Archive for the ‘Attractions’ Category

The Magic of the Holidays Comes Alive at “Christmas at the Smoky Mountain Opry”

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Oct. 18, 2019) – Music and the magic of Christmas combine at the Smoky Mountain Opry this holiday season for a show that will provide hours of entertainment and create memories sure to last a lifetime. Debuting on November 1, Christmas at the Smoky Mountain Opry combines every special element of the holiday season that makes it the most wonderful time of the year.

Visitors to Christmas at the Smoky Mountain Opry experience holiday music from talented singers, dazzling dancing, seemingly magical special effects on lavish sets, comedy, and so much more through the talents of an incredible cast and band. The child in everyone will be caught up in wonder when life-size toys and sugarplum fairies come to life, and angels and aerialists soar high in the sky. Santa Claus brings his elves and enchanted reindeer together to create a world for the young and young at heart.  Laughter and fun result from the holiday antics of Slim Chance, and the Christmas comedy includes reindeer games and juggling that “lights up” the stage and everyone’s heart. This multi-million dollar production features singers and dancers sharing music from traditional Christmas hymns to holiday favorites set in a winter wonderland complete with falling snow throughout the theater! A celebration of the true meaning of the season – the birth of Christ – is told through inspiring music and a live nativity.

“The holidays are everyone’s favorite time of the year,” said Michael Headla, Smoky Mountain Opry General Manager, “and we combine the traditions and special experiences that are only found at Christmastime with the excitement of high-energy singing and dancing, lighting and special visual effects, lavish costumes and a talented cast of musicians. We can’t wait for our visitors to the Opry to experience this special show and create memories they will cherish as favorite memories for years to come.”

With the variety of yuletide stories and songs, it is no surprise why Christmas at the Smoky Mountain Opry will create an experience that will keep the holidays alive in every heart all year long. Show times and reservations are available by calling 865-428-7469 or visiting www.smokymtnopry.com.

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About World Choice Investments: Founded in 1988, World Choice Investments, LLC, doing business as Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction, Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show, Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud, Smoky Mountain Opry, The Comedy Barn Theater, and Frizzle Chicken Farmhouse Café, operates dinner show venues, theaters, and restaurants for family fun and adventure in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee; Branson, Missouri; and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Our dinner shows feature special effects, musical productions, live animals and a four-course family feast.

Media Contacts:

Ellen Liston: (865) 428-9629, (865) 919-7001 or ellenl@wciinvest.com

Tennille McElroy: (865) 429-7183, (865) 809-0292 or tennille@gcipf.com

Inaugural Holiday Show Premieres Nov. 1 at Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show in Pigeon Forge

Pigeon Forge, Tenn. (Oct. 16, 2019) – After a highly successful opening season, Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. prepares to sail into the holidays with a new Christmas show that offers a spectacular swashbuckling spin on “A Christmas Carol” with Captain Scrooge and his cavalier crew.

The premiere of this holiday show promises to be a Christmas adventure unlike anything else experienced in the Smokies this yuletide season. Opening on Friday, Nov. 1 and continuing through January 4, 2020, Pirates Voyage combines a classic Christmas tale with a bountiful feast that will join together a pirate’s “Yo Ho” with the season’s “Ho Ho Ho.”

“We invite swashbucklers of all ages to start a new Christmas tradition for the holidays like no one else can offer,” said Jeff Thomas, General Manager of Pirates Voyage. “Where else can families come together and create memories that will last long after the holidays are gone—with pirates, acrobatics, a special delicious meal, a classic holiday story with its own special pirate twist and angels helping bring about the true meaning of Christmas in our Nativity. As we like to say, it’s a Holly Jolly Roger Christmas event!”

During Christmas at Pirates Voyage, high tide meets the yuletide in this new show that offers a variety of holiday fun and entertainment that will make for lasting holiday memories for everyone who attends. The Mystical Christmas Spirit takes the captain through time and space to find the true meaning of Christmas, including a “dream” where giant toys come to life and perform amazing acrobatics high above the indoor lagoon. Other adventures during this holiday experience at Pirates Voyage include a live Nativity, an angel with a special message and a comical Christmas castaway and her sea lion companion. Holiday guests also will be thrilled by an epic battle between the crimson and emerald pirates as they compete for the coveted Christmas treasure on land, on deck, in water and high above two pirate ships.

The adventure actually begins in the Pirates Village, where younger swashbucklers as well as parents and grandparents can “Join the Christmas Crew” and be transformed into mermaids and pirates before the main show begins. The four-course holiday feast straight from Captain Blackbeard’s yuletide galley makes Pirates Voyage the most unique place to eat in the Smokies. The meal begins with Voyager creamy vegetable soup and a homemade buccaneer biscuit. The feast fit for a pirate continues with cracklin’ pan-fried chicken, sugar cured ham, matey’s mac ‘n’ cheese, and Jolly Roger sweet potato souffle. Walk the plank peach turnover and unlimited Coca-Cola® products, tea or coffee complete the meal. Vegetarian and gluten-free meals are available by request.

