Leiper’s Fork, Frankln, TN

LEIPER’S FORK — In mid-February, a couple in a white Jeep pulled onto the 11-acre farm of Dorene and Stephen Pearson’s luxurious Leiper’s Fork estate.

The Pearsons wanted to sell, and the couple wanted to buy.

A contract was signed for the $5.3 million home and repairs were designated. The Pearsons bought a lavish dinner for the couple, Kim and Phil McDowell, and gave them four $250 bottles of wine.

But two weeks later, after the Pearsons paid more than $60,000 for the requested renovations, the excuses began. Kim McDowell, the charming wife who spoke in a British accent, had been in a car wreck, then she had cancer, then the millions she’d inherited from her family in Wales was trapped in a New York clearinghouse and several lawyers were working around the clock to free the money up.

Meanwhile, the Pearsons, who have five children and an elderly parent living with them, had all but moved out of their home. Three-quarters of their belongings were in storage. The house the Pearsons wanted to buy in downtown Franklin went to another buyer.

Six months later, the couple still receives messages almost daily from Kim McDowell, saying the money is coming. The Pearsons don’t believe it.

We didn’t extend our contract past the two weeks when they said they could close,” Stephen Pearson said. “The agreement was verbal after that. After all, their realtor said (the McDowells) provided a proof of funds, so we believed they had the money.”

As the Pearsons spoke to families in Leiper’s Fork, it appeared others had been similarly duped, paying thousands of dollars in renovations and lavish entertainment for the McDowells, who posed as prospective cash buyers accompanied by an entourage of staff and proof-of-funds letters.
Along the stretch of Leiper’s Fork where the Pearsons live, several homes are priced in the $5 million to $6 million price range and the Pearsons said most of the families know one another. Prospective home buyers with sufficient funds to close on such large purchases, especially with the kind of cash on hand the McDowells claimed to have, is often a rarity, even in some of the most affluent corners of Williamson County.
The Pearsons were disgusted and confused as to how they could have been victim to a scam. A Realtor had vetted the couple and the McDowells brought an estate manager and a professional chef to help evaluate the Pearsons’ property. A local property inspector also came and spent a day examining the home, Dorene Pearson said.
“Finally, I’d had enough,” she said. “I wanted answers. I wanted to face Kim, and I wanted her to tell me that this was all a lie.”

The McDowells listed an address on documents the couples exchanged, so Dorene Pearson drove to the home in Spring Hill.
“I knocked on the door, and a young woman answered,” Dorene said. “I asked her if she knew Kim and Phil McDowell. As soon as I said their names, the color drained from her face. She looked like she was afraid.”

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The Tennessean
Reporter Jordan Buie can be reached at jbuie@tennessean.com or on Twitter @jordanbuie

4th of July is special to me.

On my way to Florida to celebrate my youngest sons 4th of July birthday.
I’m so proud of his accomplishments and just love, love, love him. He’s had a tough time in his early years but struggled through to obtain a bachelors degree. Plus he has a great career in the medical field.

There are many festivities in Franklin and Nashville this weekend.

Franklin On The 4TH

NEWS UPDATE:

2016 “Franklin on the Fourth” in Downtown Franklin
The annual Independence Day celebration begins at 10 a.m. on July 4th.

Franklin, Tennessee – This year’s 4th of July Celebration will focus on family fun and include great music, quality crafts, tasty food, antique cars, and a large kids zone. Downtown Franklin is the perfect location to have a festival and community event such as “Franklin on the Fourth”.

The free festival kicks off at 10 a.m. on Monday, July 4th, with bluegrass music playing from the stage. Food vendors include everything from roasted corn on the cob to BBQ, ice cream to nachos; and corn dogs to smoothies. Craft vendors will fill the area with wood working, jewelry and other handmade items.

Our presenting sponsors, Kroger and Williamson Medical Center, will have booths right on the Square. Antique cars will line Main Street between the square and 4th Avenue. The kid’s zone on 3rd Avenue North will have inflatables, a petting zoo, and pony rides. The always fun Children’s Parade begins lining up at 4:45 and starts at 5 p.m. Registration for the parade is free and goes on all day at the Lions Club booth, which also will be selling water.

Live entertainment, including popular groups Mersi Stone, Tommy Jackson’s Rocky Top Revue, Williamson Branch, Adam Searan, and John England and the Western Swingers , continues throughout the day with a variety of music genres including Bluegrass, Country, Soul, Patriotic Music, and Big Band Swing. The final group of the day will be the 129th Army Band, “Guardians of Swing”, preceded by the presentation of colors and the “National Anthem”

Franklin on the Fourth ends at 8 p.m. to give attendees time to get to the Fireworks Display at the Park at Harlinsdale Farm. The display, put on by the City of Franklin and its sponsors, will begin at approximately 9 p.m.

