One big claim to fame that we had in the Smokies during, and definitely after, the Smoky Mountain holiday Winterfest was that we had the only place in East Tennessee to enjoy snow sports no matter what the weather was like outside at Ober Gatlinburg, but all that is changing with the advent of a pretty daring new attraction in Pigeon Forge – the aptly named “Pigeon Forge Snow” on Teaster Lane.
To put it in a nutshell, Pigeon Forge Snow is an indoor snowtubing establishment. That one laconic sentence though really does underscore what kind of impact that brings to our area, there’s nothing else like it in the city and Ober Gatlinburg’s snowtubing facilities only run from November to late February. Pigeon Forge Snow is not open yet, but the sheer novelty of the attraction plus its development close to where the Mountain Mile project is going underway has been making lots of waves in our local news and events.
From their website: “Pigeon Forge Snow is the first indoor snow facility in the entire United States that will offer REAL snow all year long. Believe it or not, it is going to be between 60-70 degrees inside. No need to bring your parka! [There will also be] a SnowPlay area that is fun for all ages. We have a second level made for friends and family to be able to watch their loved ones enjoy their tubing session. The second level also has areas to relax and get some food or drinks from our snack bar.”
Pigeon Forge Snow will be open every day from 10:00AM to 10:00PM. For more information on this dazzling attraction, as well as keeping up to date on when it will open, visit https://pigeonforgesnow.com/.
The end of the year only comes once a year and we like to punctuate the change and transition by ending the previous cycle and beginning a new one – with a BANG!Or rather a series of BANGs across a couple areas at least once the world’s most popular midnight hour clocks in. In Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, we celebrate New Years Eve and the first seconds of the new year with fireworks most colorful and explosive along with some other events in the area. In this article, we’ll highlight what we recommend you do with New Years Eve 2017.
* Titanic Museum Kids Noon Years Eve * Mypigeonforge.com writes: The Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge, TN invites you to Ring in the New Year at our First Ever Kids’ “Noon Year’s Eve” Celebration! Don’t forget the PJ’s!
This year, kids can ring-in the New Year ahead of time at their very own “Noon Year’s Eve” celebration at Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge, TN on Sunday, December 31st, announces the Museum Attraction’s co-owner, Mary Kellogg-Joslyn.
“This rockin’ New Years Noon event will be a kid’s version of a grown-up’s midnight bash, complete with a Titanic Museum Tour, a visit with our own Alice in Wonderland and Mad Hatter character, PLUS a countdown to an exciting Noon Year Balloon Drop,” explains Kellogg Joslyn.
* New Year’s Eve Show at the Smoky Mountain Opry * Mypigeonforge.com writes: Ring in the New Year at one of the most anticipated annual events in Pigeon Forge. The New Year’s Eve Show at the Smoky Mountain Opry Theater is a spectacular showcase of talent and entertainment. The Smoky Mountain Opry goes all out with stunning set designs, pyrotechnics, laser lighting and other special effects to wow the audience. Not to mention, an incredibly talented cast that includes singers, comedians, dancers, aerialists, magicians and ice skaters!
The holiday show begins with a performance of “Christmas at The Smoky Mountain Opry”™ at 8 pm. At midnight, watch the ball drop in New York City’s Times Square on the big screen. And the night doesn’t end there. See the biggest midnight balloon drop in the area, party the night away with the Smoky Mountain Opry cast and dance to a live show band.
* The Island’s New Year’s Eve Celebration * MyPigeonforge.com writes: Ring in the New Year with us on The Island! After our widely successful event last year we are back BIGGER and BETTER with a night packed full of fun! Live music & plenty of family fun, plus attractions!!
And what’s a New Year’s Celebration without a midnight countdown and fireworks? Its all brought to you FREE by The Island! The event kicks off at 10 pm so get there early to enjoy a full night of fun!
* New Year’s Eve Ball Drop and Fireworks Show * Gatlinburg.com writes: Gatlinburg will welcome the arrival of 2018 in unique style with its Annual New Year’s Eve Ball Drop and Fireworks Show around the intersection of Parkway and Historic Nature Trail at the base of the Space Needle late Sunday night, December 31.
Nearly 50,000 people will gather around the intersection of Parkway and Historic Nature Trail at the base of the Space Needle late Sunday night, December 31 to ring in the New Year. At the stroke of midnight on January 1, 2018, fireworks will blast off the rooftop of the 400-foot tall Space Needle with special music choreographed for the fireworks show produced by Pyro-Shows of LaFollette, Tennessee. The Space Needle has added rhythmic LED lights to the tower, making for a spectacular display.
While Halloween and the peak colors of the mountains get closer in our month of October, we wanted to take a minute to look ahead at the next truly big event coming up in the Smokies – the Winterfest kick off!
