Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Has Ownership of Zippin Pippin Reverted to the City?

Posted on Tue, Aug 21, 2007 at 4:00 AM

When it comes to the Zippin Pippin, the excitement never stops.

During a parks committee meeting earlier today, city attorney Elbert Jefferson asserted that the city of Memphis once again owns Elvis’ favorite roller coaster ride.

Earlier this year, the Zippin Pippin was donated to Save Libertyland, a grassroots organization dedicated to saving the theme park. Members of the group went before the council committee today to discuss the idea of keeping the Zippin and the Grand Carousel in the former park and creating a new mini-park around them.

“This resolution is requesting the city of Memphis preserve and restore the Grand Carousel and the Zippin Pippin as working rides. … We don’t have a clue what would be required,” said Council member Barbara Swearengen Ware. “I think this is irresponsible. This is a blank check.”

But the city broke in that they owned the Pippin, and hypothetically, could do whatever they wanted with it.

“We placed Save Libertyland on notice several times: If they failed to remove the Pippin from the grounds by a certain date, it reverts back to the city,” said Jefferson.

Save Libertyland co-founder Denise Parkinson said that if the city tries to bulldoze the Pippin, Save Libertyland is prepared to take the city back to court.

The council committee ultimately decided to maintain the rides “as is” until the fairgrounds study is released next month.

To read previous stories about Save Libertyland and the Zippin Pippin, click here, here, here, here, and here.

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