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Elvis fans are including Tupelo during Elvis Week trips

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Elvis Presley's birthplace in Tupelo, Miss. (Tom Dees / FOX13 News) Elvis Presley's birthplace in Tupelo, Miss. (Tom Dees / FOX13 News)
TUPELO, Miss. (FOX13) -

As the growing number of Elvis fans making the trip to Memphis for Elvis for Elvis Week, they are also taking a two hour trip to Tupelo, Miss., to see the birthplace of The King of Rock n' Roll.

An estimated 100,000 fans a year make the pilgrimage to Tupelo.

"They are looking to see where he came from, where he got his love of music where he learned to play guitar. We have the original church where Elvis attended as a child and where he learned to play from Brother Frank Smith."

READ MORE: Candlelight vigil to remember Elvis Presley

Where as Graceland has the mansion where Elvis lived, prospered, and died, Tupelo has the shack where he was born and where his family struggled to make ends meet.
 
"If Elvis was born here, everything inside him begins here," said Marco Ursina, who traveled all the way from Italy to see The King's birthplace. As an Elvis fan it was just that important to him.

READ MORE: 36TH ANNUAL ELVIS WEEK IN MEMPHIS COVERAGE

The recent addition of an Elvis theatre and an amphitheater to the birthplace are drawing more fans. Still, the number of fans who make the trip to Tupelo is much less than Graceland's annual 600,000 visitors.
 
"I think a lot of people don't want to make the two hour trip that it is from Memphis to come here," said Don Joseph of Peoria, Ill., who now includes Tupelo during his annual Elvis Week trip.

"This is my second year and I come here because I think it is nice," Joseph added. "People are friendly here. I enjoy seeing what Elvis went through as a kid."

In Tupelo they don't have a vigil. Instead they tend to focus on Elvis' birthday.

"We do the birthday because Memphis does such a great job at the vigil at this time of year. So many fans are up there for the candle light vigil. On June 8, we have a birthday party here."

To take a tour of everything at Elvis' birthplace in Tupelo, the cost is only $15. If you want to only go through the shotgun shack where Elvis was born, the cost is only $6.  To learn more check out ElvisPresleyBirthplace.com.

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