Happy Friday, Memphis! Get out and enjoy the unseasonably warm weather with these five can't-miss weekend events:
The 28th annual International Blues Challenge has brought the best blues musicians from 40 states and 16 countries to Beale St. this weekend. You can see all of the bands competing the semi-finals on Friday night for $15, and check out the solo/duo and band finals at the Orpheum on Saturday. Don't miss the Youth Showcase this afternoon and the Youth Jam at the Hard Rock Cafe tonight if you're intersted in up-and-coming talent.
Shake off the working week at Wine Down, the Dixon's Friday night wine tasting. There will be snacks, six wines available for tasting and live music from Latin jazz singer Marcella Pinilla. It's going to be a low key, very relaxed sort of evening in a cool setting (be sure to wander through the open galleries between drinks).
On Saturday afternoon, some very brave Memphians will don their swimmies and take a dip in the frosty cold Wolf River as part of the Special Olympics' annual Polar Bear Plunge. After the plunge, you can warm up with chili from teams participating the the Chili Cook-Off. If you want to plunge, it's $50 and you absolutely must wear shoes.
The U of M women's basketball team is having a special game to raise awareness for breast cancer on Saturday afternoon at the FedExForum. If you wear pink, you'll get free admission to the 4 p.m. game, and the first 700 fans will get a free pink beanie. The men's team is getting involved too and wearing pink for their noon game against Xavier.
5. Watch the super bowl, various bars, Sunday, 5 p.m., free
It's Super Bowl Sunday, and you know you're going to watch the game (even if it's just for the commercials). Why not watch it at the Flying Saucer, where they're extending pint nite ($3, most pints) for 48 hours, or Kooky Canuck, where there will be specials on 32oz beers, well drinks and wings. There's a big list of downtown parties here, but feel free to add your own in the comments.
If none of these events are your thing, there are a ton more on the blog's calendar. No matter what you do this weekend, I hope you have a blast.