In 1969, Overton Square Founders & Developers James D. Robinson Jr.(23), Ben Woodson(25), Charles H. Hull Jr.(24), and Frank Doggrell III(25) led the efforts to pass a referendum to allow establishments to sell liquor by the drink. The approved license was driven from Nashville right to the doors of T.G.I. Friday's first franchised location outside of New York City in Overton Square. It quickly became a success and an anchor for other shops, restaurants, pubs, and other attractions to safely establish themselves.
In the 70’s, Overton Square was home to 11 restaurants, 27 shops and employed 800 Memphis locals. Over time, the Square was home to an ice skating rink, Solomon Alfred's, the Mississippi River Co, the Public Eye, Bombay Bicycle Club, Gonzales & Gertrude's, the Hot Air Balloon, Lafayette's Music Room, Yosemite Sam's (originally a disco), Godfather's Supper Club Trader Dick's, and the original Huey's. Pub crawls attracted over 40,000 people and Christmas at Overton Square was known for its carolers, roasted chestnuts and for bringing snow to the Mid-South every year.
Today Overton Square is home to thriving businesses anchored by three live-performance theaters and a multi-screen movie theater, Loeb Properties is cultivating this local landmark into a new kind of arts and entertainment district that is a destination for locals and visitors alike.