Posts Tagged ‘Pigeon Forge’

Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives Headline Pigeon Forge’s July Fourth Patriot Festival

Fireworks and family fun round out the Independence Day celebration.

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (June 3, 2019) – Marty Stuart and his Fabulous Superlatives will headline Pigeon Forge’s 29th annual Patriot Festival on July 4 in the city’s Patriot Park. The free concert begins at 8:30 p.m. following an afternoon lineup of family-friendly events.

With a long list of hits that that includes “Hillbilly Rock,” “Tempted,” and “Cry! Cry! Cry!,” Stuart is a five-time Grammy Award winner, platinum recording artist, Lifetime Achievement Award recipient from the Americana Music Association, Grand Ole Opry star, country music archivist, photographer, musician, and songwriter. Since starting out singing gospel music as a child, Stuart has spent over four decades celebrating American roots music.

“Our Patriot Festival always brings a great crowd and a great artist to Pigeon Forge, and Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives certainly fit the bill,” said Leon Downey, executive director of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. “Folks can celebrate the Fourth of July with us as we end the night with an incredible fireworks display following Marty’s show.”

This free festival takes place in Pigeon Forge’s Patriot Park. Festivities begin at 2 p.m. with a free kids’ carnival. Onstage entertainment starts at 4 p.m. and will continue  into the night. The fireworks display starts at approximately 9:45 p.m.

The afternoon entertainment lineup also includes the Tom Petty tribute band Free Fallin, Whiskey Icarus, the Brad Hudson Band, the Pigeon Forge Community Chorus and the annual veterans tribute.

Patriot Festival guests are welcome to bring lawn chairs and blankets. Umbrellas, tents, and coolers are not permitted. Food vendors will be available. Free parking is provided at the Teaster Lane Municipal parking lot, and a free shuttle operates every 20 minutes between the lot and  festival site.

Additional information regarding the festival and Pigeon Forge can be found at MyPigeonForge.com or by calling 800-251-9100.

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Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives photo available for download here. Both photos courtesy of Marty Stuart.

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.

 

Media Contact:

Trish McGee

tmcgee@bohanideas.com

615-327-1189

 

Costuming Brings Characters To Life At New Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show in Pigeon Forge

New Show Sets Sail This Friday, May 24

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Thursday, May 23, 2019) – If it’s a pirate’s life for you, you have to look and dress the part. No one knows that better than the professional costuming team getting the cast and crew ready for the debut of Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show in Pigeon Forge, which officially opens this Friday, May 24.

From pirate captains to many other colorful characters setting sail in this pirate adventure, the costumes for this crew are all ship-shape and sure to impress audiences and set the mood for the swashbuckling storyline. Every costume has been custom-designed and fabricated in-house for each individual performer, including embellishments fitting to the specific character.

In excess of 800 yards of specialized fabric was used to make the show’s costumes, and more than 1800 hours over the course of several months were spent designing, creating and bringing the Pirates Voyage unique look to life. The specialty costumes for the mermaids took a minimum 40 hours each to fabricate, and multiple outfits are necessary for each performer per show.  The swords, all custom-designed and custom-made, are unique to each character and took eight weeks to complete just for the Pirates Voyage show.

The design, development, and fabrication of all aspects of costuming took shape under the direction and supervision of Corporate Director of Productions Clare Lewis, who said that the show’s costumes are key to immersing the audience in their own Pirates Voyage.

“These costumes dress up our characters and truly bring the pirates experience to life,” Lewis said. “Our dedicated and hardworking professional costuming team began work in late 2018.  The attention to every detail to make sure that each ensemble worn throughout the show adds to the overall experience of what life is like in this action-packed adventure world. It has been all hands on deck to complete this amazing costuming feat!”

Pirates Voyage construction phase is a $9 million project, in addition to the initial investment in the property for a total of $28 million. Reservations are now being taken for all 2019 shows; ticket information is available at piratesvoyage.com or by calling 865-505-AHOY (2469).

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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

Park Hosts Star Gazing Event at Purchase Knob

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is hosting a stargazing event on Friday, May 31 at the Appalachian Highlands Science Learning Center in North Carolina. Located on Purchase Knob at 5,000 feet in elevation, the learning center provides one of the clearest views of the sky from the Haywood County region of the park.

