The Candlelight Vigil is Elvis Week's main event, and the only one that completely captures the week's unique blend of reverence, kitsch and fun. It's also one of those things that you've got to do at least once before you die.
Assignment #224 in the 365 Things to Do in Memphis is to queue up at the gates of Graceland for the Candleight Vigil.
The annual candlelight vigil is an odd mixture of somber and celebratory. The devoted wait in line for hours to file quietly past Elvis' gravesite. Others build makeshift shrines on the street and sit around them in lawn chairs. Quite a few people come in costume.
This year's vigil starts at 8 p.m. on Wednesday night, though the hardcore will be lined up long before that. The line moves until everyone who's wanted to pay their respects has had a chance – usually sometime early the next morning. If you can't make it to the vigil, you can stream it online. The vigil (and parking during the vigil) are free.
35th Annual Elvis Week Candlelight Vigil
Wednesday, Aug. 15, 8 p.m. – until