CY News Briefs

MicroMemphis takes a closer look at Cooper-Young
By Lurene Kelley

Cooper-Young is the focus of a new venture by the University of Memphis Department of Journalism. MicroMemphis is a hyperlocal news hub staffed by student-journalists. The group of six aspiring reporters gathers stories about or directly affecting the Cooper-Young neighborhood. The effort is part of a new curriculum in the Department of Journalism designed to teach students multimedia storytelling. is a collection of videos, slideshows, links, and stories. Students are also active on Twitter and Facebook promoting information from the site and sharing links created by other Memphis media reporting CY related news. The Cooper-Young site is the first stop in the overall plan to cover multiple Memphis neighborhoods in the next several years. You can follow the MicroMemphis project on Twitter at or find MicroMemphis on Facebook. If you have any story ideas you’d like to share, please contact us through the site at

Sweet and spicy additions to the CY restaurant scene
By Barb Elder

The Memphis Business Journal has been buzzing about two new restaurants coming to CY this April. The first is actually an expansion of the year-old, highly successful Sweet Grass. Chef Ryan Trimm is calling it Sweet Grass Next Door. This new venture will be located, you guessed it, right beside the original Sweet Grass ( 937 S. Cooper) but will feature a menu of small plates ranging from $6 to $15 and a more casual, bar-like atmosphere.
In addition, Chef Ben Vaughn is opening a taqueria called El Diablo at 938 S. Cooper next to his other restaurant, Au Fond Farmtable. With this move he hopes to provide an approachable, laid back atmosphere with taco and tapas plates and dinner entrees ranging from $4 to $12. El Diablo will serve dinner only and will be open until 2am, giving CY residents and visitors a late option.
Bon Appetite!

CY mom and education advocate wins trip to Washington DC
By Victoria Livadas

Parenting magazine recently announced that Mandy Grisham has been selected to represent Tennessee at the second-annual Mom Congress on Education and Learning at Georgetown University in Washington, DC this April 10-13. Grisham was chosen for her outstanding contributions and dedication to improving local schools. A total of fifty-one moms, representing each state and the District of Columbia, have been selected by Parenting as Mom Congress delegates. Mandy will receive round-trip airfare, a three-night hotel stay, and the opportunity to connect with other moms from across the country to share success stories, challenges, and concerns as they work to improve our nation’s schools. She will also have opportunity to hear from US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign,, Reach Out and Read, the National PTA, the National Education Association, Headstart, PBS, and NBC Learn. CY is proud of Mandy’s achievements and looks forward to the new ideas and resources she will bring back for the betterment of our community. For more information on the Mom Congress, visit

Local artist, Yvonne Bobo, teams up with Sherwood Elementary
By Nicole Phillippe

At Sherwood Elementary students were exposed to a truly unique creative experience while learning about the environment and renewable sources of energy. Cooper-Young artist Yvonne Bobo ( led students in a project where they harvested motors, gears, and LED lights from donated VCR’s. Students will be using these parts to make their own pinwheel generators that power an LED light when exposed to wind. During her visit Yvonne discussed renewable sources of energy and showed a PowerPoint presentation of her kinetic sculptures and other metal work. Students explored magnetism and motion through a series of experiments and then had a blast taking the VCR’s apart. Thanks to Yvonne for giving of her time to this project, and thanks to everyone who donated VCR’s!

Art Auction at Playhouse on the Square
By Lisa Lynch

Playhouse on the Square’s 34th Annual Original Art Auction will take place on Saturday, April 30. With over 160 artists contributing one-of-a-kind pieces for a live and silent auction, the party of the year will be at Playhouse on the Square! Auctioneers Gene Katz, Mike McLaren, and Michael Detroit help to create a festive atmosphere for everyone from the serious art buyer to the auction novice. Admission is $25 (which will be deducted from the purchase of art), and hors d’oeuvres and beverages are complimentary. The All-Day Silent Auction will begin at 10am. The Live Auction begins at 6:30pm with a special performance by the cast of Ragtime. For more information please call 901-725-0776.

CY up and coming artist makes a debut
By Barb Elder

On Friday, March 25, CY native Susannah Acuff was the center of attention at Material art gallery, located at 2553 Broad Ave. This one night exhibition called Stripes was Susannah’s first solo show. Susannah received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Memphis in Health Science and Communication. However, after returning from lab work in Brazil, she engaged in additional courses for a BFA at the U of M. Her sculptures, installations, and mixed media works explore the relationship between the physical and the metaphysical. Often featuring totemic imagery, Susannah beckons the viewer into a fantastic world with themes of levity, duality, and carnal urges. CY is proud of our artists, and we wish Susannah continued success in her creative endeavors.