Show times and reservations are available by calling (865) 505-2469 or by visiting www.piratesvoyage.com.

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About World Choice Investments: Founded in 1988, World Choice Investments, LLC, doing business as Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction, Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show, Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud, Smoky Mountain Opry, The Comedy Barn Theater, and Frizzle Chicken Farmhouse Café, operates dinner show venues, theaters, and restaurants for family fun and adventure in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee; Branson, Missouri; and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Our dinner shows feature special effects, musical productions, live animals and a four-course family feast.

Media Contacts:

Ellen Liston: (865) 428-9629, (865) 919-7001 or ellenl@wciinvest.com

Leah Hicks: (865) 774-8139, (865) 898-6925 or leahh@wciinvest.com

WonderWorks Debuts Wonder of Magic Halloween Spooktacular Show

CONTACT:     Cher Murphy

cher@chermurphypr.com

(571) 263-2128

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee – (October 1, 2019) – WonderWorks is known for entertaining the whole family all year long, but they are setting out to give people a spooky treat this fall. Their ongoing family friendly magic show will be transformed for the season, becoming the “Wonders of Magic Halloween Spooktacular.” The show will run from September 30, 2019 through November 2, 2019, with tickets being $18.99, plus tax, for all ages. The show is unique to the Pigeon Forge area, making it a special experience for all.

 “We are really excited that Terry and the cast will be presenting a Halloween themed show for the first time. The show will be a little spooky but, as always, completely family friendly and tons of fun,” explains Ed Shaffer, general manager for WonderWorks in Pigeon Forge. “With the addition of the Halloween show to our lineup, fans of the Wonders of Magic will now have a chance to see three different shows throughout the year!”

 The Wonders of Magic Show features Terry Evanswood, who has been awarded for putting on the Best Magic Shows in Pigeon Forge, and is the longest running headline performer in town. His shows are consistently sold out, and leave audiences in awe at the amazing magic that he is able to perform. The Halloween Spooktacular will offer guests a spooky good time, as it includes special costumes and props that have not been used in other shows. There will also be an array of spooky elements, including fog, haunting sounds, flashing lights, and plenty of eye-bending fun.

 Being the only show of its kind in the area, the show times are expected to sell out quickly. Those looking for a family friendly way to get into the Halloween spirit will want to get their seats reserved early. Crowds can expect to be dazzled, amazed, and left in wonder at how Terry is able to pull off the spooky magic. This show is family friendly, with all ages welcome.

 “This is going to be the event you don’t want to miss this year,” added Shaffer. “You will laugh, you will get a little spooked, and you will leave having created a great family memory.”

 The Wonders of Magic Halloween Spooktacular show times will be 5:30 pm on September 30, 2019, 5:30 pm on Monday’s and Wednesday’s through October 2019, 5:30 pm and 8:00 pm on Friday’s and Saturday’s in October 2019, and select other dates. To see the full schedule and reserve show tickets, visit the site: https://www.wonderworksonline.com/pigeon-forge/the-experience/the-wonders-of-magic/.

 WonderWorks in Pigeon Forge offers 35,000 square feet of “edu-tainment” opportunities, billing itself as an amusement park for the mind. They offer over 100 hands-on exhibits covering natural disasters, space discovery, an imagination lab, a physical challenge zone, a far out art gallery, and a light and sound zone. WonderWorks is open daily from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. For more information, log onto their site: https://www.wonderworksonline.com/pigeon-forge/.

 

About WonderWorks

WonderWorks, a science focused indoor amusement park, combines education and entertainment. With over 100 hands-on exhibits – there is something unique and challenging for all ages. Feel the power of 71mph hurricane–force winds in the Hurricane Shack. Make huge, life–sized bubbles in the Bubble Lab. Get the NASA treatment in our Astronaut Training Gyro and experience zero gravity. Nail it by lying on the death–defying Bed of Nails. Conquer your fear of heights on our indoor Glow-In-The-Dark Ropes Course. WonderWorks is also home to Wonders of Magic, starring Terry Evanswood, the award-winning and longest running performer in Pigeon Forge. WonderWorks hosts birthday parties and special events seasonally. Open daily from 9 a.m. until midnight. https://www.wonderworksonline.com/pigeon-forge.

 

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Dollywood’s Harvest Festival, Great Pumpkin Luminights Return for Fantastic Fall Family Fun

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Tuesday, September 24, 2019) — Family-friendly fall fun is back at Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana, thanks to the return of Great Pumpkin LumiNights. Now in its third season, Great Pumpkin LumiNights expands again this year by growing the glow to Wildwood Grove.

An overwhelming guest-favorite since it was introduced in 2017, Great Pumpkin LumiNights recently was named the country’s Best Theme Park Halloween Event in the 2019 USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice travel awards. This year, Great Pumpkin LumiNights includes an expanded footprint into Wildwood Grove, new harvest-themed experiences, food and merchandise; as well as activities that are enjoyable for even the youngest guests.

