Downtown Franklin is Ready to Celebrate!

The Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN and its division, the Downtown Franklin Association (DFA), have partnered with Visit Franklin and the City of Franklin to celebrate Holiday Magic on Main during the Christmas season.

Downtown Franklin is not to be missed at Christmastime, and this year America’s Favorite Main Street district will be celebrating Christmas safely, with shopping options for unique gifts from locally owned retailers, a variety of restaurants perfect for memorable family meals and plenty of spots throughout downtown Franklin to take that perfect keepsake photo.

Heritage Foundation CEO Bari Beasley said, “There’s no doubt the pandemic has affected everything about how we work, how we interact and even how we celebrate. Our Holiday Magic on Main promotion offers residents and visitors the chance to celebrate the winter holidays by spending time with their loved ones in our beautiful downtown district, making memories at our unique restaurants and shopping for distinctive gifts at our locally owned shops.”

The Downtown Franklin Association website will be updated continually throughout the season with activations and promotions. Be sure to check out And a special thank you goes out to First Citizens National Bank for their sponsorship of this unique event. 

Holiday Magic on Main Features Iconic NOEL Sign

Holiday Magic on Main kicked off Friday, Nov. 27 with the lighting of the iconic NOEL sign atop the White Building at Main St. and Fifth Ave. and a ceremony with Franklin Mayor Ken Moore reading a proclamation in honor of the event.

The White Building, built in 1923 at Five Points, has been home to the NOEL sign since the 1980s. The sign was originally placed on top of the Noel Hotel in Nashville, located then at 200 Fourth Avenue North. According to Williamson Source, business partners and brothers Oscar and John Noel opened their hotel on January 6, 1930.

The Noel Hotel closed its doors in September 1972. Karen Cochran, owner of the White Building in downtown Franklin, was married to John Noel III, a founder of the DFA and the grandson of John Noel Sr. When she learned that the hotel business had run its course, the article says that Cochran and Noel decided to take the sign back to their home.

The article reads: “For years after, the couple would set up the massive sign at the corner of Franklin Road and Elysian Fields for passersby to see while driving each year for Christmastime. Then one day, Cochran thought, ‘Why not put it on top of the White Building at Five Points?’”

The family moved their sign once again, to a more permanent location and each year those driving from Lewisburg Pike or Columbia Avenue have the perfect view of the NOEL sign. We look forward to seeing this icon light up our downtown again this Christmas!

Get a Free Ride on the Hop-and-Shop Trolley

The DFA is working with the TMA Group, Franklin’s public transportation service, to offer free shuttles between Downtown Franklin and The Factory, 230 Franklin Rd., every Saturday during Holiday Magic on Main, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Shuttles will run on Nov. 28, Dec. 5, Dec. 12 and Dec. 19. Downtown Franklin Association Main Street Director Jill Burgin noted the free shuttle offers flexibility for people to park at The Factory and shop there and in Downtown Franklin.

“With the road work going on along Franklin Road, we want to do everything possible to make the shopping experience easier,” she said. “The National Retail Federation reports that more people will be Christmas shopping earlier this year, to avoid crowds and to bypass any shipping delays they may experience online. We want to support that and highlight the variety of shopping options available in Downtown Franklin.”

Get Your Message on the Franklin Theatre Marquee 

For a minimum donation of $100 to The Franklin Theatre, you can see your name (or your message!) up in lights. Your donation gets your message on the historic theater’s marquee for a day. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity which makes for a great holiday card photo op, marriage proposal or message in memory or in honor of a loved one. 



CLICK HERE to read the story from the Williamson Herald about the kickoff of this amazing monthlong celebration.