The Peabody Memphis


Word is that someone once put baby alligators and, later, turtles in the lobby fountain of the stately Peabody hotel. But a 1930s general manager thought ducks were more fitting. His first wooden decoys were soon replaced by live North American mallards, which were trained by a staffer who was once a circus performer. Thus began a tradition that continues to this day: the duck parade.

At 11 each morning, one drake and four hens leave the rooftop Royal Duck Palace and take the elevator to the lobby. John Phillip Sousa’s “King Cotton March,” plays as they waddle off the elevator, along a red carpet, and into the travertine marble fountain, where they spend the day. The ceremony is reversed at 5 each evening. Watching the duck parade is free; meals in this landmark hotel’s restaurants (where duck is never served), or stays in its luxurious rooms, are pricier—but worth it if you’re up for a splurge.


149 Union Ave.
Memphis, Tennessee 38103


35.14189900, -90.05201700
Visit Website
(901) 529-4000

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