5 Great Things: Best Cakes, free summer camp, U.S. Civil Rights Trail

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - As the Winter Olympics close out and the medal podiums empty, I wish I could award gold medals for the 5 Great Things that happened in the Mid-South this week.

Mid-South cakes named best on Food Network list

Food Network named two cakes from the Mid-South on its list of best cakes in the state. The Pucker Up Cake from Memphis-based Muddy's Bake Shop was named best in Tennessee, and the Cinnamon Pecan Coffee Cake at Billie's Pecans in Crenshaw was named best in Mississippi. Muddy's and Billie's Pecans were excited and honored for the distinction.

Bonds approved for $175M convention center upgrade

Renovation plans for Cook Convention Center took another step toward becoming a reality after Shelby County Commissioners approved a plan allowing the city to issue bonds worth up to $175 million. The plan would have construction begin this year and be completed by September 2019 with the hope of bringing in bigger and better businesses.

Black filmmakers wanted: New residency program seeks talented writers

Indie Memphis is introducing the Black Filmmaker Residency for Screenwriting program. The program calls for the selection of a filmmaker from outside Memphis to move to Memphis, live rent-free near Overton Square from September 17 until November 16, and get $7,500 to write a screenplay that is preferably based in Memphis. In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination, the deadline for applying for the program is April 4.

Mayor announces free camps for Memphis youth this summer

More than 2,300 Memphis kids to be able to attend Memphis city summer camps at no charge, this year. Previously, to attend a summer camp at a city community center, the cost was around $162 and $80 for low-income families. Mayor Jim Strickland said although that fee will now be waived, eligibility requirements to attend camp remain the same. Strickland said to support continued learning, the city's camps will include literacy programs. Applications begin April 7 at each community center on a first-come, first-serve basis.

10 TN sites set to be on U.S. Civil Rights Trail

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam spoke at the National Civil Rights Museum to announce the launch of the U.S. Civil Rights Trail consisting of 100 historic sites in 14 states. Three of those sites are in Memphis including Clayborn Temple, Mason Temple Church of God in Christ, and the National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel. Representatives from the Department of Tourist Development said there's still an opportunity to recognize more historical sites to be included in the trail in the future.

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