Posts Tagged ‘Pigeon Forge’

Dolly’s Dinner Theater Company Purchases Fee Hedrick Entertainment

Acquisition includes Comedy Barn, Hatfield & McCoy and Smoky Mountain Opry 

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Friday, February 1, 2019) – World Choice Investments, the operating partner of Dolly Parton’s dinner theaters, will expand its dinner theater holdings to seven with the purchase of three theaters and a restaurant from David Fee and Jim Hedrick’s Fee Hedrick Entertainment in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.   Parton’s enterprise now operates spectacular shows in Branson, Missouri, and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and with the purchase, five theater attractions in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

“My theater production company just purchased Fee Hedrick Entertainment, and I am so excited to have more family entertainment to present to our guests in Pigeon Forge.  In 2019, we’ll operate Comedy Barn, Hatfield & McCoy and Smoky Mountain Opry in the same way folks have come to remember them,” Dolly said.   “David, Jim and their team have done a great job with these shows through the years and, for now, we don’t plan to change anything.  They are fun family entertainment, and that is the business I’m in.”

The terms of the purchase are private but Fee and Fred Hardwick of World Choice Investments stressed this is a win-win for both companies.

“David Fee and his staff have been great competition for us over the years,” Fred Hardwick, Chairman of the Board of World Choice Investments, said.   “He produces high quality, successful shows.  As Dolly said, this is an opportunity to expand our portfolio of theaters in Pigeon Forge with quality family entertainment.  We will also continue to expand our own brands like Pirates Voyage – opening this year in Pigeon Forge.”  WCI had previously announced it planned to open Pirates Voyage in Pigeon Forge adjacent to The Island in time for the summer tourism season.

“All of these theaters provide a great opportunity for us to package our shows in an affordable way and to focus with Dollywood to bring people to the area,” Hardwick said.  “Dolly’s enthusiastic leadership will continue to focus on bringing the best in entertainment in an affordable way for the families visiting the Smoky Mountains.”

For more information and tickets, go to www.dinnershowtickets.com.

-WCII2019-

About World Choice Investments: Founded in 1988, World Choice Investments, LLC, doing business as Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction and Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show, operates dinner attraction venues for family fun and adventure in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, Branson, Missouri and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Our shows feature special effects, musical productions, live animals and a four-course family feast.

Media Contacts:

Pete Owens: (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or peteo@wciinvest.com

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

This message has been scanned for malware by Websense. www.websense.com

Pigeon Forge Offers New Reasons To Use Vacation Days in 2019

Family-friendly destination ready to prevent millions of vacations days from going to waste.

 

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (Jan. 30, 2019)—According to the latest research*, 705 million vacation days go unused annually in the U.S. The city of Pigeon Forge (Tennessee) has several new reasons for workers to spend those hard-earned vacation days in the family-friendly destination located in the Great Smoky Mountains.

 

“What better way to spend vacation days than with family and friends, sharing great times and memories,” said Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism Executive Director Leon Downey. “With the wide variety of attractions and entertainment that Pigeon Forge offers for all ages, including lots of new ones this year, folks should get their calendars out now and start planning to come see us!”

 

Pigeon Forge always delivers on the promise of something new for visitors to see and do each year, and 2019 is no exception.

 

Dollywood theme park’s Wildwood Grove, opening this spring, features 11 new experiences for guests, six of which are ride attractions, including a suspended family roller coaster called the Dragonflier as well as a 55-foot-tall Wildwood Tree, live entertainment, the Till & Harvest restaurant, and various indoor and outdoor play areas including Hidden Hollow, a 4,000-square-foot indoor play space. Dollywood.com

 

The Island, a retail, dining, lodging and entertainment complex, has added Yee-Haw Brewing Company, a production brewery and taproom that offers ales and lagers, including Yee-Haw’s World Beer Cup award-winning Dunkel, as well as seasonal and high-gravity beers. Visitors also can enjoy the Spinning Parrots family coaster; RideMakerz, an immersive remote-control car customizing experience; and the Savannah Bee Company which sells specialty honey and honey-based products. TheIsland

 

Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Show is the centerpiece of the new Lumberjack Square, which also is home to Paula Deen’s Lumberjack Feud Adventure, a ropes course, extreme zipline, roller coaster, an 80-foot-tall jump tower, a multi-level lumberjack-themed adventure park and an aerial kids’ playground. The show features 11 competitive lumberjack events including axe throwing, chopping, sawing, speed climbing, and log rolling in a 350-seat climate-controlled outdoor venue where world-class lumberjacks square off daily from spring through December. LumberjackFeud

 

The new Rocky Top Mountain Coaster sits on more than 20 acres and takes riders on a nine-minute journey that traverses multiple 360-degree turns, four tunnels, thrilling curves, and daring hairpin turns, all propelled by four uplifts and four drops, allowing it to reach a maximum speed of 30 miles per hour. Able to accommodate riders as young as three years of age (with minimum height requirement), it is another family attraction.

 

Other attractions opening this summer include Titanic Museum Attraction’s collection of Titanic lifejackets, the world’s largest ever assembled since the ship’s maiden voyage. Only 12 lifejackets are known to exist, and beginning July 1, seven from collectors worldwide will be on display through November 2019 in Pigeon Forge for the first time in history. TitanicMuseumAttraction

 

The 200-foot-tall Mountain Monster three-in-one thrill ride anchors the Tower Shops at Mountain Mile, a 180,000-square-foot multi-purpose retail, dining and family entertainment development that spans 174 acres. Mountain Monster, opening this summer, will offer guests a drop ride, a dive ride and a swing, all in one attraction. MountainMilePigeonForge.com.

 

Uncle Lem’s Outfitters, a soon-to-open 4,580-square-foot retail space, supports and encourages a love of the great outdoors by supplying enthusiasts with the necessary gear. Uncle Lem’s takes advantage of the area’s natural setting and plans to offer the services of hiking, fishing, bicycling, and outdoor adventure guides. It will open with paddle board and kayak rentals with bicycle rentals to follow.

 

Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show, a Dolly Parton Company, will be located adjacent to The Island in Pigeon Forge in a 21,000-square-foot arena. Crimson and Sapphire pirates battle on deck, in the water, and in the sky above their full-sized ships in a 15-foot-deep indoor lagoon. The show also includes a four-course pirate feast.

 

Pigeon Forge offers more than 14,500 overnight accommodations, ranging from hotels and condos to cabins and campgrounds. Joining the lineup this year are the 200-room Ramsey Hotel & Convention Center; the 108-room Fairfield Inn & Suites; and the 102-room Tru by Hilton.

 

For more information about what’s new for 2019 as well as existing favorites, please visit MyPigeonForge.com or call 1-800-251-9100.

 

*Research from the U.S. Travel Association’s ProjectTimeOff.com.

 

#

About Pigeon Forge:

Pigeon Forge is located in East Tennessee, approximately 35 miles from Knoxville and McGhee-Tyson Airport. Two-thirds of the nation’s population east of the Mississippi River lives within a day’s drive, making it an easily accessible family vacation destination. The city’s neighbor is Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the most-visited national park in the U.S. It also is home to Dolly Parton’s Dollywood theme park, Tennessee’s most-visited ticketed attraction. More information about all aspects of Pigeon Forge are available at MyPigeonForge.com or toll-free at 1-800-251-9100.

 

Images are available for download here.

 

 

 

Media Contact:

Trish McGee

on behalf of the Pigeon Forge Dept. of Tourism

tmcgee@bohanideas.com

615-327-1189 ext. 327

 

 

 

 

 

Pigeon Forge Offers Year-Round Trolley Service Beginning Jan. 6

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (Jan. 3, 2019)—For the first time in 14 years, Pigeon Forge Trolley ticket prices increased, effective Jan. 1, 2019, allowing for year-round trolley service. Beginning Jan. 6, 2019, the North and South Parkway winter trolley route will operate from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. daily and remain in effect until the trolleys resume full operation on March 12, 2019.

The Pigeon Forge trolley system is the third-largest rural transit system in the U.S.

The winter route will travel as far north as Sevierville and to light number 10 on the south end of town. The route also will travel portions of Teaster Lane. In total, there are more than 100 trolley stops located on the winter route.

“Our city leaders are constantly looking for ways to improve life in Pigeon Forge for our residents,” said Pigeon Forge City Manager Earlene Teaster. “Transportation is an important factor to everyone, and by expanding our transit services and offering year-round trolley service, we hope this provides a convenience to those who live and work in Pigeon Forge.”