Dollywood’s Harvest Festival runs Sept. 27- Nov. 2 (closed Tuesday, Oct. 22 & Tuesday, Oct. 29) with park operating hours each day from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., providing guests more time to enjoy harvest time in the Smokies. Popular pumpkin displays from past events return—like the pumpkin spider, pumpkin dance party and Dolly-inspired displays— while Wildwood Grove joins the fun for the first time with a harvest experience at The Wildwood Tree.

The Plaza at Wilderness Pass again serves as a centerpiece for the event with an area for character interaction, additional displays—and the focal point—a 40 ft. tall pumpkin tree featuring larger-than-life carved pumpkins. Families bask in the glow of thousands of intricately-carved pumpkins as they wander through displays in Dollywood’s Timber Canyon, Wilderness Pass, Wildwood Grove and upper Craftsman’s Valley areas. Beyond the impressive displays, guests can find a number of exciting activities to create thrilling memories together.

“I’m so glad to hear families are just lovin’ Great Pumpkin LumiNights,” Dolly Parton said. “When I was a kid, we’d love to get pumpkins, scoop out all those guts from the inside and carve these beautiful masterpieces—at least us kids thought they were masterpieces! But, it makes me just feel good to know families are able to spend time together exploring during what really is the most beautiful time of year in the Smokies.”

While Great Pumpkin LumiNights lights up Dollywood each evening, the biggest names in Southern gospel music lift their voices each day as part of the Southern Gospel Jubilee. Guests can experience more than 600 individual Southern gospel performances on stages throughout the park during the run of the festival. It’s the largest Southern gospel event in America, fitting for the music icon who got her start singing in churches around the Smokies.

“God truly does turn the Smokies into His own personal coloring book during the fall,” Parton added. “And nothing fits so well with those colorful fall mountains than the uplifting Southern gospel songs that fill the air with powerful praise for Him. I’m proud we’re able to have some of the best Southern gospel singers here during the Harvest Festival.”

Headlining acts include The Martins (Sept. 27-28), The McKameys (Oct. 4-5), Ernie Haase and Signature Sound (Oct. 12-13), The Isaacs (Oct. 18-19), Karen Peck and New River (Oct. 20-21), Gold City (Oct. 27-28) and many more. A complete schedule of artists, show times and stage locations is available at Dollywood.com.

Dollywood celebrates Smoky Mountain crafts all year with the park’s well-known master craftsmen. During the Harvest Festival, however, more than two dozen visiting artisans from across the country provide in-depth demonstrations including woodworking, chainsaw carvings, fiddle-making and more. Guests can find inspirational jewelry, historic handmade games, pottery, hand-painted Christmas ornaments, and even Windsor chairs available for purchase.

Autumn in the Smokies also provides a bountiful harvest of crops that allows Dollywood’s culinary team an opportunity to showcase their skills with a menu full of fall favorites. Guests can find traditional items like cabbage rolls, pierogies, sausage sandwiches, skillet potatoes, apple cider and fried apple pies. A number of new tasty treats also are on the menu, including chicken Applewood pasta, Reuben wontons, candy corn cider and chocolate chip cookie pizza.

For more information about Dollywood’s Harvest Festival featuring Southern Gospel Jubilee and Great Pumpkin LumiNights, please visit dollywood.com, call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD, or download the Dollywood App.

 

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 About The Dollywood Company:   A highly-awarded and widely-recognized leader in the amusement industry, The Dollywood Company consists of the 150-acre Dollywood theme park; the 35-acre Dollywood’s Splash Country; Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa; and Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins. As unique as its namesake and owner Dolly Parton, Dollywood is the 2010 Applause Award winner, the theme park industry’s highest accolade; winner of more than 35 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 26 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). The park is located near Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and has been named a top three US theme park by USA Today on multiple occasions. Dollywood is open nine months a year (mid-March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region. Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel and TripAdvisor as one of the country’s most beautiful water parks and named 2009’s Must-See Waterpark by the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions, operates from mid-May to Labor Day. Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, which received the 2017 Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor, provides guests spectacular mountain views and family-friendly amenities next door to Dollywood theme park and Dollywood’s Splash Country. Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins offers luxurious cabin accommodations overlooking Dollywood. For more information, call 1-800-Dollywood or visit dollywood.com. Operating days and hours vary.

 Dollywood Media Contacts:

Pete Owens: Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations, (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

Wes Ramey: Senior Public Relations Manager, (865) 428-9484, (865) 640-3805 or wramey@dollywood.com

Ellen Liston: Senior Publicist, (865) 428-9629, (865) 919-7001 or eliston@dollywood.com

Amber Davis: New Media and Digital Publicist, (865) 428-9601, (865) 591-1002 or aldavis@dollywood.com

Jennifer Webb: Publicist, (865) 428-9660, (865) 323-7584 or jwebb@dollywood.com

For B-roll, photography and more information, visit the Dollywood Media Room at http://www.dollywood.com/Media/Media-Room

Dollywood’s Great Pumpkin LumiNights Wins USA Today 10Best Award

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Friday, September 6, 2019) — Dollywood’s Great Pumpkin LumiNights has won the 2019 USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice travel award for Best Theme Park Halloween Event, thanks to the votes of park supporters from around the country.

