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Heritage Ball celebrates 40 years


With 14 members of his family by his side, "Coach" Jimmy Gentry accepts the Heritage Ball Patron's Award from 2012 Patron Award recipient, Tim Pagliara. For the first time in history, the Patron's Award was presented to more than one person. It was awarded to the entire Gentry Family for their work preserving the heritage of Franklin and Williamson County.

See photos of the event on our facebook page.

More than 700 people gathered at the Eastern Flank Battlefield Saturday evening to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Franklin’s own Heritage Ball. 

Set underneath a brilliantly decorated tent, fashioned with hues of ruby red, silver and black, the celebration began at dusk and ended just before midnight. 

A spectacular array of silent auction items awaited guests upon arrival, but before any bids were registered, guests were treated to a champagne reception provided by Lexus of Nashville. 

The three-story tent was perfectly appointed to provide an elegant ambiance guests have grown to expect at this Williamson County’s oldest black-tie affair.

A succulent farm-to-table dinner was served to guests promptly. Each one of the 70 tables was adorned with a rich centerpiece of red velvet roses to mark this momentous ball—established four decades ago to ensure the preservation of Carnton Plantation. 

Dr. Joe and Betty Willoughby were crowned the 2013 King and Queen of the Heritage Ball, and for the first time in the event’s history, the Patron’s Award was presented to an entire family. 

The distinguished award, traditionally presented to one person, honors exceptional contributions made to the preservation of Franklin and Williamson County’s heritage.  

Surrounded by 14 family members, representing three generations, Coach Jimmy Gentry accepted the award from 2012 recipient, Tim Pagliara. 

Ordinarily, we honor an individual, but this year, that wasn’t enough,” Pagliara said. “Coach Gentry and his family have made tremendous contributions to this city and county.”

The evening was topped off by a grand performance of the beloved and talented Jimmy Church Band. Dancing to the familiar tunes of the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s was not a burden, but rather a celebration of all that has been accomplished since that first gala in Franklin in 1973.

See photos of the event on our facebook page.


Posted on: 9/25/2013


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