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Commentary: Heritage Foundation expresses gratitude for yearlong support

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Dickens of a Christmas 2019

Dr. John Mather, the self-proclaimed Town Crier, rings the bell to call attention to the opening ceremony of the 35th Dickens of a Christmas in 2019.

If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that you can’t take anything for granted.

As we enter the Thanksgiving season, we at the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County want to express our heartfelt thanks to those individuals and businesses that have been rock solid in their support of our organization throughout this year. 

COVID-19 forced us to cancel our treasured annual events, including our Main Street Festival, Pumpkinfest and Dickens of a Christmas. Our beloved Franklin Theatre’s doors remain temporarily closed and this year we were unable to formally celebrate with our supporters at the Heritage Ball, which is the longest-running black-tie affair in Williamson County. 

But amid all of these uncertainties, our presenting sponsors, FirstBank, First Citizens National Bank, First Horizon, Jackson and Sondra Morris, stood by us even in the absence of the events they were sponsoring. Additional sponsors, including CoreCivic, The Heritage at Brentwood, Mars Petcare, Pinnacle Financial Partners, Renasant Bank, Vanderbilt Health and Williamson Medical Center also remained involved. Because of that, we have been able to continue our mission of saving people and places that matter in Williamson County.  

We have continued to promote preservation and education through our Warwick Lecture Series and our Jr. Heritage Foundation. In lieu of Pumpkinfest, we were able to pivot and create Paint the Town Orange, a monthlong celebration that drove shoppers and diners to historic downtown Franklin to support our amazing merchants. 

We’ve continued behind-the-scenes work at Franklin Grove, the old campus of O’More College of Design, which is going to become one of Franklin’s newest reuses of historic property. 

We have begun allowing Franklin Theatre to be open for socially distanced rentals and the marquee continues to be a beacon of hope as it displays messages funded by donations from the community. 

Historic downtown Franklin and Franklin Theatre are two tangible examples of treasured places that wouldn’t be the same today had it not been for the work of the Heritage Foundation over the past five decades. This work has been possible because of the support of this wonderful community and our faithful sponsors over the years. 

We are so grateful for all of our corporate partners and supporters and we look forward to an eventful 2021, where we can get back to seeing movies and shows at Franklin Theatre, attending the Main Street Festival and dressing up for the most elegant Heritage Ball we’ve ever had. 

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