by Luke Levenson
Tennessee’s state flower, the Iris, takes its name from the Greek word for rainbow — traditionally a symbol of hope and new beginnings. When the seven founders of the Iris Ball got together to plan for the inaugural charity event, they had similar sentiments in mind. On April 1, ticketholders of the Iris Ball will fill M Street’s The Rosewall with drinking, dancing and raising money for Purple Hearts Homes — a national nonprofit that assists military veterans by providing improvements on their homes. The founders/Steering Committee members are long-time friends who have all lived in Nashville at one time or another, and they felt called to give back to the city that was special to them.
“We wanted to put on an event that celebrates Nashville,” said Steering Committee member Drew Danieley. “We also wanted to create an event that helps veterans. Members of the Committee live all over the country, but this is a way for us to get together as friends and celebrate two groups that have given us all so much.”
The members of the Steering Committee recruited a number of younger hosts to get the word out about Purple Hears Homes and the Ball and to reach out to potential sponsors. With their help, the Committee’s vision was realized, and now the black tie event has a magnificent agenda of live music by the Music City Toppers from 8:30-12:30, an open bar and a silent auction. Proceeds from the auction, ticket sales and donations will go to Purple Hearts Homes.
“One of the things about Purple Hearts Homes that registered with us was its service to veterans of all eras,” said Danieley. “They help veterans of World War II, and they help veterans who have just gotten home last year. Their projects are across the board, so that really stood out to us as a way that benefits as many veterans as possible.”
Sponsors include Pinnacle Financial Partners, Brasfield & Gorrie General Contractors, Burr & Forman LLP, Eshelman Construction, Waller LLP, Nitetrain Coach, The Perfect Setting and TKO Artist Management.
To purchase tickets for the Iris Ball and for more information on Purple Hearts Homes, visit theirisball.com.