“Franklin on the Fourth” is coordinated by the Franklin Lions Club and TN Events in conjunction with the City of Franklin. All proceeds benefit the Franklin Lions Club Charities.

REMEMBER !!
The tradition of the “Children’s Parade” will continue and begin at 5:00 p.m. (Children will begin lining up at a designated marked location at 4:45) There will be Prizes for best costume and decorated bikes and wagons. Pets are welcome!

10:00 a.m.
Festival Begins
Marty Crum Bluegrass
Vendor Booths and Kids Zone are Open!!

11:15 a.m.
Mersi Stone

12:05 p.m.
Williamson Branch

1:05 p.m.
Tommy Jackson’s Rocky Top Revue

2:00 p.m.
John England and the Western Swingers

3:10 p.m.
Adam Searan

4:15 p.m.
The Fabulous Suede’s

4:45 p.m.
Line up for the Children’s Parade Begins

5:00 p.m.
Children’s Parade Begins

5:15 p.m.
Speeches, Recognitions
National Anthem

5:30 p.m.
“Dixie Strutters”

7:00 p.m.
Presentation of Colors
National Anthem
The 129th Army Band
“Guardians of Swing”

Steeplechase Facts and Benefits Vanderblt

IROQUOIS FACTS

2016 marks the 75th running of the Iroquois Steeplechase.

Even under threatening weather conditions such as the Nashville Flood of 2010, the Iroquois has run continuously since 1941 only taking one year off during World War II.

The list of Iroquois winners includes the greatest steeplechase horses in America. Five Eclipse Award winners – Flatterer, Lonesome Glory, Correggio, All Gong and Good Night Shirt – have won the Iroquois. Several others have competed in the race.

When Iroquois, the namesake of the Nashville race, became the first American-bred winner of the English Derby in 1881, Wall Street closed temporarily for a celebration.

The Iroquois Steeplechase grounds were constructed in 1936 as part of a parks improvement project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA).
The Iroquois draws an average crowd of 25,000 on race day.
Improvements to the Iroquois Steeplechase grounds that are paid for by the Volunteer State Horsemen’s Foundation from race proceeds provide year-round benefits and enhancements for the Equestrian Center at Percy Warner Park.

Since 1981, the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt has been the official charity of the Iroquois

Iroquois Steeplechase – May 14, 2016

The Iroquois Steeplechase has been Nashville’s rite of spring since 1941, attracting more than 25,000 spectators annually to watch the best horses and riders in the world race over hurdles and timber on a manicured turf track.

Held the second Saturday of each May at Percy Warner Park, this iconic sporting event is Music City’s annual celebration of time‐honored traditions, Tennessee hospitality and Southern fashions. Guests enjoy areas for families, well‐appointed tents and individually organized tailgates where the emphasis is on race day pickings, larger‐than‐life hats, Honey Jack Juleps and crowd‐pleasing recipes.

What makes Nashville a place people want to live?

I read a stat that Nashville grows by 80 people a day. Of all the stats I read on a daily basis, this one stuck with me—Chicago only grew by 82 people in all of last year!

The Nashville region is expected to grow by almost 40 percent over the next 15 years, adding roughly 500,000 people. Cranes are everywhere in Nashville, and with few reliable transit options, so are cars.

So what makes Nashville a place people want to live?

I went to Nashville, talked to local leaders, dined in its hip new restaurants, ate delicious popsicles and spent lots of time in Uber to find out what makes Nashville so great.

The first thing I noticed about Nashville was cranes. They are everywhere. More than 100 new projects—$2 billion in development—are being constructed in Nashville. I counted six in a few-block area of the Gulch neighborhood, adjacent to downtown Nashville and Music Row, alone. The second most noticeable thing about Nashville? Cars. There are almost no transportation options other than driving.

Overall my research points to seven reasons Nashville has nbecome so popular, but also cautions that sustainability is a real concern and could stymie future growth.

Reasons Nashville is growing
1. Low cost of living
2. Families
3. Less stress
4. Jobs
5. Government efficiency
6. Planning
7. Culture

Issues it must address: Transportation and Affordable Housing

What makes Nashville an attractive place?

