Posts Tagged ‘family vacation’

Dollywood’s Splash Country Debuts New Family Slide for 17th Season

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Tuesday, May 9, 2017)—As the days grow longer and the sun a little warmer, lifeguards at Dollywood’s Splash Country become more eager to open the gates for another season of Smoky Mountain water park fun. Opening day for 2017 is Saturday, May 13 when the park debuts a new family racing slide, attraction upgrades, new parking options, a new calming area, and newly-recognized Platinum Award-winning lifeguards.

The most anticipated new-comer to Dollywood’s Splash Country for 2017 is TailSpin Racer, a five-story slide complex that offers six people the opportunity to race each other in a thrilling rush. From its unique spiraling, high-speed AquaTubes to its splashdown finish, it’s an all-out competition to see who can get to the end first. TailSpin Racer matches riders in a head-to-head race with the fun of a traditional mat racer-style slide and the tight turns and daring drops of an enclosed slide. Guests will immediately spot the new attraction near the front of the water park, which only adds to the excitement.

“TailSpin Racer is our first new attraction since we opened our water coaster, RiverRush,” explained Dollywood’s Splash Country General Manager Mike Brown. “This is something our guests have been asking for and we are thrilled that we’re delivering a family slide that gives six people the chance to race at the same time.”

Dollywood’s Splash Country also is thrilled to welcome back its team of lifeguards which recently earned the prestigious Platinum International Safety Award from Ellis & Associates. These water park guards are the only team in the state of Tennessee to receive this recognition. Dollywood’s Splash Country is independently audited by a third party several times each season. E&A, a firm specializing in international aquatic safety and risk management, presented the award. In 2016, E&A had 355 clients who qualified for an award; only 10% earned the Platinum Award.  Both Dollywood’s Splash Country and Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort lifeguards were honored with Platinum for their vigilance in guarding the water.

“Of all the things we’re proud of at our water park, our lifeguards deserve the highest praise,” Brown continued. “Our guests trust us to keep their families safe as they splash and play with us; our guards take their roles seriously. We expect them to be alert and aware of everything happening in their zones. They do that, and more. We have the best lifeguards in the business.”

Additionally, Dollywood’s Splash Country guests can look forward to several upgrades throughout the park. From the new option of Preferred Parking, to misters on walkways to cool feet, and new equipment to help streamline food purchases, the water park has refreshing upgrades to enhance guest comfort. And, based on the response to Dollywood’s calming room, Dollywood’s Splash Country will offer a new calming area for guests who experience sensory overload. The area provides an opportunity for individuals to take a break in a private area of the park.

Dollywood’s Splash Country opens Saturday, May 13 with daily operation beginning on Saturday, May 20. Daily operation continues through Sunday, August 13. The park opens Aug. 15 and 17 and on weekends through Labor Day weekend until Sept. 4. For more information about Dollywood’s Splash Country or any of The Dollywood Company properties, please visit www.dollywood.com or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

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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 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 30 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, which celebrated record attendance in 2016. Dollywood was named a top three US theme park by USA Today in 2014 and TripAdvisor recognized Dollywood as a top 20 worldwide theme park in 2015. Dollywood is open nine months a year (late March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and a dozen crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region.  Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel 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. The 300-room Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort 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: Public Relations Director (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

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

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

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

 

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

Drop Line Opens May 6 At Dollywood

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Friday, May 5, 2017) — Dolly Parton declared this season at Dollywood as “The Year of the Family,” thanks to the fantastic family fun which abounds throughout 2017. Today, park officials unveiled Drop Line, a 230-foot-tall free-fall experience, to media during a special sneak preview. The ride officially opens to guests on Saturday, May 6.

Drop Line lifts guests more than 20 stories above Dollywood’s Timber Canyon. As it ascends, the ride’s gondola slowly spins around the tower, providing guests with a bird’s eye view of the Great Smoky Mountains. Guests shouldn’t get too comfortable with the commanding vantage point they find more than 200 feet above the ground, however. In an instant, Drop Line descends back to the ground in a thrilling rush of excitement.

