Welcome to April in Memphis — the month of spring sunshine, blooming blossoms and plenty of ways to celebrate! We love this month for its focus on philanthropy, fitness and, of course, delectable food festivals. Here are our top picks for fun-filled days in Bluff City this April!
21 Memphis Events & Happenings: April 2017
March 31 through April 9, 2017: Midtown Opera Festival at Playhouse on the Square
Come out to the Playhouse on the Square this March 31 through April 9 and gift your ears the voices of the Midtown Opera! This musical festival will showcase three operas by living American composers: John Musto’s Later the Same Evening, Jake Heggie’s Three Decembers, and Hilliard & Boresi’s Blue Viola. Each opera is preceded by an Opera Prelude Talk, providing audience members with insight into the story, characters and music. And after the opera, attendees are invited to remain in their seats for a “Talk Back” with the artists and creative team. A full festival pass costs $100. Learn more at operamemphis.org.
April 2, 2017: Kosten Foundation Kick It 5K
Get active this April by joining the Kosten Foundation for its 7th Annual Kick It 5K. This family-friendly run will benefit the Herb Kosten Pancreatic Cancer Foundation, so the family can feel good themselves while doing good for others! Plus, runners are encouraged to donate, raise funds and build a team to win prizes. There will also be a silent auction following the race. The fun begins at 2 p.m. at Shelby Farms. Learn more at kickit5k.racesonline.com.
April 5-8, 2017: Memphis Fashion Week
Calling all fashionistas and local business lovers! This April 5 through 8, fashion becomes the focal point of Memphis’ social calendar. Enjoy a Kick Off Party & Featured Designer Trunk Show at The Lab by Memphis Fashion Design Network on Wednesday, April 5, followed by The Chickasaw Oaks Preview Party with VIP Lounge and Trunk Show on Thursday. Find yourself mesmerized by Featured and Headlining Designer’s Runway Shows on Friday, April 7, and finish the weekend off in style with The Emerging Memphis Designer Project Shows at Memphis College of Art on Saturday. All proceeds from this weekend benefit the Memphis Fashion Design Network, and tickets range from $30 to $225. Visit eventbrite.com.
April 8, 2017: Children’s Museum of Memphis’ Easter Through the Looking Glass
Celebrate a “Hoppy” Easter with the Children’s Museum of Memphis as they host a “Through the Looking Glass” day complete with the Easter bunny (also serving as the white rabbit, in this case), Alice, a mysterious feline, a queen who may take your heart and, of course, an entirely mad hatter! The kiddos will love wooden egg decorating, a candy station, face painting and balloon animals. Plus, each child will receive a plush bunny to remember the day! Tickets are $5 for members and $20 for non-members. Learn more at www.cmom.com.
April 8, 2017: Overton Square Crawfish Festival
Celebrate the start to spring the right way — eating crawfish, listening to live music and soaking in the sunshine with the whole family! This all-day festival will feature crawfish and Cajun food, arts and craft vendors and live music. The event begins at noon and admission is free! Visit overtonsquarecrawfishfestival.com.
April 8, 2017: Healthy Memphis Festival at WISEACRE Brewing Co.
If you’re more of a health nut who tries to avoid the greasy and salty options available at most festivals, the Healthy Memphis Festival is just right for you! Head to WISEACRE Brewing Co. to peruse the specialty food offerings from local, diverse and ethnic cuisine vendors to find your healthy fit. Then, enjoy farmers’ market finds, arts and crafts, fine art, home and lifestyle goods and quality imports while taking in some live tunes. There will also be a kids’ corner complete with bouncy houses, games, face painting and balloon artists. Learn more at facebook.com.
April 8, 2017: 13th Annual Mudbug Bash supporting Palmer Home for Children
One of the greatest awareness and fundraising events for Palmer Home is back! Grab the family and head to the square in Hernando, Mississippi, for the 13th Annual Mudbug Bash! This night of festive fun includes delicious food, libations and live music by one of Memphis’ favorite party bands, Hollywood. Each year, a record number of community members fill the streets in celebration of the rescue and restoration of children, raising much-needed funds and a spirit of hope. Feel that uplifting sense of community this April 8 at 6 p.m. Tickets start at $75. Visit palmerhome.org.
