BY HEIDI HOOD
MANAGING DIRECTOR OF THE DOWNTOWN FRANKLIN ASSOCIATION
The Downtown Franklin Association, a division of the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, is excited to continue its mission work this year with the launch of the festival season well underway...
As a nationally accredited Main Street program, the Downtown Franklin Association’s mission is to lead the continued revitalization and purposeful evolution of downtown Franklin - in the context of historic preservation - by maintaining a diverse economic base, promoting a unique local shopping experience, fostering accessible and attractive public spaces, and forging partnerships across all sectors.
38th ANNUAL MAIN STREET FESTIVAL
The DFA was thrilled to host the 38th Annual Main Street Festival, presented by First Horizon Bank, on April 23rd and 24th. Produced by the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, this festival is one of Main Street’s most beloved traditions, drawing around 100,000 guests from near and far over a single weekend, featuring over 150 arts and crafts vendors, a wide array of food trucks, live entertainment and more. New this year, were unique activations like “Spring Street,” featuring special photo opportunities, chalk art and more experiential activities for memory-making on Main Street, as well as the “Caterpillar Crawl,” which encouraged guests to shop and dine the businesses on Main Street during the festival. According to economic impact studies by Chandlerthinks in 2021 from Main Street Festival, the festival’s economic impact was over $4 million.
The DFA also continues to live out its mission to maintain the quality and design of downtown by mobilizing a signage committee to update the wayfinding signs with current information regarding the shops and destinations downtown, projecting the effort to be completely updated by the summertime.
In support of the economic vitality downtown, the DFA is launching DFA University on May 10th with guest speaker Joni Cole, co-owner of Gray’s on Main. Joni will be sharing educational content on the topic “Creating Culture & Retaining Talent” as an exclusive benefit to DFA membership. In addition, DFA University will continue to cover business-building points of interest for the business community downtown, with additional “lunch and learn” events taking place throughout the year.
Providing hospitality and concierge on the streets for visitors downtown, Franklin Locals equips trained, on-the-street representatives to answer questions, give recommendations and share the story of Franklin with new friends. The DFA is now recruiting volunteers to join this fun crew for the summer season. You can learn more and apply on their website:
In the ever-changing landscape of Franklin, the DFA is working hard to ensure downtown remains one of America’s favorite historic districts.