Midtown is one of the 5 defined districts of Memphis, Tennessee, USA containing different individual areas loosely defined as Danny Thomas on the West, North Parkway and Summer to the North, Highland to the East and Lamar and Park to the South.
Architecturally, Midtown is marked with residential vintage housing, specialty stores, and high-rise buildings, often all located on the same avenue. This is partly due to the fact that much of Midtown was constructed prior to the enactment of not comparable zoning laws, and it is not uncommon to see an apartment complex nestled inside of a neighborhood.
Midtown Is Memphis Edit
Culturally, Midtown has a very diverse population, having an evenly distributed black and white population, as well as a notable Asian population. This diversity has gotten Midtown Memphis noted in several magazines for having "the best Memphis has to offer right at your doorstep." This slogan eventually inspired a bumper sticker that can be seen throughout the city, which proclaims "Midtown is Memphis."
The slogan and bumper sticker "Midtown Is Memphis" were created in 1993 by Midtowners John Branston and Tom Foster as part of a promotional campaign.
The exact boundaries of Midtown are often disputed. Generally, it is the area between the Medical District to the west and East Memphis to the east. Some will say the eastern boundary line is East Parkway, others the CN RR line just past East Parkway, others as far east as Highland Street. The northern boundary is just as difficult to find agreement on. Some will say North Parkway, others the abandoned L&N RR line that runs NE, still others put it as far north as Jackson and even Vollintine. The southern line to Midtown is roughly the Union Pacific/CSX RR line east to McLean, south down McLean to Norfolk Southern RR line and east the eastern boundary, be it East Parkway, CN RR, or Highland. The least disputed boundary of Midtown is the western border, which is commonly regarded as the Midtown section of Interstate 240.
Midtown is bisected by three primary east-west avenues:
- Union, which since World War II has served as the area's main commercial artery;
- Poplar, which is largely fronted by 1920s apartment buildings;
- Madison, which served as pre-war Memphis' main east-west corridor. Madison Avenue was once the location of the "Dummy Line", the main east-west streetcar line that went from downtown to the Fairgrounds (east along Madison, south down Cooper, and east along Young), and many commercial and residential structures along the avenue date to the beginning of the twentieth century. Most of this stretch of Madison contains its original granite curbs, and in a few locations the original brick pavers can be seen in the gutters.
Educational Opportunities Edit
Midtown provides many excellent opportunities for education. There are quality public schools like Snowden Elementary and Central High School, both of which offer optional programs. Private schools including Grace Saint Luke's Episcopal School, Immaculate Conception Catholic School and Catholic High School are in Midtown. Major colleges Christian Brothers University, Crichton College, Memphis College of Art, Memphis Theological Seminary, Rhodes College, and the Southern College of Optometry are also located in Midtown Memphis.
Midtown contains Overton Park which includes the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, the Memphis Zoo, and the Memphis College of Art. It is also known for its many bars and restaurants, many of them featuring live music at nights. These include Alex's Tavern, Bosco's, Huey's, Side Street Bar & Grill, Zinnie's, and others. Located in the Cooper-Young neighborhood are also coffeehouses, restaurants and bars, including Young Avenue Deli, Cafe Olé, Celtic Crossing, and Java Cabana. Located in Midtown Memphis is also a local movie theatre, Studio On The Square, and the city's only professional theatre troupe, Playhouse on the Square, which currently runs three separate theatres.
The Cooper-Young Festival is also held annually at the intersection of Cooper and Young, in Midtown. Another area, Overton Square holds a St. Patrick's Day celebration.
Mid-town has also been home to the Mid-South Fair for 152 years. The year 2008 is the last year that the Mid-South Fair will be held in Memphis. Starting in 2009 the Mid-South Fair will be held on newly acquired land at Tunica Resorts, Mississippi.
- ↑ Callahan, Jody. "Mid-South Fair moving to Tunica", The Commercial Appeal, 2008-05-18.
- ↑ Thomas, Peter. "County lands Mid-South Fair", The Tunica Times, 2008-05-22.
- ↑ Sheffield, Michael. "Tunica new home of Mid-South Fair starting in 2009", Memphis Business Journal, 2008-05-20.
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