Entering its third season this year, Great Pumpkin LumiNights—part of Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana (Sept. 27-Nov. 2)—has become a new Smoky Mountain tradition with family-friendly activities that are sure to please kids of every age. Dollywood stays open until 9 p.m. each evening (closed Oct. 22 & 29) allowing families more time to enjoy the glow of thousands of carved pumpkins throughout the park.

The 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards include nominees chosen by a panel of relevant experts. The public voting happens digitally on the 10Best.com website. After four weeks of voting, the results are revealed. Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights finished second to Dollywood, with Halloween Haunt at Kings Island third. The complete top-10 can be found on the 10Best.com website.

“We knew Great Pumpkin LumiNights was a hit during the first few evenings of the event in 2017,” said Pete Owens, Dollywood Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations. “We received a lot of great feedback from guests about how much they liked it, but also about what we could add and change to make it even better. Last year, we doubled the size of Great Pumpkin LumiNights by putting in a number of new displays, and this year the event grows even larger with the addition of Wildwood Grove, which includes the harvest story experience at the Wildwood Tree.

“Awards like these give us the opportunity to share with the world what our guests already know,” he continued. “The memories made and experiences shared at Dollywood really are unlike anything found elsewhere. We hope new guests will come see why this event has earned the title of best in the country!”

Great Pumpkin LumiNights grows again in 2019, stretching into the newly-opened Wildwood Grove. In addition to the pumpkin displays, the Wildwood Tree tells a Smoky Mountain harvest story multiple times each evening. The Plaza at Wilderness Pass also serves as a main centerpiece for the event with an area for character interaction, additional displays and a 40 ft. tall pumpkin tree.

Families will bask in the glow of thousands of intricately-carved pumpkins as they wander through displays throughout Dollywood’s Timber Canyon, Wilderness Pass and upper Craftsman’s Valley areas. Beyond the impressive displays, guests can find a number of exciting activities to create thrilling memories together.

Dollywood’s Harvest Festival also includes several hundred performances by award-winning Southern gospel artists, making the Harvest Festival’s Southern Gospel Jubilee the genre’s largest event in America. Dollywood guests also can enjoy the spectacular artistry of visiting crafters from across the country or sample the special harvest-themed food items from Dollywood’s award-winning foods team. Each day is a picture-perfect opportunity for families to enjoy the experiences of a Smoky Mountain harvest!

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About The Dollywood Company:   A highly-awarded and widely-recognized leader in the amusement industry, The Dollywood Company consists of the 150-acre Dollywood theme park; the 35-acre Dollywood’s Splash Country; Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa; and Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins. As unique as its namesake and owner Dolly Parton, Dollywood is the 2010 Applause Award winner, the theme park industry’s highest accolade; winner of more than 35 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 26 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). The park is located near Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and has been named a top three US theme park by USA Today on multiple occasions. Dollywood is open nine months a year (mid-March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region. Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel and TripAdvisor as one of the country’s most beautiful water parks and named 2009’s Must-See Waterpark by the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions, operates from mid-May to Labor Day. Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, which received the 2017 Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor, provides guests spectacular mountain views and family-friendly amenities next door to Dollywood theme park and Dollywood’s Splash Country. Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins offers luxurious cabin accommodations overlooking Dollywood. For more information, call 1-800-Dollywood or visit dollywood.com. Operating days and hours vary.

Media Contacts:

Pete Owens: Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations, (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

Wes Ramey: Senior Public Relations Manager, (865) 428-9484, (865) 640-3805 or wramey@dollywood.com

Ellen Liston: Senior Publicist, (865) 428-9629, (865) 919-7001 or eliston@dollywood.com

Amber Davis: New Media and Digital Publicist, (865) 428-9601, (865) 591-1002 or aldavis@dollywood.com

Jennifer Webb: Publicist, (865) 428-9602, (865) 323-7584 or jwebb@dollywood.com

For B-roll, photography and more information, visit the Dollywood Media Room at http://www.dollywood.com/Media/Media-Room

World’s First Cable-to-Rail Zipline Roller Coaster Opens in Pigeon Forge, TN

Media Contact:

Josh Mayberry, Paula Deen’s Lumberjack

Feud Show & Adventure Park

jmayberry@topconcepts.us

(865) 280-1550

 

Family Friendly Adventure Now Open at Lumberjack Square

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. – Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Show & Adventure Park, in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, has officially opened the Flying Ox, the world’s first cable-to-rail zipline roller coaster.

The one-of-a-kind Flying Ox zipline roller coaster takes riders on a thrilling 1,000-foot-long ride 80 feet in the air above Lumberjack Square in the zipline position. Instead of traveling in a straight line, riders wind, drop, and soar through the air at approximately 15 miles per hour. The Flying Ox combines the thrill of ziplining with the track features of a roller coaster into one family fun attraction.