The Astronomy Club of Asheville will lead an exploration of the night sky at this high elevation site with a 260 degree unobstructed view of the sky. Visitors can expect to see many celestial wonders including star clusters, binary star systems, and other galaxies.

“National Park areas offer a wonderful opportunity to stargaze,” said Park Superintendent Cassius Cash. “National Parks across the country monitor and manage for natural night sky conditions in much the same way as we would to protect our air and water. Visitors are often amazed at the amount of stars that can be seen simply by entering into the natural darkness of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.”

The event starts at 8:00 p.m. with an indoor presentation of what can be seen in the nighttime skies during May. This presentation will be held rain or shine. The learning center is located at 5,000 feet in elevation so visitors should bring warm layers. The program is free, but participation is limited by parking availability. Participants must register in advance to reserve one of the 44 parking permits.  Reservations can be made by registering through Eventbrite (www.eventbrite.com/o/astronomy-club-of-asheville-20250065100) or by calling 828-497-1907.

For more information about stargazing in the park, please visit the park’s website at www.nps.gov/grsm/learn/nature/dff509-focuspartner1.htm.

-NPS-

www.nps.gov/grsm

www.Facebook.com/GreatSmokyMountainsNPS

www.Twitter.com/GreatSmokyNPS

www.Instagram.com/GreatSmokyNPS

www.flickr.com/photos/greatsmokymountainsnationalpark

Dana Soehn

dana_soehn@nps.gov

865-436-1207

Spectacular Schedule of Bluegrass Entertainment Highlights Dollywood’s Annual Barbecue & Bluegrass Presented by Bush’s®

Nearly 450 individual bluegrass performances occur during 10-day festival 

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Monday, May 20, 2019) —Perhaps the best way to celebrate the approaching summer is a trip to Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass presented by BUSH’S®, May 24-June 2. Thanks to an impressive lineup of talented bluegrass musicians and menus full of expertly-prepared barbeque from Dollywood’s culinary team, the hardest part for guests may be deciding where to start!

The event kicks off in style with a blockbuster opening weekend featuring bluegrass music’s biggest names performing at DP’s Celebrity Theater. Multi-time International Bluegrass Music Association Vocal Group of the Year, Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver (May 24), and the “Queen of Bluegrass” Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (May 25-26) headline the first three days of the festival. The hits keep coming from the finest musicians in the genre, including Dailey & Vincent (May 27-28), The Grascals (May 29), Sister Sadie (May 30), Flatt Lonesome (May 31), Joe Mullins and The Radio Ramblers (June 1), and Blue Highway, which wraps up the event on June 2.

One of the largest bluegrass events around, Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass offers guests more than 40 individual performances—all included with park admission—every day of the festival. That means nearly 450 bluegrass performances take place during the run of the event.

Groups like Sugar & The Mint (May 24), former America’s Got Talent contestants Summer Brooke and the Mountain Faith Band (May 26), Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper (May 27), Lonesome River Band (May 28), The Kenny and Amanda Smith Band (June 1) and Volume Five (June 2) are among the groups featured at Dollywood’s Showstreet Palace Theater.

Additional performances take place at The Plaza Stage at Wilderness Pass, including Gate 10 (May 24), The Burnett Sisters (May 28), Turning Ground (May 30), and Unbridled Strings (June 2). Several roving performers keep the sweet sounds of bluegrass music echoing throughout the streets of Dollywood, including the unique championship buckdancing and fiddling of Nashville’s Hillary Klug (May 24-June 2).

For a complete lineup of concert performances and show times, please visit Dollywood.com or view the Dollywood App. It’s a heaping helping of free daily concerts from an amazing collection of talented performers.

Dollywood’s award-winning foods team has turned up the heat on the culinary offerings during this festival with a plethora of delights that perfectly complement the amazing music ringing through the air. Traditional items, including smoked ribs and slow-smoked pulled pork highlight the menu, while a number of additional options are sure to become favorites.

Dollywood chefs took advantage of the park’s partnership with BUSH’S® Beans to include several tantalizing recipes, including Cowboy Kettle Beans, while BBQ pork nachos, roasted corn on the cob, and even BBQ shrimp skewers are sure to be hits.