“Drop Line is the perfect new attraction for Dollywood,” said the park’s General Manager Gene Scherrer. “We have a number of unique rides, but this one is unlike anything else here. Our guests will have a chance to enjoy the beautiful Smoky Mountain scenery as they rise up the tower, but once they get to the top, the anticipation of the drop will certainly create memories they’ll remember for quite some time,” he added with a laugh.

Dollywood also soon will open Whistle Punk Chaser, adjacent to Drop Line and the award-winning Thunderhead wooden coaster. Whistle Punk Chaser is a junior coaster which throws exciting twists and turns at Dollywood’s younger guests, helping prepare them for the day they can join their parents aboard the park’s larger rides.

The Year of the Family continues with several exciting events and festivals, including Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 26-June 4) and summer at Dollywood (June 17- Aug. 6). Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana (Sept. 29- Oct. 28), which this year features Great Pumpkin LumiNights, and Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas presented by Humana (Nov. 4- Jan. 1) round out the year.

The Year of the Family continues at Dollywood’s Splash Country as well. The water park’s newest attraction, TailSpin Racer, opens along with the park on Saturday, May 13. TailSpin Racer is a six-lane, mat racer slide which certainly will see families and friends challenge each other to a wet and wild race to its splashdown finish.

For B-roll of Drop Line, please visit: https://thedollywoodcompany.sharefile.com/d-s88281ad311d4112a

For more information about Dollywood’s Year of the Family, visit www.dollywood.com or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

 

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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 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 30 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 26 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). In 2014, Dollywood was named a top three US theme park by USA Today and TripAdvisor recognized Dollywood as a top 20 worldwide theme park in 2015. Dollywood is open nine months a year (late March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and a dozen crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region.  Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel as one of the country’s most beautiful waterparks and named 2009’s Must-See Waterpark by the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions, operates from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The 300-room Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort 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: Director of Communications, (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

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

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

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

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

 

 

Magician Romeo To Appear In New Theater

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Jan. 31, 2017) — The Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group is proud to present the return of “Magic Beyond Belief™ Darren Romeo” in the ALL NEW Magic Beyond Belief™ Darren Romeo Theater, 2135 Parkway in Pigeon Forge (across the street from “The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud™”).  Co-owners David Fee and Jim Hedrick, of the Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group, will premiere the new 525 seat-theater on Friday, March 3.

Romeo, an internationally acclaimed magician, has been the star of Fee/Hedrick’s “Magic Beyond Belief™ Darren Romeo” show for the past two years in a matinee show at The Smoky Mountain Opry™ Theater.  Romeo will now star in his own show in a magical evening time slot at the new theater.

This full, two-hour “Magic Beyond Belief™ Darren Romeo” production will feature stunning illusions, mind-boggling special effects, parody celebrity impersonations, hilarious comedy, vocal performance and a huge tribute to the magicians who inspired him the most:  Siegfried and Roy and Harry Blackstone Jr.  It is a high-energy, fast-faced production.

“As a former magician myself, I have loved magic all of my life,” said David Fee, co-owner of the new theater. “Darren Romeo is one of the best magicians I have ever seen. He is extremely special and unique.  His show mixes amazing magic with music, and it is mesmerizing! We are very proud of Darren and of the success of his show in Pigeon Forge and it became obvious to us that he needed his own theater.”

“We expect to invest over $500,000 dollars in theater upgrades to complete the theater with all of the bells and whistles for a truly magical experience,” Fee said. “Two large video screens will complement the show, as well as the glamour of mood-setting lights, engaging music, new elaborate sets, fantastic costumes and state-of-the-art lighting and sound systems.” Fee says the show will leave the entire family spellbound.

Romeo, the first and only protégé of Master Magicians Siegfried and Roy, will appear Monday through Saturday, March through October, at The Magic Beyond Belief Darren Romeo Theater.  Romeo’s “Magic Beyond Belief™ Darren Romeo” is known for his combination of live singing with the art of magic and illusion for a one-of-a-kind magical performance.

