There are quite a few things to do on December 25th in Memphis, Tennessee, to liven up the winter doldrums. Several bowling alleys are open for some spirited competition and family fun, you can go to a movie, or see the Christmas lights.
Some Memphis restaurants serve a holiday meal on Christmas Day and afterward, you can even find some live music.
There are a number of restaurants that will be open in Memphis on Christmas Day. An all-time favorite is having brunch at the Peabody Hotel. The Peabody is world famous because of its 5 resident ducks, who march daily through the Lobby at 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. Built in 1869, the downtown luxury hotel is on the National Register of Historic Places and continues to carry the distinction as the “South’s Grand Hotel.” Reservations are required.
Bowling is great exercise and a good way to burn off those Christmas calories. Best of all, it's fun for the whole family and everyone can participate. Several bowling alleys in the Mid-South will be open for limited hours on Christmas Day and some even offer special pricing for the holiday. Here are a few that are usually open:
- Andy B's: Located in Bartlett, just northeast of central Memphis, Andy B's offers 44 lanes of bowling by the hour or by the game. There is also an arcade gaming area and snack bar.
- Billy Hardwick's: In Memphis, Billy Hardwick’s All Star Lanes is a family-owned 40 lane bowling center with HD scoring, a full lounge, snack bar, and redemption arcade.
- Main Event Entertainment: Main Event, in Memphis, offers bowling, arcade games, billiards, and more.
On Christmas Day, the Metropolitan Interfaith Association (MIFA) delivers meals and gifts to homebound senior citizens. Volunteering to make these deliveries is a nice way to share the spirit of the season and as a trained volunteer you can continue your service through the months to come.
Lots of folks have a tradition of going to the movies once the events of Christmas have drawn to a close because it's a good way to wind down from all the excitement of the holiday. Often you'll find new movies opening that day. Most of the larger movie theater chains are open on Christmas and in Memphis, a major chain is Malco which shows movies 365 days a year.
You can count on Bar DKDC in Cooper-Young to celebrate the holidays with some local favorites for a live music performance. On Christmas Night, there is usually a special band with the show beginning around 10 p.m. Enjoy craft cocktails, local beers, and a festive crowd at this Bohemian neighborhood bar.
Take the whole family on a leisurely drive through Shelby Farms to enjoy their spectacular light display, Starry Nights. This mile and a half route features more than one million light bulbs depicting holiday scenes. There are also walk-through lighted trails and a Mistletoe Village. Starry Nights is usually open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day evenings.
Even on Christmas Day, the heart of Memphis nightlife doesn't skip a beat. While not everything will be open, you can still get a bite to eat, a drink or two, and enjoy live music at some of Beale's most popular nightspots including the Rum Boogie Cafe and the Pig on Beale.
If you are in the mood for a little gambling after your holiday feast, head for the Tunica area casinos forty miles south of Memphis. Tunica is the third-largest gaming town in the nation with eight casinos, hotels, live shows and more. The casinos will all be open on Christmas Day and will offer all of the usual attractions.
While the Memphis Zoo is closed on Christmas Day, that evening they re-open at 5:30 for the Suntrust Zoo Lights. This favorite holiday event was rated one of the Top 20 zoo light displays by USA Today readers two years in a row. You'll find snow and an LED-lit, 90 ft. tall Ferris wheel and Memphis' only outdoor ice skating rink for an extra charge. On Zoo Lights nights you can wander the lighted displays throughout the zoo.
See the Christmas Lights at Graceland
Even if Graceland is not open for tours, you can stand outside the mansion wall and take pictures and walk around the plaza area for free. At Christmas, Graceland sparkles with traditional decorations and blue lights leading up the driveway. Graceland makes for a nice destination when taking the family for a drive on Christmas Day once the sun goes down.