11 days of food and fun at The Celebration funds 365 days of community service!

SHELBYVILLE, TN – Yesterday’s announcement of better than anticipated attendance at the 74th annual Celebration is a positive sign that local civic groups will meet their annual fundraising goals. 17 local civic clubs raise money for charity at the annual Celebration and for more than half of the participating organizations; Celebration is their only or largest fundraiser of the year. More than 3.5 million dollars has been raised over the past 15 years for charity at the Celebration. Last year alone, these clubs grossed nearly $400,000 and netted more than $240,000. The overall economic impact on Middle Tennessee by the Celebration event is nearly $40 million and the Celebration facilities generate another $13 million annually through events throughout the year.

"The Celebration is honored to give back to our community by providing an opportunity for local civic organizations to make a difference in our community.  The participating civic clubs are able to help a tremendous number of people due to their hard work at The Celebration and we are delighted to be a partner in their good works,” said Dr. Doyle Meadows, CEO of the Celebration.

The Celebration has a proud tradition of giving revenues generated through concession sales, program sales, souvenir sales and other services such as parking cars back to the community. The 17 participating civic organizations from Bedford County run the concessions, souvenir booths and program sales at the 11 day premier Tennessee Walking Horse event. The revenue generated by these groups fund their charitable programs for the entire year.

 “We rely on proceeds from the Celebration for all of our charity work and to maintain our VFW home on Depot Street. Local veterans are very important to our community and our country and without the Celebration we could not support our veterans,” said David Baker, Quartermaster of VFW Post 5019.

Some of the area civic clubs participating at the 74th Annual Celebration include: American Legion Post 23, Civitan Club of Shelbyville, Community Lions Club, Disabled American Veterans (DAV), East Bedford Civic Club, Kiwanis Club of Shelbyville, Optimist Club, Shelbyville Central High School Quarterback Club, Shelbyville Breakfast Rotary, Shelbyville Central High School Band Boosters, Shelbyville Jaycees, Shelbyville Lions Club, Shelbyville Noon Rotary Club and Veterans of Foreign Wars.        

Without the Celebration, many of the community projects funded by local civic organizations would fold. The revenue generated among the 17 civic organizations ranges from $6,000 to $35,000 each.  Nearly100% of the net proceeds are returned to Shelbyville/Bedford County community in the service of Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Boys State, Girls State, Big Brothers & Big Sisters, Special Olympics, Great Strides, special needs children and adults, veterans, ball teams of all ages, and scholarships. Kiwanis alone gives nine scholarships to worth high school seniors.

Selling nearly a 120,000 tickets to fans from more than 40 states each year, The Celebration® has an economic impact on Middle Tennessee’s economy, comparable to a NASCAR race and bigger than the Music City Bowl and the Country Music Marathon.