Before coming to Pigeon Forge, Romeo previously performed in his own show as “Siegfried & Roy presents: Darren Romeo” at the Mirage in Las Vegas and all over the world.  He has also performed in Las Vegas at Caesar’s Palace, at the Flamingo Hilton and at the world-famous Magic Castle in Hollywood.

Magician Romeo said, “Magic is my passion, and I will be able to present the biggest and best versions of my show to date in the new Magic Beyond Belief Darren Romeo Theater.”

One of the most awarded magicians in the history of magic, Romeo has garnered an extensive list of accolades including:

“Show of the Year” (2 years in a row) from the Branson Critic Association,

Magician of the Year” from the Magic Castle, The Academy of Magical Arts, Inc., the prestigious Merlin Award for “Entertainer of the Year” from the International Magician’s Society and the Milbourne Christopher Award for “Notable Contributions to the Art of Magic” from The Society of American Magicians (SAM).

In addition to all of the large illusions people would expect to see on stage from Siegfried and Roy’s protégé, Romeo will perform close-up magic and sleight of hand tricks in the new show as well.

Romeo will carry on Harry Blackstone Jr.’s legacy by performing his famous “Floating Light Bulb” Illusion.  He is the only magician in the world granted permission from the Blackstone family to perform this tribute.

The New York Daily News called Romeo’s show “Irresistible” and the Las Vegas Review Journal said it was “the most unique and compelling show to hit the strip in many years.” Entertainment Today said his show was “Extraordinary. Fantastic!”

“We want to provide clean wholesome entertainment for families who will return to see our shows again and again,” Fee said. “Our new theater is Beyond Belief!  Get your tickets now before they all . .  . DISAPPEAR!”

“Magic Beyond Belief™ Darren Romeo” will be performed at 8:15 p.m. on Monday through Saturday.  Tickets for the show will be $29.95, plus tax per person and children 11 and under are only $9.95 plus tax per person. There will be a combo deal when guests buy tickets to “The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud™” they will be able to purchase tickets to “Magic Beyond Belief™ Darren Romeo” for $19.95 plus tax per person. For more information visit pigeonforgemagic.com.

The Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group, one of the largest show production companies in the southeast, also owns and produces other major shows in the Smoky Mountain area including “The Smoky Mountain Opry,™” “The Comedy Barn®,” The “Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud,™” and “The Smith Morning Variety Show.”

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The Inn At Christmas Place Wins 2017 Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice Award

Pigeon Forge, Tennessee – January 26, 2017 The Inn at Christmas Place today announced it has been recognized for the fourth time as a Travelers’ Choice winner, in the best service category of the 2017 TripAdvisor Travelers’ ChoiceR awards for hotels.  In the 15th year of the awards, TripAdvisor has highlighted the world’s top properties based on the millions of reviews and opinions collected in a single year from travelers around the globe.  Winners were identified in the categories of Top Hotels, Luxury, Bargain, Small, Service, B&Bs and Inns, Romance, and Family.  The hallmarks of Travelers’ Choice hotels winners are remarkable service, value, and quality.

“I am so proud of the entire team at The Inn at Christmas Place!  It’s the guest experience that they create that makes us such an amazing place to visit, and which has earned us this reward for the fourth time!” says K-Kin Fairbank Biggs, managing partner.  “It’s such a beautiful testament to our focus of continuing to offer the absolute best service, and to the relationships we have built with our guests over time.  But, of course, without our guests choosing to share their great experiences with TripAdvisor, we wouldn’t have been considered – so we thank them for taking the time to give us those good reviews!”

Celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, The Inn at Christmas Place has earned its status as America’s premier Christmas lodging destination.  With a year-round Christmas theme, guests come again and again to enjoy the warmth of the holiday spirit through beautiful decorations in every guest room and public space and the welcoming atmosphere created by a dedicated team of associates, as well as many special activities and events offered exclusively for guests.

“For the past 15 years, TripAdvisor has relied on the experiences and opinions of our travel community that has explored thousands of hotels around the world to determine these celebrated awards,” said Barbara Messing, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor.  “Travelers planning their trips for 2017 can find inspiration for some of the best places to book from this diverse group of outstanding accommodations around the globe.”

