Elvis fans flock to Memphis to honor music icon

Published: Aug. 9, 2023 at 7:26 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - In the Bluff City, it’s a big week for tens of thousands of devoted Elvis fans who are flocking to Graceland to celebrate the King of Rock n’ Roll.

This week begins the highly anticipated week of events at Graceland with Wednesday kicking off exclusive tours of the icon’s mansion, nightly concerts, and a VIP lunch meet ‘n’ mingle with special guest appearances.

”Oh, I grew up with Elvis! I mean, not with him, but loving him,’ said one longtime Elvis fan.

”That man could take a song, put it through his heart, and let it come out of his mouth, and nobody could sing like Elvis did,” said Mary Pat Van Epps, another Elvis fan.

A tribute to Elvis and Lisa Marie Presley outside Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee, during Elvis...
A tribute to Elvis and Lisa Marie Presley outside Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee, during Elvis Week, Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2023.(Action News 5)

Fans can expect the week to capture the different eras of Elvis and showcase the talented young tribute artists inspired by the man himself.

“I grew up on the Elvis music, and then there was a tribute artist that won the tournament and came to England one time and did a whole show... So I went to go see him... and I was like, ‘Yeah, I’ll give this a try,’ and I’ve done well ever since really,” said Arron Walker, an Elvis tribute artist.

But plans will be a little different this year with more fans now remembering another star fallen too soon, the daughter of Elvis, Lisa Marie Presley.

”Sweet girl, God bless her. She’s had a tough life, and it will be good to honor her, and, of course, her son Benjamin is buried at Graceland too,” said Van Epps.

“The Lord will take us when he’s ready to take us, and it was just that time zone,” said Vernal Chris Lafoe, an Elvis fan.

Rain or shine, Elvis Week 2023 will not disappoint.

Memphis Tourism expects this event to be a huge economic boom, bringing in several million dollars at the same time that the FedEx St. Jude Championship gets underway at TPC Southwind.

For those who are not able to make it out, a virtual option to celebrate is available.

The annual candlelight ceremony at Graceland will be held next Tuesday, Aug 15, at 8:30 p.m.

For more details on the week-long event, click here.

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