For more information, show times and food information for Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass presented by BUSH’S®, please call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD, visit www.dollywood.com 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 Splash Country Opens With New Experiences and Innovation

Interactive Events and Less Wait Time Shine in Water Park’s 19th Season

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Wednesday, May 15, 2019)—Dive into summer and Dollywood’s Splash Country for the water park’s 19th season! This year features an elevated guest experience, exciting events and new offerings—with a splash of innovation. Opening day is Saturday, May 18.

Guests will be delighted to find more picnic tables and more shade this season. In addition to 6,000 square feet of newly-shaded space on the wave pool deck, there are new structures covering more queue lines which gives guests a cooler wait for their favorite Dollywood’s Splash Country attractions.

“Safety and guest excellence are the two most important measurements by which we judge our season’s success,” said Janet Dawson, Dollywood’s Splash Country General Manager. “In the heat of summer, our water park may be the coolest place to be in town, but it can still get hot! For the best experience, we’re always on the lookout for ways to give guests more shade. We think we came up with some new spots that our guests truly will appreciate this season.”

The best way to experience Dollywood’s Splash Country is with your own private mountain oasis—better known at our water park as Retreats. New in 2019, guests have the opportunity to upgrade that Retreat experience with more plush amenities: four Deluxe Retreats now offer a couch, love seat, a fridge stocked with bottled water, and barstool seating overlooking the lazy river.

Another upgrade to look for this season includes even more TimeSaver H2O options. On busy days, water park guests have four ways to spend less time waiting in line. Depending on which level guests purchase, this enhanced wristband technology enables park goers to cut their wait time up to 90 percent!

One of the most anticipated rollouts at Dollywood’s Splash Country in 2019 includes a new dining option called Picnic in the Park. The innovative genius in this new option lies in the opportunity guests have to place a meal order ahead of their visit so that the food is ready when they are.
“Our guests tell us they love our food, but they’ve asked us to find ways to cut down their wait time,” Dawson explained. “With Picnic in the Park, guests can pre-order their food so it’s waiting for them to pick up! We think this will revolutionize the lunchtime experience at our park.”

Live entertainment takes center stage this season—literally! The wave pool deck hosts live bands every Saturday in July and August. Splash Bash LIVE brings artists of all genres to celebrate summer with familiar tunes. Meanwhile, Too Hot Tuesdays with Hot 104.5 will return with a live DJ and family-friendly interactive games. Guests also should mark their calendars for the American Cornhole Organization’s tournament at Dollywood’s Splash Country (June 1) and Water Safety Day in conjunction with World’s Largest Swimming Lesson (June 20).

To kick off the season, Dollywood’s Splash Country is offering Bring-A-Friend-FREE tickets for every Season Pass purchased online through Sunday, May 19. The water park is adding to that incentive with a week of Passholder appreciation offers including 50% off Retreat rentals, as well as discounted souvenir photos, food, merchandise, and a FREE one-time ride TimeSaver H2O coupon.

Dollywood’s Splash Country opens Saturday, May 18. Daily operation continues through Sunday, August 11. After that, the park shifts operations to Tuesdays, Thursdays and weekends through Aug. 25. Splash Country opens one final weekend Aug. 31 and Sept. 1 with the last day being Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 2). 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 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

 

 

DOLLYWOOD OFFICIALLY OPENS LARGEST EXPANSION IN PARK HISTORY

Guests experience $37 million Wildwood Grove for the first time

 

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (May 10, 2019)— Dollywood again solidified its place among the nation’s premier family destinations as Dolly Parton today officially opened Wildwood Grove, the largest expansion in park history. Parton opened the fascinating new land to visitors ready to enjoy its 11 thrilling new experiences. During an early morning media event, Parton shared the inspiration and dreams that led to the creation of Wildwood Grove, calling the area the new standard for Dollywood.

At $37 million, Wildwood Grove is Dollywood theme park’s largest capital investment ever and is the first new area added to Dollywood since Wilderness Pass in 2008. The biggest adventure in Dollywood’s history provides guests of all sizes unique experiences to enjoy together as a family.

“When I was a little girl growing up in the hills of the Smoky Mountains, I’d often let my imagination just run away—something I still do now—dreaming these big dreams about what it’d be like to venture off with a family of bears in to the woods or how fun it would be to hitch a ride with the butterflies and dragonflies,” Parton said. “All us kids would splash and play in the creeks and ponds around home and have these daydreams about the world around us, and that’s what’s so special about Wildwood Grove. We’ve been able to create a new area to allow families to experience some of those exact dreams we all had when we were little.

