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5 Rockin’ Offsite Event Venues for Groups Visiting Memphis, Tennessee

The Gates to Elvis Presley's Memphis in Graceland. Photo Credit Andrea Zucker and the Memphis CVB

What do Elvis Presley, B.B. King and Otis Redding all have in common? Despite being among the most popular musicians of the 20th century, each of these legends got their start in Memphis, Tennessee. For this reason, many people know Memphis as Home of the Blues and the Birthplace of Rock ‘n’ Roll, but there is so much more that this river city has to offer, especially when it comes to offsite event venues for meetings and events.

From pyramids to historic mansions to rockin’ music venues, these are the coolest offsite venues for groups looking to have their next gathering in Memphis.

Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid

The Memphis Pyramid is an iconic staple of Memphis’ downtown and is commonly known throughout the area for being the 10th largest pyramid in the world, standing tall at 32 stories. Originally used as a 20,000-seat sporting, entertainment and religious event space, in 2015 the 535,000-square-foot steel pyramid re-opened after a complete renovation as a Bass Bro Shops retail store

Exterior of the Big Cypress Lodge at Bass Pro Shop Pyramid. Photo Credit: Jarrod Connolly
Exterior of the Big Cypress Lodge at Bass Pro Shop Pyramid. Photo Credit: Jarrod Connolly 

But the Bass Pro Shops Pyramid, as it’s colloquially called, isn’t just a retail outlet. The structure also houses a variety of attractions and activities including an entertainment patio, interactive wetlands education museum, Wahlburgers restaurant, 13-lane bowling alley, 600,000-gallon water tank and aquarium, archery and pistol range, 28-story elevator and a glass observation deck overlooking downtown Memphis. 

[Related: 4 Tennessee Banquet Venues with a View]

The Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid also features a 103-room hotel called the Big Cypress Lodge and several meeting and event venues. The largest of these event venues is the Mississippi Terrace outdoor entertainment patio, a 7,000-square-foot venue located on the third floor of the pyramid and able to accommodate 150 attendees. The patio also connects to the Ducks Unlimited Gallery and Waterfowl Gallery rooms to provide an additional 1,400 square feet of space and the ability to accommodate groups of up to 800 when combined. 

Big Cypress Lodge is also able to provide a variety of group activities utilizing some of the venues at the Pyramid, including trips to the observation deck, sharp shooting and archery, a tour of the 4,300-square-foot Ducks Unlimited Water Fowling Heritage Center, underwater bowling and other attractions across downtown Memphis.

Elvis Presley’s Graceland

Graceland Mansion Exterior. Photo Credit David Meany
Graceland Mansion Exterior. Photo Credit: David Meany

Elvis Presley is one of the most famous musicians of the 20th century, and groups can visit his historic landmark mansion and 120-acre property that will let them experience the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll like never before. 

Explore the newly restored historic Graceland mansion where Elvis and his family lived and experience the 200,000-square-foot entertainment and exhibit center, Elvis Presley’s Memphis, where you can tour several museums and exhibits surrounding Elvis’ life and his role in launching a music and pop culture revolution.

Graceland also features The Guest House at Graceland hotel, a AAA Four-Diamond resort hotel just steps away from the iconic mansion. The Guest House at Graceland features 17 meeting and event venues spread across 22,000 square feet of meeting, theater and prefunction space. The largest of these venues is the 11,000-square-foot Grand Ballroom able to accommodate groups of up to 1,200 in theater-style seating. As an added bonus, groups who host their event at Graceland will have the opportunity to book a private after-hours tour of the Graceland mansion and other attractions at the Elvis Presley’s Memphis exhibit complex, the ability to dine among Elvis’ classic car collection and the option to eat at multiple onsite restaurants.

Shelby Farms Park

Located just east of the city lies Shelby Farms Park, one of the largest urban parks in the country at 4,500 acres, covering nearly five times the area of New York City’s Central Park. The public park features more than 40 miles of trails, 20 bodies of water, a 2,000-acre forest and over 200 species of wildlife including three dozen buffalo. The park also features a variety of activities including ziplining, horseback riding, paintball, laser tag and more. 

