Virginia's Blue Ridge is now open in the Phase Three stage of the Commonwealth's Forward Virginia plan. Learn more about the program and what it means for various types of businesses & experiences in the region with our Phase Three Guidelines page. Phase Three >
One of Virginia's fastest growing counties, Franklin County is comprised of communities that continue to value their farms, forests, waters, and cultural heritage.
You can discover and choose from a diverse selection of attractions, from outdoor adventures like boating, camping and hiking, to cultural and historic experiences such as the Blue Ridge Institute & Museum at Ferrum College or catching one of the many local musical performances.
Check out the pages below to learn more about the unique adventures and experiences you'll find in Franklin County.
Lifestyle in Franklin County can mean anything from hunting and fishing, to hiking and biking, to sailing and water skiing, to just kicking back on a dock at sunset.
The special geography of the county offers numerous recreational opportunities. The Blue Ridge Mountains on the western border offer nature trails, camping, horseback riding and the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Smith Mountain Lake, the eastern border of the county, is a 20,000-acre man-made lake offering a variety of recreational activities including tournament fishing, hunting, sailing, boating and windsurfing.
Philpott Lake, in the southern part of the county, is known for excellent fishing and considered Virginia's best smallmouth bass and trout reservoir.
All that activity will help you work up an appetite, and we recommend stopping by Homestead Creamery for some locally-produced goods and incredible ice cream. You can also learn and sample the county's moonshine heritage at its two local distilleries: Franklin County Distilleries & Twin Creeks Distillery.
The Blue Ridge Folklife Festival, the largest such festival in Virginia, is held in October. The Blue Ridge Institute at Ferrum College organizes the festival where folkways and the traditional culture of the Blue Ridge Mountains are celebrated. Festival highlights include music, food, crafts, and performances that perpetuate regional lore. The Blue Ridge Institute is also a stop on The Crooked Road: Virginia's Heritage Music Trail.
Other festivals in the county include the Boones Mill Apple Festival, Franklin County Arts and Crafts Festival, Pigg River Ramble (an annual float and race on the Pigg River), and Smith Mountain Lake Wine Festival.
You can also regularly hear great live music at the Harvester Performance Center in Rocky Mount.
Here, you get a chance to enjoy the many scenic corners of our community where every side road opens up new vistas, views, and quiet moments for those tired of crowds, long lines, and clutter.
Population: 56,159 (as of 2010 Census)
Towns: Rocky Mount, Boones Mill
Unincorporated Communities: Callaway, Ferrum, Glade Hill, Hales Ford, North Shore, Penhook, Redwood, Snow Creek, Union Hall, Westlake Corner
Surrounding Counties: Bedford County, Pittsylvania County, Henry County, Patrick County, Floyd County, Roanoke County
Education: 12 Public Elementary Schools, 1 Public Middle School, 1 Public High School - Franklin County High School
District: 5th Congressional District
Income (Per Capita): $27,584
Type of Government: County Administrator & Elected Board of Supervisors
County Seat: Rocky Mount
Land Area: 712 square miles