Memphis should and absolutely could host an All-Star weekend. The star-studded event would be a boon for the local economy, and an excellent opportunity to showcase our plentiful attractions, historic culture, and Southern hospitality. Natives and visitors alike would have a great time.
The rest of the country will finally discover the vast culinary metropolis that lies beyond Gus' Fried Chicken and The Rendezvous. I'm talking about Ching's Wings, Payne's, Jerry's Sno Cones, Coletta's, Chili's, Piccadilly Cafeteria, Bar Louie, Perkins, The Chicago Pizza Factory... The list goes on and on my friends!
Tourists can also take advantage of our plethora of things to do. There's The National Civil Rights Museum, Sun Studio, Stax, Graceland, Beale Street, The Agricenter, Thomas Kinkade gallery at Wolfchase Galleria, taking a dip in the Mississippi river, and taking a leisurely drive down Airways boulevard. Truly too many to list!
Critics will tell you that Memphis doesn't have enough hotel rooms to accommodate the volume of tourists and personnel that comes with hosting an ASG weekend. Those critics are dead wrong. Look closer.
We have beautiful historic hotels like The Peabody, modern palaces of luxury like The Westin, a bounty of rustic offerings at the Bass Pro Pyramid, We also have a wealth of untapped real estate that can be transformed into cozy accommodations in the snap of a finger. Or the snap of two fingers. It takes two fingers to make the snap happen. OK yes I've heard the story about the guy who could snap with one finger but that's just an urban myth.
Back to how we can actually accommodate everyone for ASG weekend: we've been wondering what do do with the Coliseum. Why not make it a giant hostel? And if you cant get a room at Bass Pro Pyramid, grab a tent and set up camp in one of our many green spaces: Shelby Farms, Overton Park, Autozone Park, the Liberty Bowl, between industrial sites on President's Island, whatever Secret Garden ish is going on behind that plywood door and facade on South Main (you know the one).
We have lots of abandoned buildings. There are some churches downtown that I'm pretty sure are empty. I think we even have an abandoned Church's Fried Chicken where people could bring sleeping bags. And just think of the beautiful Sterick building! With 29 floors and over 350k square feet of space, this building alone could house ten ASG weekends if we have enough asbestos masks.
The point is, Memphis is ready and able to host the most fabulous All-Star Game in NBA history. Hopefully our city leaders and the league realize what a golden opportunity we have on our hands.