Hug a cow for producing the milk that makes your ice cream possible during Sweet Treat Sunday at the Memphis Botanic Garden.
Stax Museum of American Soul Music, 926 E. McLemore
Fri., July 17, 6-8 p.m.
It’s a great time to visit the Stax Museum of American Soul Music for this visual art exhibition celebrating songs from the iconic Stax catalog. The opening reception features a gallery talk by curator Peter “Souleo” Wright . Now you are ready to see Motown: The Musical at The Orpheum where you will learn about Berry Gordy’s journey from featherweight boxer to heavyweight music mogul. And I heard it through the grapevine that there might be a few tunes involved in that production. Did you catch that? Yeah, that’s how I roll.
TheatreSouth, Inside First Congregational Church, 1000 S. Cooper
Sat., July 18, 5:30 p.m.
Remember when you were 20 and could party till you puked? Voices of the South is giving a visual of that on stage with memorable show sets and costume pieces from past productions as decorations for their birthday party complete with cake, music, and balloons. The theatre company responsible for providing stage space to Sister Myotis — amen — will be starting their 2015-2016 season on July 31 with a production of Temple of the Dog.
Corner of Evergreen and Chelsea Ave., North Memphis Greenline
Sat., July 18, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
We have all enjoyed the Greenline from Midtown to Shelby Farms Park. Future plans are for the trail to go all the way to Downtown Memphis and beyond. This Saturday, 70 artists will participate in a o ne-day collaborative mural project on the Chelsea Greenline floodwall to change the way Memphians see art. You are invited to watch this monumental task and see a transformation in the way Memphis connects physically and visually. Bikes, inline skates, tennis shoes, dogs on leashes, skateboards, wheelchairs, strollers, and any non-motorized mode of transportation are welcome. I heard Vance Lauderdale was going to show up in his rickshaw. But that was before the orphans revolted.
Memphis Botanic Garden, 750 Cherry
Sun., July 19, 2-4 p.m.
It was a hot summer day when my friend across the street came over to see if I could play. I could. Our first task was to climb the big magnolia tree where the tree’s massive leaves and dense foliage provided lots of privacy for gossiping. But we quickly tired of that. Then we had a brilliant idea. First we went inside and asked for two trash bags and some dish soap. I think my mom thought we were going to do something industrious like picking up trash or washing her car. In retrospect, that would have been nice. We had come up with a less industrious plan. We had devised a plan to make our own swimming pool. The soap was to create bubbles in our swimming pool. So we squirted half the bottle of dish soap in one trash bag, then emptied the other half in the other trash bag. We climbed in to our respective “pools” and turned on the water hose. I filled mine first and found the more forceful the water sprayer, the more bubbles I achieved. My friend did her “pool” next. But she started out with the water on full force and it blew some of the soap right into her eyes. Well, she started screaming and running home in soap-in-the-eye agony. And then we heard it. We always heard it first before we saw it — the Merry Mobile! My friend’s tears magically dried up as we saw it float around the corner in all its glory. If you are not familiar with the Merry Mobile of the 1960s, you missed out. It was magnificent. To call it an ice cream truck was like saying Elvis sang a few ditties. The Merry Mobile was a round contraption that seemingly floated down the street handing out frozen treats from the gods.
Well, there are no more Merry Mobiles in Memphis. But this Sunday you can make an ice cream sundae at Memphis Botanic Garden in a take-home dish. While you are there you can learn about how your favorite ingredients come from plants, play ice cream-themed games, and pet a cow. Almost like a Merry Mobile. No, not really. It’s probably actually better. The Merry Mobile didn’t have a cow.
Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, 1934 Poplar
Sun., July 19, 2-3:45 p.m.
As you probably already know, Memphis Brooks Museum of Art is having a block party this Saturday to celebrate “The Art of Video Games” exhibition. The party will include art-making, music, film, dance, games, dance demos, a screening of the 1982 sci-fi classic Tron, the results of The Art of Minecraft Design & Build Contest, an Amurica photo booth, and more. A little under the radar, however, is the screening on Sunday of the Caroll Spinney story. Described as “one of the most emotionally effective performing arts docs that’s ever been made,” this loving portrait of the man in the yellow suit features footage of Caroll Spinney’s earliest collaborations with Jim Henson as it traces his journey from bullied child to the man behind Sesame Street’s Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch, roles Spinney has played for nearly a half-century.
In the words of Big Bird, “Super. Duper. Flooper.”
For a full list of what’s happening this weekend in and around Memphis, check out our calendar of events. Also, be sure to tag your favorite Instagram photos of Memphis while you are out and about with the #memphisflyer hashtag. I hope you have a great weekend.