Signature events such as Brentwood’s annual STAR Gala and Taste of Williamson at CoolSprings Galleria help raise funds for worthy causes while making a name for this bustling, on-the-grow city.
The latest addition to its events lineup is the greater Nashville area Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, which drew thousands of participants and spectators to Brentwood’s Maryland Farms office park on Oct. 10, 2009 in a move that organizers and city officials hope will be a permanent one.
“We were looking for a strategic location that could be a home for the race, and we felt that Brentwood and Williamson County could provide room to grow,” says Tina Hamilton, director of affiliate events for Susan G. Komen for the Cure – Greater Nashville.
“Historically, we’ve had about 10,000 participants and 3,000 to 4,000 spectators. At the 2009 race, 12,000 registered participants put about 20,000 people through the area on race day. “The feedback has been awesome,” Hamilton continues.
“We plan to be there again in 2010 and build on the great successes of last year.” A big part of that success was the $1.4 million the 2009 event raised. Susan G. Komen for the Cure ranks second only to the federal government in funding breast cancer research, and much of that funding comes from the 120-plus races that take place throughout the country each October.
“The race is our signature event,” Hamilton explains. “The money it raises determines how much we will be able to grant over the next fiscal year to other nonprofits for breast-health education, treatments, research, help for survivors, free mammograms and other services. The more we raise, the more we can give out.”
About 75 percent of money raised goes to organizations here in the community, such as the Brentwood YMCA, Minnie Pearl Cancer Foundation and Gilda’s Club Nashville. Vanderbilt University Medical Center has received national research dollars from Komen for the Cure.
In conjunction with the Race for the Cure, the Brentwood Cool Springs Chamber of Commerce sponsored the Healthy Living & Lifestyles Expo, a showcase of health-related businesses in the area. The Expo, presented by Williamson Medical Center, took place outdoors at the Brentwood Place Shopping Center and featured the Komen on the Go educational outreach vehicle, which travels to different locations raising awareness about breast health and early detection of breast cancer.
“Komen on the Go became the centerpiece of the expo,” says Steve Dycus, marketing and public relations senior coordinator for Williamson Medical Center. “We estimate that up to 500 people attended, and there is strong support for the event to continue.”
Another Brentwood event, the renowned annual STAR Gala, took place in February 2010 at the Factory at Franklin – a new venue for the event. The black-tie gala featured dinner, dancing and a silent auction, all with a Casino Royale theme. Sponsored by the Brentwood Cool Springs Chamber of Commerce, the annual event benefits education in Williamson County. All 2010 proceeds went to support special needs education. A Wines of the World patrons’ party will be held in conjunction with the gala.
In March 2010, the area's best chefs will come together to raise money for United Way of Williamson County at the annual Taste of Williamson at CoolSprings Galleria. Attendees meet chefs, sip wine, sample foods and enjoy musical entertainment at this event, which is sponsored by the Brentwood Cool Springs Chamber of Commerce and CoolSprings Galleria.
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