To see the 2017 Travelers’ Choice U.S. Hotel winners for Best Service, visit https://www.tripadvisor.com/TravelersChoice-Hotels-cBestService-g191.

For reviews of The Inn at Christmas Place, visit https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g55270-d659723-Reviews-The_Inn_at_Christmas_Place-Pigeon_Forge_Tennessee.html

Travelers can also follow the conversation on Twitter at #travelerschoice and #2017TCwinners.

About TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor® is the world’s largest travel site, enabling travelers to unleash the potential of every trip. TripAdvisor offers advice from millions of travelers and a wide variety of travel choices and planning features with seamless links to booking tools that check hundreds of websites to find the best hotel prices.

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Contact:     Janet Donaldson, Chief Marketing Officer, Christmas Place Properties; janet@christmasplace.com; 865-453-0415, ext. 114

 

Dollywood Becomes Hollywood On Tuesday, Nov. 22

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Monday, Oct. 31, 2016) —Dollywood becomes Hollywood on Tuesday, Nov. 22, complete with red carpet arrivals, media interviews and special viewing areas for guests, as Dolly Parton has invited the cast from her new NBC movie, Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love, to visit the park for the worldwide premiere.

Dollywood adds another operating day to its 2016 calendar to allow park guests the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see behind-the-scenes of a real Hollywood premiere. Dollywood opens from 2 -9 p.m. on this special day, providing a sneak peek at the festivities which include red carpet arrivals and more!

The premiere event begins at 5 p.m. with red carpet arrivals following. Parton and cast members of Christmas of Many Colors make their way down the red carpet along Dollywood’s Showstreet as media from across the country cover the action.

The Coca-Cola Refresh Team brings the Coca-Cola Polar Bear to make photos for guests in attendance. Coca-Cola also offers special holiday beverage samplings during the event.

Guests at the premiere also can enjoy Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas presented by Humana, the nine-time award winner for Best Christmas Event. Two new holiday shows and four million dazzling Christmas lights combine with the park’s award-winning rides, delectable holiday dishes and heart-warming Christmas atmosphere for a delightful yuletide experience.

Smoky Mountain Christmas guests can upgrade a paid one-day admission ticket to a regular 2017 season pass for as low as $27 (plus tax when buying four or more). Ticket purchasers receive credit for the value of a regular one-day ticket ($65) toward the purchase of a 2017 season pass. A season pass purchased during Smoky Mountain Christmas provides unlimited admission to this year’s Christmas festival along with Dollywood’s entire 2017 season. (A one-day ticket is valid for upgrade on the day of visit only.) Also, guests who purchase a Dollywood one-day ticket after 6 p.m. receive free admission to the park’s next operating day.

Please visit www.dollywood.com or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD for more information, including operating days and hours, daily show schedule and more helpful tips to help plan a visit.

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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 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 nearly 30 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 25 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). In 2014, Dollywood was named a top three US theme park by USA Today and TripAdvisor recognized Dollywood as a top 20 worldwide theme park in 2015. Dollywood is open nine months a year (late March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and a dozen crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region.  Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel as one of the country’s most beautiful waterparks and named 2009’s Must-See Waterpark by the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions, operates from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The 300-room Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort 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.

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Media Contacts:

Pete Owens: Director of Communications, (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

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

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

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

 

 

Dolly Parton’s Nov. 15 ‘Pure & Simple’ Concert in Pigeon Forge Sold Out

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (July 1, 2016) — Pointing to the immense popularity of East Tennessee’s favorite entertainment icon, tickets for Dolly Parton’s  Nov. 15 Pure & Simple concert at the LeConte Center in Pigeon Forge have sold out. Tickets went on sale to Dollywood season passholders on June 15. Remaining tickets were made available to the general public this morning.

Parton currently is in the midst of the Pure & Simple tour, her first major North American concert tour in more than 25 years. Parton has crisscrossed the country performing to sold-out venues, but it is the trip home to Sevier County which may be the most special. Proceeds from the concert benefit Parton’s Imagination Library, a literacy program which provides free books to children from birth to age five.