“Wildwood Grove is so special to me because so many of the same daydreams and imaginations from my childhood have now found a perfect place at my Dollywood. I hope families will enjoy laughing, playing and exploring together in this great new place that truly does feel like home for me.”

The Dollywood Company President Craig Ross explained the significance of the newest addition to the storied theme park.

“Without doubt, this is one of the most exciting days in the history of our company,” Ross explained. “It is rare in our industry that a park adds a completely new land in its entirety, and as we continue to grow and set attendance records, we needed to add more area to give guests more room to spread out and explore. Additionally, we were able to take many of Dolly’s childhood dreams and create experiences that are uniquely Smoky Mountain-themed and really help tell the story of this beautiful area.

“I know our guests will be thrilled with the great diversity of attractions they will be able to enjoy when they visit Wildwood Grove. We’re extremely proud of the fact that there are experiences here that every member of the family will love and enjoy.”

After stepping into Wildwood Grove, imagination takes flight, delivering explorers on a journey of discovery in this breathtaking area. Remarkable sights await visitors throughout the land. In the distance, the breathtaking Wildwood Tree catches the eye as lively butterflies shimmer in the daylight. Families laugh and play, taking rides inside giant acorns at Treetop Tower and aboard a thrilling “leaf boat” on the Great Tree Swing.

Even the bears are friendly in Wildwood Grove, as they let guests meander with them through their own natural habitat at the Black Bear Trail. If smaller guests need a quick break, Hidden Hollow contains a 4,000 sq. ft. climate-controlled area with climbing structures, slides and games where kids and their parents can enjoy play time full of exploration.

Nearby, families scream with delight as they take a ride with Tennessee’s state symbol—the mockingbird—in an experience they control themselves at The Mad Mockingbird. Others dip and dart through geysers while suspended from dragonflies on the area’s signature ride attraction, Dragonflier.

At the heart of it all is the Wildwood Tree. This focal point is a beacon for all, drawing families to watch the butterflies play in its leafy canopy, while encouraging others to splash and play in the winding creek that flows at its base. As the daylight fades, families can bask in a colorful kaleidoscope of summer fun as the area glows to life.

Wildwood Grove also features new merchandise and dining options for park guests. Till & Harvest, which is expected to open around Memorial Day, provides the perfect blend of Smoky Mountain flavors and fresh Mexican cuisine. The menu features a variety of build-your-own style entrees such as burritos, bowls, salads and nachos all filled with wood-fired meats, fresh vegetables and flavorful sauces. Along with the Smoky Mountain Mexican flavors, Till & Harvest also provides a spacious open-air patio for families to enjoy the sights and sounds of Wildwood Grove while they enjoy their meal.

Mountain Grove Merchants is the one-stop-shop for guests looking for the perfect gift or souvenir to celebrate their adventure in Wildwood Grove.

Nearly $1 million was invested in Wildwood Grove’s landscaping, with more than 400 trees and 2,300 shrubs creating a beautiful, yet decidedly natural atmosphere to enjoy. As the landscaping continues to mature, the visual appeal of the area will only increase.

Each day of exploration in Wildwood Grove is an experience families don’t want to miss. These merry memory making moments are certain to become a treasured part of every family’s visit.

