10 Reasons to be Thankful for Memphis (2010 Edition)

Posted by Holly Whitfield | November 24th 2010 2080 11

Tomorrow, as you sit down with your family or friends over a huge turkey (or Tofurkey) dinner, take a second to be thankful for living in Memphis. I know I will.

Invest in Good Times, Memphis, Tenn.

If you're stuck for reasons why you should be thankful for Memphis, here are 10 good ones:

1. Memphis doesn't feel like anywhere else. There are some cities that may be cleaner or safer or open later, but there's no other city that comes close to having the amount of pure, gritty, beautiful soul that Memphis has.

2. Basketball season. Between the Tigers and the Grizzlies, you can almost catch a live game every night between November and March.

3. Ghost River beer. The guys that make Ghost River swear that the beer is so good because the water in Memphis is so delicious. All of their beer is made locally at their brewery on S. Main.  Though you can't buy it at the grocery store, you can get their three constant brews and their seasonal brew on tap at bars all over town (or in kegs at their dock).

4. The Greenline. Since the seven-mile paved trail that runs from Tillman to Shelby Farms opened earlier this year, it's been packed with bikers, walkers, joggers and skaters. There's nothing else like it in the city, and I'm so thankful that it's been a success. We can only hope that it will be expanded deeper into Midtown and East Memphis in the future.

5. Easy traffic. When I asked you guys what you were thankful for on Facebook and Twitter, a handful of you mentioned how easy it is to deal with Memphis traffic. I know I might not always think so when I'm trying to go to YoLo at 5 p.m., but compared to other cities, even our worst rush hour traffic is easily managed.

6. There's so much to do. So much, in fact, that I've been blogging about Memphis for more than a year, and I haven't even come close to seeing or doing everything I've wanted to. If you wanted to go out every night, you could. If you wanted to hear a band every day, you could. If you only wanted to shop at locally owned shops and eat in locally-owned restaurants for a year, it would be fairly easy.

7. We're making progress. It's amazing how much progress we've made in the last two years. We've got more locally grown food, a vibrant outdoor concert venue, brand new festivals and events, new bands and all sorts of movers and shakers making their own opportunities. Memphis is a city where you have the opportunity to create the community you want to live in. Think about that, then do it.

8. Holes in the wall. The best Cajun food in Memphis is served up in a yellow brick shack on S. Florida (Deju Vu). The best hot wings come from a shopping center on Getwell (Ching's) and one of the best bars in town is covered in graffiti and named after being poor and hungry (The P&H.) You can eat at chain restaurants in Memphis, but I'm not sure why you'd want to when our best food and drinks come from holes in the wall and dive bars.

9. The weather. Yeah, I know it's probably not supposed to be 70 degrees in late November, but I don't see most of you complaining. You're all too busy hanging out on the Greenline.

10. The people. Memphians are some of the warmest, friendliest, nicest and most wickedly funny people I've ever met. We're generally pretty relaxed and we know how to have a good time. We're also resourceful, creative and attractive (no matter what other people think).

As for me, I'm thankful for every single person that reads this, that comments or emails me, sends me tips or asks me questions. Thank you for making what I do so incredibly special.

Have a great Thanksgiving holiday. I'll be back on Friday morning – for now, I've got a ton of baking to do.

Author: Holly Whitfield

I write about what’s going on with Memphis music, food, arts, events, sports, people, and culture. Memphians love Elvis and barbeque with a passion that must be seen to be believed, but there is so much more to this place.

Show Comments


  1. Eric Tate says:

    You are just a bright , little ray of sunshine, ain’t cha’? Oh, and nice “Ho.Ho” poster. Keep at it.

  2. Elizabeth says:

    I love this list! I follow you an Twitter and would absolutely love to meet up with you for coffee and chat about Memphis, BBQ…or anything! I’m @liebastrom on Twitter.

  3. rachel says:

    Thanks for what you do! You are definitely an asset to this town!

