The Downtown Franklin Association (DFA) hosted a “Season of Love” promotional campaign to its collective following of nearly 100k mid-January and carried it through Valentine’s Day, highlighting downtown Franklin as an ideal place for destination weddings, romantic getaways, and Valentine’s experiences. 


“The DFA serves the downtown community in many ways, one of which is promoting the downtown historic district to our audience of nearly 100,000,” says Managing Director, Heidi Hood. “Many couples got engaged during the holidays, and we wanted to help newly engaged couples with their wedding plans by raising awareness for what’s available to them in downtown Franklin.” 


So what is available to couples for romantic gestures and weddings in downtown Franklin?  


There are a few places that could be great ideas for proposals, such as The Franklin Theatre marquee, where one could feature a message for the perfect surprise element and photo opportunity. There’s also the infamous public square, and even “Picture Perfect Tours” with Franklin Walking Tours. Hidden treasures like Merridee’s Breadbasket back patio also provides a more private element and intimate romantic atmosphere for a proposal moment. 


When it comes to wedding venues, downtown Franklin boasts a variety of choices from historic churches such as Franklin United Methodist Church; family-owned, full-service/in-house wedding experiences at destinations like CJ’s Off the Square; a slightly more grandiose vibe with a luxurious adjacent courtyard like The Harpeth Hotel; romantic, theatrical production-style weddings at The Franklin Theatre; historic plantation experiences like Carnton; and of course, the infamous Factory at Franklin. 


Caterers found downtown for weddings and smaller events include places like Americana Taphouse, Grays on Main, Triple Crown Bakery, Puckett’s, and Kilwins. Vendors like Southern Events, Rock Paper Scissors, and The Registry help bring the details together for the big day and beyond. Services like Lavender Nail Bar, The NOW Massage, and skoah. Facial Shop are great places to spoil a couple or wedding party.  


When looking for smaller places for showers and rehearsal dinners before the big day, couples can find a variety available to them in places like The Parker House on Main, Gray’s on Main, Franklin Bakehouse, DeAnn Art Gallery, Americana Taphouse, Saint Goose, and The Franklin Theatre. 


But what about the guests? What can they enjoy during the weekend while visiting for a wedding? There’s plenty to see and do downtown for visitors, with the unique array of locally owned shopping and restaurants, as well as a variety of historic walking tours and destinations like Franklin on Foot, Gallery 202, Franklin Walking Tours, The Carter House, The Lotz House, and live music venues like Gray’s, Izzy’s Feel Good Food, and Puckett’s. Open late bars can be found at places like 1799 Kitchen & Cocktails, as well as O’ Be Joyful on Main Street. 


Couples and guests are likely to enjoy the personalization that comes from doing business with the friendly faces of the hospitable downtown Franklin community. The Visitor Center is also a great resource for newly engaged couples planning a wedding downtown. 


In addition to weddings, there’s plenty of ways for friends and families to celebrate Galentine’s and Valentine’s days as well. Local photographers like Misty Westebbe Photography can offer children’s Valentine’s-themed portrait sessions in honor of the occasion. Saint Goose, LLC, offers private classes to taste and learn about wine or whiskey. A variety of programming for entertainment happens at The Franklin Theatre and the Williamson County Performing Arts Center nearby.  


Downtown Franklin is a fascinating place to host a wedding, shower, bachelor/ette party, Galentine’s or Valentine’s for couples, friends, and families from everywhere. CLICK HERE to download the current guide to Downtown Franklin Association destination wedding businesses, and plan that special occasion today!

(photo cred: Kathy Thomas Photography)