Previously, trolley service in Pigeon Forge ceased the first week of January and remained out of service until early March. The schedule aligned with the city’s tourism season, which typically begins to increase in March as spring break travelers return to the area.

Trolleys do not operate on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Pigeon Forge residents and those who work in the city may purchase a year-round pass ($35 per person), a $3 one-day pass, a $1 North or South Parkway ticket as well as tickets for additional route options at the Pigeon Forge Trolley Office located in the Old Mill district at traffic light seven. (There is no charge for children ages three and under.)

Last year, more than 750 year-round passes were sold. City leaders hope to see an increase in those numbers with the winter route addition.

“Year-round trolley service is not only a convenience that the city can offer Pigeon Forge residents and workers, but trolley use also helps ensure cleaner air by decreasing the number of cars on our streets and, in turn, the amount of emissions released into the air,” Teaster added.

During peak season, the Pigeon Forge transit department offers six trolley routes, all of which originate and end at the Pigeon Forge Trolley Station located in the Old Mill district on Old Mill Drive. Annually, more than 2.9 million passengers use the mass transit system in Pigeon Forge.

All Pigeon Forge trolleys and trams are lift-equipped for wheelchairs and/or other mobility aids and may be accessed at any designated trolley stop. Passengers who are unable to get to a designated trolley stop may schedule a paratransit van for next-day pickup. Paratransit van reservations may be made by calling (865) 453-6444.

For more information about trolley service, please visit http://www.pigeonforgetrolley.org or call 865-453-6444.

-pigeonforge2019-

Media Contact:

Trish McGee

tmcgee@bohanideas.com

(615) 327-1189

 

The Ripken Experience Scores Winning Third Season in Pigeon Forge

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Nov. 28, 2018) – At the completion of its third year of operation in the Smoky Mountains, The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge scored yet another homerun with baseball fans and city officials alike.

Research recently released by the city determined that The Ripken Experience was responsible for $33.8 million in visitor spending during its 2018 season which began in March and concluded in November. In that nine-month period, The Ripken Experience hosted 925 teams from 25 states, Canada and Puerto Rico, traveling from as far away as California, New York, and Texas. Other states represented are Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Further demonstrating the sports facility’s success is that 99 percent of those who visited the facility reside outside of Sevier County. Pigeon Forge is located in Sevier County just six miles from the entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Tournament participants, coaches, and their families contribute to the local economy through overnight lodging stays, ticket purchases to area attractions, restaurant dining and other purchases.

Since opening its doors in March 2016, more than 2,100 youth baseball teams and 150 high school softball teams have taken the fields at The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge for competition in 80 events. In total, more than 33,500 players and coaches have traveled to play ball on fields that offer unobstructed views of the Great Smoky Mountains, with an additional 1,000 teams expected to travel to the complex for competition in 2019.

“The partnership with Pigeon Forge has been fantastic. The fact that the complex has had this positive impact on the city is wonderful and confirms what we all had hoped and believed would be the result of the project. I am excited to continue to grow with our great partner, and we are all proud of being a member of this wonderful community.” Cal Ripken, Jr. said.

The appeal of Pigeon Forge as a family vacation destination was a major reason the city built the $22.5 million complex and contracted with Ripken Baseball to operate it.

“The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge continues to demonstrate its ability to attract young people and their families to Pigeon Forge,” said Pigeon Forge City Manager Earlene Teaster. “We continue to see more and more Ripken guests who are first-time visitors to Pigeon Forge, which further underscores the value of the city’s investment in this fine property.”

The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge youth complex is located on a ridge above Pigeon Forge. Each field borrows its design inspiration from current and former ballparks highlighting the professional player progression from the Minor to Major Leagues, 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”; Engel 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 hosts tournaments nine months out of the year and offers year-round branded events in its 14,000-square-foot clubhouse. Tournaments are free to spectators, and parking is free at the complex.

Visitor information about Pigeon Forge is available online at MyPigeonForge.com and toll-free at 800-251-9100. To learn more Ripken Baseball and for The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge tournament schedule, visit RipkenBaseball.com.

