Courtesy Visit Tupelo
Published March 09, 2017
As the birthplace of Elvis Presley, Tupelo, Mississippi, holds a rich history of live music, historic buildings and more than 160 restaurants, creating a great setting for meeting groups to relax at the end of the day.
“Whatever food you like, we have it here,” said Jennie Bradford Curlee, public relations and international sales director at the Tupelo Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Located in northeast Mississippi, Tupelo sits between Memphis, Tennessee, and Birmingham, Alabama, with access from southern Mississippi by way of State Highway 45.
The historic Natchez Trace Parkway intersects the city, marking the Old Natchez Trace trail, a 444-mile scenic drive, in addition to hosting other outdoor activities like horseback riding, hiking and boating. Managed by the National Park Service, the land is considered an All-American Road as well as one of the top 10 national parks in the country.
In town, planners will find everything they need to organize unforgettable events, with original venues like the Gumtree Museum of Art, the Tupelo Furniture Market and the Tupelo Automobile Museum, where visitors can survey a $10 million collection of vintage cars in mint condition. Before he became the King of Rock ’n’ Roll, Presley was just a boy from Tupelo, and attendees can enjoy a reception on the property of his childhood home, which features a museum, an event center and a theater.
The Tupelo Convention and Visitors Bureau also works with planners to ensure a smooth experience, coordinating city tours, shuttle buses, promotional giveaways, welcome bags and site visits.
Lodging options include the Holiday Inn and Suites, the Fairfield Inn and Suites, and the Hilton Garden Inn, which connects directly to the conference center.
“All hotels are within a 10- to 15-minute drive of major meeting facilities,” said Curlee.
BancorpSouth Conference Center
Adjacent to the Hilton Garden Inn in Tupelo’s historic downtown, the BancorpSouth Conference Center features eight meeting rooms and complimentary parking.
Next door, the BancorpSouth Arena has 32,000 square feet of space, seating up to 10,000 guests. The space can accommodate a variety of events and programs, with movable wall dividers, wall-to-wall carpeting and a built-in sound system. There are 1,300 on-site parking spots, as well.
Surrounded by oak and pecan trees, The Antler provides a relaxed and rustic meeting space alongside a lake. Planners can choose from three event venues on the 65-acre private farm, each featuring modern amenities and elegant Southern decor.
Guests can step through the cobblestone entrance of Grey Manor to find wrought-iron chandeliers in the 2,200 square feet space or admire French-style chandeliers in the 6,500-square-foot Grand Hall. The Cottage is a 3,000-square-foot cabin with four rooms that can serve as a cozy setting for smaller groups.
Tupelo Automobile Museum
One of the city’s most original attractions is the Tupelo Automobile Museum, which features more than 100 antique and classic automobiles. Spanning nearly a century of car design and engineering, the collection contains everything from an 1886 Benz to a 1994 Dodge Viper and a Lincoln previously owned by Presley. Planners can also use the grounds for after-hours events or receptions.
Elvis Presley Birthplace
The Elvis Presley Birthplace is more than just an attraction; it offers meeting groups a wide range of amenities and activities. The Event Center features 2,500 square feet of space that can be divided for private meetings using an air wall. It contains a boardroom, audiovisual equipment and a full-service kitchen for catering. There is also a 126-seat theater in the facility that is often used for performances and movies.
After a meeting, attendees can tour the two-room home where the King spent most of his childhood and view the private collection of murals, exhibits and artifacts in the Elvis Presley Museum. Other highlights of the 15-acre grounds are an “Elvis at 13” statue, Presley’s childhood church and a story wall detailing his life.
Location: Northwest Mississippi
Access: Tupelo Regional Airport; state highways 45 and 78
Major Meeting Spaces: BancorpSouth Conference Center, BancorpSouth Arena, Tupelo Furniture Market, Belden Center
Hotel Rooms: 1,800
Off-site Venues: The Antler, Elvis Presley Event Center