Memphis and other familiar rhythms. The greatness of the SHC rests on how it connects kindred spirits – young and old – in celebration of the beauty of cultural diversity and the richness of the city’s heritage.
- September 9 – 11 – Unreal Film Festival
The Unreal Film Festival is a Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror genre film festival with categories for both short and feature length films. Opening for entries in January and closes July 15th. Notification for winning and selected films occurs on August 1st. The festival takes place at Malco Studio on the Square.
- September 10 – 11 – Germantown Festival – Free – Family friendly
On Saturday, September 10th, 2016 from 9:30 to 6pm and Sunday, September 11th, 2016 from Noon to 6pm, the community will once again gather in Germantown Civic Club Complex (7745 Poplar Pike) in Germantown for arts and crafts, children’s activities, rides and games, live stage entertainment, car exhibits, community displays, the Running of the Weenies Dachshund race and festival foods for all tastes. This 2 day event is held rain or shine and for many is a long standing tradition of family fun and excitement. The Festival hosts nearly 400 local and regional artists and craftsmen, offering a wide range of unique items including jewelry, pottery, metal, woodwork, hand-stitched garments, paintings, photography and many other popular and trendy items such as purses, fabrics and garden accessories. The Children’s activities and games are always a favorite for families. Attractions include rock climbing walls, bungee jumps, inflatable moonwalks and slides as well as pony, train and kiddie rides. Children of all ages enjoy the clowns wandering the park offering balloon animals and face painting as well as the many art activities and amusements. Civic and Non-Profit Organizations will be selling mouth-watering festival food of every kind from corn dogs, cotton candy, funnel cakes to catfish, brats, BBQ and much more. Live stage entertainment is scheduled for both days and offers festival goers a chance to sit and relax or tap their toes and dance. Additionally, new and classic cars will be on exhibit at the Germantown Festival from car clubs and local dealerships. Admission to the Festival is free and free shuttle bus service is available from two free parking lots located at Union University, 2745 Hacks Cross Road, and Baptist Rehabilitation Center 2120 Exeter Rd. Germantown, TN
- September 16 – 17 – 5th Annual Literacy Rocks Festival – 10am-5pm
The Literacy Rocks! Festival is an annual festival accepting and open to all regardless of gender, race, national origin, religion, age, marital status, or disability. Their mission is to promote literacy by connecting authors primarily with avid readers, book clubs, authors and publishers. It is held in September during National Literacy Month. At the festival you can meet, engage and network with authors, book clubs and avid readers from across the nation, purchase books to support literacy, walk the book club ‘purple carpet,’ participate in games, win door prizes, have fun in the children’s corner, attend book club panel discussions, enter essay contests to win a number of prizes and awards, and more. Friday’s event is for authors and publishers only; Saturday’s event is free and open to the public.
- Saturday, September 17 – Cooper Young Festival – Free – Family Friendly
This annual festival is a day of music, artwork, vendors, food, and more. Stay tuned for the music lineup and more.
- Saturday, September 24 – BreakFest – 10am
- September 24th – Tamale Fest
Centro Cultural will again partner with Caritas Village and Crosstown Arts to host their 2nd annual Tamale Fest fundraising and cultural event. The festival will take place on and around the grounds of Caritas Village at 2509 Harvard Avenue. The festival will have main stage live entertainment, a tamale team cooking contest led by local tamale-making experts, a tamale tasting tent, a kids’ activity corner, art vendors, food trucks and a tamale photo booth.
- Saturday, September 24 – Midsouth Pride Festival – 10am
Celebrate with this annual free festival, live entertainment, kids area, food and merchandise vendors at festival site at 4th & Beale St.
- September 29 – October 1 – Gonerfest
Gonerfest is an annual music festival hosted by Goner Records, an independent record label in Memphis. The festival showcases Goner-related bands from around the world across a diverse range of genres in conjunction with an art show featuring works by artists from all over the country. There’s also a delicious assortment of food and beer including crafts from Memphis’ very own Memphis Made Brewery.
- September 30 – October 1 – Bona Fide Blues Festival – Free – Family Friendly
The Bona Fide Blues Festival will take place at Overton Square. Stay tuned for the line up details.