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The front yard of Loflin Yard features sunshades and covered porches, perfect for a sunny day.

Featured Article

The Backyard of Downtown Memphis

Loflin Yard and Streetdog Foundation Share Their Love for Memphis' Dogs

Article by Kit Garrott

Photography by Christian Owen and Kit Garrott

Originally published in River City Lifestyle

The search for the perfect summer hangout can be arduous and elusive. The spot must check many boxes: good food, great drinks, outdoor and indoor seating, pet and family friendly and the list goes on. Downtown Memphis is home to many rooftop bars, gritty Beale Street standards and some great restaurants. Many of these frequented gathering places have one thing in common: no dogs allowed. This rule can be a deal breaker for those on their summer search for a place to be with their friends, including the furrier ones. 

For families, visitors, pets and 20-somethings, Loflin Yard is the perfect place to land on a Saturday afternoon. Loflin checks all the boxes and then some - complete with a gravel gathering space sprinkled with chairs, covered by sun shades and soothing Loflin Falls running through. Beyond the bar in the repurposed Coach House, past the projector screen and indoor stage, the grass-covered backyard beckons all visitors. Dogs enjoy water bowls and a cool, comfortable surface under their paws. Humans enjoy craft beer, cocktails and a game of cornhole. 

While Loflin Yard offers a variety of event space configurations available for rent, the bar serves as a backyard for those who live nearby and a Downtown backyard for those who live further east. On a summer weekend, several seats are filled by folks holding a leash in one hand and an Aperol Spritz in the other. Loflin Yard has truly created an atmosphere with dogs and their families in mind. In the summertime, you can find small pools on the grass for dogs to cool off in while you enjoy live music. 

Loflin sets itself apart from other pet-friendly bars and restaurants in their commitment to Memphis dogs without families as well as those already in happy homes. Loflin Yard regularly partners with Streetdog Foundation to host friend-making events. The founders of Streetdog, Melanie and Kent Pafford, set out with the mission to rescue, rehabilitate and rehome the street dogs of Memphis and the Midsouth. “We try to take the dogs off the streets that are in the worst condition and find them the perfect home,” explains Kent. 

On August 7th, 2009, a friend asked Melanie and Kent to help find their dog at the shelter in Memphis. “We thought we found the dog, but he wasn’t theirs,” Melanie says. “But at that point, we made a promise. We saw all of the other dogs there and saw in their eyes that they knew their fate. We couldn’t unsee what we saw. We decided that night that we would make it our spiritual mission to help our city’s dogs.”

Almost fourteen years later, Streetdog holds true to its mission with a consistent and personal approach to rehoming dogs. “We have fosters and adopters who know they can either foster every once in a while, just for a night or over the Christmas holiday. They know they can bring the dogs back to us and they will always be safe,” Melanie says. Melanie and Kent bring their dogs to Loflin Yard for many reasons. Melanie says, “Loflin is a space for everybody! It is the happiest dog space in all of the Midsouth. The staff are huge dog lovers and have been great to the Foundation. It’s been a win-win!” 

Loflin Yard goes the extra mile to make their bar a pet-friendly spot that people love, dog owner or not (yet!?). The green space brings a new life to Downtown Memphis and preserves the historical Coach House - once home to Downtown’s carriage fleet. From smoked wings to a knockout romaine salad, Loflin Yard provides sustenance and a place to relax for everyone, in every season.

"Loflin is a space for everybody! It is the happiest dog space in all of the Midsouth." - Melanie Pafford, Streetdog Foundation

  • The front yard of Loflin Yard features sunshades and covered porches, perfect for a sunny day.
  • Loflin Yard's backyard features cornhole, picnic tables, a bar and more seating.
  • The gravel front yard features fire pits and games.
  • The Coach House rolls out a large projector screen inside for games and big events.
  • Loflin Yard welcome pets and their families year round.
  • Bruno is one year old and very dog-friendly.
  • Streetdog provides everything needed to care for foster dogs.
  • River City Lifestyle Intern, Katherine Redd, with a happy pup.
  • Streetdog has foster and adoption applications, as well as volunteer information available on their website -
  • If you cannot foster or adopt, you can volunteer with Streetdog in many other ways.
  • A face and a place everyone can love.