Parking is free at the LeConte Center, however, concert goers should plan to arrive early for the best available parking. The show begins at 7 p.m.; doors open two hours prior to the start.

Parton is as busy as ever, and with the Pure & Simple tour, a new CD and much more in the works, she doesn’t plan on slowing down any time soon. Parton’s set-list during the tour includes a number of hit songs, with a few new offerings from her double-disc album Pure & Simple with Dolly’s Biggest Hits. She also is playing a number of hits that have not been heard live for decades.

Parton’s Imagination Library is administered through the Dollywood Foundation which partners with local sponsors to provide an age appropriate book each month to children from birth to age five in participating communities. To date, the Imagination Library has provided more than 80 million books in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia.

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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 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 nearly 30 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 25 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). In 2014, Dollywood was named a top three US theme park by USA Today and TripAdvisor recognized Dollywood as a top 20 worldwide theme park in 2015. Dollywood is open nine months a year (late March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and a dozen crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region.  Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel as one of the country’s most beautiful waterparks and named 2009’s Must-See Waterpark by the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions, operates from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The 300-room Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort 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.

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Media Contacts:

Pete Owens: Director of Communications, (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

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

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

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

 

Three Months of Ripken Experience: 363 Teams, 23 States, $6.7 Million

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (June 2016) – The first three months of youth baseball tournaments at the Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge have been everything the city expected – and perhaps more.

“Baseball lives on statistics, and the numbers coming out of the Ripken Experience are awesome. Visitor spending of $6.7 million in Pigeon Forge is simply wonderful,” said Eric Brackins, Pigeon Forge assistant city manager, who worked closely on development of the $22.5 million project.

Cal Ripken Jr., a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame and chairman and founder of Ripken Baseball, cut the ribbon on the six-field complex on March 9. The first tournament was March 12-13. Ripken Baseball has a 10-year contract to manage the facility.

Cal Ripken Jr. with young player

Cal Ripken Jr. with young player

From mid-March through the third week of June, there have been 11 tournaments that drew 363 teams from 23 states. The Alaska Quakes from Anchorage traveled the greatest distance to play on the fields that offer unobstructed views of the Great Smoky Mountains.

“The 363 teams and their followers, almost 18,000 people, benefit Pigeon Forge in many ways. They stay in our hotels, they dine in our restaurants and they have fun at our attractions and theaters,” Brackins said, noting that tournament scheduling gives them plenty of recreational time.

The appeal of Pigeon Forge as a family vacation destination was a major reason the city built the complex and contracted with Ripken Baseball to operate it.

“We were confident Ripken Baseball could attract teams, and we were equally confident Pigeon Forge would appeal to the players’ families. We’re attracting new people to Pigeon Forge and the Smokies, and we know that new visitors are almost certain to return for future vacations,” said Leon Downey, executive director of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism.

The Southeast, the Midwest and the Mid-Atlantic produced the greatest number of teams in the first three months. There were 144 teams from Tennessee, 43 from Georgia, 37 from North Carolina and 24 from Ohio.

In addition to Alaska, other distant states that produced teams included Wisconsin, Texas and Massachusetts.

A tournament with 44 teams from 16 states and Canada in the last days of June will push the team total to more than 400.

The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge is on a ridge above Pigeon Forge. Each field borrows its design from well-known professional ballparks, including Oriole Park at Camden Yards in Baltimore.

The others are Calfee Park in Pulaski, Va., the oldest park in the Appalachian League; Fluor Field in Greenville, S.C., known as “Little Fenway”; Engle Stadium in Chattanooga, Tenn., a filming location for the “42” movie about Jackie Robinson; BB&T Ballpark in Winston-Salem, N.C.; and Isotopes Park in Albuquerque, N.M.

The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge will host tournaments nine months out of the year and offer year-round branded events in its 14,000-square-foot clubhouse.

