The Binghampton neighborhood is named for its founder and first mayor, W.H. Bingham. He was an immigrant who came to America from Ireland and settled in the Memphis area, where he became a businessman and politician. The neighborhood has changed many times in the ensuing years, but in the modern era it has become a haven for immigrants, and the Binghampton International Festival celebrates the community's global diversity with musical performances, dancing, and a bike parade.
The Binghampton International Festival came about as the result of work being done through the Center for Transforming Communities. "We go to neighborhoods and work alongside people to fulfill their dreams, passions, and aspirations," says community organizer and festival spokesperson Kate Kananura, recounting work the center has previously done in North Memphis, South Memphis, and Highland Heights. "Binghampton is one of the most culturally diverse neighborhoods in Memphis, and it is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the entire state of Tennessee," she adds. "There are few other neighborhoods like Binghampton, where there are people from Africa, Mexico, Nepal, and Asia. It's just a wonderful mix of people who have lived together for a long time and who want to know more about each other's culture."
According to Kananura, the Binghampton International Festival was created so, "one very beautiful neighborhood" filled with immigrants and the families of immigrants could "tell its story to Memphis and to the world."