The Best Hot Chicken Festival In Nashville

Take heart, hot chicken fans – there is an alternative to the July 4 Nashville Hot Chicken Festival that is WAY MORE FUN

You may have checked out my previous article where I opined that the Nashville Hot Chicken Festival held each July 4 weekend in East Nashville is a colossal waste of time.

Take heart, hot chicken fans – there is an alternative event that is WAY MORE FUN – and as an added bonus, it’s a fundraiser for the Predators Foundation.

I’m referring to Hot Shots! Hot Chicken, Whiskey and Bourbon Festival scheduled for Friday evening, October 21 at Bridgestone Arena. When I tell you that, for $70 a ticket, you get unlimited samples from the most popular Nashville Hot Chicken joints in town, and unlimited tastings (well, limited only by your sense of propriety) from regional and national distilleries – well, I really shouldn’t have to tell you anything else. But I will! Because your ticket also gets you into the exclusive Viewing Party as the Nashville Predators play the Detroit Red Wings that evening. And, if all that wasn’t enough, your ticket also gets you to pick a future Preds game to attend at Bridgestone Arena. BOOM!

If you are into Nashville Hot Chicken and Predators hockey, but want to attend this with your kids or just don’t want alcohol, you should know that there is an option for that, and it’s just $50. (These prices are “early bird” rates that just last through tomorrow – not sure how much they’ll go up after that, but I would seriously consider attending this event even if you have to pay more.)

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Last year’s inaugural Hot Shots! Hot Chicken, Whiskey and Bourbon Festival was held the afternoon of August 1. Moving the event to an evening in October means that attendees will also get to participate in a watch party as the Predators take on the Red Wings in Detroit.

End of Summer Fun in Franklin

Now I look up and realize that summer is coming to an end, so I’ve got a really promising end-of-summer event to suggest

Huge apologies to those of you who’ve patiently been waiting for me to write a new post about fun things to do in and around Nashville. A few of you Continue reading “End of Summer Fun in Franklin”

No Foolin’ – a Fun Way to Support the Ronald McDonald House

This fun event features food from some of Nashville’s eateries, live jazz performed by Nashville’s talented Denny Jiosa, an outstanding selection of silent auction items, and a selection of wine, beer and spirits tastings skillfully curated by Ed Fryer of Village Wines & Spirits in Hillsboro Village.

Some of the very best happenings in Nashville are those that benefit schools, philanthropic organizations or charities. One of my personal favorite happenings is scheduled for this Friday, April 1. Continue reading “No Foolin’ – a Fun Way to Support the Ronald McDonald House”

A Pull-Out-All-The-Stops Weekend of Concerts and Fun in Nashville

This weekend, even the most cynical and tourist-weary Nashvillian would find something going on worth braving the heat and the crowds.

I think sometimes I give my readers the wrong impression. In this blog, I rarely talk about big concerts and haven’t yet mentioned having fun at the downtown honky-tonks. Well, that is about to change…because this weekend (July 30 – August 2) is crammed full of epic concerts and other stuff to do downtown. Even the most cynical and tourist-weary local would find something going on worth braving the heat and the crowds. (Truthfully, I spend a lot of time downtown attending concerts. But almost no time in the honky-tonks!)

Thursday night marks the last weekly concert of the 2015 Bluegrass at the Ryman series; Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder are sure to bring the season to a foot-stompin’ close. This is not new music, but these sweet songs require a level of technical prowess that transcends generations. If we’re lucky, songstress Sharon White (of The Whites, aka Mrs. Ricky Skaggs) will grace the stage for a song or three; she’s been seen flat-footing in the aisles when she’s not on stage, so she’s sure to entertain either way! Tickets are an unheard-of bargain at less than $30, thanks to sponsorship by Springer Mountain Farms Chicken. (Season tickets for next year typically go on sale immediately after the last concert of the season – plan ahead and you’ll be rewarded with six Thursday night concerts in 2016.)

There is an event on Friday night that already has me star struck. I’m so excited that I can barely think of anything else. Because on Friday – at The Ryman – I am going to see one of the hugest songwriting talents, who is also an incredible singer, and funny, and gorgeous – Dolly Parton! I don’t have great seats or anything, but I don’t care. There are a couple of other big concerts in town Friday night (Eric Church in the inaugural concert at Ascend Amphitheater, and Shania Twain at the Bridgestone Arena), but I didn’t have a moment’s hesitation choosing.

I was ordering at Big Shake’s Hot Chicken & Fish (as seen on Shark Tank) today when I picked up a flyer that looked interesting – advertising the inaugural Hot Shots 2015 Hot Chicken, Whiskey and Bourbon Festival on Saturday, August 1 at Bridgestone Arena. I was shocked that I hadn’t previously heard one thing about this fundraiser for the Nashville Predators Foundation. Never mind that I missed out on early bird pricing, I still think that $65 ($70 at the door) per person for unlimited whiskey & bourbon tasting, hot chicken provided by 12 different local vendors, a souvenir glass and a ticket voucher for a 2015-2106 Predators game represents a pretty good deal. For those who won’t be tasting whiskey, a chicken-only ticket costs $20 less. The festival runs from 1pm to 5pm.

How fortunate that I’ll already be downtown on Saturday evening – I can just take a leisurely stroll of about 4 blocks (perhaps stopping in for refreshment at Acme Feed & Seed – “the honky tonk for locals”) to attend the Chicago/Earth Wind & Fire concert at Ascend Amphitheater. For this tour, I’m told that both bands will share the stage at the end of the concert. I predict that may be the precise moment when my head explodes. Hopefully I can keep it together enough to catch my rideshare home.

I already know that Sunday is going to need to be a “chill” day, so fortunately I’ve got some low-energy options lined up. First, brunch at Le Peep Grille in Belle Meade (thanks to a Groupon I purchased several weeks ago). Then, I’ll prepare to “get my Zen on” at the Nashville Pond Society’s Parade of Ponds, featuring backyard ponds in East Nashville, Inglewood and Madison. Home again, to reflect on the awesomeness that is life in Nashville, rejoice that I live in this fine city, and begin planning another weekend that Sounds Like Fun.