Why We Love Memphis, Volume II

For the Valentine’s Day, Love Issue of StoryBoard last February – an era ago, 2019 that is – we asked Memphians to share what they love about Memphis. 

During this pandemic and for the slow reopening, faced with so many unknowns about what Memphis we will have left on the other side, here is the second set of what some Memphians said then, and how their expressions echo, loudly, today.

BEST READS: Bringing back popular articles to introduce to new readers, sponsored by Captain & Co. Real Estate, LLC for their “Memphis Mondays” series. Look for Captain & Co.’s Memphis every Monday.

What do I love? If I had to choose just one thing I would say our soul. We feel through our music, our art, our food, our people. We are all family. Memphis is a big small town where we share deeply and connect through our passions. At the end of each day we are all Memphians. We love, cry, and bleed the same. With a whole lot of grit, a whole lot of soul, and voices that carry in one melodious harmony which mimics our mighty Mississippi. I Love You, Memphis! You have made me.

~Penny Pulse Callonas, Memphian

Memphis is home! It is an integral part of who I am and I want to be there and to do what I can to make it into the wonderful city that many who don’t live there see it as. It is time for Memphians to stop fighting each other and start working together. We do have grit and soul and creativity and so much to offer.

~Rachel Scott Woodall, Memphian

Panorama of Overton Park’s Greensward on a spring day, 2020

I have lived in Memphis my entire life but never took the time to really see my city. Until two years ago, when I made it a point to change that, when my children and I explored our city like travelers.

The National Civil Rights Museum ignited our desire to learn more about the pioneers in the movement. Stax and Sun studios made us want to know more about the rich Memphis music history.

We were captivated by the views from the Ornamental Metal Museum, Big River Crossing, the top of The Peabody and the top of Clark Tower.

We explored the trails of Lichterman Nature Center, the River Walk at Mud Island, and Shelby Farms. Woodland Discovery Playground is the kind of place I dreamed of when I was a kid.

I love my city and I am proud to call it home. I want my children to feel the same way.

I am not blind to the problems that plague our city; they are pointed out daily on the local news. And I don’t want my children to turn a blind eye to the obstacles we face, but I also don’t want them to complain about them either.

I love my city so much I want to make a difference here. I want my children to feel the same way.

~Kelly King Howe,
beauty in the ordinary blog & StoryBoard contributor

Memphis with its many layers of complexities has a sense of resiliency that allows her to look beyond her faults, reestablish her needs and give it yet another try.

~Lakethen Mason, Win Sum Agency

Memphis is a city that I feel like I both know intimately and am constantly discovering. It is a city that has a rich history and is unique – when you are in Memphis, you know that you are in Memphis. I love learning about the history of particular spaces in the city, especially spaces that have a present connection to my life. I also love that there are so many positive changes going on in Memphis right now. I am particularly enjoying watching historic buildings come back to life through adaptive reuse projects.

Memphis is a really exciting place to be!

~Emily Cohen, curator of Newman to Now

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