The new attraction was inspired by the history of the local logging industry. It is just one of several experiences located in the lumberjack-themed adventure park that opened in late 2018. Guests also can enjoy scenic views from the attraction’s 80-foot-tall observation tower.

“With the addition of the Flying Ox, Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Show & Adventure Park is the only location in the world where thrill seekers can ride a cable-to-rail zipline roller coaster,” said Vice President of Marketing Josh Mayberry. “Lumberjack Square strives to provide a unique experience where guests can watch a lumberjack show then try their hand at some of the competitive events they see performed by the professional lumberjacks.”

Guests can experience a log roll and boom run while secured by harnesses that keep participants from landing in the water. A lumberjack-themed ropes course, speed climb towers, and a simulated free-fall from an 80-foot-tall jump platform are also offered. In the coming months, the park will be adding springboard chop and cross-cut saw attractions.

To engineer the new attraction, Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud partnered with CLIMB Works, the leader in the zipline industry. CLIMB Works is committed to exceeding safety standards and guest expectations.

The guest reviews at Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Show & Adventure Park have been outstanding so far, and the team is excited to share a unique experience with everyone that visits Pigeon Forge! The park can accommodate groups of up to 400 per hour and is open daily rain or shine. Guests can purchase tickets at the Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud box office on the Parkway in Pigeon Forge or online.

For more information about Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Adventure Park, please visit https://lumberjackfeud.com/.

About Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Show & Adventure Park

Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Show & Adventure Park, recently voted Best New Business by

PigeonForge.com, is a one of a kind entertainment complex offering affordable fun for families

and groups. Showcased by our world-class lumberjacks and our one-of-a-kind adventure park,

the attraction provides the area’s newest entertainment destination. Paula Deen’s Lumberjack

Feud Show & Adventure Park is a must-see on your next family vacation. For more information,

visit https://lumberjackfeud.com/ or call 865-366-3330.

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Additional Information

Josh Mayberry

Jmayberry (at) topconcetps (dot) us

(865) 280-1550

The Comedy Barn Theater Celebrates 25 Seasons of Laughs in 2019

Special Anniversary Show on July 30 Highlights Family Fun, Years of Creating Memories

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Wednesday, July 31, 2019) – Twenty-five years of laughs, family fun and clean comedy are being celebrated at The Comedy Barn Theater in Pigeon Forge this year, and a special show on Tuesday night, July 30 commemorated this special entertainment milestone.

Here are the basics if you’ve never experienced what has been awarded the title of Pigeon Forge’s Funniest Show year after year.  This hilarious show combines the talents and fun antics of magicians, comedians, jugglers, ventriloquists, and even members of the audience in a variety of fun routines that offer surprises and laughs galore. Lovable animals take the stage for more family fun, while live country and gospel music as well as Smoky Mountain clogging also take center stage with memorable performances that everyone in attendance will enjoy.

Four original cast members have been entertaining young and old at The Comedy Barn Theater since the first show in 1994, and they each have favorite memories and parts of the act that they find special and offer some of the many reasons why people come to this show – and even more why they keep coming back year after year. Ron Jeffery came to the area 35 years ago to play bass for Hee Haw legend Archie Campbell’s show, then joined the original Comedy Barn cast. Eric Lambert was one of the original comedians, Buddy Cline has been the band’s drummer since that first night, and Charlie King has provided the band with its guitar melodies for all 25 years.  Kathy Kearney, now Executive Assistant to the General Manager at the Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show, also came on board – first selling tickets for the show and then joining the cast in the magician and animal acts.

Jeffery says he knows what makes the Comedy Barn so special.  “The whole place is a family, and everyone has been here so long, everyone gets along. People come in here to see (comedian) Danny (Devaney), to see me and Eric. It’s just such a unique situation that keeps people coming back.” Kearney noted that it’s two very simple ingredients that set this show apart: “Good clean comedy and laughter are what has made it such a favorite throughout the years.”

Cline added that while the show has played for two and a half decades, each night is a different experience. “The audience makes the show so special, because it’s different every night. The people you have up on stage, like Eric, you never know what he is going to do. Even though we have been doing it for 25 years, some person could come on stage (in the audience participation segments) and do it totally different and do something we have never seen before.”

While this show celebrates its 25th anniversary of entertaining Smoky Mountain visitors, the troupe at The Comedy Barn knows that each show is an opportunity to provide special memories for those in attendance. Jeffery says he remembers one couple who came 15 times in one year. “You get to know the guests by name, you get to know their kids, and 25 years later, you get to know their grandkids. It is just amazing how generations of families come to Comedy Barn.” King echoed those comments. “It is awesome to be a part of something this life-changing as far as lots of customers coming back year after year after year after year. We see the same folks come back from Texas, Florida, Georgia, and California just to name a few places. What we have here is very special; it is like no other.”