#

Cal Ripken, Jr. headshot and The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge facility images available here. Photo credit The Ripken Experience Pigeon Forge

 

Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas Celebrates 11 Years as Favorite Christmas Event with Glacier Ridge, Five Million Lights

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Nov. 5, 2018) — After earning its 11th consecutive Golden Ticket award for Best Theme Park Christmas Event, Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas presented by Humana (Nov. 10, 2018- Jan. 5, 2019) adds even more merry memory making moments with the addition of the impressive Glacier Ridge.

With the all-new Glacier Ridge, guests can experience the Smokies at Christmas in a way they never have before. The novel and immense experience of Glacier Ridge pushes the park’s total count to more than five million twinkling lights. Located in the areas of the park known as Timber Canyon, Wilderness Pass and the upper portion of Craftsman’s Valley, Glacier Ridge is a must-see during Smoky Mountain Christmas.
“Christmas is so important to me for so many reasons,” Dolly Parton said. “I’m so thankful that it’s a time when our family comes together to share stories, remember old times, and make new memories we’ll take with us through the next year and beyond. There’s a lot of laughin’ and a whole lot of love when we all get together. I want those folks who come to experience Christmas with us at Dollywood to feel like they’re part of the family, making those memories and sharing those special times. I know the fun they’ll find in Glacier Ridge will help them create brand new memories and traditions.”

As guests near Glacier Ridge, they’ll feel as if the Smokies have frozen over, thanks to an arctic color palette and a mesmerizing atmosphere sure to wow guests. The Plaza at Wilderness Pass transforms into a winter wonderland, complete with a 50 ft. tall animated tree which anchors the area. Every 30 minutes the Plaza sparkles to life to present a fully-synchronized, dazzling light show complete with holiday hits that will have guests singing along.

For guests entering from Timber Canyon, the Arctic Passage, a 130-ft. long programmable light tunnel, transports them into Glacier Ridge in a stunning array of light and color. Once emerging from the tunnel, guests will be greeted by polar bears who have made a home at Drop Line Bay. Because the Smokies have frozen to create Glacier Ridge, these friends from the North are able to spend time with their Smoky Mountain cousins.

Those coming to Glacier Ridge through Craftsman’s Valley experience a one-of-a-kind new light installation that mimics the natural phenomenon known as the aurora borealis. Guests can walk through Dollywood’s version of the northern lights—which is brought to life with music as only Dolly can do— making it feel as if the aurora borealis has come south, even if for just a few weeks.

Since Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas helped kick off Sevier County’s Winterfest in 1990, the festival has been known globally as a must-see Christmas event. Amusement Today contributors and voters bestowed the Best Theme Park Christmas Event award on Dollywood in 2008 when the honor was first created. Dollywood is the 11-time—and only—winner of the award.

From the cheer and joy of Dollywood’s Parade of Many Colors, to traditional holiday shows like It’s a Wonderful Life and Christmas in the Smokies, Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas fosters family memory making for guests. For those who wander through the spectacular scenery, it is easy to understand why it has become a family tradition for so many. Guests can experience the fun enchantment of Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer and friends straight from the children’s holiday classic, or sit down together for a fabulous Christmas feast at many of Dollywood’s award-winning dining locations.  Most of Dollywood’s signature rides and attractions also operate in this merry environment, with rides racing along just above the millions of twinkling lights.

A season pass purchased during Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas provides unlimited admission to this year’s Christmas festival along with unlimited admission for Dollywood’s entire 2019 season, including the introduction of Wildwood Grove. To ensure the lowest prices of the season, guests should purchase their 2019 season pass online now or upgrade their paid one-day admission ticket on the day of their visit. Ticket purchasers receive credit for the value of a regular one-day ticket toward the purchase of a 2019 season pass.

With five million lights, award-winning entertainment, the addition of Glacier Ridge and much more, one thing is for certain: Dollywood truly captures the essence of Christmas.

-dollywood2018-

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, which celebrated record attendance in 2017. Dollywood was named a top three US theme park by USA Today in 2014 and 2017. Dollywood is open nine months a year (late 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

Christmas Comes To Life at Dolly Parton’s Stampede for 2018 Holiday Season

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Oct. 24, 2018) – Experience the spirit of Christmas at Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction this holiday season. Debuting Oct. 31 and running through January 5, 2019, families can create new traditions at “The Most Fun Place to Eat in the Smokies.” With a full-scale living Nativity, four-course feast, and an arena full of the merriest sights and sounds, every guest will leave jollier than Old Saint Nick.