  4. Kelli says:

    I agree! #11 reason is this blog! I am always informed of things going on here in Memphis – thanks to you!

    Happy Thanksiving!

  5. Caroline says:

    I’m thankful for all the Memphians by choice who are reminders that this city is a great place to call home.

  6. Jenna says:

    This is fantastic! Thank you for this! Very nice to see others that appreciate living in Memphis!

  7. […] In the spirit of Thanksgiving, Memphis-advocate Kerry gives us 10 Reasons to be Thankful for Memphis. […]

  8. Joey says:

    Nice job. Keep spreadin’ the love and have a fantastic Thanksgiving!

    M-town rocks!


  9. Whitney says:

    Yay, Memphis! I am thankful to be living back in my hometown after three years away…

  10. Hooper Troopers says:

    Thank YOU, Kerry! I learn so much by reading your blog daily! It’s simple and full of awesomeness.

  11. Lynn says:

    Thank you for your blog and adding another reason – the river walk along mighy Mississippi! Lynn

  12. Sadie says:

    I lived in Memphis until I was 11 then came back for college. I had no idea what I was missing. Now, after 3 years of 2am drives down poplar and a fair amount of #8, I can’t understand why my family ever left!

    Memphis is so diverse and full of adventures and you capture her spirit with the quirk and humor it deserves. THANK YOU!

  13. frisbee tom says:

    cool, thanks

  14. Chris says:

    I love your positivity about Memphis.

  15. Jarrod Terry says:

    11. Shelby Farms is 5 times larger than New York’s Central Park. And we have bison. We win.

  16. […] 10 Reasons to be Thankful for Memphis […]

  17. Awesome! It’s easy to take things for granted but there are a lot of good things about this city.

  18. hubbell says:

    memphis “traffic” is relatively nonexistent to those of us who’ve fled traffic-clogged cities to be here, or lived in places where horns are used almost like mating calls. it’s also convenient, in this part of the world, that they mark the counties on the license plates, so you know who to simply keep an eye on, who to really watch out for, and who is an absolute nuclear threat to your being.

  19. Gone and Glad says:

    Lived there my entire life, until I was almost 30. You people seriously need to get out.

  20. Gigi says:

    Some of my favorite things were left off the list:

    I love Memphis blog
    The Peabody
    Mud Island
    The Orpheum
    The River
    South Main Trolley
    The Museums – Brooks, Pink Palace
    The Zoo
    Rock N Soul Museum
    Overton Park (Levitt Shell)

  21. Doctor J says:

    You might be interested in this (growing) collection of “Why I Chose Memphis” stories: http://readmorewritemorethinkmorebemore.blogspot.com/search/label/Why%20I%20Chose%20Memphis

    To your readers: please send me your own “Why I Chose Memphis” story if you have the time or inclination!

  22. jenna says:

    I LOVE Memphis too! i’m 5th generation Memphian. Why do some people seek and focus on the negatives instead of taking advantage of all the limitless positives!
    you’re great!

  23. Nico says:

    I lived in Memphis for four years. I’ve always had mixed feelings about the city. Now that I’ve left -I’m leaving in France- I realize I loved it more that I thought.

    This site is a great idea. Congratulations!


  24. Lisa C. says:

    Happy to have stumbled on to your blog. I just moved to Memphis 4 weeks ago from Austin, TX. Since I’ve been here, I have really enjoyed the feeling that Memphis gives me, which is what Austin gave me in 1995 when I first moved there. Don’t quite have that feeling in Austin any more, although it is truly a great city in it’s own right….a city should never get rid of it’s true grit and I feel like Memphis never will.

  25. clyde says:

    What bar is named after being hungry?

  26. Memphis Claire says:

    Thanks for posting this.  As a Memphian by choice for the last 12.5 years, I love seeing what others like about my city.  I'm thankful for the Peace and Justice Center.  And Hope House. And Literacy Mid-South.  And Memphis Heritage.

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