This will be my 9th Elvis Week, and it seems I get more excited each year. Not sure yet if there will be a Jerry Schilling sighting, but we will be wearing our Jerry’s Girls shirts anyway. There is so much on the schedule, it is sure to be an amazing 11 days. Yes, Elvis Week is more than just a week, it’s actually 9 days and I’m driving for almost 3 of them. This year should be a blast! I’m excited just to see old friends, let alone the excellent events scheduled.
I leave Maryland Thursday August 8th, drive 486 miles to the Smokey Mountains and spend the night. Friday I’ll drive 413 miles to Memphis, pick up my Elvis Week tickets at Graceland, check in to the great Guest House at Graceland, unpack and get organized for the week, and do the Evening Walk Up. Saturday I am going to relax after my long two days of driving and just go to the Elvis Fan & Collector Show at the Travel Lodge (former Magnuson) during the day and attend the Elvis Movie Double Feature in the Guest House Theater at night. Sunday I am spending the day at Graceland, Elvis Presley’s Memphis and the new Exhibition Center. Monday I am going to Jon Daly’s Elvis Con at the new Holiday Inn Express in the morning, attending Sharon Parker’s MeetUp at Marlowe’s in the afternoon and attending Marian Cocke’s final Elvis Presley Memorial Dinner (with hopefully Jerry Schilling) at the Peabody at night.
Tuesday August 13th I’m attending the American Sound Studio Panel in the morning with Ronnie Milsap, BJ Thomas, Mark James, the Memphis Boys and others. I’m going back to Elvis Con that afternoon then to the Ronnie Milsap concert that night. Wednesday morning is my favorite Elvis Week event each year Jon Daly’s Elvis Week Book Sale at Marlowe’s, then I’ll make an appearance at the Fan Celebration Event at the Guest House and attend the American Sound 50th Anniversary Concert that night with BJ Thomas and the Memphis Boys followed by the Elvis Week Bash all throughout Elvis Presley’s Memphis. Thursday morning is the Conversations on Elvis Panel with Bill Morris and Pat West, the Memories of Elvis Dinner Banquet at the Guest House and the Candlelight Vigil that night.
Friday August 16th, the 42nd anniversary of Elvis’ death, begins with the Elvis Gospel Brunch with the Blackwood Brothers Quartet at the Guest House, then my friends dinner at Marlowe’s (a nice group of 13 of us reminiscing how our Elvis Week was). After our MeetUp, we’re going to the 1969 50th Anniversary Concert – Elvis Returns to Vegas with the TCB Band, the Imperials and Estelle Brown followed by the Viva Las Vegas After Party throughout Elvis Presley’s Memphis. Saturday morning is the Elvis in Vegas Panel with the TCB Band, the Imperials, Estelle Brown and others. In the afternoon, I tour Graceland again. That night is the Elvis Presley Gospel Homecoming with the Imperials, the Blackwoods and the Stamps.
Sunday morning August 18th after I pack up my car, I’ll attend the James Burton event in the Guest House Theater then I’ll head for home driving 403 miles stopping just past Knoxville for the night. Monday I’ll make the rest of the way home to Maryland driving just under 500 miles. Usually, I like the bulk of the drive on the first day but they just added this James Burton event celebrating his 80th birthday, which is a pretty rare event, so I’m staying for that then leaving and I don’t like to drive after dark so the bulk of the drive will be on the second day instead.
For the next 11 days, I’ll be in the Elvis bubble where the rest of the world doesn’t exist. If you’d like to jump in with me, please follow me @DeenasDays on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook as I will be posting in real time as much as possible. TCB!