WILDWOOD GROVE FACTS

  • The Wildwood Tree comes to life each evening during a unique nighttime experience which begins June 15. Each season of the year features a spectacular new experience for guests. The Wildwood Tree features nearly 650 lighted butterflies (orange, blue, yellow, pink and multi-colored) and almost 9000 leaves.
  • Dragonflier— This thrilling suspended roller coaster lets guests soar with a dragonfly as it dips and darts along the gushing geysers and lush landscape of Wildwood Grove. (Vekoma 453m suspended coaster) (1486 ft. in length)
  • Black Bear Trail— Riders hop on the back of these friendly bears for a spirited trek through their natural habitat. (Metallbau Emmeln Pony Trek)
  • Great Tree Swing— Guests aboard this thrilling “leaf boat” swing back and forth just like a leaf falling from a giant sycamore tree. (Zamperla Galleon)
  • Treetop Tower— This family tower gives guests a sky-high view of Wildwood Grove as they soar nearly 40 feet in the air. Riders, seated inside giant acorns, spin around the top of a tall oak tree before gently drifting back to the grove floor. (Zamperla Samba Tower)
  • The Mad Mockingbird— Tennessee’s state bird—the mockingbird—gives visitors a lift as it flies in a high speed circle around a tall tree. Riders control their ride experience by moving a sail as the birds rush above the ground. (Larson Flying Scooter)
  • Frogs & Fireflies— Adventurous guests can hop aboard one of these friendly frogs as they chase each other in a spirited race around the lily pad. (Zamperla Jump Around)
  • Hidden Hollow- This 4,000 sq. ft., climate-controlled area allows families to explore and play in an indoor environment.
  • Wildwood Creek features pop jets, splashing pools and more wet play activities, while the dry play area at Wildwood Creek features “music instruments” for guests to enjoy.
  • Three new costume characters call Wildwood Grove home. Flit and Flutter serve as Wildwood Grove’s ambassadors and Benjamin Bear loves to make new friends. Characters will have scheduled opportunities to meet guests each day.

 

For more information about Wildwood Grove or Dollywood’s 2019 season, please visit 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 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 Officially Opens Largest Expansion in Park History

Guests experience $37 million Wildwood Grove for the first time

 PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Friday, May 10, 2019)— Dollywood again solidified its place among the nation’s premier family destinations as Dolly Parton today officially opened Wildwood Grove, the largest expansion in park history. Parton opened the fascinating new land to visitors ready to enjoy its 11 thrilling new experiences. During an early morning media event, Parton shared the inspiration and dreams that led to the creation of Wildwood Grove, calling the area the new standard for Dollywood.

At $37 million, Wildwood Grove is Dollywood theme park’s largest capital investment ever and is the first new area added to Dollywood since Wilderness Pass in 2008. The biggest adventure in Dollywood’s history provides guests of all sizes unique experiences to enjoy together as a family.

“When I was a little girl growing up in the hills of the Smoky Mountains, I’d often let my imagination just run away—something I still do now—dreaming these big dreams about what it’d be like to venture off with a family of bears in to the woods or how fun it would be to hitch a ride with the butterflies and dragonflies,” Parton said. “All us kids would splash and play in the creeks and ponds around home and have these daydreams about the world around us, and that’s what’s so special about Wildwood Grove. We’ve been able to create a new area to allow families to experience some of those exact dreams we all had when we were little.

“Wildwood Grove is so special to me because so many of the same daydreams and imaginations from my childhood have now found a perfect place at my Dollywood. I hope families will enjoy laughing, playing and exploring together in this great new place that truly does feel like home for me.”

The Dollywood Company President Craig Ross explained the significance of the newest addition to the storied theme park.

“Without doubt, this is one of the most exciting days in the history of our company,” Ross explained. “It is rare in our industry that a park adds a completely new land in its entirety, and as we continue to grow and set attendance records, we needed to add more area to give guests more room to spread out and explore. Additionally, we were able to take many of Dolly’s childhood dreams and create experiences that are uniquely Smoky Mountain-themed and really help tell the story of this beautiful area.

“I know our guests will be thrilled with the great diversity of attractions they will be able to enjoy when they visit Wildwood Grove. We’re extremely proud of the fact that there are experiences here that every member of the family will love and enjoy.”

After stepping into Wildwood Grove, imagination takes flight, delivering explorers on a journey of discovery in this breathtaking area. Remarkable sights await visitors throughout the land. In the distance, the breathtaking Wildwood Tree catches the eye as lively butterflies shimmer in the daylight. Families laugh and play, taking rides inside giant acorns at Treetop Tower and aboard a thrilling “leaf boat” on the Great Tree Swing.

Even the bears are friendly in Wildwood Grove, as they let guests meander with them through their own natural habitat at the Black Bear Trail. If smaller guests need a quick break, Hidden Hollow contains a 4,000 sq. ft. climate-controlled area with climbing structures, slides and games where kids and their parents can enjoy play time full of exploration.

Nearby, families scream with delight as they take a ride with Tennessee’s state symbol—the mockingbird—in an experience they control themselves at The Mad Mockingbird. Others dip and dart through geysers while suspended from dragonflies on the area’s signature ride attraction, Dragonflier.