Visitor information about Pigeon Forge is available online at MyPigeonForge.com and toll-free at 800-251-9100.

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Contact:

Tom Adkinson

tadkinson@bohanideas.com

615-341-8796

 

 

Pigeon Forge’s July 4 Patriot Festival To Feature Joe Diffie, Fireworks Spectacular

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (June 2016) – Grand Ole Opry member and Grammy Award winner Joe Diffie will rock Patriot Festival, Pigeon Forge’s annual blowout to celebrate July 4, immediately before a spectacular fireworks show brightens the sky over this Great Smoky Mountains resort city.

Activity begins at noon, and onstage entertainment begins at 1:30 p.m. for guests at Patriot Park.  Admission is free.

Joe Diffie

Joe Diffie

In addition to a variety of local entertainers, music will come from Emily Ann Roberts, who placed second on NBC’s “The Voice,” and Tribute, a celebration of the Allman Brothers Band.

Patriot Festival guests will recognize Diffie’s songs that will come from his 20 Top 10 hits and his 13 albums. Count on sing-alongs to “John Deere Green,” “ Prop Me Up Beside the Jukebox” and “If the Devil Danced (in Empty Pockets).”

Food and family games are part of the day’s activities, and guests are welcome to bring lawn chairs and blankets. Free parking will be at Patriot Park and the city’s Teaster Lane parking lot. A free shuttle will run from the Teaster Lane lot.

Fireworks will begin at approximately 9:30 p.m., and WIVK-FM in Knoxville will simulcast the fireworks show’s patriotic soundtrack.

Patriot Festival in Patriot Park, Pigeon Forge

Patriot Festival in Patriot Park, Pigeon Forge

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Contact:

Tom Adkinson, APR

tadkinson@bohanideas.com

615-341-8796

 

 

 

 

Great Smoky Mountains National Park Hosts ‘Music in the American Wild’ Events

Great Smoky Mountains National Park invites the public to celebrate the National Park Service Centennial with Music in the American Wild for two live performances of music from eleven composers and seven performers, all affiliated with Eastman School of Music in upstate New York. The group is traveling to various National Parks in the country and will play two concerts in the park on June 14 and June 15.BearAmerican Wild

On June 14, the performance will be at Purchase Knob near Maggie Valley, N.C., at 6 p.m. Parking is limited, so reservations are required at https://musicinthesmokies2016.eventbrite.com.

On June 15, the performance will be at the Cades Cove Amphitheater at 7 p.m. and does not require a reservation. Both programs are free. These concerts are the premiere of music being played in the places that inspired the compositions. The seven performers play flute, clarinet, horn, violin, viola, cello and percussion.

“We are excited to celebrate the NPS Centennial with Music in the American Wild,” said Park Superintendent Cassius Cash. “National Parks have inspired many artists over their 100 year history, and listening to original compositions inspired by places like Great Smoky Mountains National Park surrounded by natural beauty is a unique opportunity.”

Music in the American Wild is part of the Imagine Your Parks grant initiative from the National Endowment for the Arts created in partnership with the National Park Service to support projects that use the arts to engage people with memorable places and landscapes of the National Park System. More information about the project is at www.musicintheamericanwild.com.

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Contact:

Dana Soehn, Dana_Soehn@nps.gov, 865-436-1207

Jamie Sanders, Jamie_Sanders@nps.gov, 865-436-1203

 

Amazing Animals Exotic Animal and Pet Show Debuts at Comedy Barn Theater

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (May 2016)  – Where do trained pigs, parrots, housecats, dogs, a serval cat, a Burmese python, a kinkajou and a mini-donkey all perform together? The answer is at the new and original Amazing Animals Exotic Animal and Pet Show at The Comedy Barn Theater in Pigeon Forge, Tenn,, produced by The Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group. Anthony and Alena King, their trained “amazing animals,” animal trainer “Professor Bumblemoore,” (Corkey Miller, Action Animals, USA) and her trained exotic pets perform in a hilarious new pet variety show at The Comedy Barn Theater at 2 p.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. The show opened May 21.

