Rally on square aims to boost Big Payback

Xavier Smith • May 3, 2017 at 10:09 PM

The environment outside of the Lebanon-Wilson County Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday was festive and party-like as the group partnered with the Community Foundation to rally for the Big Payback.

“Today’s event was very exciting,” said chamber President Melanie Minter, who said the event rose from a roundtable meeting with local nonprofits about how to help boost support for the Big Payback.

“This is supporting the Wilson County nonprofits that are participating. There are 29 nonprofits that are a member of the Community Foundation and Big Payback,” Minter said. 

The rally included food trucks, live radio broadcasts, music, display of posters from a nonprofit contest, prizes, free give-a-ways, Sonic girls, the Chick-Fil-A cow and more. 

More than a dozen local nonprofits were also on hand to give more information about their causes. 

As of the end of the rally at 1 p.m., more than $74,000 had been raised for Wilson County nonprofits. During the two-hour event, Leadership Middle Tennessee raised the most money, while the Mt. Juliet Animal Shelter had the most donors. 

A total of 781 Middle Tennessee nonprofits, churches and schools are participating in the 24-hour online giving challenge, an initiative of the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.

The Big Payback is a community-wide online giving day designed to give the public the opportunity to pay back the nonprofits. The event started May 3 at midnight, and donors have 24 hours to make donations to 781 participating local nonprofits – including schools and religious institutions – at thebigpayback.org.

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