1. Low cost of living
A cost of living comparison offers the first glimpse of why Nashville is an attractive option for people. Housing is less expensive in Nashville. Add to that the fact that annual expenses for a family of four are roughly $15,000 cheaper. And Tennessee’s per capita taxes are some of the lowest in the country. With no state income tax, combined state and local per capita tax burden is only $2,777 in Tennessee.

2. It’s good for families
Between 2009 and 2014 Nashville grew by 41,000 people or about 17,000 households.

3. Stress—less of it

Also on par with the low cost of living that makes Nashville an attractive place is a few phrases that kept coming up in my conversations—Nashville “is easy” or “simple” and “a less stressful place to live.” In a comparison of the most stressed-out cities, Nashville is 33rd. While sitting at Barista Parlor Golden Sound, a coffee house located in an old recording studio in the Gulch neighborhood, I overheard a conversation that sums up that sentiment. A woman in her 20’s was visiting from New York City and talking on the phone about a potential move to Nashville. Her reason? I can work anywhere, why am I killing myself trying to pay rent in NYC when there are cool things in Nashville and it’s so much cheaper? She went on to say “I don’t have a desire to leave New York, I have a desire to not have a heart attack by the time I’m 30.” And the clincher: “I have another friend moving here from San Francisco and can rent a beautiful one-bedroom loft overlooking downtown Nashville and be less stressed.”

4. Jobs
Named one of Gallop’s top five cities for job growth, over the past decade Nashville grew nine times more jobs than Chicago as a percent of total jobs. Taxes and the regulatory environment could play a role in that growth—Tennessee’s corporate income tax rate is 6.5 percent, compared to Illinois’ combined 9.5 percent. Tennessee’s business tax climate is ranked 15th. There’s also no personal income tax.

5. Government Efficiency
With no state income tax, combined state and local per capita tax burden is only $2,777 in Tennessee compared to $4,658 in Illinois.

A universal theme I heard attributed to Nashville’s growth is that the city “removes hurdles to make it happen.” One of these hurdles is layers of government. Businesses have said they located in Nashville because there were less layers of government to deal with in the region and, whether or not the reality, Nashville was perceived as an easier place to do business. For example, a call center was awarded a building permit in one day.

The city of Nashville and Davidson County have one, consolidated government, Metro. Assessment of that shift found the consolidated government did improve efficiency and slowed down the increase in government expenditures per capita, suggesting that the metropolitan government was doing more with its resources. Surveys of residents found that people were very satisfied with the consolidation.

6. Planning

Nashville’s Belmont neighborhood: A Nashville Next plan goal is to make Nashville more walkable and less car dependent.

Nashville recently adopted Nashville Next, a comprehensive plan that will guide the city’s growth for the next 25 years. Adopted on June 22, 2015, after three years of community engagement involving more than 18,500 participants, The plan is “…a strategy for what the city should do. Where to build homes — and what kind. How to improve transportation. And the best ways to spend city tax dollars.” There is an overall consensus on focused development downtown. The plan’s four strategies are:

1. Create more walkable centers
2. Create opportunity through abundant housing
3. Build a high-capacity transit system and
4. Increase the community’s resiliency

In creating the four strategies, planners considered changes in demographic trends, poverty and environment, and aligned those trends with the plan’s goals. For example, Nashville will have an older population with the aging of the Baby Boomer generation and a younger Millennial generation, both of whom will want smaller, attached homes rather than homes on large single-family lots. Further, demographic trends “…point toward a future where demand for walkable neighborhoods outstrips the supply…”

Nashville Next has a preferred future shaped by six factors:

1. Protection of sensitive environmental features
2. A complete transit network
3. Household affordability across income levels
4. Focus on activity centers—places with transportation access, abundant housing and amenities
5. Strategic infill that supports transit lines and activity centers
6. Protection and enhancement of the character of different parts of the county. The plan goals include:

Develop standards that guide the design, location and construction of affordable housing across all neighborhoods.
Target infill development along mobility corridors to provide more housing choices that support walking and transit use and to transition gracefully between residential neighborhoods and more intense mixed use and commercial centers and corridors.
Ensure jobs, education and training opportunities are located close to transit service, in centers or in high-need areas.

Development in Nashville’s Gulch neighborhood.

These goals will guide how the Metro government regulates land use, zoning and other development decisions as well as capital spending through policy maps. The policy maps give geographic guidance for decision-making, such as priorities for transit or new greenways. Progress will be tracked annually.

