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Enjoy Good Food, Music, and Community at Franklin High School’s Taste of Franklin Fundraiser

Article by Lisa Valentine

Photography by Provided

Originally published in Franklin Lifestyle

There’s no better way to experience some of the best cuisine that Franklin has to offer than at Franklin High School’s Taste of Franklin event.

“Taste of Franklin is an incredible community event featuring approximately 20 local restaurant tastings, amazing live music, and a silent auction to raise money for Project Graduation,” explains Franklin High School parent and Taste of Franklin Founder Jordan Beaird. Beaird, a mother of six - with three FHS graduates, two current FHS students, and one future FHS Admiral - came up with the idea as a creative, community-oriented fundraiser for the sophomore class.

“The students at Franklin High School raise money to have funds for Project Graduation, which is an all-night grad party in a safe, alcohol and drug-free environment so that students can have a safe celebration after graduation,” explains Beaird. “The sophomore class puts on the Taste of Franklin event every year and the funds are saved for their senior year.”

The wildly successful event has sold out every year since its inception in early 2020, boasting more than 500 guests each year. “It’s been a great thing for our whole community to come together,” says Beaird.

Attendees can enjoy a variety of bites to eat from some local favorites from around Franklin, including downtown and the Cool Springs area. Each restaurant provides two to three samples of their delicious fare. With a list including MOOYAH, Waldo's, Jim ‘N Nick's, Kilwins, Franklin Bakehouse, Garcia’s, Wilco Fusion Grill, Drake's, Moe’s Southwest Grill, Gigi’s Cupcakes, Taziki’s, Hillsboro Nutrition, Whitney’s Cookies, Sopapilla's, Sweethaven, North Italia, and more, it is the perfect way to experience some of the best eats in Franklin.

It is put on by a committee of sophomore parents that plans the event and the students volunteer onsite to execute it. “This event is known to have incredible student volunteers and support,” says Beaird. “We assign a couple of students to each restaurant booth. They’re able to interact with the chefs and the restaurant owners at the event and it’s actually provided some great job opportunities and business experience for some kids by learning from the restaurant owners on how they run their business and how to set up for events.”

In addition to delectable food, the evening also features live music performed by local talent. A lineup of nine singer-songwriters comprised of current Franklin High School students, alumni, and local singer-songwriters from the community will perform their original songs in the unique-to-Nashville “in-the-round” format.

Taste of Franklin will also feature a silent auction filled with an array of experiences and gifts including a teen driving course from Brentwood Driver Training, a one-month Row House membership for two including 10 guest passes, getaway vacations at both a lake house and a beach house, photography sessions, Sky Zone, and Miles Car Wash gift certificates, a leaf blower, family passes to the Nashville Zoo and the Franklin Theatre, Nashville Predators hockey tickets, and more.

“It’s such a fun night to gather with your friends in the community while supporting students at Franklin High School, as well as all these businesses and artists,” says Beaird. “It is a night you don’t want to miss! We are so appreciative of the outpouring of support from local businesses, musicians, and the parent and student volunteers who make this event a huge success year after year,” she says.

Taste of Franklin will take place in the Commons at Franklin High School on January 27 from 4 to 7 p.m. Tickets are $35 (ages 5 and under are free) and are available online at Search Franklin High Parent Association.