Monday, January 08, 2007

Happy Birthday Elvis Presley! 72 years ago today, The King was born in a two-room shack in Tupelo, Mississippi. Though it's been half a century since he burst upon the world's consciousness, and 30 years since his sudden death in 1977, his presence is still felt around the world, mostly through his music but also through a unique pop culture afterlife of Elvis impersonators, National Enquirer sightings and a range of merchandise that is truly mind-boggling.

Along with Tupelo, the key site for an Elvis Birthday pilgrimage is his longtime Memphis home (and burial place), Graceland, on Elvis Presley Boulevard (US-51) about a mile south of I-55 amid a clutter of burger joints and muffler shops. At age 21, flush with his early success, Elvis paid $100,000 for what was then one of the grandest houses in town. Splurge on a $30 combination “Platinum Tour” ticket and you can tour the mansion as well as the other “collections,” such as the King’s private jet or his car collection. (Many of his cars, including his famous pink 1955 Cadillac, are arrayed as if at a drive-in movie—with a big screen playing his race car scenes from Viva Las Vegas on a continuous loop—it’s my favorite stop in the whole shebang.)

Of course, Elvis is everywhere, but there's at least one other very special spot where you can commune with his spirit: Elvis' favorite Route 66 motel room, across from the very good museum in Clinton, Oklahoma.

For more on Elvis, check out the offical website.


Anonymous child said...

good site

11:19 PM  

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