April 15, 2017: Kaleidoscope Food Festival
Nothing tickles our fancy quite like a day full of Memphis sunshine and unforgettable eats. This Saturday, April 15, the Binghampton Development Corporation is bringing our foodie dreams to life at the WISEACRE Brewery with the inaugural Kaleidoscope Food Festival! Take a bite into cultures otherwise unexplored through food, storytelling and performances. Vendors will feature multicultural chefs from the Binghampton neighborhood, including Indra’s Dumplings (Nepal), Ibti’s Soup (Sudan), Aroma Kitchen by Flora & CC (South Sudan, Kenya), Raffe’s (Syria) and more. Plus WISEACRE beer will be specially paired with various dishes to bring the best out of both food and drink. The festival runs from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m., and admission is free! Learn more at facebook.com.
April 15, 2017: Harbor Town Crawfish Festival
Explore scenic Harbor Town on Mud Island this April 15 for the 6th Annual Crawfish Festival! Attendees will enjoy live music, crawfish and more, while supporting the Mid-South Food Bank and The Maria Montessori School. This is the perfect event for that Memphis explorer looking to enjoy Mud Island and some finger-lickin’ eats — all while benefiting an important cause. Admission is $5 or bring two canned goods. Learn more at harbortownmemphis.com.
April 19-23, 2017: Africa in April Cultural Awareness Festival
Explore African culture this April with this unique festival grounded in providing awareness to the eclectic, diverse culture of Africa. The festival will showcase Africa through multiple mediums, including education, economics, fashion, music and cuisine. Attendees will enjoy a cultural marketplace complete with four days of fun, festivities and food! Admission is $5. Learn more at facebook.com.
April 21, 2017: Save A Heart Crawfish Boil
Nothing says spring and summer in the South like a crawfish boil. Our favorite part about this one? Proceeds benefit the Gift of Life Mid-South Event, which helps to bring children to Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital in Memphis for lifesaving heart surgery. We can’t think of any better reason to head out to the Agricenter to savor some crawdads and cuisine from vendors like the Tuscan Italian Eatery, Double JJ BBQ and Holiday Ham. And you might win the $1,000 cash prize at the end of the evening! The event runs from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., and tickets start at $50. Visit eventbrite.com.
April 21, 2017: Hoedown for Hope
We can’t get enough of Memphis’ philanthropic April events and the Hoedown for Hope is no exception! This event will take place at Propcellar and will feature live music from Six String Lovers, delicious southern food by Heart & Soul catering, specialty pops from MEMpops, an amazing silent auction, photo booth and a mechanical bull! Best of all, funds raised will benefit the Hope House, a nonprofit organization that has provided quality early childhood education and any social services to HIV-affected children and their families for the past 21 years. The event starts at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $75. Learn more at hopehousememphis.org.
April 22, 2017: 15th Annual Southern Hot Wing Festival for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Memphis
Hot wings and the South go hand-in-hand, and this annual festival celebrates just that. Attendees can expect over 70 vendors bringing the chicken wing to the spotlight with their own unique recipes and fiery sauces. Music, entertainment and the sweet smell of hot wings will draw Memphis’ food lovers to the Tennessee Visitor’s Center April 22, beginning at 11 a.m. and spreading love for the almighty wing until 7 p.m. Proceeds will benefit the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Memphis. Learn more at southernhotwingfestival.com.
April 22, 2017: V&E Greenline Artwalk
Explore Memphis’ booming art scene while raising money and awareness for the V&E Greenline, a community-owned trail that travels through the heart of Midtown and the Vollintine Evergreen Community. On April 22, experience the V&E Greenline Artwalk! This family-friendly event will feature an expected 70 vendors selling their original creations at affordable prices, a silent auction, children’s area, beer, wine and scrumptious BBQ food options (vegetarian options available as well). Learn more at vegreenline.org.
