The Experience of Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival
Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival was inspired by friendship, history, experience and the desire to create an authentic music festival. Three years ago, Musician and Franklin, TN resident Kevin Griffin was on a September morning run through The Park at Harlinsdale, a century-old horse farm recently purchased by the City of Franklin. Kevin was so taken by the rolling hills, natural amphitheaters, and breathtaking vistas of the 230-acre farm, he envisioned it as a natural fit for a music festival venue. Considering Franklin’s music and cultural history, Kevin wanted the community to further appreciate combining this with the beauty and rustic quality of Middle Tennessee in the fall, and with the blessing of the City, began to dream up a music festival to do it justice.
Partnered with lifelong buddies W. Brandt Wood and Michael Whelan, the trio aspired to highlight the diversity and community spirit of the New Orleans Jazz Fest, tailoring the best elements to Franklin– a richly historic town just 20 minutes south of Nashville. Like Jazz Fest, Pilgrimage takes place during the day, and offers a diverse yet renowned lineup of rock and roll, alt-country, bluegrass, jazz, indie, gospel and more.
The festival has grown in its three years to double down on the music programming, with six stages and heralded lineups year after year, and has expanded its cultural focus by showcasing hundreds of local artisans, restaurants, food trucks and makers that give context and authenticity to the Pilgrimage experience.
Pilgrimage has always presented itself as family friendly which means kids are welcomed and encouraged to experience festival culture at young age. Specifically, at the Lil’ Pilgrims Area with Grammy award winning producer, Ralph Covert, kids experience numerous activities, renowned artists, and are presented musical talent at a high level that has underscored a commitment to the “all ages” experience.
Each year Pilgrimage develops new elements to continue to create a music festival with the mission to grow and evolve each year. In 2017 Pilgrimage introduced Farm to Turn-Table, a food truck park with plenty of shade, seating, food trucks and activities that made it an event in itself. In 2017 Pilgrimage also introduced the Americana Music Triangle Experience which was a collection of municipalities from the rich music heritage of the South in one tent to participate for the first time, collectively in sharing this rich heritage. Thousands of people got to see in one place, where they might want to visit these towns, small and large, to keep this history alive.
When performances wrap and the lights come back on, guests can conveniently head back into the heart of downtown Franklin, within walking distance from the Park at Harlinsdale, to imbibe the best of the town’s bars and restaurants, retail shops, and great weekend lineup of nighttime shows and events.
About the Festival & Planning Your Trip
- A diverse, renowned lineup of Rock & Roll, Americana, Alt-Country, Bluegrass, Jazz, Indie, Gospel, Pop & Blues. Pilgrimage music programming has grown in its first 3 years to 6 stages, 60+ musicians in a city many call home. It serves great value and advantage to Pilgrimage that so many talented musicians and industry folks live in such close proximity. Pilgrimage always has surprises on stage that include guest appearances, acoustic performances, and unique pairings. Pilgrimage freely mixes genres and musical styles to create an intentionally diverse music experience throughout the day so you can see all of your favorites and discover new ones.
- The Pilgrimage experience has always been about authenticity. Our founders and team are passionate about festivals so much that we handcraft this boutique festival, we sweat the details, we curate every aspect of the experience with the festival in mind and we want both regulars and first-time patrons to be transported into a realm that will forever be remembered as amazing. Pilgrimage develops in its food and beverage ops, vendors, team, and community and even down to security. We are extremely fortunate to be stewards of the Pilgrimage experience and it's imperative to maintain a high level of performance in order to deliver on this responsibility.
Americana Music Triangle Experience
- The Americana Music Triangle Experience is where we’ve brought to life the culture of some of the world’s premier music tourism destinations, right here at the Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival! Now in its second year, the Americana Music Triangle Experience is a dedicated space where attendees can immerse themselves in world-famous music landmarks, tucked away hamlets and one-of-a-kind stops along the Gold Record Road. We hope to inspire fans to plan road trips of their own to visit each of these partner cities.
- This offbeat festival “village” is a collection of tiny houses and lounge furniture located on the front lawn for folks to chill between sets. It is a whimsical take on a studio of the same name, where Justin Timberlake and his Creative Director Trace Ayala engage in creative pursuits, including the William Rast apparel line.
Farm to Turn-Table
- Farm to Turntable is our food truck park located in the South Paddock which includes your favorite food trucks, picnic tables, shaded areas, seating, active kitchens and spirit activations. This new element was introduced at the 2017 Pilgrimage Festival.
For Your Lil’ Pilgrims
- Kids programming includes award-winning entertainers on the Lil’ Pilgrims stage, plus activities and craft making. The Lil’ Pilgrim’s area has expanded the activities stage, The Mare Barn Theater, to include sessions in kid improv, up close puppet and magic shows and a songwriting workshop for children.
Made South Makers Village
- Makers Village is our marketplace featuring southern makers, local artisans, and craftsman in keeping with the larger Pilgrimage vision of creating a one of a kind experience in an authentic, handcrafted way to create the exceptional customer experience.
Hotels and Inns
- Visit our plan your trip page for a list of our hotel and inn partners in and around Franklin.
PILGRIMAGE FESTIVAL APP
- Download the official Pilgrimage App for iphones to view the 2018 lineup, build your own personalized schedule and for all other information.
PARKING & PARKING PASSES
- Please visit our getting here page for information on parking passes, directions, maps and designated parking areas.