The two-hour show includes zany comedy, animal antics and family fun for all ages. Ten high-diving housecats all perform in a comedy routine. They jump through hoops, move in a zig zag pattern, complete a high step routine, perform an Olympic pole balance, walk upside down, do super jumps, and even do a high diving stunt. In addition, pig stars Boris Bacon and Jessie Hamm compete with the audience in piggy games.

“We have a whole cast of fuzzy, furry, feathered and four-legged friends,” said David Fee, president and chief executive officer of Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group and co-owner of The Comedy Barn Theater. “We have exotic and domestic animals, a wonderful mix of live music and plenty of mayhem. Charlie the donkey astounds the audience with his mathematic skills, and we have wonderful waltzing dogs. We have dogs who roll over, do hurdle jumps and barrel rolls, hind leg stands, and some dogs even jump rope.”

“There are beautiful exotic birds,” Fee said. “The birds do comedy, skate, ride scooters and bicycles, go through Roman rings, perform on the high wire, dance, pull carts, see-saw, do foot juggling, fly through rings and achieve many other unusual feats.”

The Kings have performed on Animal Planet’s Pet Star, The Tonight Show, at theme parks, festivals, fairs, pet expos, conventions and corporate events across the country, in Branson, Mo., theaters, and with The Comedy Pet Variety Show in Lakeland, Fla., as well as with the Royal Hannelford Circus.

“The Kings have been performing at the Comedy Barn and their act has been so requested that we have opened up a matinee format where they can perform with all of their animals in one show,” said Fee. “A couple of their animals will also be in our regular Comedy Barn Show every night.”

Miller has accumulated over three decades of experience working with exotic animals. She has traveled all over the United States and Canada. She has worked with Oprah Winfrey, Brendan Fraser, Sidney Poitier, Jack Hanna, Steve Irwin, Jim Fowler, Bill Murray, Robert DeNiro, Maya Angelou, John Cusack, Hulk Hogan and Dolly Parton, just to name a few. She’s been seen on The Today Show and Late Night with David Letterman several times. Her animals have been seen in hundreds of major motion pictures, thousands of commercials and print ads.

All of Miller’s shows feature rescue animals that have found their “furever” home with her. Miller is a champion for the humane treatment of all animals and is a huge advocate for teaching children how to care for their pets properly.

Also featured in the matinee show is magician/comedian Greg Franklin as goofy Farmer Klemm. A native of Kannapolis, N.C., Franklin has performed professionally since he was 16 when he landed a part in the Paul Osborne Merlin Rainbow Mystery Cavern Show just down the road at the site of what is now lost Treasure Miniature Golf in Pigeon Forge.

Since then, he starred in his own magic show produced by Dallas-based Osborne at amusement parks all over America. He has owned his own magic store near Orlando, created a villainous professional wrestling character named “The fabulous Mister Franklin” and was appearing at The Carolina Nights Dinner Theater in Maggie Valley before coming to The Comedy Barn Theater.

Fee said, “Our goal is to offer clean, family entertainment at a reasonable price. The main focus of our new show is amazing animals; however, we have some pretty spectacular clogging, singing and magic, too. This is a variety show that the whole family can enjoy. We combine laughter with lots of fun and talented performers to delight people of all ages.”

Open year round, The Comedy Barn Theater has two shows nightly throughout the year as well as some scheduled matinees for groups throughout the season. Tickets for the new Amazing Animals matinee show are $29.95 plus tax for adults and $9.95 plus tax for children ages 3-11.  Guests may purchase tickets to either the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud or The Smoky Mountain Opry at regular price and get a combo deal of $19.95 plus tax to add one, two, three, four or five additional Fee/Hedrick Shows including The Amazing Animals Show. In the combination package children are FREE per each paid adult ticket. Toll Free 1-800-29 LAUGH or (865) 428-5222.  For more information, visit http://comedybarn.com/pigeon-forge-show/amazing-animals-exotic-pet-show.

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 CONTACT:  Deborah Fee Newsom

(865) 414-6887 or (865) 774-8877

Deborah@FeeHedrick.com