Senator Blackburn to speak at Knox GOP Lincoln Day Dinner

By Jamie Schnell

William “Buddy” Burkhardt, the chairman of the Knox County Republican Party, has announced the annual Lincoln Day Dinner is scheduled for Friday, March 8 at Rothchild’s Event Center located at 8807 Kingston Pike in Knoxville. The keynote speaker for the event will be Senator Marsha Blackburn.

Burkhardt is ready to sell more tickets, which are available at any time. He told The Focus, “ I have been working with Senator Blackburn’s campaign to ensure the event runs smoothly. We currently have just under 200 people signed up to attend, and we hope to have 300 attendees in total – this would be amazing!

“Typically, we have two months to prepare for this event, but I only had five weeks. Despite this, I used everything in my power to make sure that people knew the event’s date and times. The response has been tremendous and significant.”

Burkhardt describes Senator Blackburn as a “fireball” who has been excellent to work with. “She’s a tremendous senator and stands by our Republican beliefs. She is attending the event and buying two tables to bring in her supporters. I’m very thankful to have her support. Aside from Senator Blackburn, Mayor Jacobs will be the master of ceremonies, and Rep. Tim Burchett will be there doing introductions and speaking briefly. We should have an excellent turnout for the Knox County delegation.”

The Lincoln Day Dinner is one of two annual fundraisers for the Republican Party in Knox County to support Republican candidates in the general election and the Republican Party’s day-to-day operations. Most of the funding for the year is from this dinner and the next opportunity to raise money will be the sporting clays tournament, which will be held on August 9th this year at Iron Mountain Sporting Clays.

The doors will open for the Lincoln Dinner at 5:00 p.m., and the program will start at 7:00 p.m., with an elected official’s reception from 6:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Senator Blackburn is set to speak at 7:30 p.m.

Individual tickets for the event are priced at $100 per person. Sponsorships are sold out, which Burkhardt called a “beautiful problem.” Buddy said the annual Lincoln Day dinner is an excellent opportunity for anyone to come and see a good portion of their elected officials in one place, speak to them, shake their hands, and share their thoughts.

If you have questions or want to purchase tickets, please contact Buddy Burkhardt at or (865)356-5050 or visit