Most of you know that all three cities have a party within very short dates of each other, some years had them all on the same day. In this article, we’ll give you some beginning information on all three since it’s still a little while before the event will take place and some information hasn’t been detailed yet. Let’s look:
Sevierville Winterfest Kickoff 2017
November 6th at Sevierville Community Center and Civic Center
From 3:00PM to 9:30PM
“Draped in more than 5 million lights, Pigeon Forge creates a winter wonderland for locals and guests alike to enjoy during the city’s annual Winterfest celebration. The lights of Winterfest shine from early November through the end of February.
From winter light displays to captivating holiday shows and so much more, here are just a few of the fun ways you can experience the delightful Winterfest Celebration.
Visit Dollywood to see more than 4 million lights shine during Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas, when the park is filled with holiday music, plenty of rides, a nightly Parade of Lights and much more to celebrate the season. Dollywood recently announced the addition of Dolly’s Parade of Many Colors, featuring new floats, specialty characters and songs. The park also adds a new show to its entertainment lineup with the stage production It’s a Wonderful Life.
Old Mill Square features a light display depicting its own version of a covered bridge, one made of thousands of twinkling lights that lead to one of the most historic areas of Pigeon Forge. The Smoky MountainOpry is decked out for the holiday season with giant trees, wreaths and more, all covered with sparkling lights. You might even catch Old Saint Nick making a rooftop delivery.
Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede pulls out all the stops when it comes to decorating for the holidays. One of the highlights is their 60-foot-tall tree, adorned with colorful lights, ribbons and sparkling ornaments from the very bottom to the twinkling star on top. Another must-see is The Island in Pigeon Forge with all new decorations including approximately 40,000 ornaments, half a million lights and more than 5,000 feet of garland. Guests are treated to three new Christmas trees, including one that stands 40 feet tall and allows guests to walk through. Santa and Mrs. Claus greet guests at their new workshop while roving carolers fill the air with Christmas music.
And the best way to take in the beauty and splendor of all the light displays throughout Pigeon Forge is on the Winterfest Driving Tour of Lights, which begins at the north end of the Parkway.
Whether this is your first time to visit Pigeon Forge, or you’re making a return trip, Winterfest is the perfect occasion to share special memories with family and friends.”
“Offering mouth-watering recipes of homemade chili ranging from mild and delightful to wild and adventurous, the City of Gatlinburg hosts its annual Winter Magic Kickoff and Chili Cookoff on Wednesday, Nov. 8 from 5 to 8 p.m. in downtown.
City dignitaries will signify the start of Gatlinburg Winter Magic with a ceremonial lighting of more than 3 million lights throughout the city.”
Participants in the Chili Cookoff will be competing for the coveted People’s Choice Award, Best Booth Presentation. While the street event is free, tickets for chili sampling are $10. There is also a special edition t-shirt available for purchase.”
Dollywood is currently in full swing for their Harvest Festival and LumiNights celebrations for 2017. These pictures were taken by our frequent collaborator, Ge’ne Kea-Lawhead and all copyright belongs to her.
See more on the Dollywood Harvest Festival and LumiNights celebrations at www.dollywood.com.
The eclipse is just a few days away! Here is a slightly updated account of information on the eclipse from the National park Service:
“Where Can I See The Eclipse?
The entire western half of Great Smoky Mountains National Park will fall under the path of totality for the eclipse, providing opportunities for viewing, weather permitting. The park is currently planning organized public viewing events at three locations in the park: Clingmans Dome; Cades Cove; and Oconaluftee. Visit the Great Smoky Mountains Association page to buy an Eclipse Regional Map.
Clingmans Dome: Clingmans Dome Trailhead parking area will be converted to a special ticketed event site for experiencing the eclipse with the assistance of experts, educational exhibits, and story tellers. The Clingmans Dome tower will be limited to MEDIA ACCESS ONLY, but there are many opportunities for viewing from the parking area and along the 0.5 mile trail to the tower. Tickets for the Clingmans Dome event are sold out. Any cancelled tickets will become available to the public again, so visit recreation.gov regularly to watch for cancellations. You must have a ticket to attend the event at Clingmans Dome. NASA will be streaming live from Clingmans Dome and other locations around the country. Watch the NASA Livestream on August 21. Clingmans Dome Road will be closed on Sunday, August 20th and Monday, August 21st to accommodate the special event. Call 865-436-1585 with questions about the event.
Cades Cove and Oconaluftee: The park is currently planning to host informal staff- guided eclipse viewing sites at Cable Mill (Cades Cove) and Oconaluftee Visitor Center. There will be no charge to participate. Vehicle access to these sites, though, may be closed when parking becomes full or roads become congested.
The Park is still working on details for these events, so check back here often for updated information as it becomes available.
Visitors may view the eclipse from other areas of the park on your own, though due to the influx of eclipse viewers during the already-busy season, the Park Service may need to close certain areas on August 21st to reduce gridlock, which may include Newfound Gap Road and Cades Cove.”