Every year at the end of the summer, Jacksonians from all over town gather together under the tall, century-old oaks on the lawn of the historic First Presbyterian Church for the Jackson Symphony’s annual event, The Starlight Symphony. People bring picnic blankets and set up tents to enjoy snacks, wines, and cheeses. Children run around playing, and you won’t be there long without seeing friends and neighbors. The music begins at twilight, and by the time the symphony is in full swing you can lay back and look up at the stars. It’s one of our favorite nights of the year, and fortunately, because we live in a city with a thriving arts scene, we get to enjoy many nights like this!

During the summer, you can enjoy free live music or movie nights at Jackson’s AMP at the Market. Food trucks show up to these family-friendly events and are a great and easy way to get out at the end of the week with family and friends. In addition to the Jackson Symphony, the Jackson Theater Guild and Ballet Arts Jackson host great performances throughout the year.

There are also a number of annual parades and festivals that celebrate the holidays and other cultural events including Jackson’s Christmas in the City, the International Food and Art Festival, and the Rockabilly Festival, among others.

“The best thing about Jackson is that you really get to know the people around you. Because of Jackson’s size, much of my community lives within 10 minutes of each other, and we are able to sit down and have regular time with each other—getting to know each other, hearing about our days, and having that support.”

— Lisa G., non-profit executive director


Good food is key to good living. So many of our relationships are built around a shared table, and if the food is yummy, then it’s that much more memorable. Lucky for us, Jackson has a wide variety of food options for everyone. From those who love some good home-cooking to the foodies who like to try new things, Jackson has you covered. In addition to all the familiar chains you’d expect to find in a thriving town, Jackson has many local restaurants to choose from. There are Jackson staples like the family-owned Brooks Shaw & Son’s Old Country Store that has been here for over 50 years and newer restaurants like Tulum Fresh Mexican Grill that serves up Baja fish tacos that Jacksonians are crazy about. West Tennessee’s rich barbecue culture means you’ll never

struggle to find a great, local place for barbecue and wings. If you like the international food scene, we have a diverse selection of authentic international restaurants including Asian, Indian, Mediterranean, African, and more.

The West Tennessee Farmers Market is a popular Saturday morning spot. Not only can you buy produce, meat, and dairy from farmers you’ll grow to know and trust, you can also grab a quick lunch from your choice of yummy food trucks—including The Donut Truck which sells the best donuts we’ve ever had!

Because of Jackson’s low cost of living and our hub-nature for the surrounding counties, Jackson is also a ranked as one of the nation’s top 100 retail markets. Jackson’s Old Hickory Mall is the only indoor shopping mall between Memphis and Nashville; the Shoppes at the Columns is a popular and convenient shopping spot for clothes, home, and dining; and there are a number of local boutiques and shops to choose from. The dollar goes farther here than in our neighboring cities, and you’ll find the variety of retailers shopping lovers expect right here in our city.

Looking for a place to eat? Check out some of our favorite dining locales:


Asia Garden
Brooksie’s Barn
Brooks Shaw & Son’s Old Country Store Chandelier Café
ComeUnity Café
Coyote Blues
Dumplins Bistro & Bakery
Flat Iron Grille & Bistro
Los Portales
Old Town Spaghetti Store
Picasso Bistro & Pizzeria
Rock N Dough Pizza & Brewery
Tulum Fresh Mexican Grill
West Alley BBQ & Smokehouse
West Tennessee Farmers Market Woodstock Bake Shop

“I feel like there’s a strong community spirit here. People want and desire community in Jackson. My kids are getting a similar experience to the one I had growing up—playing outside, making friends with the neighborhood kids. It’s like going back in time a little bit.”

— Angie R., elementary school teacher


Just minutes from the center of town you’ll find Cypress Grove Nature Park—a Jackson favorite that has managed to maintain the feeling of a secret local spot away from it all. At Cypress Grove you’ll find over a mile of boardwalk that extends deep into a forest of towering cypress trees and over a large open pond. Despite the fact that it’s so close to town, it is easy to feel far away from everything in the quiet of Cypress Grove, watching deer pass by or looking at the hawks, eagles, owls, and other birds in the park’s injured fowl sanctuary. This kind of reprieve into nature can be a much-needed reset after the daily routine of work, home, and errands. Fortunately, Jackson has so many opportunities to enjoy the area’s natural beauty that you’ll find little excuse for not getting outside. Jackson has over 800 acres of parks and is surrounded by state parks, including Natchez Trace State Park, Chickasaw State Park, and the historic Pinson Mounds State Archaeological Park, which is home to over 15 Native American mounds.

Jackson is also a great place for sports enthusiasts. Our city has its own minor league baseball team, The Jackson Generals. The Generals’ home, Pringles Park, is a fan- friendly stadium that has a great view of the field wherever you’re seated. Generals home games frequently include fireworks, themed nights, and are a great place for dates, family outings, or grabbing some hotdogs and beers with friends.

For the recreational ballplayers in the family, the 17-field West Tennessee Healthcare Baseball/Softball Sportsplex sits adjacent to Pringles Park where local leagues play and host regional and national tournaments.

Jackson also has a number of fitness and health centers that host races and other fitness activities throughout the year.

Fitness Centers

Anytime Fitness
Fight Shop
Gold’s Gym
Jackson Sport & Fitness
LIFT Wellness Center
Planet Fitness

Yoga Center of Jackson

“Jackson is a town that is full of surprises—a state of the art medical community, superb symphony and theatrical programs, and beautiful residential neighborhoods—all nestled in a community centrally located within easy reach of larger urban areas.”

— Chris W., MD, OB-GYN


Whether it be a faith community, the heritage of your region, or the broader arts that tie us all together as people, our identities are shaped and solidified by the people and places we find ourselves returning to time and again. Jackson is rich in cultural centers and activities. Our city is home to over 200 churches and worship centers of all denominations. Jackson’s museums celebrate our city’s and West Tennessee’s history and heritage, including the Carnegie Center for Arts and History, the Casey Jones Train Museum, and the Rockabilly Hall of Fame, among others. The Jackson Madison County Library has two campuses on each end of town and hosts cultural events including literary readings, story time for children, and book clubs. Our colleges and universities also host community events and offer community library memberships.

“The people of Jackson, the vibe here, and the community are very special. I am not from here, but now I can’t imagine my world or my life without Jackson. The way my life has been shaped by the people I’ve met here is the kind of thing I never could have planned but has been precisely what I needed.”

— Matt A., community development executive director

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