10 Things You Must Do In Memphis

10 Things You Must Do In Memphis

There's more to Memphis than music fest and barbecue.
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With so many different things to do in Memphis, it can be hard to figure out what to do. So here's a list of local favorites for you to chose from!

1. Memphis Pyramid



The Memphis Pyramid is a Memphis staple. In the recent years, it was turned into a bass pro shop and it's huge. Inside there's water that some of the boats float in. A sky deck that looks over the river, which is a really good place to have a few pictures taken. A restaurant, bowling alley, fudge shop, and real alligators.

2. Harbor Town





Another cool place to go see is harbor town. Harbor town has cute restaurants and shops. Harbor town is in the middle of the Mississippi river, and it’s the best place to catch some sun and hang out by the river.

3. Local Eats

Memphis is known for Barbecue, but that’s not all we have here. In fact, we have a lot of different places that are really good and only here. Huey’s is a burger place that every Memphian has been to. Muddy’s Bake Shop is one of the best places to get some cupcakes if you have a sweet tooth. If you want some coffee, Café Eclectic is the place to go. A few other local places are Kooky Canuck, Gibson’s Donuts, Chings, Dyers and many more.

4. I love Memphis Mural

The I love Memphis mural is something most Memphians have taken at least one picture with. In the heart of Cooper Young you can take prom pictures, senior pictures, or just randomly stop by and take pictures with it. No one will judge you because it’s a Memphis thing.

5. Shelby Farms

Shelby Farms is the outdoor place to go. There’s a pretty lake, which you rent a boat or bring your own. Also, there are several playgrounds for children to play on, and horse rides. They also to do holiday themed attractions like spooky nights and starry nights.

6. The Malco Drive-In

On summer nights, if you don’t feel like spending time in a movie theater, you can just go watch a movie at the drive-in. With three different big screens, snacks, and your car, you can have a night to remember. You can also act like you are in the 1980’s since its such vintage thing to do.

7. Memphis Zoo

The Memphis zoo is one of the best in the country. From elephants to pandas to sea lions, there’s something for the entire family to see. The zoo isn’t free, but on Tuesday if you are a Tennessee resident you can go for free! They have professional pictures, really cool gift shops, and they even host a lot of the proms. If you’re feeling hot, just kick off your shoes and put your feet in the wade pool, or grab some ice cream. In December, they have zoo lights and ice skating, they even have fake snow when you first walk in!

8. Graceland

Memphis is the home of Graceland! Thousands of Elvis Presley fans travel to Memphis, Tennessee just to visit Graceland. You can visit his house, which has a kidney shaped swimming pool, you can see his planes, his wardrobe, the meditation garden, and cemetery. You can even stay at the Graceland guest house.

9. Overton Square

Overton Square is the heart of Midtown. With lots of different murals to take pictures with, it’s definitely one of the best places to see. It has a lot of different restaurants, bars, and cute little shops. It’s also home to Overton Park, our biggest park. Overton Square also hosts many different things like the crawfish festival, Greek festival, and the Italian Festival. So whether you’re looking for a night out or a family day, Overton Square is just the right place.

10. Beale Street

Beale Street is what Memphis is known for, with bars, restaurants, and shops, it’s the place to be all week long. During the day it’s a great place for your family and at night, it’s a perfect night out with your friends or date night because there’s something for everyone.

Cover Image Credit: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Digital Visual Library

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Your Wait time At Theme Parks Is Not Unfair, You're Just Impatient

Your perceived wait time is always going to be longer than your actual wait time if you can't take a minute to focus on something other than yourself.

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Toy Story Land at Disney's Hollywood Studios "unboxed" on June 30, 2018. My friend and I decided to brave the crowds on opening day. We got to the park around 7 AM only to find out that the park opened around 6 AM. Upon some more scrolling through multiple Disney Annual Passholder Facebook groups, we discovered that people were waiting outside the park as early as 1 AM.

We knew we'd be waiting in line for the bulk of the Toy Story Land unboxing day. There were four main lines in the new land: the line to enter the land; the line for Slinky Dog Dash, the new roller coaster; the line for Alien Spinning Saucers, the easier of the new rides in the land; Toy Story Mania, the (now old news) arcade-type ride; and the new quick-service restaurant, Woody's Lunchbox (complete with grilled cheese and "grown-up drinks").

