If asked to single out one residential neighborhood that best represents a uniquely “Memphis” setting, most would point to Central Gardens in Midtown. This National Historic District symbolizes amazing endurance and perseverance, boasts 1,350 residences and churches, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Central Gardens Home & Garden Tour in Memphis
One of the homes on the 2015 Central Gardens Home & Garden Tour is located at 247 Kimbrough Place. This home was built in 1926. The current and longtime owner is a music teacher and well-known pianist, thus, there are several music rooms throughout.

On Sunday, September 13, residents of the Central Gardens community will pause from their daily routines to welcome guests for the 39th Annual Central Gardens Historic District Home & Garden Tour. The architectural artisty and tree-lined boulevards of this locale represent a genuine glimpse of Memphis, both past and present. The event promises an afternoon of entertainment, arts, Memphis history, grand architecture and a showing of elegant interiors. This much-anticipated tour appeals to history buffs, home and garden aficionados, and Sunday afternoon strollers alike.

Central Gardens Home & Garden Tour, Memphis
This home at 283 Kimbrough Place, another 2015 tour home, is on a grand corner lot. Many features from the original 1940s structure are still in place, such as the tiles and banister in the entry. A large addition and kitchen have been added in recent years.

Architectural variety graces the homes in Central Gardens, including Arts and Crafts-, Tudor-, Victorian- and Period-style features. Most of the homes in this neighborhood were architect-designed and custom built for the first owners during a time when there was great appreciation for natural materials and an extreme emphasis on craftsmanship.

CGA guests at the Memphis home and garden tour 2014
Tina and Emily McElravey, (l-r), mother-daughter attendees at last year’s tour

This year’s walking tour will showcase eight homes from the 1920s, ’30s and ’40s that are located along Kimbrough Place and Vance Avenue. For anyone who wants more, there is also a walking tour phone app of more than 80 other historic homes not on the 2015 schedule. The app includes a GPS-enabled guide for the Central Gardens Arboretum, as well. Central Gardens was designated a Level III Accredited Arboretum by the state of Tennessee in 2008. It is one of only two of this stature in the Volunteer State and home to some 90-plus species of trees, many of which are more than 80 years old.

Docents for the CGA Home & Garden Tour, Memphis
Docents from last year’s tour (l to r): Gina Brewer, Kristy Glassman and Barrie Simpson, who is also this year’s Central Gardens Association president

Car enthusiasts will enjoy the 2015 tour addition of a vintage car display, including a 1963 Triumph TR3 convertible and a 1926 Ford. And plan to linger, as Opera Memphis will provide entertainment the afternoon of the tour as part of its 30 Days of Opera series throughout the city.

CGA hashtag for the Central Gardens Home & Garden Tour, Memphis
Tour participant Kristy Glassman promoting the #CGAHomeTour hashtag

What could be more pleasant than delightful entertainment combined with a peek into local history in one of Memphis’ most scenic neighborhoods?

Tour hours are 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., and tickets can be purchased in advance for $12 on the Central Gardens website and at multiple retail locations in town. Tickets may also be purchased at any home on tour day for $15. Visit the Central Gardens website for locations, additional information and a look at the 2015 tour venue.

Click here to get the Central Gardens app, or search Central Gardens and download for free. The app is available for iOS and Android devices.


About the Author
Christian Owen