[Related: Teambuilding in Tennessee - Activities to Help Groups Connect]

Shelby Farms Park has a variety of event venues including the FedEx Event Center, which houses the 7,200-square-foot Lakeside Ballroom and two breakout rooms that offer over 500 square feet of additional event space. The park also features several outdoor venues including seven outdoor pavilions able to accommodate anywhere from 30 to 100 attendees, and the Great Lawn and Outdoor Stage, which provides the perfect meeting spaces for festivals, concerts or teambuilding activities.

Live Music Venues

As a city known for its music scene, it isn’t surprising that Memphis is home to a variety of live music venues. Here is an overview of just some of what the Birthplace of Soul has to offer.

[Related: 6 Storied Texas Music Venues for Special Events]

Overton Park Shell

Located in Overton Park in Midtown Memphis, the historic Overton Park Shell amphitheater hosts a variety of free concerts throughout the summer and fall and is recognized as the site of Elvis Presley’s first professional rock-n-roll show. The outdoor amphitheater has evolved a lot since its inception in the 1930s, now hosting a state-of-the-art sound and light system and able to accommodate up to 3,000 concert-goers. The Overton Park Shell is also available for a backstage experience tour that outlines the last 90 years of Memphis music history.

Beale Street Entertainment District

A Night Out at the Orpheum Theatre. Photo Credit Phillip Parker
A Night Out at the Orpheum Theatre. Photo Credit: Phillip Parker

Beale Street is one of the most iconic streets in Memphis, home to over three blocks of nightclubs, restaurants and shops in the heart of downtown Memphis. It also happens to be home to some of the city’s greatest live music venues including: 

  • Rum Boogie Café: Decorated with hundreds of autographed guitars and music memorabilia, Rum Boogie Café boasts a Cajun-barbecue and rum menu and has hosted such artists as Vince Johnson, Eric Hughes, Free World and Beale Street Mojo. 
Live Music at B.B. King Blues Club. Photo Credit Craig Thompson
Live Music at B.B. King Blues Club. Photo Credit: Craig Thompson
  • B.B. King Blues Club: Often considered ground zero for live music in Memphis, B.B. King Blues Club features Southern staples like Memphis-style ribs, pulled pork and fried catfish. 
  • The Orpheum Theatre: Known for its chandeliered, Art Deco-era ceiling, The Orpheum Theatre features Broadway shows, live concerts, comedy performances and other globally acclaimed artists. 
  • FedExForum: Typically home to the NBA Memphis Grizzlies, the FedExForum also doubles as a modern arena concert venue, hosting artists like Drake, Cody Johnson, Lionel Richie and more.

Rundown on the Renasant Convention Center

The Renasant Convention Center is one of the largest convention centers in the Southeastern United States, with more than 350,000 square feet of event and convention space and the ability to host a wide range of events, from large tradeshows to smaller corporate events. The convention center underwent a $200 million renovation in 2020, which included the addition of a 46,000-square-foot exhibit hall, new lobby area, upgraded meeting rooms and improved technology capabilities in the spaces. 

2024 Farm and Gin Convention at The Renasant Convention Center. Photo Credit: Julian Harper
2024 Farm and Gin Convention at The Renasant Convention Center. Photo Credit: Julian Harper

The largest venue in the convention center is a 118,000-square-foot, column-free Exhibit Hall that can also be divided into three spaces for multiple groups to use. The Renasant Convention Center is also connected to the Sheraton Memphis Downtown hotel, which provides 13 additional event spaces and 600 hotel rooms. 

The convention center is split into three levels that each house thousands of feet of event space. The top level, or Level 2, features the Exhibit Hall, a 28,000-square-foot Grand Ballroom, a prefunction foyer, five meeting rooms, a boardroom and the outdoor Riverview Terrace. The middle level, or Level 1, features the Main Street Lobby and Concourse, 24 flexible meeting rooms and the 2,100-seat Cannon Center for the Performing Arts. The bottom level, or Lower Level, features an 18,000-square-foot Junior Ballroom that can divide into 10 breakout rooms, plus a prefunction lobby and boardroom.

Read this next: Explore These Top Natural Attractions for Meetings Groups in East Tennessee

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Logan Pratt | Digital Content Coordinator

Logan Pratt joined Meetings Today in May 2023 as digital content coordinator, focusing on digital marketing efforts and covering breaking news stories for the Meetings Today website and newsletters. To send a press release or any information regarding the meetings and events industry please email