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Beale Street Blues Museum

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Beale Street, the "Best Three Blocks of Music in America," will be home to one of the most exciting New Year's Eve celebrations in America this December 31, with an outdoor concert adding to the energy of the traditional Guitar Drop and fireworks at the stroke of midnight, and to the fun and festivities inside the street's famous clubs and restaurants.

This New Year's Eve has special meaning as it will "Celebrate 30 Years of Resurrecting the Blues." The ribbon cutting for the rebirth of Beale Street took place in December 1982. Since that time, under the leadership of John Elkington, Beale Street has become a globally-renowned entertainment district.

The entertainment district will host 13 bands during an eight-hour free concert to be held on a stage at Beale Street and Rufus Thomas, adjacent to the Hard Rock Cafe, where an enormous lighted guitar will descend the wall, landing to launch a fireworks display announcing the New Year. The outdoor concert will feature Mid-South performers representing the diverse musical traditions of Beale Street, in the Home of the Blues and the Birthplace of Rock and Roll.

For those who can't be there in person, WKNO-TV, Channel 10, will broadcast live from Beale Street beginning at 11:00 p.m. with on-the-scene coverage of the night's festivities, including the Guitar Drop.

Blues artist Kitty Dearing takes the stage at 5:00 p.m., launching a cavalcade of rhythm and blues, country and rock performers, along with more blues. Rockers Evolve Thru Scars will raise the excitement level just before the Guitar Drop, then give the old year a musical send-off following the midnight fireworks.

In addition to Deering and Evolve Thru Scars, the concert will feature performances by Brutal Honesty, The Delta Project, So We Persist, Prosody, Barbara Blue, Mason Jar Fireflies, Craig Schuster, Jordan Allena, Low Society, Deadfall Road, and Dexter Haygood & the Playboy Killers.

The concert and Guitar Drop cap an exciting two days on Beale Street. Bands, cheerleaders, and coaches from the Iowa State University and the University of Tulsa will highlight the Liberty Bowl Parade at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 30. Handy Park then will be the scene of the Liberty Bowl Pep Rally at 5:00 p.m. that day. At 7:00 p.m. the spotlight moves to the FedEx Forum where the University of Memphis Men's Basketball Tigers will host Loyola of Maryland.

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