Free Things to Do in Midtown Memphis

Photo of the Overton Park Shell in Memphis, TN.
••• Thomas R Machnitzki/Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-SA-3.0-migrated-with-disclaimers

Yes, going out on the town to visit museums and attractions, dine in restaurants, drink in bars and shop in local stores can add up quickly. But that doesn’t mean a day of fun has to break the bank. In fact, Memphis has plenty of free things to do. And that includes these great free things to do in Midtown Memphis.

Stroll the Neighborhoods

Many people visit Cooper-Young, Broad Avenue Arts District and Overton Square to dine in the restaurants, have a drink in the bars and shop in the boutiques and galleries.

But, it doesn’t cost anything to stroll these neighborhoods and enjoy the electricity of the crowds, especially on a weekend evening. There is plenty of people-watching fun, and from time to time, free music and events do take place. The Water Tower Pavilion in Broad Avenue regularly has events, musicians often perform in the gazebo at the corner of Cooper Street and Young Avenue, and fun events regularly take place in Overton Square. And the corn hole near the Overton Square parking garage is always free.

Levitt Shell Concerts

The Levitt Shell in Overton Park features concert series in the spring, summer, and fall, which, except for occasional special events, are always free. The concert series usually start in late May and run through early August on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Film showings are sometimes sprinkled in before the fall concert series resumes in September. The festivals feature fun local, regional and international touring acts in a family-friendly setting.

Attendees are encouraged to bring their own picnics and beverages to set up on blankets or chairs on the lawn. Food trucks also roll in for the fun.

Overton Park Old Forest

Overton Park’s Old Forest features trail hikes that bring visitors deep into the woods in the center of Memphis. Even on a hot day, the trails that go deep into the old-growth forest are a relaxing way to get into nature in the middle of the city.

Shelby Farms Greenline

The Shelby Farms Greenline stretches for more than six miles from near Tillman Street between Walnut Grove Road and Sam Cooper Boulevard to Shelby Farms Park in East Memphis. This rails-to-trails path is wide enough for bicyclists, walkers and runners to all enjoy the path. It's one of the top spots in Memphis for a run.

Free Days at Area Museums

The Memphis Zoo and Memphis Brooks Museum of Art are among the many attractions in the city that offer free days or free hours. The Brooks also opens for special family days on select Saturdays when fun activities are scheduled around exhibits and the doors are open to everyone for free.