Martin Luther King Jr Riverside Park

The park was named in honor of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968, while visiting Memphis to support striking sanitation workers.

It’s a shame that this large and beautiful park got little attention in the past, but now it feels like it has the potential to be one of the city’s best. It just needs some time and attention. Read on to learn more.

Park History

Martin Luther King Jr Riverside Park is a large park that is off most people’s maps. But, that doesn’t mean the potential of the park isn’t there.

In 1904, Memphis hired landscape architect George Kessler to design and develop a city-wide system of long, avenues that connected the parks of Overton and Riverside. This was one of the earliest efforts in Tennessee to apply comprehensive urban planning and design principles.

The Parkway System helped shape Memphis and is still an important part of the city today. It served as a model for many other cities in Tennessee.

As a result, many private citizens donated land for Memphis parks. Robert Church was one of them, and he established a park that still bears his name.

Park Amenities

The park amenities at Martin Luther King Jr Riverside Park are extensive. Visitors can enjoy walking, picnicking, and playing baseball, tennis, or Frisbee.

There are also boat ramps that give visitors access to McKellar Lake. The park is a great place to take in the scenic beauty of the river and the city.

The park is home to several monuments that honor Martin Luther King and his legacy. It also serves as a memorial to those who died during the Civil War. A must-see place!

Park Activities

A visit to Memphis, Tennessee isn’t complete without a trip to the Mississippi River. Motoring along the scenic Riverside Drive is a must and it’s also fun to explore the Big River Trail.

Several parks are located on the Mississippi River and many of them have bike trails and walking paths. Some of these are even multi-use and offer space for rollerbladers, skaters, and cyclists.

The City of Memphis has done an excellent job of building a city park system over the years, starting with Overton and then continuing to the Fairgrounds, Confederacy Park, and others. Landscape architect George Kessler designed these parkways and lands, and many private citizens deeded a piece of their land to the city for public use.

The Memphis Park Commission was established in 1900 and has been a key player in the city’s overall “green” appearance ever since. In fact, it is one of the city’s most well-known and respected civic institutions. 

Park Events

During the Martin Luther King Jr holiday, Memphis celebrates with community-wide events. Check out the annual Race 4 Reconciliation and other activities to show that King’s dream of a unified Memphis is alive and well.

The city also offers a variety of park events for kids, including the annual Marching Ducks Festival on the Riverfront and the Children’s Museum of Memphis. The Children’s Museum of Memphis has hands-on, interactive exhibits that are sure to thrill kids of all ages.

This East Memphis favorite features two playground structures (big and little), baby and big kid swings, a pavilion you can rent out, lots of open space to run, and a paved walking trail.

This historic park was a key rallying point for the sanitation workers who went on strike in 1968. The plaza is now a popular spot for locals and visitors to relax and take in history. It also hosts a food truck round-up on Thursdays. Up next is
T.O. Fuller State Park – One of Memphis’ Hidden Treasures.



Driving directions from Heavenly Sunshine Cleaning, Inc. to Martin Luther King, Jr. Riverside Park

Driving directions from Martin Luther King, Jr. Riverside Park to T.O. Fuller State Park