by Rachel Petty

The latest nonprofit fundraiser in Carthage, “Taste of River City” at the Smith County Ag Center, will give attendees the perfect opportunity to enjoy a good meal and support a good cause: The Smith County Emmanuel House. 

The event will be held on Thursday, January 16, 2020, from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.

Part local restaurant showcase and part soup and chili cook-off, “Taste of River City” is sure to please any palate.

Each ticket to the event buys a ceramic bowl, which attendees can fill up as many times as they wish with delicious soups and chilis made by local organizations.

Several local restaurants and caterers will offer a wide array of samples from their menus for guests to enjoy, as well.

Additionally, the event will feature live music and a silent auction. 

Cindy Dowell will be playing harp from 5-6 p.m., Peter Ready will be playing guitar from 6-7 p.m., and Don Kannapel will be playing keyboard from 7-8 p.m. 

In the silent auction, items such as a homemade quilt, gift certificates to local salons, massage vouchers, merchandise baskets, and more will be up for bid. Bidding will end at 8:15 p.m.

Pre-sale tickets to “Taste of River City” are $25 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under. Tickets can be purchased at Wilson Bank & Trust, BankTennessee, Smith County Bank, Citizens Bank, The Smith County Chamber of Commerce, Smith County Drug Center, or Gordonsville Drugs. 

On the night of the event, tickets can be purchased at the door for $30 for adults and $15 for children. 

The event organizers see “Taste of River City” as a way for the community to come together, celebrate the city’s great culinary offerings, and meet The Emmanuel House board members and residents to see what the organization is all about. 

Jeremy Hassler, one of the event’s organizers and the Emmanuel House board attorney, told Smith County Insider that he hopes to see the event grow to become an annual fundraiser that people look forward to every year.

If you can’t make it to this year’s “Taste of River City,” there are still plenty of ways to support The Emmanuel House. 

The Emmanuel House is currently housing 10 women and 3 babies with another on the way. 

Women who live in The Emmanuel House complete an 18-month program and pay rent as they focus on getting back on their feet following homelessness, domestic violence, incarceration, a recovery program, or any other setback in life.

Currently, the greatest need for The Emmanuel House is consistent funding. 

The house operates on a budget of $60,000 per year. Approximately 25% of this operating budget comes from the residents’ rent payments, and the rest is funded by donations.

If you or your church or business would like to donate to The Emmanuel House, you can do so by check mailed to their P.O. Box (P.O. Box 344 – Gordonsville, TN – 38563), or via PayPal by using the email 

For direct deposit or to set up a recurring transfer, you can use Citizens Bank Routing Number 64107729 and Donations Sweep Account 12277223. 

If you would like to volunteer your time, The Emmanuel House is always in need of volunteers to help transport residents to meetings, therapy sessions, and doctor’s appointments, typically no farther than Lebanon or Cookeville.

If you have any questions about The Emmanuel House or “Taste of River City,” please reach out to any of the members of the Board of Directors: Michael Nesbitt – President, Monica Mowdy – Vice President, Rachel Kemp – Secretary, Holleigh Upchurch – Treasurer, Bill Woodard, Kandra Preston, Dillon Reed, Lindsey Gull, Jacky Carver, Jr., Jeremiah Hassler – Board Attorney, or Holly Burton – Executive Director. 

To stay up to date on news, needs, and volunteer opportunities, follow The Emmanuel House on Facebook or visit their website.