High Hopes Development Center hosted Hats Off to High Hopes, its largest fundraiser for the past 22 years, at The Factory in Franklin Sunday.
Taking a departure from its typical format, this year’s Hats Off was “Turning the Tables Edition,” with celebrity servers and local chefs enhancing the evening.
“As a nonprofit, our Hats Off to High Hopes fundraiser is a wonderful way to further our mission,” said Brandy Blanton, director of development. “We were thrilled to have so many notable local and national celebrities, renowned local chefs, and more than 300 attendees join us this year to support High Hopes, and to help ‘tip our hat’ to our staff and the children we serve.”
Celebrity servers included actors, professional athletes, local figures and award-winning musicians ranging in genre from Christian to rock. The event was catered by an array of prominent local chefs with libations provided by Leiper’s Fork Distillery, Harvest Beverage and Tennessee Brew Works. Actors Scott and Missy Reeves provided coffee from their Revival Roasting Co and Art Four Sale entertained the crowd.
Capping off a challenging week for Middle Tennessee, Blanton invited Michael W. Smith to open the evening in prayer.
“After a very difficult week for our community, we found comfort in lifting up our friends and neighbors in prayer during this time of need while gathered to support the High Hopes mission,” Blanton said.
For 35 years, High Hopes has been equipping children, youth and their families throughout Tennessee with the skills necessary to achieve success through education, therapeutic services and loving support. The event raised nearly $150,000 in support of this mission.
Celebrity servers were Vince Neil (Mötley Crüe), Kevin Griffin (Better Than Ezra), Michael W. Smith (Christian Artist), Mike Keith (Voice of the Titans), Cortland Finnegan (Titans alum), Terry Crisp (Predators broadcaster), Andy Griggs (country artist), Emerson Hart (Tonic), Jamie O'Neal (country artist), JT Hodges (songwriter/artist), Rhori Johnston (NewsChannel5), Bob Mueller (WKRN), Zoe Upkins (The Voice), Harry Chapman (Former NewsChannel5 anchor), Rogers Anderson (Williamson County mayor), Tanner Hudson (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) and Brittni Jessie (singer/songwriter).
Renowned chefs were Tyler Brown, Southall; Jason McConnell, Red Pony/Cork & Cow; Miss Daisy, Miss Daisy’s Kitchen; Chef Tim, Cool Café, Cassie Upshaw, 1799 Kitchen & Cocktails; Chris Calder, Deacon's New South; Matt Farley, Acme Feed & Seed; and Jose Aguilera and Suzette Lane, Catering & Events by Suzette.