Because we were so early, we did not have to wait in line to get into the land. We decided to ride Alien Spinning Saucers first. The posted wait time was 150 minutes, but my friend timed the line and we only waited for 50 minutes. Next, we tried to find the line for Slinky Dog Dash. After receiving conflicting answers, the runaround, and even an, "I don't know, good luck," from multiple Cast Members, we exited the land to find the beginning of the Slinky line. We were then told that there was only one line to enter the park that eventually broke off into the Slinky line. We were not about to wait to get back into the area we just left, so we got a Fastpass for Toy Story Mania that we didn't plan on using in order to be let into the land sooner. We still had to wait for our time, so we decided to get the exclusive Little Green Man alien popcorn bin—this took an entire hour. We then used our Fastpass to enter the land, found the Slinky line, and proceeded to wait for two and a half hours only for the ride to shut down due to rain. But we've come this far and rain was not about to stop us. We waited an hour, still in line and under a covered area, for the rain to stop. Then, we waited another hour and a half to get on the ride from there once it reopened (mainly because they prioritized people who missed their Fastpass time due to the rain). After that, we used the mobile order feature on the My Disney Experience app to skip part of the line at Woody's Lunchbox.

Did you know that there is actually a psychological science to waiting? In the hospitality industry, this science is the difference between "perceived wait" and "actual wait." A perceived wait is how long you feel like you are waiting, while the actual wait is, of course, the real and factual time you wait. There are eight things that affect the perceived wait time: unoccupied time feels longer than occupied time, pre-process waits feel longer than in-process waits, anxiety makes waits feel longer, uncertain waits are longer than certain waits, unexplained waits are longer than explained waits, unfair waits are longer than equitable waits, people will wait longer for more valuable service and solo waiting feels longer than group waiting.

Our perceived wait time for Alien Spinning Saucers was short because we expected it to be longer. Our wait for the popcorn seemed longer because it was unoccupied and unexplained. Our wait for the rain to stop so the ride could reopen seemed shorter because it was explained. Our wait between the ride reopening and getting on the coaster seemed longer because it felt unfair for Disney to let so many Fastpass holders through while more people waited through the rain. Our entire wait for Slinky Dog Dash seemed longer because we were not told the wait time in the beginning. Our wait for our food after placing a mobile order seemed shorter because it was an in-process wait. We also didn't mind wait long wait times for any of these experiences because they were new and we placed more value on them than other rides or restaurants at Disney. The people who arrived at 1 AM just added five hours to their perceived wait

Some non-theme park examples of this science of waiting in the hospitality industry would be waiting at a restaurant, movie theater, hotel, performance or even grocery store. When I went to see "Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom," the power went out in the theater right as we arrived. Not only did we have to wait for it to come back and for them to reset the projectors, I had to wait in a bit of anxiety because the power outage spooked me. It was only a 30-minute wait but felt so much longer. At the quick-service restaurant where I work, we track the time from when the guest places their order to the time they receive their food. Guests in the drive-thru will complain about 10 or more minute waits, when our screens tell us they have only been waiting four or five minutes. Their actual wait was the four or five minutes that we track because this is when they first request our service, but their perceived wait begins the moment they pull into the parking lot and join the line because this is when they begin interacting with our business. While in line, they are experiencing pre-process wait times; after placing the order, they experience in-process wait times.

Establishments in the hospitality industry do what they can to cut down on guests' wait times. For example, theme parks offer services like Disney's Fastpass or Universal's Express pass in order to cut down the time waiting in lines so guests have more time to buy food and merchandise. Stores like Target or Wal-Mart offer self-checkout to give guests that in-process wait time. Movie theaters allow you to check in and get tickets on a mobile app and some quick-service restaurants let you place mobile or online orders. So why do people still get so bent out of shape about being forced to wait?

On Toy Story Land unboxing day, I witnessed a woman make a small scene about being forced to wait to exit the new land. Cast Members were regulating the flow of traffic in and out of the land due to the large crowd and the line that was in place to enter the land. Those exiting the land needed to wait while those entering moved forward from the line. Looking from the outside of the situation as I was, this all makes sense. However, the woman I saw may have felt that her wait was unfair or unexplained. She switched between her hands on her hips and her arms crossed, communicated with her body language that she was not happy. Her face was in a nasty scowl at those entering the land and the Cast Members in the area. She kept shaking her head at those in her group and when allowed to proceed out of the land, I could tell she was making snide comments about the wait.