The cast enjoys their jobs, and it shows on stage – to the audience and to their fellow entertainers. “My favorite thing that I get to do is improvisation (with the audience),” Lambert said, “that freedom to say something that will make everyone laugh from ages three to 90 is what makes this a wonderful, challenging and rewarding job.” King says he just loves doing what he does – playing the guitar – and loves to hear Kendall Manning sing. “And of course, I love Danny and Eric. Those two are absolutely unbelievable – just fantastic comedians.” Cline loves the interaction with fellow original Ron Jeffery on the Hank Snow classic “I’ve Been Everywhere.” “Even though we’ve done the number so much, it’s still fun to play every show (after 25 years).”

This award-winning comedy variety adventure shows no signs of slowing down as it heads into its next 25 years. “I knew that (we) would be here 25 years later,” Lambert said. “The reason is that we always intended for this to be something that took a stand; we built the Comedy Barn on the principles of clean family comedy and audience interactions; those things are eternal.” His co-star Charlie King summed it up similarly. “The night of the first show just seemed like everything worked. Everybody was just happy performing with each other, and we still are. Throughout the years, it’s been easy for us to accept new cast members as they become part of the family. The people that I work with have been so amazing – we are like family.” Jeffery added, “After one week, I had a feeling this was something pretty special.” Kearney summed up why she is still part of The Comedy Barn family after 25 years: “It’s home.”

Millions of new laughs can be heard just ahead as the Comedy Barns heads into its next decades of good clean fun. “It’s our job to make our guests laugh,” Lambert said, “and in 25 years, we have learned very well how to make families laugh.”

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About Great Choice Investments:  Great Choice Investments, LLC, doing business as Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud, Smoky Mountain Opry, The Comedy Barn Theater, and Frizzle Chicken Farmhouse Café, operates dinner show venues, theaters, and restaurants for family fun and adventure in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. Our dinner shows feature special effects, musical productions, live animals and a four-course family feast.

 

Media Contacts:

Ellen Liston: (865) 428-9629, (865) 919-7001 or eliston@dollywood.com

Tennille McElroy: (865) 429-7183, ext. 320, (865) 809-0292 or tennille@gcipf.com

Alcatraz East Crime Museum to Host Conversation with True Crime Investigative Journalist Billy Jensen

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Billy Jensen, renowned true crime journalist, will be speaking in a rare opportunity at Alcatraz East Crime Museum 

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (July 3, 2019) – He’s been called the Facebook detective and a citizen sleuth and has built a solid reputation for helping to solve true crimes. For the last two decades, Billy Jensen has become a household name within the true crime genre. Fans now have a chance to hear from the “consulting digital detective” in an intimate setting at the Alcatraz East Crime Museum. Jensen will be speaking at a special event on Saturday, July 20, 2019 at 9:30 a.m. The event is free with the paid general admission to the museum, but advance reservations are required to attend.

“We are honored to have Billy Jensen visit the museum and share his experiences and expertise with our visitors,” explains Rachael Penman, director of artifacts and exhibits at Alcatraz East Crime Museum. “He is doing important work and is so open with the true crime community about his journey.”

Those attending will be treated to hearing him speak about such things as the Golden State Killer Case, his podcast, his new book that is coming out, how he got started in the field, and what he’s currently working on. The small group setting will also provide an opportunity to ask questions.

A true crime journalist focused squarely on unsolved murders and missing persons, after 17 years of writing hundreds of stories with no endings, he was fed up and decided to try and solve the murders himself using radical social media techniques. And it worked. Billy has solved or helped solve ten homicides. Law enforcement agencies now reach out to Billy to help in cases that have them stumped, using him as a “consulting digital detective.” His new book, “Chase Darkness with Me: How One True-Crime Writer Started Solving Murders,” is currently available for pre-order, and comes out on August, 13, 2019: http://www.chasedarknesswithme.com/.

Jensen is known for his involvement with the Golden State Killer Case, in which the serial killer committed at least 13 murders, over 50 rapes, and more than 100 burglaries in California. The crimes took place between 1974 and 1986, with the suspected killer, Joseph James DeAngelo, being arrested and charged with murder, kidnapping, and abduction in April 2018.

“This is a rare opportunity for East Tennessee to have this kind of access to a real mover in the field,” added Penman. “It’s a chance to go a bit behind the scenes with Jensen’s process and struggles.”

The event is free with the paid general admission to the museum, but advance reservations are required to attend. Attendees must be at least 10 years old. Seating is limited and is on a first come basis. Museum tickets only will not be admitted. To get more information about the museum, or to purchase tickets, visit the site at: https://www.alcatrazeast.com/temporary-exhibits/speaker-programs/billy-jensen/.

There are also two special exhibits on display during the summer, both aimed at providing visitors with information about headline-grabbing cases from decades ago, and of recent years. The special summer exhibits focus on the 25th anniversary of Nicole Brown Simpson’s murder, as well as the sexual assault crimes that involved the USA Gymnastics team doctor, with over 200 women accusing him of the crimes.

