By SUSAN T. LEATHERS
Special to Home Page Media Group
Eighteen years ago, right before the turn of the century when Nolensville’s population hovered around 3,000, the Historic Nolensville Buttercup Festival made its debut. On Saturday, the town’s current population – just shy of 7,000– swelled even larger.
The 18th annual spring festival packed in locals and visitors alike, all lured by beautiful blue skies, temps that peaked in the low 70s, and even the slow-moving Mill Creek current. Orange cones along both sides of busy Nolensville Pike that bisects the town’s historic district, helped keep strollers, wagons, wheelchairs and those pushing and pulling them safe from slow moving, bumper-to- bumper traffic that never seemed to let up.
With “historic” in its name, visitors had plenty of opportunities to see how things were done long before most of those chowing down on funnel cakes, petting alpacas or shopping for “Nolensville” embroidered pillows were born.
Members of the Appalachian Area Chapter of Blacksmiths set up a forging exhibit behind the Historic Nolensville School that is now home to the Nolensville Historical Society. Chapter members kept their fire hot and worked with hot metal all day. AACB vice-president Ron Nichols of Brentwood was joined by Connor White, Clint Busby and others who volunteered to exhibit their forging skills.
Anna Hill, who moved to Nolensville four years ago from Brentwood, volunteered at the society’s booth and was thrilled with the turnout. She was even happier about the weather. “It’s been great,” she said enthusiastically.
Andrew and Jennifer Whittaker officially launched their Team Whitt Designs wood craft business at the 2016 festival. Though they’ve now participated in festivals across the region, Andrew said the Buttercup will always be their favorite.
“We try to make our things affordable,” Jennifer said. Their blanket ladders and hand-painted wood signs sold well all day, they said, exceeding their expectations.
The festival featured over 120 vendors including artisans, food trucks and church- and community groups. Local businesses in the historic district benefitted from the foot traffic as well.
“It was our best festival yet,” Buttercup Festival committee chairman Debbie Suttmiller, who opened Peacock Lane boutique in 2011, said. “Fantastic weather, all the vendors were very happy and the crowd had a great time. “Everything went smoothly and we are very pleased. Next we will tally the results and pick our charities for this year’s proceeds. “The merchants of the Historic District volunteer their time all year to organize the festival and it has grown a great deal over the past couple of years.
“We are happy that we can provide this fun family day and as a result help several local charities.”