Off Topic Messages

Thu Sep 08, 2005 3:52 pm

I'm not sure what they are doing with the shell, Carolyn, but it is still there. Looks exactly the same as it always has. The only difference was, in previous years you could get onto the stage, but if I remember correctly the stage entrance was blocked off by a chain-link fence.

Thu Sep 08, 2005 4:27 pm

Thought the diggers were in and its a EPE shopping mall now... :twisted:

Thu Sep 08, 2005 5:16 pm

Now that's something ain't it ?

To have been able to actually walk out onto that stage.

I take it the chain link is not really much of a deterent, unless it is electrified.

Thu Sep 08, 2005 6:34 pm

Steve_M wrote:Now that's something ain't it ?

To have been able to actually walk out onto that stage.

I take it the chain link is not really much of a deterent, unless it is electrified.


The fence would be difficult to scale, but the most-determined people find a way, I'm sure. Fortunately, I had the video camera rolling in 1997 when I was there and the fence was not. :)

It really is a neat little venue, Steve. The seats are wooden benches, and are most-likely the originals, which gives the place a very nice flavor.

Thu Sep 08, 2005 7:41 pm

Wow, so those are the very seats, the very layout and the surrounding scenery is exactly what Elvis saw and took in on that very show when all of a sudden he started getting screamed at over a century ago.

goosebump moment just thinking about it.

Thu Sep 08, 2005 7:51 pm

Steve M -

You wrote:
...he started getting screamed at over a century ago.


Err..... it wasn't quite that long ago !

Fri Sep 09, 2005 2:37 am

I have a video of a DOC on the history of memphis...and on it they were saying that the seats ( orig) were gone,and had to be replaced throught time,with weather and been stolen etc.

Fri Sep 09, 2005 3:50 am

iamhekev wrote:I have a video of a DOC on the history of memphis...and on it they were saying that the seats ( orig) were gone,and had to be replaced throught time,with weather and been stolen etc.


Hmmm. That's interesting. The benches that are there are very old and crusty. But, I suppose even 30-year-old benches could weather very quickly, not to mention 50-year-old ones. Perhaps some have been replaced while others remain, I don't know.

Fri Sep 09, 2005 4:45 am

Image


Overton Park Shell, Aug. 2005.

Fri Sep 09, 2005 7:02 am

I was told in March when I was there that nothing has happened there for quite some time. It is seldom used at all.

Fri Sep 09, 2005 3:39 pm

I can see that. The photo I posted was taken minutes before a Backstreet Boys show.

Sat Sep 10, 2005 9:47 pm

Its a good question Carolyn.

I think the place was filled to capacity on that day in July 1954.

This wasn't just ot see Elvis, there was a host of other country artists performing that day, thankfully, as all who came to see those other "established" artists also got to see Elvis by default.

What is amazing and now really cast in legendary stone is their reaction which was natural as Elvis was really still unknown.

Those first screams....boy, can that shells walls tell some stories....

Tue Sep 13, 2005 10:46 pm

The following is partial email I received from Larry Kelley recently. I know Larry is very concerned and is quite involved in the "saving and restoration" of THE OVERTON PARK SHELL. Previously to this year, Larry's son, JAMIE AARON KELLEY, Elvis Performer, has performed the last 4 years at THE SHELL to raise funds to SAVE it from becoming a parking lot!

It's been said, "the last place ELVIS performed has been raized...hopefully the FIRST Public place will be saved!!!"

Email From Larry Kelley:

In June, the Memphis City Council voted $100,000 for architectural and engineering work on the Shell for the fiscal year that began July 1. An architect who worked on a similar bandshell, is expected to go to Memphis and consult and give them realistic $ figures to work with in the campaign to completely refurbish the Shell. A lot of work remains to be done to get things really off the ground! I have a meeting with a gentleman involved in the Memphis side of things for when we get to Elvis Week. More as it comes in.
Keep those fingers and legs still crossed. I can tell you that they likely will take out the benches as they are today and replace them so if you want to see the Shell as it is today, make plans to go there during Elvis Week and take pictures as it may change quite a bit after all is said and done. But at least the main structure will still be standing where Elvis performed.