The museum is always adding to its collection and has a star-studded panel of experts who make up the Advisory Board, including those in law enforcement, collectors, a medical examiner, crime scene investigators, and others. The board includes Jim Willett, a retired prison warden, Anthony Rivera, a combat veteran and Navy SEAL chief, and Judge Belvin Perry, Jr., who is best known for the Casey Anthony trial. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit: www.alcatrazeast.com.

About Alcatraz East

Alcatraz East is the most arresting crime museum in the United States. Guests of all ages can encounter a unique journey into the history of American crime, crime solving, and our justice system. Through interactive exhibits and original artifacts, Alcatraz East is an entertaining and educational experience for all ages – so much fun it’s a crime! This family attraction is located at the entrance of The Island, located at 2757 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN. General admission tickets are $14.95 for children, $24.95 for adults. Group ticket sales are available. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., with the last ticket sold 60 minutes before closing. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit: www.alcatrazeast.com.

About Billy Jensen

A true crime investigator, Billy Jensen has helped to solve 10 cases and is frequently contacted by law enforcement to assist on cases. He focuses on unsolved murders and missing person cases. He has spent over 20 years writing about and investigating true crime stories. He is also a writer and book author. Jensen has also written crime stories for Rolling Stone, Los Angeles Magazine and the Long Island Press, and was most recently a producer and investigator on the Warner Bros. show Crime Watch Daily, where he covered the Allenstown 4 murders, the Humboldt 5, the gap in the system when it comes to missing persons and unidentified remains and the unique talents of citizen detectives. His investigation into the wrongful conviction of Kimberly Long helped earn her release from prison. To learn more about Billy, visit his site at: http://billyjensen.com/.

# # #



Cher Murphy

President

Cher Murphy PR

T: 571-263-2128

Dollywood’s Splash Country Continues Water Safety Day with Decade of Swim Lessons

World’s Largest Swimming Lesson and Prizes Offered

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Wednesday, June 12, 2019) – Though drowning is preventable, it’s one of the leading causes of death among children. Dollywood’s Splash Country wants to change that. For ten years now, the water park has set aside a day to educate the community about water safety.

This year, swim instructors and community leaders will come together Thursday, June 20 to provide a free 30-minute lesson in the morning and offer education throughout the day. Area partners LeConte Medical Center, The Dr. Robert F. Thomas Foundation, WVLT Local 8 News and WIVK 107.7 join Splash Country to host the event.

“As a family water park, we believe it is incumbent upon us to join arm-in-arm with our community and raise awareness about the benefits of teaching kids to swim,” explained Dollywood’s Splash Country General Manager Janet Dawson. “This is the tenth year that we’ve participated in the World’s Largest Swimming Lesson. We’ve made this an important day in our season because research shows that formal swim lessons can reduce the risk of drowning by 88% among children who are four and younger. We believe this simple event can save lives.”

The World’s Largest Swimming Lesson happens at pools and water parks around the world on June 20. Dollywood’s Splash Country is one of the participating venues. Last year, nearly 42,000 kids and adults participated in 27 countries.

Due to popular demand, Olympic gold medalist Jenna Johnson and legendary swim coach Jackie Bertucci are teaming up for a second consecutive year to lead the lesson at Dollywood’s Splash Country.

“LeConte Medical Center is honored to be a part of raising awareness concerning safety on or near water,” said LeConte Medical Center President and CAO Gaye Jolly. “The event is important to our community and we are proud to have great partners like the Dr. Robert F Thomas Foundation and Dollywood’s Splash County for Water Safety Day.”

The swim lesson begins at 10 a.m. at Mountain Waves wave pool. Vendor booths are open from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Guests who visit the vendor booths receive a Splash Pass, allowing them to receive a prize at each booth. Once the participants have visited all vendors, they may turn their pass in for the chance to win two season passes to Dollywood’s Splash Country!

Water Safety Day and WLSL registration begins Thursday, June 20 at 9 a.m. at Dollywood’s Splash Country. The park opens to guests at 9:30 a.m. Guests should arrive early to register before the swim lesson begins at 10 a.m. Dollywood’s Splash Country admission is required to participate in Water Safety Day and may be purchased on-site or online at Dollywood.com.

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About The Dollywood Company:   A highly-awarded and widely-recognized leader in the amusement industry, The Dollywood Company consists of the 150-acre Dollywood theme park; the 35-acre Dollywood’s Splash Country; Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa; and Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins. As unique as its namesake and owner Dolly Parton, Dollywood is the 2010 Applause Award winner, the theme park industry’s highest accolade; winner of more than 35 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 26 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). The park is located near Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and has been named a top three US theme park by USA Today on multiple occasions. Dollywood is open nine months a year (mid-March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region. Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel and TripAdvisor as one of the country’s most beautiful water parks and named 2009’s Must-See Waterpark by the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions, operates from mid-May to Labor Day. Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, which received the 2017 Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor, provides guests spectacular mountain views and family-friendly amenities next door to Dollywood theme park and Dollywood’s Splash Country. Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins offers luxurious cabin accommodations overlooking Dollywood. For more information, call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD or visit dollywood.com. Operating days and hours vary.

