Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Cooper-Young Fest, Big Bugs, Art of Caring

Posted By on Wed, Sep 20, 2017 at 3:58 PM

click to enlarge Pauldarius Brown and Paula Raiford at Cooper-Young Festival. - MICHAEL DONAHUE
  • Michael Donahue
  • Pauldarius Brown and Paula Raiford at Cooper-Young Festival.

You probably bumped into somebody you knew at the Cooper-Young Festival. Literally.

About 125,000 people attended this year’s event, which was held Sept. 17, said Tamara Cook, Cooper-Young Business Association executive director.

“We were down about 5,000 or 10,000, but they think it was probably the football game,” she said.

Cook was referring to the University of Memphis/UCLA game, held the same day. Many Tiger blue shirts were seen at the festival after U of M’s win.

Music was in the air - and not just from the jubilant pigskin fans. “We had 17 bands on three stages,” Cook said. “And that’s not counting the fringe festivals that were going on. Memphis Made had six bands down there. I think Cafe Ole in their back parking lot had bands all day. And bands were at 381 South Cooper. I can’t keep up with all those people. It’s always something new every year.”

This year’s festival also included 425 artists booths, Cook said.

She rated this year’s event as great. “Everything is always good in Cooper-Young. How can it not be?”


click to enlarge Terri Fox and David H. G. Rogers at Big Bugs. - MICHAEL DONAHUE
  • Michael Donahue
  • Terri Fox and David H. G. Rogers at Big Bugs.

Guests drank green “Bug Juice” (not made with bugs, but with green Kool-Aid) and ate bug (made with icing)-decorated cookies at the VIB (Very Big Bug Party) Sept. 14 at Memphis Botanic Center. The event was a preview party for the new exhibit, “David Rogers’s Big Bugs at the Garden.”

The party included sponsors, donors, media, board members and others. As well as the children and grand-children of guests.

David Rogers, who created and built the giant wooden bugs, also attended. The bugs, which stand up to 18-feet tall, represent eight different species.

“It was fun to see the bugs change personalities as the evening grew darker and the colorful lighting of the bugs came up,” said the center’s executive director Mike Allen.

The exhibit, on view through Jan. 1, is “important to MBG in that we hope it will raise awareness about our gardens as a local attraction, break down any barriers or misconceptions people might have about what a botanic garden is, drive more visitors from all parts of our community ot the Garden, increase attendance and, ultimately, create more members.”

OBJECKT 12 will provide the tunes and local food trucks, the food.

Note: Those who want some grown-up “bug juice” can attend the Bug Crawl at the Garden 7 to 10 p.m. Sept. 30. While viewing the big bugs, guests can sip beer from numerous breweries at stations adjacent to each wooden insect.


click to enlarge Jim and Missy Rainer at Art of Caring. - MICHAEL DONAHUE
  • Michael Donahue
  • Jim and Missy Rainer at Art of Caring.
About 250 people attended Art of Caring Sept. 14 at Shelby Farms Park FedEx Event Center, said Missy Rainer, who co-chaired the event with her husband, Jim.

The event benefits the Baptist Reynolds Hospice House in Collierville and the Center for Good Grief.

Dana and Frazer Gieselmann were honorary co-chairs of the event, which included food from A Moveable Feast and a silent auction.

Judy Vandergrift worked on a painting in the midst of the partiers. The completed work then was included in the silent auction.

Ken Hall was art curator.

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