franklin’s final festival of the summer is trading bluegrass for big hair.
What used to be know as Beer and Bluegrass is now Hops & Vines. The festival still will bring together the best breweries and wineries from throughout the area to offer their best ales, lagers, reds and whites.
But instead of the twangy sounds of mandolin, fiddle and banjo, people will get down to wailing guitars and pounding drums. Down-home, foot-stomping grit will give way to rock ’n’ roll excess and bombast.
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With headlining band Hairbanger’s Ball, a cover band that channels the look and sound of hair metal greats, the newly named festival will have a decidedly 1980s feel this year, said Carisa Delph, executive director of organizer Discover Downtown Franklin.
On top of the music, the festival also is planned in conjunction with the Historic Artcraft Theatre’s Retro Rewind, a showing of beloved movies ranging from “Raising Arizona” to “Stand By Me” to “Fast Times at Ridgemont High.”
“We see what’s going on in the community, and try to add to the experience of someone coming not just to the theater but to Franklin,” said Dave Windisch, public relations director for the Artcraft. “We think about the event when we’re booking these films. It really helps to add to the experience of what downtown Franklin has to offer.”
Franklin officials started hosting a late-summer festival focused on beer and wine in 2012. The festival grew out of Discover Downtown Franklin’s Fourth Friday celebrations, when organizers would bring in bands, serve food and organize classic car shows to attract visitors the city’s downtown area.
Beer and Bluegrass would expand on that idea, featuring opportunities to sample different types of beer and wine.
In order to maximize the types of music that could be featured, organizers decided this year to tweak the name to Hops & Vines, Delph said.
“There were a lot of people who came up to us and said that they’d come to the event if it wasn’t for the bluegrass. We didn’t want to tie ourselves to just that genre of music,” she said. “We can still have bluegrass, but with this name, we can have a lot of other music too.”
Hairbanger’s Ball brings the Decade of Decadence alive, performing songs from groups such as Guns N’ Roses, Poison and Mötley Crüe. People are encouraged to dress in their best ’80s gear, from leg warmers to acid-wash jeans to Members Only jackets.
That ties in perfectly with the planned film festival at the Artcraft, Delph said.
“If you grew up in the ’80s, those were all your movies. They wanted to partner with us and do it,” she said.
The Artcraft has done film festivals revolving around classic horror, Tim Burton and Alfred Hitchcock, among other themes in the past. Organizers had been trying to plan one focused on ’80s movies for years, Windisch said.
On Friday night and throughout the day Saturday, the theater will be showing a different classic movie. People will get to watch Tom Hanks’ go from child to grown-up overnight in “Big,” follow along on the most momentous night of child-care of all time in “Adventures in Babysitting,” and wax-on, wax-off with “Karate Kid.”
Narrowing the slate to six films was a challenge, since people seem to have a different movie that they hold dear, Windisch said. But in the end, these represent a wide range of themes that everyone can relate to.
“We had to ones that we knew would be good enough to draw people in,” Windisch said. “They’re from all over the ’80s.”
At the center of the festival, though, are the breweries and wineries that gather to show off the robust local craft beverage scene. People will pay a $5 entry fee to get in, and will be able to sample different beers and wines.
Each sample is $1 each, and if people find a particular drink that they enjoy, they can pay $5 for a full-sized serving of it, Delph said.
Eight breweries and three wineries are taking part this year, including a selection of Johnson County’s most recognizable brands such as Taxman Brewing and Mallow Run Winery.
Of particular note is the growing craft scene in Franklin, Delph said. River City Winery, based in New Albany, opened its tasting room downtown earlier this year. Quaff On! Brewing Co. of Nashville increased its reach with a Big Woods restaurant at Hillview Golf Course, and Hoosier Brewing Co. is part of the gateway into the city.
Shale Creek Brewing Co. has helped anchor downtown for a number of years now.
“It’s an attraction for people to come down. It shows that Franklin is a destination for those types of businesses — people love them,” Delph said.
Hops & Vines
What: A festival offering people a chance to sample and enjoy selections from 11 local breweries and wineries.
When: 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday
Where: Downtown Franklin
Cost: $5 admission. Samples are $1 and full servings are $5.
Classic car cruise-in: 5 p.m., North Main Street
Music: Hairbanger’s Ball, 7 to 10 p.m.
Breweries: Planetary Brewing Co., Shale Creek Brewing, 450 North Brewing Co., Taxman Brewing Co., Sun King Brewery, Hoosier Brewing Co., Ash & Elm Cider Co., Quaff On! Brewing Co.
Wineries: Mallow Run Winery, River City Winery, Simmons Winery
Food: Jivy’s BBQ, Ardy’s Concession, Boxburger, Brozinni Pizzeria, Family Affair, Jones Kettle Corn, Winks BBQ, Lickity Slick Snowball Shop, Legendary Kitchen
What: A collection of beloved comedy and drama films from the 1980s.
Where: The Historic Artcraft Theatre, 57 N. Main St., Franklin
- 7:30 p.m.: “Big”
- 10 p.m.: “Raising Arizona”
- 2 p.m.: “Adventures in Babysitting”
- 5 p.m.: “Stand By Me”
- 7:30 p.m.: “The Karate Kid”
- 10 p.m.: “Fast Times at Ridgemont High”
Tickets: Full-festival passes are $25 for people 13 and over, $20 for those 55 and over, college students and military; $15 for children 12 and under. Individual show tickets are also available for $5 for adults, $4 for seniors, college students and military, and $3 for children.