Tom Lee Park is a community park overlooking the Mississippi River, situated to the immediate west of downtown Memphis , Tennessee. It provides panoramic views of the Mississippi River and the coasts of Arkansas on the opposite side, encompassing about 30 acres (12 ha) parallel to the Mississippi River for about one mile (1.6 km). The park is named after Tom Lee, an African-American river worker, who rescued the lives of 32 M.E. sinking steamboat passengers.
The Beale Street Music Festival that kicks off Memphis in May, Tom Lee Park is a popular venue for walkers, joggers, roller bladers and cyclists, and hosts one event every year.
Tom Lee Park is approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) long, but at no point is it more than 400 ft (120 m) wide. It occupies approximately 12 ha (30 acres), running south from Beale Street, bordered to the west by the Mississippi River, and east by Riverside Blvd, offering panoramic views of the Mississippi River.
Overlooking the park and the water, luxury homes and condominiums line the top of the bluff.
Events held in Tom Lee Park
The park is well known in the city and area as the location of numerous outdoor activities, among other sites organized throughout the year.
A high-profile event in the park is the annual Memphis in May celebration.
During the Memphis in May celebration, the Beale Street Music Festival is a three-day affair, featuring over 60 musical acts each year on four stages, in different genres such as blues, hip-hop, and metal.
The Sunset Symphony concert, the Memphis Symphony Orchestra’s largest annual performance event, since discontinued, was a highlight in the park during the weekend of Memorial Day, marking the end of the May celebration in Memphis. It was replaced by an event named “Celebrate Memphis” marking the conclusion of the month long affair.
Barbecue Cooking Contest
The World Barbecue Cooking Contest Championship, held on the third weekend of May, is the largest pork barbecue cooking competition in the world, bringing hundreds of participants from around the world to Tom Lee Park.
Memphis, Tennessee, is home to some gorgeous green, open spaces and parks for you to lose yourself in. Check out these others you shouldn’t miss:
- Shelby Farms Park
- Memphis Park
- Peabody Park
- Greenbelt Park
- Overton Park
- Martyrs Park
- Heroes Park
- Nesbit Park – Stanky Creek Trails
These amazing parks are located just down the street from our location at South Third Street across from The Southgate Shopping Center. Stop by for a visit anytime!