7. Culture

Nashville has many of those amenities for a mid-size city. Its restaurant scene is, “…growing exponentially” and a new $623 million downtown convention center complex “…is demonstrating that the center of gravity is now moving downtown.” Nashville has Tennessee Preforming Arts Center featuring many Broadway shows, Opera, Museums and MUSIC!

And this may be anecdotal, but more than one person (and many Uber drivers) told me that Nashville’s growth is due to the TV show Nashville, Taylor Swift making country music more mainstream and Jack White.

By Chrissy Mancini Nichols
October 21, 2015
Metroplanning.org

10 Signs You’re From Franklin, TN

Outsiders should visit at least once in their life.
By Jenna Beaudin in The List on Apr 25, 2016

Franklin, Tennessee is not your everyday small town. Growing up there my whole life until I moved away for college is truly a blessing, and I wouldn’t have wanted to grow up anywhere else. With Nashville’s popularity on the rise, people shouldn’t forget about the beautiful town only 30 minutes southwest of the big city. If you’re from Franklin, I hope you agree that these are some things that only we will understand.

1. Always being tempted to explore the red caboose.

2. Knowing you’ll be late to school because of the one lane traffic, even when it’s a late start.

3. Going to Nashville on Saturday night and walking on Broadway only to laugh at the drunk people walking around.

4. Trying to be a hipster at Frothy Monkey.

5. When your only options to go out on the weekends are the mall, going to the movies, or walking around Downtown Franklin.

6. Scaring your friend with the “DTF?” text when really it means “Downtown Franklin?”

7. Getting to brag that Miley Cyrus basically grew up there and shows it off to her famous friends.

8. ….and that she loves our town so much she filmed that scene from the Hannah Montana Movie in our high school.

9. When we all thought the end of the world was upon us when the flood hit in 2010. (This is a grass field beside my house by the way)

10. When you’re visiting family from college and the night before you go back, you eat your feelings because college will never be Franklin.

I never appreciated how wonderful Franklin was until I left for college. Every time I go back, I cherish every moment. If you’re a senior graduating this year, go outside and breathe in that beautiful, clean, Franklin air, because college air is just not the same.

Jenna Beaudin
www.theodysseyonline.com

Timothy’s Gift Concert

Timothy’s Gift Concert – May 7, 2016 – 7PM at Gracepointe Church, Franklin, TN.

The Timothy’s Gift journey started the instant compassion became passion. In 1998, Nashville businessman Ron Miller watched a news report about a Florida boy, Tim Kane, who was charged with murder, tried as an adult, and given two life sentences despite having never touch a single victim. Hearing Tim’s certainly unique story lead to the birth of a Non-Profit, Timothy’s Gift, that has already touched thousands of lives. What may be most extraordinary about all of this is the hope Tim has sparked all from inside the prison walls.

The Hope Tour, led by Melissa Greene, has risen to be a vital instrument for sharing the message of Timothy’s Gift to both inmates and staff.

The message of Timothy’s Gift is that no one is forgotten, that every human being has great WORTH.

TimothysGift.com

Top 50 rated Oak Steakhouse coming to Nashville

A nationally ranked steakhouse concept will occupy a 7,000 square foot leased space attached to The Westin Nashville hotel, which is rising directly across from Music City Center.

Oak Steakhouse Nashville is planned to open this fall as the first location here for Charleston, S.C.-based The Indigo Road Restaurant Group.
The restaurant, which will operate independent of the Westin hotel, would be the third under the Oak Steakhouse concept. The other locations are in Charleston and Atlanta, while Indigo Road Restaurant Group also operates The Oak Table in Columbia, S.C., among other concepts.

Steve Palmer, managing partner of The Indigo Road Restaurant Group, said the Oak Steakhouse planned at the corner of Eighth Avenue South and Clark Place would fulfill his longtime dream of opening a restaurant in Nashville.
“After two years of searching for the right space, I see the opening of the Westin and the Music City Center as great drivers for our project,” he said. “The Nashville food scene is strong and reminds me of Charleston; I am excited to be a part of it.”

In addition to the Oak Steakhouse Nashville space, the 454-room Westin hotel will includethe Nashville area’s highest-level rooftop bar, L27, as well as lobby-level bar/eatery and social gathering place Decker & Dyer and the luxury, resort-style Rhapsody Spa.

The modern steakhouse is expected to have a menu centered around Certified Angus Beef Prime wet and dry-aged steaks alongside locally-sourced sides, salads and small plates. It will have a 200-seat dining capacity with a private dining space also that could seat up to 100 guests.

