Friday, May 16, 2008

Don't Do BBQ? Here Are Some Alternatives

Posted on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 4:00 AM

Swarms of Memphian are packing Tom Lee Park this weekend for the annual meat fest (otherwise known as the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest). It's not a pretty sight if you’re not a fan of crowds or general drunken debauchery. Here are a few more options.

Get your barbecue fix without fighting the crowds at the Animal Protection Association's Memphis in May Barbecue Party. Held in a location far, far away from downtown (6461 River Tide Drive … not Riverside Drive), this scaled-down version of the city's annual pig party raises money for APA’s programs. The festivities begin at 6:30 p.m. tonight.

Honestly though, barbecue makes you fat, and it contributes to the death of cute little piggies. So you may want to skip the glutton festivals and opt for the Memphis in May Triathlon instead. Athletes compete in a 1.5K swim, a 40K bike race, and a 10K run to raise money for the Church Health Center. The triathlon begins tonight at Edmund Orgill Park in Millington and runs through Sunday night.

The American Diabetes Association recommends eating less meat to avoid adult-onset diabetes. Here in Memphis, we’re not strangers to obesity and its related health problems. Artists Frank D. Robinson Jr. has created a series of paintings addressing health ills, such as diabetes, in urban communities. The show, titled "Dis-Ease … Don’t Nobody Know My Troubles, But God," opens at the Caritas Village tonight from 6-9 p.m.

If you do give in to the gluttony of barbecue fest, walk off those extra pounds Saturday morning during the Sierra Club's Vollintine-Evergreen Greenline Walk. Sierra Club members will provide a history lesson during the walk through Midtown’s rails-to-trails park. Meet up at the train station on the corner of Tutweiler and Dickinson on Saturday at 8:45 a.m.

For something totally unrelated to health or food, stop by the Michael Rose Theatre on the University of Memphis campus on Saturday night for the SNAP! Music Academy Spring Concert featuring kids from STAX's music program. The show will also feature Kenneth Whalum and Dexter and Otis Redding III, relatives of the late Otis Redding. The show begins at 7 p.m.

Speaking of Otis Redding, soul fans will have a chance to meet with the late musician's family at the STAX Museum of American Soul Music's panel discussion titled Conversations with the Reddings. The event is scheduled for Sunday, May 18 from 5-7 p.m. For more weekend fun, check out the Flyer's searchable online calendar.

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