by Heidi Hood, Managing Director of the Downtown Franklin Association
The Downtown Franklin Association (a division of the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County), is gearing up for a productive summer!
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 inviting public spaces, and forging partnerships across all sectors.
In support of the economic vitality downtown,the DFA hosted its first DFA University on May 10th at the Heritage Foundation headquarters on Bridge Street, with guest speaker Joni Cole, co-owner of Gray’s on Main. Joni shared educational content on “Creating Culture & Retaining Talent,” as an exclusive benefit to DFA membership. DFA University will continue to cover business-building points of interest for the business community downtown with additional workshop-style events in the final months of this year.
The DFA is excited to launch DFA Masterminds in June! This program benefits members of the organization, creating space for intentional, solution-focused conversations that help various membership sectors, including nonprofits, retailers, restaurants, building owners and professional services. In addition, this program will provide yet another resource for economic vitality and development to businesses within a one-mile radius of the Public Square.
This month, the DFA was proud to build a resource for local start-ups and growing businesses, collaborating with DFA members and community partners to create this resource built around the unique needs of building a business in downtown Franklin. Visit downtownfanklintn.com/smartstart to view this live resource.
May also brought recruits for DFA’s beloved hospitality program, Franklin Locals. Having hosted a successful spring season, the DFA is ready to launch a hopefully even larger team of volunteers to provide hospitality on the streets, answer questions and welcome new friends on Main Street. The organization would like to see this volunteer force double in size by the end of the fall season this year. For more information and to apply to join for the next season, visit downtownfanklintn.com/franklinlocals.
In the ever-changing landscape of Franklin, the DFA is working hard to ensure downtown remains one of America’s favorite historic districts.