CY singing circle open to all
By Shai White-Gilbertson

Singing together is a time-honored way to create and maintain a sense of community. As I’ve moved around in life, I’ve happily participated in several informal singing groups with different styles, although they’ve primarily been acapella groups that gathered in living rooms. Typically, someone will teach a brief song or chant, often only a few lines long, to the group. As voices take up the melody and repeat it, simply listening to one another allows harmonies to arise. Since coming to Memphis about a year ago, I’ve missed the camaraderie of these kinds of gatherings. Luckily, I landed in the Cooper-Young neighborhood, probably the best place in Memphis in which to propose starting a local singing group! If interested, e-mail

Free hat making workshop at Playhouse on the Square
By Lisa Lynch

Learn a new skill and help Playhouse on the Square prepare for the highly anticipated re-staging of Ragtime. Playhouse on the Square will host a hat-making workshop on Saturday, April 9, from 10am-4pm in the theatre’s costume shop. The free workshop will begin with a brief history of hat-making, general information, and techniques from 10-11:30am. Participants will get to work hands-on from 11:30am–4pm, with an hour break for lunch. The workshop will be led by Karen Ralston, the Volunteer Milliner for Playhouse on the Square’s costume shop. Karen has designed, constructed, or assisted in the construction of every hat that has been on any of the Playhouse stages for more than a decade. For reservations call 901-937-6478.

Memphis artist to exhibit painting in Russia
By Giorgio Vaselli

Memphis artist Rollin Kocsis will participate in the Energy Art Movement’s Energy Art Salon 2011 in Veliky Novgorod, Russia in April. The exhibition’s host will be the prestigious City’s Art Exhibition Center “Dialog.” Mr. Kocsis’ 20 x 24 inch acrylic on canvas painting Prism was selected to be included in the exhibition. The exhibition opens on April 22 and runs through May 22. Rollin Kocsis is currently the curator of art at Gallery Fifty Six at 2256 Central Avenue. For more information on the show see

Springfest 2011 rocks The Children’s Museum of Memphis
By Randy McKeel

Celebrate spring with The Children’s Museum of Memphis at Jamming to the Music: Springfest 2011 on Saturday, April 16, 10am-1pm. Bring your lawn chairs, blankets, and picnic lunches to chill out and enjoy continuous stage performances including the Luv Clowns, Delta Rhythm Cloggers, The Friendzies, and The Doorknobs. The festivities also include cowboy pony rides, face painting, animal balloons, crafts, moon bouncers, races, and concessions – something for everyone! All activities are included with admission and are free to members. In case of rain, the event will be cancelled. For more information, call 901-458-2678 or visit

Church Health Center offers community classes
By Jeff Hulett

For those unfamiliar with the Church Health Center, there are several free classes coming up that you are welcome to participate in. The first is our free healthy cooking class that is offered in the demonstration kitchen at Church Health Center Wellness, 1115 Union Avenue, every Thursday at 9am, 10:30am, and 5:30pm. The Church Health Center is also offering a free, six-week course on diabetes education, helping people take control of their diabetes. Classes are Mondays at 11am or Thursdays at 6pm at Church Health Center Wellness, 1115 Union Avenue. Those interested can start anytime and no reservation is required. For more information on these activities please call 901-259-4673 or visit
In addition the Church Health Center is asking doctors’ offices to donate one out of every three sample medications to the Center. The Center will provide containers and pick up the medicines. To sign up for the “1 in 3 for the CHC” initiative call 901-272-0010, Ext. 1106.

Get to know The Bodine School
By Ashley Smith

The Bodine School will once again present their Spring Library Talks series, featuring Executive Director, Dr. Rene Friemoth Lee. The talks will be held on Tuesday, April 5, 6:30-8pm at Literacy MidSouth in CY, and again on Wednesday, April 13, 10-11:30am at the Germantown Library. Topics include: understanding the reading demands of school; pinpointing specific reading difficulties in children; identifying dyslexia; understanding the impact of reading difficulties on school and home; finding the help parents need; and survival strategies.
The Bodine School, located in Germantown, is a leader in the MidSouth in teaching children with reading difficulties to read and succeed. For further information on the school and programs please call Ashley Smith, Technology Communications Coordinator at 901-754-1800 ext. 309 or email

Sign up to be a Snowden Elementary ThinkShow! juror
By Margaret Metz

Please consider volunteering on Thursday, April 28 to be a juror for the ThinkShow! at Snowden. ThinkShow! is an inventive new program that asks students to stretch beyond standardized testing and tap into other talents and skills. The program relies entirely on volunteer jurors (like you!) to help evaluate these creative and original student projects. We need at least one juror per class for a total of one hundred jurors. Any two hour block between 8am-2pm would allow you ample time to talk with students and gain a clear understanding from them and their teachers about the learning that was embedded in the project. That also includes time to view the orientation video, enjoy a snack, and provide feedback for the class. It’s fun!
To participate go to and click on the “Sign up to be a Juror” link. This will take you directly to an on-line application. If you are uncomfortable giving Memphis City Schools any of the information such as address and phone number, you can leave those fields blank, but we do need an e-mail address. For questions please contact Christine Todd at or 901-628-1212. Thank you!

Author: LampLighter

The voice of Cooper-Young, a vibrant, diverse neighborhood to live, work and play, in the heart of Midtown Memphis, Tennessee.

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