The architecture and design efforts by Bill Johnson of Atlanta-based The Johnson Studio at Cooper Carry is expected to incorporate signature Oak steakhouse design elements including exposed light bulbs, reclaimed wood and leather banquettes to create a contemporary, sophisticated space.

The restaurant will be accessible through a separate entrance, but will share valet service with the hotel for convenience of guests.
The culinary team that’s being hired will work with regional farmers and purveyors to bring farm-to-table sensibilities to the operation here, The Indigo Road Restaurant Group said.

Among accolades, Travel + Leisure magazine has named Charleston’s Oak Steakhouse a “Best Steakhouse in America.” The Daily Meal and the Huffington Post have also ranked the concept among “America’s 50 Best Steakhouses.”

Getahn Ward, gward@tennessean.com

Franklin, TN Main Street Festival April 23-24, 2016

Main Street Festival activities will run Saturday, April 23, from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. and Sunday, April 24, 11 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

The Heritage Foundation’s Main Street Festival, presented by First Tennessee, returns to downtown Franklin April 23-24. The free spring celebration is expected to draw a crowd of about 120,000 for a fun-filled weekend of music, arts and crafts, food, and children’s activities.

WHAT TO EXPECT
This year, live music will take place on two stages: The XFINITY Stage on the Public Square and The Guitar Center Stage on Main Street at First Avenue. A performance schedule is available on the Main Street Festival event page at HistoricFranklin.com. Franklin’s own Daphne and the Mystery Machines will headline a Saturday night performance on the Guitar Center Stage at 7 p.m. A lucky attendee will have a chance to win a $150 gift card to Guitar Center at the performance. Visit www.Facebook.com/ HistoricFranklin to enter this contest.

New to 2016, Centricity Music and WAY-FM present contemporary Christian artists JJ Weeks Band and David Dunn leading worship for the first ever “Worship on the Square.” This event begins at 10:45 a.m. Sunday on the XFINITY Stage at the Public Square.

The King Arthur Bake Truck will make an appearance this year next to the XFINITY Stage at the Public Square handing out homemade cookies and collecting donations for the Heritage Foundation.

Three photo opportunities on the Public Square give attendees a chance to capture and share spring photos. Third Avenue South will offer a kids’ zone with a variety of inflatables, train and pony rides, a petting zoo and other activities for a small fee.

The centerpiece of Main Street Festival is the juried arts and crafts show featuring more than 150 artisans and crafters with handmade wares. Vendors will offer jewelry, pottery, furniture, woodworking, leather work, photography and more from First to Fifth Avenues.

No street festival is complete without food. More than twenty-five vendors will offer an international assortment of food including original corn roast, barbecue, Greek food, Mexican cuisine, Italian ice and old fashioned soda located at two food courts on Third Avenue North and Fourth Avenue South. A French food truck and grass-fed organic food truck will join the lineup for the first time this year. And as always, kettle corn, hot dogs, and funnel cakes will be offered. Also, a beer garden located down Fourth Avenue South will feature a variety of beer and wine selections.

Offsite parking will be available at Church of the City and Harlinsdale Farm on Saturday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. and at Franklin High School and Harlinsdale Farm on Sunday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Shuttles will service each location for $1 each way/ each person. Food, drink, pets, and non-folding strollers are not allowed on the shuttle.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Heritage Foundation of Franklin and Williamson County and its division, the Downtown Franklin Association, and their missions, respectively: to protect and preserve the architectural, geographical and cultural heritage of Franklin and Williamson County, and to promote the ongoing economic revitalization of Downtown Franklin in the context of historic preservation.

The Heritage Foundation

Pricing your home in the Nashville TN area.

Not Sure How to Price Your Home? Use These Expert Strategies to Hit the Sweet Spot

Pricing your home based on data, not emotion, can mean a swift sale.

You don’t need to be Bob Barker to know when the price just isn’t right. Just ask Candace Talmadge. She originally listed her Lancaster, Texas, home for $129,000, but “eventually had to accept the market reality” and chop $4,000 off the price.

The home’s location proved challenging: Buyers were either turned off by the area — a lower-income neighborhood south of Dallas — or unable to afford the home.

“Sellers have to keep in mind the location,” says Talmadge. “Who are going to be the likely buyers?”

Home pricing is more of a science than an art, but many homeowners price with their heartstrings instead of cold, hard data. Here’s why crunching the numbers is always the better route to an accurate home price — as well as what can happen when home sellers overlook those all important data points.

Read more: http://www.houselogic.com/home-advice/home-thoughts/how-much-is-my-home-worth/#ixzz435TRNUTV
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