Fred Jones (TSD file photo: Warren Roseborough)

The Friends of Fred Jones Committee will celebrate the life and legacy of Fred Jones Jr., founder of the Southern Heritage Classic, on March 24 at 7 p.m. at the Holiday Inn-University of Memphis.

A black tie appreciation dinner will be the setting to honor Jones for his 40-plus years of contributions to sports, entertainment, education and the Memphis community. Jones started in the entertainment industry as tour manager to Stax recording artist Isaac Hayes and later promoted shows for some of the biggest names in music. He took his business to new heights when he brought sports and entertainment together in what has become one of the largest events in Memphis each year, the Southern Heritage Classic.

The Classic brings thousands from across the Mid-south and generates $21 million dollars annually to the local economy. Jones’ love for Memphis and his community is reflected through his ideas, innovation and philanthropy; from donating to local schools and community organizations to playing an integral role in bringing the NBA Grizzlies to Memphis.

Jones’ daughter, Nedra Jones, is as chairperson of the committee.

“We want to show our appreciation to him and give those he has helped and worked with over the years an opportunity to say, thank you,” she said.

For more information and tickets, contact the Friends of Fred Jones Committee: Nedra Jones, chairperson, 615-618-5227; Shri Green, co-chair, 901-482-1216; Bhalander Boyd, co-chair, 901- 827-9530; Pat Agnew, Summitt Management Corp., 901-398-6655; Email: