Elvis Presley Birthday: Fans Gather at Graceland Lawn to Honor The King

by Liz Holland
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Elvis Presley fans gathered at the late icon’s Graceland property to celebrate what would have been the singer’s 87th birthday on Saturday. The star’s former wife, Priscilla Presley, thanked fans for coming and for keeping his legacy alive during the annual birthday week celebration at Graceland.

“I am so surprised at how many people are here,” Presley said. “I was a nervous wreck on the plane wondering ‘what if nobody showed up?’ [I]know how cold it is. But I know Elvis fans will always show up.”

Presley shared her gratitude for all the love Elvis fans have shown over the years. She added that the king himself never would have imagined that he would still be so popular today, or that people would come to his home to see how he lived. She told the younger people and children there that she was “in awe that you are still here supporting him.”

2022 Brings a Yearlong Elvis Presley Celebration

This year’s Elvis birthday celebration is extra special, as it kicks off a year long celebration full of special events and exhibits at Graceland for 2022. The celebration is titled “Elvis 45”, and celebrates the singer whose death occurred 45 years ago. The celebration will culminate in August with Elvis week, held on the anniversary of his passing. 

“2022 is going to be a huge year for Elvis Presley and a huge year here at Graceland,” said DJ Argo of Elvis Radio. “Not only is it the 40th anniversary of Graceland opening to the public, but it’s the 65th anniversary of Elvis purchasing this beautiful home. And it is hard to believe that it was 45 years ago that we lost Elvis physically. But we are paying tribute all year long at Graceland to the man, his music, and his enduring legacy.”

Jack Soden, Elvis Presley Enterprises CEO, joked that Elvis’ birthday is always the coldest day in Memphis. He continued by echoing sentiments from Elvis about the dedication of his fans. “I guess it proves what devoted fans Elvis has to be here in the cold,” Soden said. “You’re going to be hearing 45 a lot this year. And the only way that legacy would be what it is – almost bigger than what it was 45 years ago – is you all. You have kept the legacy alive and growing. We’re here because you’re here.”

Presley Was a Private Man

Priscilla Presley says even though the singer has been gone for 45 years, she still feels his presence at Graceland. “It’s a little bittersweet for me to be here in front of Graceland,” Presley said. “It’s 45 years since his passing and I still can’t believe it. I still think he’s here. [I] still feel him here. I go in Graceland and I feel his spirit, I know he’s living there. He’s there, trust me.”

She also reflected on how private the rockstar was. “He had a very private life here,” Presley said. “This was the first place he would come to after a movie, after a show, after tours. He would come home. This is home. He couldn’t wait to be at Graceland. And the more I come, I see why. It’s just a place of calmness and memories and friends. It was where he completely let go.”

The cake was cut and fans were invited to enjoy some to celebrate.

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