Each of us received a headset with a recorded self guided tour discussing the mansion and each of its distinctly different rooms. Among the rooms were a highly ornate formal dining room, a guest suite, the kitchen and the Jungle Room, all located on the main floor.  We were told nothing much had changed since Elvis died August 16, 1977. It was, for sure, 1970s décor which many of us grew up in. The basement contained two large rooms; the yellow and blue television room with three TVs built into the wall, high tech for its time period, and the billiard room with its cloth walls and ceiling. A three corner tear on the pool table was the result of a misguided pool cue stick made by one of Elvis’ friends. No one is allowed to enter the second story since Elvis never allowed visitors on that floor.

Upon exiting the mansion, we walked the grounds to Vernon Presley’s private office and the smokehouse where Elvis used to target shoot.  From there, we went to the fabulous trophy room. It was here where one learned to appreciate what a great artist Elvis was with hundreds of gold records and several platinum records. We also learned more of his incredible generosity to the people of Memphis with plaques recognizing his charitable contributions through the years.

A special treat for us was the area with Elvis’ clothing including outlandish jumpsuits, his wedding attire, movie wardrobe and his army uniform. Upon leaving this awesome display, we went to see not only his grave, but the graves of his parents and grandmother, and a monument to his brother who died at birth. This is solemn ground for any Elvis fan and another testimony to his short but extraordinary life.  At the head of Elvis’ ground cover is an eternal flame which to me symbolizes the great impact he made to the world of popular music. At this point, we filed to awaiting tour buses which took us back across Elvis Presley Blvd to continue our tour.

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