“Christmas is a very special time of year at Dolly Parton’s Stampede,” said David Swangel, General Manager of Dolly Parton’s Stampede in Pigeon Forge. “While our thrilling high-spirited adventure provides fun for our guests, we also celebrate the meaning of Christmas thanks to a full-scale, living Nativity. Families always take the time to let us know this show has become a treasured part of their yearly traditions.”

To celebrate the reason for this holiday season, guests will watch a special re-enactment of Jesus’ birth with Mary, Joseph, three wise men, and a living Nativity with camels, donkeys, and sheep. This touching scene reflects on the importance of Christmas.

Taking a whimsical turn, The Sugar Plum Fairy brings a number of toys to life for a magical celebration in “Toys Come to Life.” Including stunning aerial displays set to the unforgettable music of The Nutcracker, families can watch in awe as their childhood fantasies come to life.

Stampede’s 32 magnificent horses, not to be confused Santa’s reindeer, will race one another in exciting competitions as audience members cheer their respective sides of the North Pole and South Pole to victory. And after the arena is transformed into a winter wonderland of glistening snow, Old Saint Nick arrives by sleigh to complete the festivities.

The entire holiday experience is enhanced by the state-of-the-art, LED wall in the show’s 35,000-square-foot arena, which seamlessly complements the exciting action with stunning holiday scenery. Guests will feel as if they have been instantly transported deep in to the natural beauty of Christmas from the foothills surrounding the Great Smoky Mountains and to the clear skies above Bethlehem on the night of Jesus’ birth.

Adding to the lineup, Christmas dinner includes Stampede’s signature four-course feast consisting of Stampede’s original creamy vegetable soup, homemade buttery biscuit, a whole rotisserie chicken, hickory-smoked barbequed pork loin, buttery corn on the cob, herb-basted potato, Stampede’s own specialty dessert and unlimited tea, coffee or Coca-Cola products. Vegetarian and gluten-free meals are available upon request.

Guests are invited to start their fun-filled evening in the Saloon with side-splitting holiday comedy and Christmas classics with a twist by Mountain Ruckus, Stampede’s house band. The band performs one hour prior to show time. Show times and reservations are available by calling 1-800-356-1676 or visiting www.dpstampede.com.

-dollypartonsstampede2018-

About World Choice Investments: Founded in 1988, World Choice Investments, LLC, doing business as Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction, Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show and Celebration Dinner Show, operates dinner attraction venues for family fun and adventure in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, Branson, Missouri and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Our 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

Pete Owens: (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or peteo@wciinvest.com

Wes Ramey: (865) 428-9484, (865) 640-3805 or wesr@wciinvest.com

Steve Cruz: (865) 774-8136, (865) 410-0591 or stevec@wciinvest.com

 

 

George W. Bush Honors America, Veterans at Celebrators Conference in Pigeon Forge

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Oct. 24, 2018)—George W. Bush and Phil Waldrep Ministries shared the LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge stage this evening as they honored America and its veterans at Celebrators Conference.

“Every time I come to a patriotic event, it is unbelievably inspiring,” said Bush.

Tonight was the former president’s fourth time at Celebrators, having previously spoken at the conference in 2009, 2011 and 2013.

“This evening we are gathered to express our gratitude to God for allowing us to live in the United States of America and to show our appreciation and support to the men and women who have worn or who presently wear the uniform of the United States military,” said Waldrep.

Waldrep spent approximately 45 minutes interviewing Bush by asking questions ranging from his family and hobby of painting, which he said was, “one of the greatest learning experiences of all time,” to 9/11 and his work with veterans.

“It is a unique opportunity anytime an organization gets to host a president, especially when a former president is joining you to honor those who served our nation,” said conference founder Phil Waldrep.

When asked about a typical day as president, Bush said for him, a typical day started with reading the Bible.

“Serving God is important in life,” said Bush.

The former president also spoke about how the late evangelist Billy Graham influenced his life, got him back on “the walk” and helped him quit drinking more than 30 years ago.

“You know what is good about our country,” said Bush. The cumulative acts of compassion that make our country unique and people’s willingness to love their neighbor.