 

Media Contacts:

Pete Owens: Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations, (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

Wes Ramey: Senior Public Relations Manager, (865) 428-9484, (865) 640-3805 or wramey@dollywood.com

Ellen Liston: Senior Publicist, (865) 428-9629, (865) 919-7001 or eliston@dollywood.com

Amber Davis: New Media and Digital Publicist, (865) 428-9601, (865) 591-1002 or aldavis@dollywood.com

Jennifer Webb: Publicist, (865) 428-9660, (865) 323-7584 or jwebb@dollywood.com

For B-roll, photography and more information, visit the Dollywood Media Room at http://www.dollywood.com/Media/Media-Room

 

About LeConte Medical Center (LCMC): Proudly serving Sevier County LeConte Medical Center offers a full array of medical specialties and outstanding medical technology! The Dolly Parton Birthing Unit offers family-centered maternity care in beautiful rooms, complete with views of the Smoky Mountains. The spacious Emergency Department provides excellent emergency care, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  The Surgery department features 4 Surgical Suites, and 2 Endoscopy suites. LCMC offers outstanding diagnostic services including Laboratory Services, Cardiac Cath Lab, and Imaging Services such as MRI, Ultrasound, and CT Scan. The Dolly Parton Center for Women’s Services features the Breast Center where women can have their annual mammograms, biopsies if needed, as well as bone density exams. Why travel elsewhere, when the care you need is available in your hometown. Come see why you and your family should Count on LeConte!

 
About The Dr. Robert F. Thomas Foundation: Named in honor of a beloved Sevier County physician and minister, the Dr. Robert F. Thomas Foundation is a not-for-profit charitable organization established in 1983 to help expand the range and quality of health care services available in Sevier County. Dolly Parton, one of the many babies Dr. Thomas delivered, serves as honorary chairperson of the Foundation. The Foundation solicits contributions from individuals, businesses, and charitable foundations to achieve its goal of helping Sevier County meet the continuing challenges of the rapidly changing healthcare field.

Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show Celebrates Grand Opening in Pigeon Forge

Pigeon Forge, Tenn. (Friday, June 7, 2019)  – The swashbuckling adventure that is Pirates Voyage officially opened during a mid-day media event today in Pigeon Forge, with Dolly Parton on hand to introduce the thrilling dinner and show. She shared her excitement about her latest entertainment offering for families.

In addition to the initial investment in the property, the Pirates Voyage construction phase for the new show was $9 million, bringing the investment in the property to a total of $28 million. The dinner and show truly is an unbelievable adventure with sword fights, cannons and pirates scaling high above two pirate ships fighting to win Davy Jones’ coveted sunken treasure. A rowdy crew of characters combines heroics and high-flying fun that will have guests cheering and experiencing thrills around every corner in an epic battle for lost treasure on land, on deck, and in the water of the show’s 15-foot-deep indoor lagoon.

Since its soft opening on May 24, the crew has performed three sold out shows every day with extraordinary guest feedback. “Our guests have been telling us that Pirates Voyage is unlike any other family fun attraction they have experienced,” said Leah Hicks, Director of Sales & Marketing for Pirates Voyage. “Where else can families have fun together creating memories of a lifetime – with ship-to-ship battles, cannons blazing, acrobatics and a delicious feast? It’s perfect for swashbucklers, pirates and mermaids, and the food alone makes the show one-of-a-kind!”

The adventure actually begins in the Pirates Village, where younger swashbucklers as well as parents and grandparents can “Join the Crew” and be transformed into mermaids and pirates before the main show begins. The four-course pirate feast straight from Captain Blackbeard’s galley makes Pirates Voyage the most unique place to eat in the Smokies. The meal begins with voyager creamy vegetable soup and a buccaneer biscuit. The feast fit for a pirate continues with cracklin’ pan-fried chicken, a bone-in pork chop, matey’s mac ‘n’ cheese, and Jolly Roger sweet potato souffle. Walk the plank peach turnover and unlimited Coca-Cola® products, tea or coffee complete the meal. Vegetarian and gluten-free meals are available by request.

Show times and reservations are available by calling (865)505-2469 or visiting www.piratesvoyage.com.

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About World Choice Investments: Founded in 1988, World Choice Investments, LLC, doing business as Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction, Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show, Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud, Smoky Mountain Opry, The Comedy Barn Theater, and Frizzle Chicken Farmhouse Café, operates dinner show venues, theaters, and restaurants for family fun and adventure in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee; Branson, Missouri; and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Our dinner shows feature special effects, musical productions, live animals and a four-course family feast.

Media Contacts:

Ellen Liston: (865) 428-9629, (865) 919-7001 or ellenl@wciinvest.com

Leah Hicks: (865) 774-8139, (865) 898-6925 or leahh@wciinvest.com