January is a great time to rest after the holidays, read that book you’ve been meaning to pick up, and visit with family and friends. It may be chilly, but it’s also a great time to get out of the house and enjoy some of the best events Middle Tennessee has to offer. From outdoor activities to evenings out on the town, we’ve got you covered.

January 1: First Day Hike
Various Tennessee State Parks
Get some fresh air and recover from your night on the town with a free hike around one of Tennessee’s beautiful state parks. Can’t make this one? Check your local state park’s event calendar for other hikes and programming, most of which are free!

January 4-28: Winter Shakespeare | Hamlet
Belmont’s Troutt Theater | Nashville
The Nashville Shakespeare Festival is celebrating its 30th anniversary by kicking off its winter season with the classic Hamlet. From the website: “Artistic Director Denice Hicks directs this intimate production that takes you on a journey into the minds and hearts of the royal family of Denmark in their darkest time. Prince Hamlet, played by the magnetic Sam Ashdown, is torn between two unbearable situations: either living with his father’s murderer or committing murder himself.”

January 5: First Friday Art Scene
Historic Downtown Franklin
It might be chilly out, but there is plenty to see and do around Downtown Franklin, and the Art Scene is the best night for it. Warm up by visiting the galleries and shops, grab a drink or some food at one of the many great area restaurants, and go from venue to venue on the trolley which runs until the end of the event.

January 15-21: Nashville Restaurant Week
Various Locations
More than 60 restaurants around town will be participating with special menus and discounts. Organized by Nashville Originals, Nashville’s independent restaurant association, the week-long event is a great opportunity to try a new locally owned restaurant.

January 27: Stars for Wishes
Country Music Hall of Fame | Nashville
Enjoy a night on the town while helping to grant wishes for Make-A-Wish kids by attending the Stars for Wishes gala. The event includes dinner, cocktails, a silent auction, and an afterparty for those who want to extend the evening.

January 27: Zoo Run Run
The Nashville Zoo
Enjoy a 5k at your own pace through the grounds of the beautiful Nashville Zoo’s property, including areas not normally available to see. This event is fun for all ages, and the proceeds help fund normal Zoo operations, provide educational programs for children, feeds the 2,300 animals, and helps keep the Zoo safe and clean for visitors.

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