There were approximately 8,000 people in attendance at tonight’s event.

The evening of thanks began with the presentation of the United States flag by the Pigeon Forge police and fire departments.

Classical-crossover quintet, Veritas, performed the “Star-Spangled Banner,” which included an appearance by Challenger, the bald eagle used at presidential inaugurations, major sporting events and other historical moments.

Pigeon Forge Boy Scouts assisted in presenting medals to veterans in attendance at the conference.

The night also included a salute to each of the armed forces and a moment of silence honoring those who have lost their lives in service.

“We are an awesome nation to produce people who are willing to serve, said Bush.”

Charles Billingsley, Christian worship leader and song writer, led the crowd in “God Bless the USA” and a choir accompanied by an orchestra sang “God Bless America” to conclude the evening.

Celebrators Conference began in 1997 and is specially planned for today’s active, mature adults to experience spiritual fulfillment, Bible teaching, fellowship and fun.

Phil Waldrep Ministries, based in Decatur, Alabama, seeks to make a difference in the lives of people. This is accomplished through conferences such as Women of Joy, Gridiron, and Celebrators, as well as speaking engagements, online devotionals, and Pastor’s Encouragement Retreats.

#

Contact:
Mackenzie Borden, Public Relations
Phil Waldrep Ministries
mackenzie@philwaldrep.org
256-341-7510

Yo ho ho! Pirates Revenge™ Dinner & Show Coming to Pigeon Forge

(PIGEON FORGE, Tenn.)–Oct. 4, 2018 –Ahoy mateys!  The “Pirates Revenge™ Dinner and Show,” produced by Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group, will sail into Pigeon Forge the summer of 2019 in the current Smoky Mountain Opry Theater location.  Plans have been submitted to the City of Pigeon Forge’s planning commission for a huge $20 million renovation of the Smoky Mountain Opry Theater to turn the theater into a pirate-themed dinner show.   Pending the approval process, construction should begin early November 2018.  This will not affect the running of The Christmas at the Smoky Mountain Opry show which will proceed as usual.

The new Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group production will include a retractable water stage that will be the largest in the Southeast. The show will feature moving ships complete with brand new technology that is being designed just for this project.  The show will also include actors, stunt divers, acrobats, singers, dancers and live animals.

“We’ve enlisted the help of the best technological experts in the world to help with innovative thematic and production elements,” said David Fee, president and chief executive officer of Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group.  “Our writing team has worked on projects for Broadway shows as well as Disney and Universal productions.  This show will be like no other in existence.”

In addition to the massive changes within the building, the exterior is also slated for proposed upgrades pending approval from the city.  “I’m really excited about the addition of the moat and drawbridge going into the front doors, said David Fee.  “We plan to incorporate special effects in the theming of the outside as well as the inside.”

To incorporate the food aspect, a kitchen will be added to the inside of the theater to make way for the dinner portion of the show.  The existing theater seats will be removed and tables will be placed in the theater.

Magic Beyond Belief starring Darren Romeo will move across the street from The Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud to its own stand-alone theater and will open in March 2019.  The company hopes to keep The Smoky Mountain Opry Show and move it to a different location to be announced at a later date.

For more information, visit  http://PiratesRevengeDinnerShow.com

Or call 1-800-768-1170 or (865) 428-SHOW (7469).

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, Hatfield and McCoy Dinner FeudAmazing Animals Pet Show, and Magic Beyond Belief starring Darren Romeo. The company also owns and produces A Comedy Barn Christmas, Hatfield and McCoy Christmas Disaster Dinner Feud and Magic Beyond Belief starring Darren Romeo: Magical Christmas.

#

Contact:  Deborah Fee Newsom

(865) 414-6887 (cell)

(865) 774-8877

Deborah@FeeHedrick.com

 

Dollywood’s Great Pumpkin Luminights Grows In 2018

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Oct. 24, 2018) — The glow grows during the return of Great Pumpkin LumiNights at Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana. An overwhelming guest-favorite last season, Great Pumpkin LumiNights returns with several new immersive displays, exciting activities and an expanded footprint more than twice the size of 2017’s version. Additionally, the Harvest Festival itself grows with six additional operating days for families to enjoy.

