Brad Paisley and Wife Kimberly to Open Free Nashville Grocery Store for Families In Need

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Brad Paisley and his wife, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, are giving back to the Nashville community with the opening of The Store, a modern day version of a food pantry aimed to work as a free grocery store. The establishment, in partnership with Belmont University, is expected to open in 2019 and will be located at 2005 12th Ave. S. in Music City.

Brad tells the Tennessean that the idea for The Store came to he and his wife after volunteering one Thanksgiving with their sons at the Unity Shoppe in Santa Barbara, Calif. The couple decided to bring their sons to volunteer around the holiday after his wife thought they were acting spoiled.

“It was inspiring because these people have dignity,” Brad, a Belmont graduate, tells the publication. “It’s not a scene from ‘Oliver Twist.’ These people are able to sit there and feel very, very normal in the eyes of their kids. I remember … thinking, ‘Why isn’t this everywhere?’ Essentially, we got this idea that it could be a very effective thing in Nashville.”

Brad and his wife have teamed with Belmont University to open The Store. The non-profit organization will work like a free grocery store.

“This is a grocery store with dignity for people who have fallen on hard times,” Braid explains. “All of us are one unforeseen disaster away from rock bottom. It’s nice to think about a place where when that happens to someone, they can use it to get back on their feet.”

The Store will be located next to Belmont University’s Ministry Center and will partner with Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee and other organizations to provide fresh and nonperishable groceries to individuals and families in need for one year. With the goal to serve 3,000 people a year, customers will be referred by nonprofit and government agencies.

Kimberly says The Store is meant to be a “temporary Band-Aid on the road to self-sufficiency. So many people are making great choices in their lives. It’s not like they’ve made major mistakes, they just need a little extra help and we want to be a resource for those people.”

In addition to providing food for deserving families, The Store plans to set up a toy aisle during the holidays and will accept donations of new, unopened toys. To learn more about The Store and to donate, visit www.thestore.org.

Annie Reuter
Annie Reuter is a freelance journalist based in Nashville. When she's not covering the latest music news or interviewing countless country artists, she can be found at a writers round listening to the best up-and-coming songwriting talent Music City has to offer.

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