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Rain-soaked start doesnt dampen afternoon at Franklins Main Street Festival

First came the dismal forecast, then came the downpours, then came a breeze and then came the people. The balance of Franklin’s 30th annual Main Street Festival remained relatively dry after shrugging off a persistent rain that soaked the area for much of the first day of the two-day event.
“It was lightning and thundering, but we are here,” said Sarah Knox of Modern Bronze, a Franklin-based jewelry company she co-owns with her twin sister Liz Anderson. “The rain has kept some of the people away, and some of the vendors. But Franklinites have good attitudes.” 
Sarah Knox (left) and Liz Anderson of Modern Bronze
Photos by Skip Anderson

Knox said it’s their second year to exhibit their bronze, copper, sterling silver and 14k gold-filled jewelry at the Main Street Festival. Knox said that although their sales are down compared to last year, she and her sister expect to see a profit by the end of the weekend. 
“We’ve already recovered our fee,” she said. “So we’re not sad.” 
By 4 p.m., only a few puddles remained along East Main Street, West Main Street and the side streets that comprise the festival grounds, and the crowd had decidedly picked up from only an hour before. 
“They’re hot and they’re little, so there’s nothing to feel bad about,” called out doughnut vendor Danny Tassone, to nobody in particular. Three young women approached and purchased a dozen. 
“I put an extra one in there.” It’s something he said to everyone who bought a dozen doughnuts.

Danny Tassone co-owns Ellie's Old Fashioned Doughnuts with his wife, Ellie.

Based in Franklin, Tassone and his silver-dollar sized, sugar-covered doughnuts are well known to those who go to the Franklin Farmer’s Market – he’s there almost every weekend with a line of people waiting to buy doughnuts and flavored coffees. While there was no such line Saturday afternoon at the Main Street Festival, he conducted several transactions every minute or so. Still, he doubted he would sell enough doughnuts and coffee to make the weekend profitable. 
“Franklin has been so good to us,” Tassone, who formerly raced monster trucks, said. “We take the good with the bad.” 
By 4:30 p.m., despite a persistent blanket of low-hanging, fast-moving gray clouds, the crowd began to near the critical mass one might expect for a popular event such as the Main Street Festival.
Holly and Daryl Little brought their 5-month-old son, Gavin, and Daryl’s mother to the festival after spending the day wondering if the weather would break. 
“We kept hoping all day,” Daryl said. “We kept watching the [weather] radar hoping to find a break.” 
When the rain stopped, they headed downtown. Their first stop: a food vendor that specializes in carnival fare such as corn dogs, fried Twinkies and funnel cakes. 
Holly, Gavin and Daryl Little waited until the rain stopped before heading to downtown Franklin.

“We’ve been waiting all day to eat,” Holly said, holding a tin mug filled with root beer. “We love festival food. But food is just the first stage, we’ll shop and listen to music, too.”
The Main Street Festival is produced by The Heritage Foundation of Franklin and Williamson County and it division, the Downtown Franklin Association. Proceeds from the event are used to fulfill the mission of the organization, which is to protect and preserve the architectural, geographic and cultural heritage of Franklin and Williamson County and to promote the ongoing economic revitalization of downtown Franklin in the context of historic preservation.

Even rain slickers couldn't keep some from seeking respite in Starbucks at Five Points ...

... but for others, a pink poncho was plenty.

Posted on: 4/27/2013


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