Dickens of a Christmas

 Dickens of a Christmas

For the 30th year, the tradition to travel back about 150 years to the time of Charles Dickens continues in Historic Downtown Franklin.  The second weekend in December is home to the Dickens of a Christmas Festival on Main Street in Franklin, Tennessee.  Franklin has been named one of America’s Favorite Towns and has festivals nearly monthly.  Naturally, the town doesn’t disappoint at Christmas time.

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Looking Down Main Street
Looking Down Main Street
Franklin Public Square

The Characters

Every year, hundreds of volunteers  show up to the free street festival as characters from Dickens’ stories.  You could easily meet Ebenezer Scrooge or Father Christmas during your trip down Main Street.


dickens9 dickens5 dickens4

Ebenezer Scrooge
Ebenezer Scrooge

The Entertainment

Apart from the Dickens characters, there are many other performers that participate in the festival.  Dancers, choir groups, singers, youth orchestras, and handbell choirs are amongst those who perform during the two days.

Franklin High Choral Group
Franklin High Choral Group
Handbell Choir
Handbell Choir

The Food

There are plenty of Victorian treats to be found from several vendors which include: fish ‘n chips, turkey legs, kettle corn, roasted nuts, sausages, and sugar plums.

When you grow tired of walking around, you can enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride around the square or the kids can enjoy pony rides.

Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides
Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides


Franklin is also well-known for being very dog friendly.  Most of the establishments allow dogs in the stores.  The festival, just like a normal day, drew out lots of dog lovers and they brought along their beloved pets.  This couple brought along their great danes that looked like twins and had outfits to prove it.  They were, as you would guess, a big hit with everyone.

Great Danes Twins
Great Danes Twins

Have you ever been to a similar type of festival?  

**These photos are from 2013’s festival, but the information is the same every year – come join next year!**

This post is part of the 2014 Travel Advent Calendar.  Make sure to check out the other posts!

travel advent calendar

Ashley Hubbard

This Post Has 25 Comments

  1. Mrs. Chasing the Donkey

    Hello there fellow co host! What a brilliant sounding event, so old school! I have pinned this for the world to see!

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      It definitely does have that old school feel to it. Thanks for pinning! 🙂

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      No 🙁 I don’t have any of the fun attire. I wouldn’t be opposed to it though if someone offered me the outfit!

  2. frankaboutcroatia

    Franklin sounds like lots of fun. And not only during the Christmas as you mentioned monthly festivals. I would love to taste sugared plums.

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      It has a lot to offer for sure. People from other parts of the state kind of groan when they hear you say where you’re from because they know how you’re going to go on and on about how great it is haha…can’t wait for y’all to hear about the St. Patrick’s Day one 🙂

  3. Sharon @ Wheres Sharon

    That sounds very cool! Can’t say I have been to anything quite like that, but we did enjoy the Christmas celebrations in nearly Georgia when we were there a couple of weeks ago 🙂

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      I just read your post about Georgia and it seems really awesome as well. There was a similar town in Washington that I loved!

  4. Emma

    As an English person, I completely love this! The costumes are all great too! 🙂

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      I know! I want to get my hands on some of those costumes! 🙂

  5. Lunaguava

    Back in our native Southern Europe, we had plenty of medieval fairs and stuff like that (it helps to have ruins of ancient castles scattered around the country), so I’m all up for some dressing up and historical shenanigans. I’d have a hard time choosing a Dickens character though – the man was somewhat prolific with his writing, so there’s plenty to choose from. The event seems like a lot of fun! Extra kudos for the pet-friendly vibe. Happy holidays, Ashley!

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      Thanks guys! Medieval fairs and the like are really fun. We have a renaissance fair every year as well in the summer…lots of fun! Happy Holidays to y’all as well! 🙂

  6. Dave

    What a great tradition! I am ready for some kettle corn and sugar plums right now.

  7. Jeff Johns

    I wish I was from a small town with awesome traditions like this one! No such thing so quant in Washington, DC ha. Love the pictures, especially the dogs!

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      I love big cities, but this is why I love small towns 🙂 I’m partial to great danes anyway so I loved these guys. They were pretty relaxed about it too haha

  8. Jennifer

    I’ve never heard of this town but it sounds like a really fun one to visit!

  9. A Brit and A Southerner

    Love the old school pictures here from good old Franklin, TN! We spent a day there earlier this year and really loved the old buildings and this Dickens theme really fits in perfectly with this town.

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      Thanks guys! The Dickens idea really does fit in well here. You’ll have to come back to Franklin the next time you head to Nashville 🙂

  10. Lindsay

    Wish I had known about this! We live in Forest Hills! Next year! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Ashley Hubbard

      Definitely check it out next year. It’s a lot of fun! 🙂

  11. Rhonda Albom

    Sounds like a really fun town, and an interesting faire. My girls love dressing up Victorian. And the food sounds great too. I am surprised that any town in the states would allow dogs in stores. Pretty cool.

  12. Isabella

    Hahah! That’s a great event 🙂 I love festivals which require a little effort to prepare and dress in something special and fancy 🙂

  13. Lauren

    I love seeing small towns around the holidays – it seems as though each one has its own Christmas traditions that bring fond memories to all who grew up there! 🙂 I know my hometown is like that for me. I’m sure I’ll write about it at some point. Thanks for sharing with us 🙂

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