Join us at Celebrate Shelby on November 24

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Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris along with the mayors of Memphis, Germantown, Bartlett, Collierville, Arlington, Millington and Lakeland invite you to Celebrate the Shelby County Bicentennial on Sunday, Nov. 24!  This FREE public event will take place at Shelby Farms from 1:00-5:30 PM and includes live music from Kevin and Bethany Paige, Marcella & Her Lovers, and Savanah Brister on the T-Mobile stage, plus your favorite local food trucks, a petting zoo, rockwall climbing, trampoline, golf challenge, quarterback toss, soccer kick, FREE birthday cake, and an amazing fireworks finale over Hyde Lake! It’s Family-friendly and free for everyone, so don’t miss it!

Beale Street Music Festival

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Did you know that #BSMF19 featured our second consecutive Sunday sell-out? That means waiting to buy tickets is a big risk, and the way our 2020 lineup is shaping up, this could be our biggest year yet!  Don’t wait, buy your three-day pass for just $135 NOW! The price will not be this low again, and we only have a limited number to sell at $135. VIP passes are also available with and without parking, so if you prefer to enjoy some of music’s hottest acts while seated on a raised, covered platform with a bar just steps away and private, air conditioned restrooms exclusively for you, this is the way to go.

Memphis in May Delegation Visits Ghana

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Three members of the Memphis in May International Festival embarked on a week-long site visit of our 2020 honored country last month. President & CEO Jim Holt, Board Chair Charles Ewing and VP of Programming Susan Elliott participated in productive meetings with officials at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Tourism, and met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, the Deputy Minister of Education, and His Excellency Dr. Baffour Adjei Bawuah, Ghanaian ambassador to the U.S. The delegation also made a courtesy call on Her Excellency, Stephanie Sullivan, U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Ghana.

They also met with business organizations including the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, the Merchant Company of West Africa, the Institute of Architects, the Ghana Export Promotion Authority, and the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The results of these meetings will be seen in a variety of programs saluting Ghana throughout the month of May 2020.



Team applications are already rolling in for the 43rd World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. Nearly a quarter of the teams have applied, and you know those river view spaces are determined in part by how soon you get your application in, so what are you waiting for?? The sold out Judges’ Seminar is this weekend where we’ll train the next generation of certified WCBCC judges who will enter the Honda Judges’ Tent next May, so register your team today and see if you’ll be the one to take that World Champion title from Tuffy Stone May 13-16! We’ll see you in the pit!

Great American River Run Post-Race Party


Registration for the 2020 Great American River Run Half Marathon, 10K & 5K opened last month! If the amazing finisher's medal or sleek race shirt isn't enough, we also throw the best post-race party around! Enjoy all your favorite Memphis food options, plus free beer and live entertainment next to the mighty Mississippi River. Lace up and run with us on May 23! The price gets higher as the race gets closer, sign up now.

Vendor Profile - Mahaffey Event & Tent Rentals


Mahaffey Event & Tent Rentals has been a Memphis in May vendor for more than 25 years. They build some 200 structures each year for the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest, playing a vital role for our signature event.

"Very few festivals have their act together like Memphis in May," said George Smith, President & CEO of Mahaffey. "We fly in customers from around the country to see our tents and enjoy great barbecue. There's not a better time of the year to visit Memphis."

Education Spotlight: Lifelong Friendship Began on Student Exchange Trip to India

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We received a special email late last month from Bettina, a Memphis in May friend who participated in the Student Exchange trip to India in 2000 while attending Central High School. While on the trip, Bettina met Anahita and a friendship began. The bond has blossomed and the two haven't let a year go by without seeing each other at least once. Bettina and her mother even received an invite for Anahita's sister's wedding last year and made the trip back to India (pictured). To celebrate 20 years of friendship, Bettina and Anahita are planning to meet in Memphis this May and we're excited to welcome them once again to our events.

Bettina concluded her email by saying, "We are so appreciative of the opportunity that Memphis in May gave us to explore a different culture and find a lifelong friend."

Claim MIM as a 2019 Tax Deduction

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As 2019 draws to a close and you start thinking about making those end-of-the-year charitable donations, don’t forget, Memphis in May is a 501c(3) nonprofit!   You can make a donation through Memphis in May’s Diplomat program which allows you to support our city’s largest and most dynamic public events. Your Diplomat donation ensures MIM continues to offer quality cultural and educational programs for the city and its students as we “Bring the World to Memphis and Memphis to the World!” 

Board Profile - Howard Robertson

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Added to the Board of Directos in August, Howard Robertson is no stranger to Memphis in May. He proudly chaired the festival in 2007 (Spain) with great success, leading MIM to its second highest-grossing festival ever at the time. Robertson graduated from Lincoln University and got his first job as a publicist at Stax Records. After working for several area radio and tv stations, he started Trust Marketing & Communications. Robertson and his wife Beverly have been married for 43 years and have three grown children and a granddaughter. 

Thankful for Volunteers

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This month as Americans reflect on what we’re thankful for, Memphis in May is thankful for our Volunteers!  We couldn’t produce our award-winning and record-setting events without you!  If you haven’t volunteered with Memphis in May but would like to get involved in 2020, this is the perfect time!  Register with us now and we’ll get you plugged in to the city’s signature events and you’ll discover why most of our volunteers have been with us for five years or more and keep coming back!

Reserve the World Cargo Crate Now

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Did you know our five CN World Cargo Crates enter 100 local schools each year where some 30,000 kids are able to interact with maps, books, crafts, coins and MORE from our honored country? We're taking reservations for spring 2020 now.

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