Dollywood opens every day Sept. 28- Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. giving guests more time to enjoy the festive fall fun of harvest time in the Smokies. After the glowing reviews of last year’s Great Pumpkin LumiNights, Dollywood officials knew the event was ripe for growth. Last year’s popular pumpkin displays—like the pumpkin spider and the pumpkin dance party—are joined in 2018 by a number of elaborate, new additions, including a couple of Dolly Parton-inspired displays.

The Plaza at Wilderness Pass 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. With the addition of Great Pumpkin LumiNights to the Harvest Festival in 2017, a number of families created new traditions and memories they’ll share forever, something Parton expected to happen once she first saw the renderings for the initial event.

“We knew families were going to love all those glowing pumpkins last year,” she explained, “but with the way they responded, we found they were looking for a different and fun, family-friendly way to spend time together during this special time of year; Great Pumpkin LumiNights was certainly it. That’s why we’re givin’ them even more to love during this year’s festival. During the day, they can see all those beautiful colors God has painted across the mountains, and at night, they can experience the fun of a Smoky Mountain harvest.”

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. With so many carved pumpkins needed to create Great Pumpkin LumiNights, Dollywood has “pumpkin artists” who will host demonstrations to help guests learn how to produce the perfect pumpkin masterpiece.

Alongside Great Pumpkin LumiNights, the biggest names in Southern gospel music visit the park for the Southern Gospel Jubilee. Thanks to the additional operating days, more than 625 individual Southern gospel performances take place on stages throughout the park throughout the run of the festival—making it the biggest Southern gospel event in America. It’s very fitting for the music icon who got her start singing in church with her family.

“You really can say my career started back in those days when we’d visit all those small country churches just singin’ about God,” Parton said. “That music is close to my heart, so I’m truly proud we’re able to offer our guests so many opportunities to hear this great music during the Harvest Festival at Dollywood.”

Dollywood celebrates Smoky Mountain crafts all year with the park’s well-known master craftsmen. During the Harvest Festival, however, more than 30 visiting artisans from across the country bring their wares and share their talents with Dollywood guests. Craft demonstrations include textile art, inspirational jewelry, loom weaving, paper marbling, bentwood boxes, rug hooking, fiddle making, dulcimer making, and much more.

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

-dollywood2018-

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, which celebrated record attendance in 2017. Dollywood was named a top three US theme park by USA Today in 2014 and 2017. Dollywood is open nine months a year (late 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 orpowens@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

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

Pigeon Forge Honors America’s Military with Annual Veterans Homecoming Parade

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (July 10, 2018) – Pigeon Forge (Tennessee) will honor U.S. military veterans with its Veterans Homecoming Parade on Saturday, Aug. 18. Tennessee Department of Veterans Services Commissioner Many-Bears Grinder will serve as grand marshal of the parade.

Grinder was appointed by Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam in 2011.  Colonel Grinder is the first female in the state to serve as Commissioner for the Tennessee Department of Veterans Services. The retired colonel received the Legion of Merit award and the Bronze Star Medal for her more than 35 years of service in the Tennessee Army National Guard prior to accepting her current appointment.

The Veterans Homecoming Parade starts at 9 a.m. and travels north on the Pigeon Forge Parkway between Traffic Lights Eight and Five.

“Pigeon Forge feels privileged to have the opportunity to recognize the many brave men and women who have served our country,” said Leon Downey, executive director of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. “This parade is our way of welcoming U.S. military veterans from near and far with open arms.”

In the parade, Grinder will be joined by the Pigeon Forge city commissioners and Pigeon Forge City Manager Earlene Teaster. The parade will once again be led by the Veterans Military Honor of Pigeon Forge. More than 50 entries, including groups from three additional states, will take part in the parade, including several chapters from Vietnam Veterans of America. American Legion posts as well as Disabled American Veterans will be represented as well.

Every August, Celebrate Freedom!™ offers discounts to active and veteran military personnel, police, firefighters, paramedics and other first responders at participating Pigeon Forge businesses. Present a valid form of identification at the Pigeon Forge Welcome Center at Traffic Light Zero to receive the benefits. More information is available here.

For information about all aspects of Pigeon Forge and other city-sponsored events, visit MyPigeonForge.com or call 1-800-251-9100.

#

Contact:
Trish McGee
615-327-1189
tmcgee@bohanideas.com