There’s an old bumper sticker that touts “Midtown is Memphis.” Whether that’s true or not is up for debate, but there’s no denying that Midtown Memphis is the heart of the city, both geographically and culturally. Midtown Memphis is home to a variety of neighborhoods and entertainment districts, parks, schools, shops and restaurants.
The Midtown Memphis boundary isn’t exact; The 38104 ZIP code is the heart of Midtown, but portions of 38107, 38112, 38111 and even 38114 can claim Midtown in name. Midtown Memphis generally stretches east from the Medical District to East Parkway; some say all the way to Highland Street near the University of Memphis. North Parkway separates Midtown from North Memphis, and the southern border roughly follows Southern Avenue. Within those borders sits a collection of unique neighborhoods with homes built in the late 1800s juxtaposed with more modern architecture.
Much of Memphis enjoys the dining and entertainment options found in Midtown’s Cooper-Young District, Overton Square Entertainment District and Broad Avenue Arts District. Central Avenue along the northern border of the Cooper-Young District contains a variety of antiques stores and home shops, and the Broad Avenue Arts District offers an eclectic collection of boutiques and locally owned shops filled with unique finds.
The tree-lined streets of Midtown Memphis offer inviting opportunities for walkers and runners, and the city’s growing number of bike lanes extends into Midtown. In fact, Madison Avenue has dedicated bike lanes that take users from the Overton Square neighborhood all the way to Downtown Memphis. And on the eastern edge of Midtown Memphis sits the western terminus of the Shelby Farms Greenline. This former rail line today is a dedicated paved path that connects to Shelby Farms in East Memphis.
On the north side of Midtown Memphis is Overton Park, which is home to the Memphis Zoo, Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, Levitt Shell, a golf course, a vast green lawn and trails that circle the grand old forest. Memphis tourists and locals alike find plenty to love about Overton Park, especially during the warm months when the Levitt Shell offers free concerts in the spring and fall.
Families considering Midtown Memphis have a variety of public and private schools to consider. Idlewild and Snowden are highly rated public elementary schools. Private schools include Immaculate Conception Cathedral School, Grace-St. Luke’s Episcopal School and Memphis Catholic High School. Crosstown High School will be the newest addition to Shelby County Schools when it opens in the new Crosstown Concourse on the western side of Midtown Memphis.
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