Spring Has Sprung on the Memphis Riverfront


In true Memphis fashion, the weather has flip-flopped more in the last week than a Spring Breaker on Route 30A! But the signs are there…couple of days in the high-70s, the Grizzlies made the playoffs and downtown patios are open. Spring is here in Memphis and summer isn’t too far behind.

As we start making plans to be “outside” for all of the spring festivals and summer soirees, before the humidity musses our hair, Memphis River Parks Partnership wants to remind you to include the riverfront in your seasonal planning.

The riverfront has so much to offer, even as the work continues on the new Tom Lee Park.

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Check back next month for the latest construction updates.

This year we are implementing new environmental, recreational and physical fitness programs as we plan and prepare for the opening of the new park in 2023. With the addition of several key staff members, we have positioned ourselves to engage our community like never before, and to offer more programming to promote a riverfront for everyone.

What can you expect this year? We thought you’d never ask…

sunset kayaking

Starting April 28 through Sept 29, participants can enjoy FREE kayak rentals in the Memphis Harbor.

For the last several years, Memphis residents and visitors have come out in record-breaking numbers to enjoy our monthly kayak event. This year, we are adding a few new features to the event, known as Sunset Kayaking.

Every last Thursday of the month, starting April 28 through Sept 29, participants can enjoy FREE kayak rentals in the Memphis Harbor. (Rain date: the first Thursday of the next month.) 

For a calming 30 mins, you’re invited to enjoy the city lights, a signature Memphis sunset, popular music bellowing from the party barge, and paddle ‘til your heart’s content. DJ Brother John from 88.5 (the Voice of MSCS) will not only spin some groovy tunes for all to enjoy, but he just might have a few fun contests and giveaways up his sleeve. 

And don’t worry, there is no current in the Memphis Harbor, so this is a great “beginner” paddling event for adults and kids, alike.

Stay tuned for more information on parking, registration and put-in location.

NEW! River Quest

We can hardly contain our excitement about this NEW progressive event launching this spring! River Quest is a learning program that encourages one to explore the ecological wonders of the Mississippi River. 

Participants can obtain their “passports” for the season at the first Sunset Kayak event (and score their first stamp for participating in the paddle). These passports contain “quests” that represent different educational, environmental and recreational feats, with varying degrees of difficulty. (Translation: a mother can help guide her young child through River Quest – no sweat!) Most of these quests will be self-guided, however, there will be optional guided opportunities to learn more about the riverfront flora and fauna. 

Once a quest has been completed, a Memphis River Parks ranger must stamp your passport. You can show proof of completion by posting pictures of your quests and tagging us on social media. And once passports are filled with stamps, participants receive a special River Quest swag item.

Every student deserves an enriching summer experience, and family income shouldn’t stand in the way of that opportunity.

Yoga on the River

Join instructors from the Yoga Kickback on Tuesdays, 6PM-7PM for FREE

We are thrilled to host, once again, the Downtown Memphis Commission’s community Yoga on the River in River Garden (51 Riverside Drive) this year.

Starting April 19th, yogis of all practice levels are welcome to join instructors from the Yoga Kickback on Tuesdays, 6PM-7PM for FREE.

(You are encouraged to bring Yoga mats and water, maybe even sunglasses as the summer progresses.)

This is an awesome introduction to yoga and an opportunity to further your practice with one of the most beautiful and serene backdrops in Memphis – the riverfront.

We are planning other amazing educational events, festivals and experiences on the riverfront, including (but not limited to):

  • Vegan Block Party, April 9, 11AM-5PM, hosted by Cynthia Daniels & Co. in the Mud Island Grove (1300 Island Drive). 
  • Grizzlies Playoffs Watch Parties (Fourth Bluff Park, Front between Court and Jefferson).
  • Downtown Memphis Commission River Markets – dates and times coming soon.
  • Arbor Day Tree Planting, April 29, 4:30PM-6PM on Mud Island.
  • Pollinator Party (workshop and garden planting), April 30, 10:30AM-1PM at Beale Street Landing.
  • Tom Lee Day – May 8th – Winners of the inaugural Tom Lee Poetry Contest will perform their winning works at the annual celebration of the life and legacy of a true Memphis hero, Tom Lee.
  • Sunset Skate Nights, hosted by Brother John from Memphis Shelby County Schools.
  • Soulin’ on the River will be back this summer in conjunction with Memphis Slim House.

We can't for you to #cometotheriver!

Keep an eye out on social media for more announcements:

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