7:00 p.m. until
Countdown on Beale is an annual New Year's Eve celebration held in downtown Memphis. Perhaps the most popular New Year's Eve event in town, Countdown on Beale is always packed with tens of thousands of revelers. Here is a look at what you can expect at the celebration:
Bury Your Blues--This fun tradition invites folks to start the new year with a clean slate by "burying their blues." Bring notes, mementos, and photos of your blues (e.g., a Dear John letter, a pink slip from an employer, an overdraft notice from the bank, a photo of an ex, etc.) and toss them into the open coffin on Beale Street. If you aren't going to make it to the celebration, you can email your blues to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Live Music--In addition the music that is always flowing along Beale Street, Countdown on Beale features live music in Handy Park at 8:00 p.m.
Guitar Drop--New York may have a ball drop in Times Square, but Memphis has a guitar drop at the Hard Rock Cafe. Join the crowd and countdown the seconds to midnight when a giant blue Gibson guitar falls outside the Hard Rock Cafe accompanied by a fireworks display.
In addition to the New Year's Eve specific entertainment, Beale will be bustling as always with live music and drink specials in bars and clubs up and down the street. If you can't make it downtown for the celebration, the final minutes of Countdown on Beale will be shown on several local television stations.
If you do plan to attend, keep in mind that parking will be a real challenge. Finding a spot on the street will be nearly impossible and the parking garages will be packed. Be sure to allow yourself plenty of extra time for parking and then for exiting at the end of the night. And of course, if you have had too much to drink, don't try to drive. Call a cab instead--it's a lot cheaper than a DUI.
Countdown on Beale is not the only celebration going on in Memphis, though. Check out these other New Year's Eve events.