At work, we sometimes run a double drive-thru in which team members with iPads will take orders outside and a sequencer will direct cars so that they stay in the correct order moving toward the window. In my experience as the sequencer, I will inform the drivers which car to follow, they will acknowledge me and then still proceed to dart in front of other cars just so they make it to the window maybe a whole minute sooner. Not only is this rude, but it puts this car and the cars around them at risk of receiving the wrong food because they are now out of order. We catch these instances more often than not, but it still adds stress and makes the other guests upset. Perhaps these guests feel like their wait is also unfair or unexplained, but if they look at the situation from the outside or from the restaurant's perspective, they would understand why they need to follow the blue Toyota.

The truth of the matter is that your perceived wait time is always going to be longer than your actual wait time if you can't take a minute to focus on something other than yourself. We all want instant gratification, I get it. But in reality, we have to wait for some things. It takes time to prepare a meal. It takes time to experience a ride at a theme park that everyone else wants to go on. It takes time to ring up groceries. It takes patience to live in this world.

So next time you find yourself waiting, take a minute to remember the difference between perceived and actual wait times. Think about the eight aspects of waiting that affect your perceived wait. Do what you can to realize why you are waiting or keep yourself occupied in this wait. Don't be impatient. That's no way to live your life.

Cover Image Credit:

Aranxa Esteve

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6 Places you have to visit In Alabama

You know what they say, "Alabama the beautiful," right? Here are 6 beautiful places to visit throughout the state of Alabama.

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6. Prattville Wilderness Park/Bamboo Forest

Prattville Parks and Facilities


This park has huge oriental bamboo soaring 60 feet to form a canopy in the sky. Along with the giant bamboo, the park is home to the state's second largest breech tree. While in Prattville, you can also visit the set of the movie "Big Fish".

5. Colleges within Alabama

Anniston Star- JSU

With several universities within the state, it could make a fun trip just to see how beautiful the campuses really are. University of Alabama (Roll Tide!) located in Tuscaloosa, AL, Auburn University located in Auburn, AL, University of North Alabama located in Florence, AL, and Jacksonville State University (Go Gamecocks!) located in Jacksonville, AL, are a few really pretty campuses within the state. I might be a little biased about JSU, though. 😉

4. Dismals Canyon

North Alabama Hiking

With it located in Northwest Alabama Dismals Canyon is an 85 acre natural conservatory that is privately owned and operated. It is a 1.5 mile hiking trail with the temperature running 14 degrees below Alabama's summer average. The canyon provides the perfect habitat for the unique insects, known as Dismalites, to survive. These insects emit bright blue-green lights to attract flying insects as food.

3. Natchez Trace Parkway

Natchez Trace Parkway- Rock Spring

The middle part of the Trace travels through northwest Alabama. Alabama's section of the Trace is 33 miles long and crosses over the Tennessee River. There are several towns off the trace along the way, that you can stop off in to visit. A few of the main attractions throughout Alabama include Rock Spring, which is a small natural spring with a twenty minute walking trail to show you around the area. After completing the walk, you might decide to pull off your shoes and dangle your feet in the cool water. One more is the Colbert Ferry. Visit: https://www.natcheztracetravel.com/natchez-trace-alabama/florence-tennessee-river/124-colbert-ferry.html to find out more about the Colbert Ferry.

2. Cheaha State Park

Alabama State Parks

Located in Delta, Alabama, Cheaha State Park is where the highest point in Alabama rests at 2,407 feet above sea level. This park just so happens to be named by the Native American "Creek" nation in Muskogee language, with "Chaha" meaning "high place."

1. Gulf Shores

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Not just Gulf Shores, but all the other beaches along Alabama's coast. Many people may not realize that Alabama has a Gulf Coast front, but we sure do! The Gulf State Park has beaches, trails and a pier to visit while you're down there.

Alabama is known for football, the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, and numerous other things, but maybe now you see how pretty the state can be. Proud to be from Alabama is an understatement.

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