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Pull Up a Chair…or Pull Out Your Running Shoes

As spring turns into summer, Overton Park is getting busier every day.  To help you plan your visit, here’s a breakdown of some upcoming events and things to be aware of:

Levitt Shell Free Music Concert SeriesThursday, May 23: Get Here Early
One of Memphis’ great summer events, The Levitt Shell Free Music Concert Series, will kick off Thursday, May 23 with a performance by North Mississippi Allstars.  Sons of Mudboy will open at 6:30pm, with North Mississippi Allstars at 7:30. We are encouraging all concert patrons to be in the park by 6:45.  The annual Zoom Through the Zoo race will be happening on the same evening, and all park entrances will be closed from approximately 7:00 to 7:30.  Runners will be coming out of the Old Forest near the Golf Clubhouse, running up the hill on Golf Drive, turning north on Morrie Moss and re-entering at the Zoo entrance.  Cars attempting to enter the park during this window will be rerouted to the surrounding neighborhoods, so plan ahead!

The Levitt Shell’s concert series continues on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings throughout summer.  Here’s a full list of performers.

Black Arts FestBlack Arts Festival This Weekend
Join us in Veterans Plaza this Saturday, May 18, from 1:00 to 4:00 for a free festival celebrating Memphis’ rich African-American arts tradition.  Sponsored by Hattiloo Theatre, the event will feature crafts and an outdoor art gallery, plus performances by Artistik Approach, Bridging Souls Productions, Ficktive Kin, Flo Roach, Harkin’s House Productions, Hattiloo Theatre, Inner City South, Jamille Hunter, LeChorale, LilyRose Studios, Memphis Black Arts Alliance, Out Loud Ministry, and the Women’s Theatre Festival.  (More info is here.)

Memorial Day Race
Join hundreds of others this Memorial Day for the Second Annual Memorial Day 3-Mile Run at Overton Park.  This run honors all those who served in our country’s military and armed forces.  The race begins at 8:00am and begins and ends at the Doughboy Statue in Veterans Plaza.  To find more information and to register, click here.

Four Seasons Cocktail Series at Playhouse on the Square
It’s not too early to mark your calendar for Friday, June 21, when Playhouse on the Square honors Overton Park Conservancy on the summer solstice.  Playhouse’s free happy-hour events coincide with the changing of the seasons. On each equinox and solstice, the theatre will host a cocktail party in honor of a different non-profit organization. Guests are invited to learn about the organization being honored while enjoying light hors d’oeuvres and a signature cocktail created just for the event. Donations are accepted during the party and will benefit Overton Park Conservancy.  Here’s more information.

And of course…A Day of Merrymaking!
We’re adding new and exciting elements to our June 8 family festival every day!  Among other delights, Art Center Memphis and the Brooks Museum are teaming up to present an Art Experience area, and Hollywood Feed is putting on a dog agility course AND a canine costume contest.  That’s just the tip of the iceberg, so click here for the latest, including a list of vendors who will be joining us that day.