Despite rain, one family keeps things sweet at Dickens of a Christmas

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Despite rain, one family keeps things sweet at Dickens of a Christmas

Some may say rainy days move as slow as molasses, and for those who indulged in sugarplums at Dickens of a Christmas this weekend, that is the secret ingredient. 

The 34th annual Dickens of a Christmas transformed downtown Franklin into a winter wonderland with artificial snow, but also back to a time when the characters from Charles Dickens’ novels seemed to come to life on the streets of Franklin. 

Heritage Foundation CEO Bari Beasley acknowledged the weather was damp, but said the tradition must go on. 

“For 34 years this festival has been a holiday tradition for Franklin and Williamson County,” Beasley said. “Dickens of a Christmas embodies one of the core aspects of our mission at the Heritage Foundation, which is community.” 

The weather forecast did not dampen the spirits of attendees, who came out to see and hear carolers singing Christmas classics or dancers dressed in Victorian-era clothing that performed near 4th Avenue. 

On a sweeter note, Martha Hooper, Terry and Destiny Adkison represent the third generation of their family, who have been selling one-of-a-kind sugarplums at Dickens for 24 years. 

“We take a plum, and we put a delicious filling in it and roll it in sugar,” Hooper explained. 

Hooper has lovingly been given the nickname “Granny Sugar” by her daughter and granddaughter. 

The family put a “southern” twist on the unique delicacy from Portugal. They call it their secret ingredient, but maybe not so secret now. 

“We add a little touch of molasses to give it that southern touch,” Destiny Adkison said.  

Destiny’s mom, Terry started selling the sugary fruit when she was just 19-years-old and recruited her mom “Granny Sugar” and others to help. Terry Adkison remembers the first year well when they were selling outside of the former Batey’s Art Gallery, right across the street from where they were selling this year. 

“When we first started, there were very few vendors here,” Terry Adkison said. 

The festival has seen immense growth over the years and so has the amount of sugarplums the family sells. 

“People just keep buying them and buying them,” Hooper said.

All three family members plan to come back to Dickens next year. It will be an even sweeter year for them. 

“Next year's our 25th, so we’ll definitely be here, Hopper said. 

“We absolutely love it,” Terry Adkinson said.    

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