April 22, 2017: GPAC Gala: Celebrating Memphis Music
We’re more than proud of the music that comes out of Memphis, and the GPAC Gala is the best way to celebrate it! Grab your dancing shoes and head to the Germantown Performing Arts Center for an unforgettable evening complete with a full bar showcasing signature cocktails created by GPAC’s very own master mixologist, Brad Pitts; an array of live and silent auction items; and iconic Memphis music. To make the night even more special, Memphis culinary star, Chef Erling Jensen, will prepare a gourmet meal, served on the GPAC stage at the Duncan-Williams Performance Hall. The night will begin at 6 p.m., and tickets are $250. Visit www.gpacweb.com.
April 22, 2017: Memphis BrewFest
Who wouldn’t want to take advantage of a beautiful, spring day by tasting and testing the best of Memphis brews?! Head to AutoZone Park April 22 at 4 p.m. to enjoy classic American beers and the finest, most exotic brews in the world. Beer enthusiasts will spend the evening sampling fresh beers of all colors and tastes near the bluffs of the Mississippi River — talk about the ideal April night! Tickets start at $45. Learn more at www.memphisbrewfest.com.
April 23, 2017: Rajun Cajun Crawfish Festival
Known as the unofficial start to spring, the Rajun Cajun Crawfish Festival is back April 23 in Downtown Memphis! Over 30,000 festival-goers will enjoy live music by nationally known Louisiana Zydeco bands and local award-winning Memphis artists. Crawfish bobbing, eating, racing, arts & crafts, a kids’ zone and VIP extras will make this festival unforgettable. Admission is free. So, grab the whole family and show up with an empty stomach to this year’s highly anticipated Rajun Cajun Crawfish Festival! Visit porterleath.org.
April 25-29, 2017: 37th Annual Southaven Springfest
The Memphis favorite, Southaven Springfest is back for its 37th Annual celebration. Attendees will enjoy delicious BBQ, a beauty pageant, amusement park rides, fabulous entertainment and a weekend to remember! This quintessential Southern small-town festival is the perfect way to celebrate Southern style. So head to the top of Mississippi for a weekend of sunshine, eats and fun, fun, fun! Learn more at southaven.org.
April 27-29, 2017: Art by Design
This interior design showcase is like no other. Thirteen teams of talented designers will create vignettes featuring glimpses into their artistic talents and unique styles, while benefiting over 60 arts organizations through ArtsMemphis! The fun doesn’t stop there, though —this multi-day festival will feature a VIP dinner on Thursday, Kick-off Cocktail Party on Friday and an all-day lineup of impressive demonstrations and presentations on Saturday, April 29. Tickets start at $20. Learn more at www.artsmemphis.org.
April 29, 2017: Taste the Rarity
April is for beer-lovers in Memphis! The 4th Annual Taste of Rarity Invitational Beer Festival will showcase over 30 breweries from across the nation plus the release of Unicornucopia 2017 — a Paloma-inspired Belgian, single-aged in tequila barrels. Broad Avenue will also feature live music from the Mighty Souls Brass Band, backyard games and food trucks! The event begins at 3 p.m., and tickets are $50 to $60. Visit wiseacrebrew.com.
April 29, 2017: 8th Annual East Buntyn ArtWalk
Wander through the eclectic finds in Memphis at the 8th Annual East Buntyn ArtWalk. Featuring regional artists, this open-air bazaar of galleries set up on the front yards and porches of East Buntyn is a vibrant celebration of Memphis’ community. Ideal for Bluff City fans and art lovers alike, the ArtWalk is also kid- and pet-friendly — and admission is free! So, head to East Buntyn at 1 p.m. Visit eastbuntynartwalk.com.
Welcome spring by getting out and celebrating at one of these fabulous events. Happy April!
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