8th Annual Franklin Strawberry Festival Kicks off the Summer Season

The 8th annual Franklin Strawberry Festival was a big hit with market customers and the Franklin community. This has been a tough year for our strawberry farms with a hard freeze in April after plants set blooms, but despite the challenging growing season, our farmers were able to bring the very best to celebrate the strawberry!  Our Strawberry Festival and market sponsor, Williamson Medical Center made it possible for us to have such a large festival.
Visit this link for photos of the Strawberry Festival. 

Strawberry Judges enjoying delicious Strawberry Shortcake! From left Brandy Blanton, City of Franklin Alderman and Editor of Southern Exposure Magazine; Andy Marshall, A. Marshall Hospitality; Jan Marshall, A. Marshall Hospitality; Jenna Eckert, Williamson Medical Center

Karen Norton, of Norton Family Farms made over 600 strawberry shortcakes that were nothing short of amazing. Clearview Baptist Church volunteers spent hours preparing the strawberries that topped the shortcakes on Friday evening. Customers were able to choose more than the traditional shortcake to enjoy the local berries. Chef Michael Martin from Southfork Catering prepared 400 buttermilk biscuits and Ellie’s Donuts made 400 of their original donuts. All three shortcake variations were topped with strawberries from our farmers and cream from Hatcher Dairy. 

Ellie’s Donuts made over 400 special strawberry donuts that were a big hit among children and adults. The line for the donuts never ceased, but the general consensus was that it was worth the wait! Belle Springs Lemonade sold strawberry lemonades made with fresh strawberries from our farmers at the market. We love the way our food vendors use local ingredients from our farmers!

Children were entertained with free games and art activities including storytelling by Magda the Storyspider and a local balloon artist. Parents enjoyed live music on our patio with food from our food trucks Califarmia and Jay’s Chicago. 






The most popular event at the market among our farmers is the best tasting strawberry contest. Winning this contest gives the farmer bragging rights for the rest of the year. It was a close contest, but our winners are: 

1st Place Kelley’s Berry Farm
2nd Beaverdam Creek Farm
3rd Conry Farm

1st Place Winner Best Tasting Strawberry of 2018 Patrick Kelley of Kelley’s Berry Farm

We don’t envy our celebrity judges who had to make a decision from the 7 farms who entered their berries because we know how good they all tasted! A big thank you to Kristy Williams of the Franklin Heritage Foundation for organizing our judging contest. 

Thank you to our judges:

Jenna Eckert, Williamson Medical Center
Andy Marshall, A. Marshall Hospitality
Jan Marshall, A. Marshall Hospitality
Brandy Blanton, City of Franklin Alderman and Owner, Southern Exposure Magazine

The Celebrity Strawberry Judges have a tough job selecting the Best Tasting Strawberry, they take this responsibilty very seriously as each farmer anxiously waits to here their results

With over 50 volunteers from Clearview Baptist Church working behind the scenes, the festival ran smoothly and efficiently. Thank you so much to our volunteers! And finally, thank you to our market customers who attended our market to support to the farmers. We hope you had a “BERRY” good time! 

Thank you market sponsor Williamson Medical Center! Our community Strawberry Festival is not possible without your support each year! From left, Katherine Hellard of WMC, FFM Market Director Amy Tavalin, Jenna Eckert of Williamson Medical Center

The Franklin Farmers Market is held every Saturday from 8am-1pm behind the Factory in Franklin, TN. The market is a 16 yr old producers only market with the largest assembly of local farmers providing fresh farm food all year long each Saturday morning. Find us at 230 Franklin Road behind the Factory. Visit us online at www.franklinfarmersmarket.com or follow us on facebook, twitter and instagram for the latest market news. 

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