FRANKLIN, Tenn. –  Visit Franklin is again participating in the Event Service Professionals Association’s National Celebrate Service Week, by honoring Williamson County’s service professionals that help make it one of Tennessee’s most visited destinations. In addition to special events throughout the week, Visit Franklin awarded its annual Best in Service Award to Layla Smart, the front desk manager of TownePlace Suites by Marriott Franklin Cool Springs. 

National Celebrate Service Week was established by the ESPA to create a week focused on event service managers at hotels, convention centers, and convention and visitor bureaus, to celebrate what these event service managers do for the hospitality industry. Visit Franklin has expanded that mission locally to honor all who play a role in serving visitors, and together the county’s hospitality partners give back to a charitable cause. This year the county’s hospitality partners have come together to support Deer Run Camps & Retreats in Thompson’s Station. Donations of travel-size soaps, shampoos, and other toiletry necessities from hotel partners will help Deer Run accommodate campers through their MISSION 21:1 program who otherwise would not be able to afford the camp experience or have the means to bring camp necessities with them.

“Williamson County has so many incredible people who work in the hospitality and service industry here and what they do on a daily basis to go above and beyond what is required to ensure that guests to our community are welcomed is something we can’t say thank you enough for,” said Visit Franklin President and CEO Ellie Westman Chin. “National Celebrate Service Week is a great time to show our appreciation to our hospitality partners, but the fact they all come together to make it about giving to others shows, even more so, the heart and soul that makes up our community’s hospitality industry.”

The week started with the presentation of the Best in Service Award to Smart, who was nominated by the leadership team at TownePlace Suites by Marriott Franklin Cool Springs. Smart stood out to the selection committee with her glowing reviews not only from staff but also from guests of the hotel. She is credited with always doing the little things to make guests feel welcomed, was one of the first graduates of the Franklin Ambassadors program, and keeps the ‘TowneMap that greets guests at the property updated daily with all the events and happenings around Franklin.

The Visit Franklin staff will continue celebrating hospitality service throughout the week with the following events: 

Tuesday, July 30: Providing breakfast pastries to Franklin Police Department as a thank you to the work they do to not only keep Franklin safe each day but also for their efforts at special events like the festivals on Main Street, Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival, and so many others.

Wednesday, July 31: Delivery of donations from area hotel and hospitality partners to Deer Run Retreat for use in their MISSION 41:1 program. 

Thursday, August 1: All downtown Franklin business owners and staff, along with hospitality partners from across the county are encouraged to stop by the Visitor Center to cool down with a special treat from Visit Franklin.


 Visit Franklin is the public brand name of the Williamson County Convention & Visitors Bureau. Visit Franklin is the official destination marketing organization for Franklin and the unique communities of Williamson County, Tennessee. Visit Franklin stimulates economic growth through the promotion of travel and tourism assets such as history, music, attractions, entertainment, the arts, and events to visitors from around the world. For information on Franklin and Williamson County, visit us on the web at



Posted in

Matt is the guy who is always ready to share a story with you.

With a passion for new experiences, taking the back roads, and seeing everything possible, Matt serves as Visit Franklin's Senior Director of Public Relations connecting the many unique stories in the Franklin community with great journalists and storytellers worldwide. When not pitching a story idea to travel writers, you’ll likely find him working as a photographer on the sidelines of college and professional sports events across the Southeast.