Recently, we decided to go do something fun on a Saturday, so we went to downtown Memphis, Tennessee, to visit the Bass Pro Shops in the Memphis Pyramid. I’m sure you have heard of Bass Pro Shops, the large outdoor store chain. But maybe you aren’t as familiar with the Memphis Pyramid, especially if you aren’t from Memphis.
Here are Laura and Jaylin out in front of the store. And interestingly, this was also where Laura graduated from college just over 20 years ago. No, her college graduation wasn’t held in a large, uniquely shaped retail store. The Memphis Pyramid was originally built as a sports arena and events venue. Over the years, we saw such things there as Disney on Ice and Billy Joel in concert. While she was in school at the University of Memphis, Laura played in the band at several basketball games there, since all of the U of M home games were played there. And the U of M graduations were held there, too.
But once the Memphis Grizzlies NBA team came to town and the new FedEx Forum was built, the Pyramid was no longer used for events. After being vacant for many years, the Pyramid got a new life last year when Bass Pro Shops opened a large store there. Let’s take a look around inside!
As you can see, this is more than just a standard retail store. There are ponds with fish, like the one here. There are ponds with alligators. There is a restaurant and bowling alley, which is in the background here. And large fake trees are everywhere. It is almost more like a theme park than a store. But you can still buy things, too. Just like a theme park. The best thing here is that there is no admission.
Don’t look now, but there is a grizzly bear behind you! I can’t tell if he is growling, or if he is smiling along with Laura and Jaylin. There were several stuffed animals of various kinds throughout the store. Moose, deer, elk, bears, turkeys, and all the people who had just eaten at the restaurant. Except that they were a different kind of stuffed, I guess.
See, I told you they had some items for sale here, too. But once again, this isn’t just your normal retail store. There are several “buildings” inside the building, such as the one you can see across the way behind the merchandise and trees. And then there is that tall tower at the left what is it?
At the center of the store is an elevator to take you up to the observation deck at the top of the Pyramid. If you look back at the first photo of Laura and Jaylin outside the Pyramid, you can see the deck way up there. We decided not to make the ride up to the top, not because we have any kind of fear of heights, but just because there were about 50 people in line every time we walked by. And besides, it costs $10 per person for the elevator ride (that’s a round-trip ticket, by the way), but for us the size of the line was more of a determining factor than the cost of the ride. I hear the view from up there of the city and the Mississippi River is spectacular. We decided instead to walk along the river at ground level. But those are different photos for another post.
We did walk up the stairs to the second level, because there is even more stuff for sale up there, along with a small Ducks Unlimited museum. And some nice views of the area down below, as you can see here. And yes, I got lots of use out of the fisheye lens that day, because that was the best way to get lots of the store in one photo.
So yes, we enjoyed our visit to Bass Pro Shops at the Memphis Pyramid. We even spent some money there, so while it wasn’t entirely “free,” we didn’t have to pay to get in or to park, so that was nice. And it was really cool to see what they have done with the place since the last time we were in there.
So here is one more photo of Laura and Jaylin as we were on our way out. And did I mention that Laura graduated from college there, too? I did? Okay, um, just testing you to see if you read this whole post. Yeah, that’s it.
Show family affection to one another with brotherly love. Outdo one another in showing honor. - Romans 12:10
About the photos:
Photo: A single Raw exposure, processed in Photoshop. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Olympus OM-D E-M10
Lens: Olympus M.Zukio 25mm f1.8 and Rokinon 7.5mm f/3.5 Fisheye Lens
Date: May 21, 2016
Location: Memphis, Tennessee