At the heart of it all is The Wildwood Tree. This focal point is a beacon for all, drawing families to watch the butterflies play in its leafy canopy, while encouraging others to splash and play in the winding creek that flows at its base. As the daylight fades, families can bask in a colorful kaleidoscope of summer fun as the area glows to life.

Wildwood Grove also features new merchandise and dining options for park guests. Till & Harvest, which is expected to open around Memorial Day, provides the perfect blend of Smoky Mountain flavors and fresh Mexican cuisine. The menu features a variety of build-your-own style entrees such as burritos, bowls, salads and nachos all filled with wood-fired meats, fresh vegetables and flavorful sauces. Along with the Smoky Mountain Mexican flavors, Till & Harvest also provides a spacious open-air patio for families to enjoy the sights and sounds of Wildwood Grove while they enjoy their meal.

Mountain Grove Merchants is the one-stop-shop for guests looking for the perfect gift or souvenir to celebrate their adventure in Wildwood Grove.

Nearly $1 million has been invested in Wildwood Grove’s landscaping, with more than 400 trees and 2,300 shrubs creating a beautiful, yet decidedly natural atmosphere to enjoy. As the landscaping continues to mature, the visual appeal of the area will only increase.

Each day of exploration in Wildwood Grove is an experience families don’t want to miss. These merry memory making moments are certain to become a treasured part of every family’s visit.

WILDWOOD GROVE FACTS

  • The Wildwood Tree comes to life each evening during a unique nighttime experience which begins June 15. Each season of the year features a spectacular new experience for guests. The Wildwood Tree features nearly 650 lighted butterflies (orange, blue, yellow, pink and multi-colored) and almost 9000 leaves.
  • Dragonflier— This thrilling suspended roller coaster lets guests soar with a dragonfly as it dips and darts along the gushing geysers and lush landscape of Wildwood Grove. (Vekoma 453m suspended coaster) (1486 ft. in length)
  • Black Bear Trail— Riders hop on the back of these friendly bears for a spirited trek through their natural habitat. (Metallbau Emmeln Pony Trek)
  • Great Tree Swing— Guests aboard this thrilling “leaf boat” swing back and forth just like a leaf falling from a giant sycamore tree. (Zamperla Galleon)
  • Treetop Tower— This family tower gives guests a sky-high view of Wildwood Grove as they soar nearly 40 feet in the air. Riders, seated inside giant acorns, spin around the top of a tall oak tree before gently drifting back to the grove floor. (Zamperla Samba Tower)
  • The Mad Mockingbird— Tennessee’s state bird—the mockingbird—gives visitors a lift as it flies in a high speed circle around a tall tree. Riders control their ride experience by moving a sail as the birds rush above the ground. (Larson Flying Scooter)
  • Frogs & Fireflies— Adventurous guests can hop aboard one of these friendly frogs as they chase each other in a spirited race around the lily pad. (Zamperla Jump Around)
  • Hidden Hollow- This 4,000 sq. ft., climate-controlled area allows families to explore and play in an indoor environment.
  • Wildwood Creek features pop jets, splashing pools and more wet play activities, while the dry play area at Wildwood Creek features “music instruments” for guests to enjoy.
  • Three new costume characters call Wildwood Grove home. Flit and Flutter serve as Wildwood Grove’s ambassadors and Benjamin Bear loves to make new friends. Characters will have scheduled opportunities to meet guests each day.

For more information about Wildwood Grove or Dollywood’s 2019 season, please visit 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 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

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Temporary Exhibit Memorializes Nicole Brown Simpson, Highlights Domestic Violence

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (April 29, 2019) – Murdered 25 years ago this June, Nicole Brown Simpson would have celebrated her 60th birthday on May 19, 2019. In her memory, Alcatraz East Crime Museum is turning the focus on domestic violence, offering a temporary exhibit dedicated to who Nicole was as a daughter, sister, and mother, and the devastating impact of domestic violence. The exhibit will open on May 17, 2019 and will run for three months.

“Domestic violence is a major problem that doesn’t get the attention it should,” explains Rachael Penman, director of artifacts and exhibits at Alcatraz East Crime Museum. “We wanted to turn the focus back on Nicole’s story, and how devastating the fear of domestic violence can be, as well as celebrate the special person she was to so many.”

The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) reports that one in every four women and one in every nine men experience severe intimate partner physical violence. They also report that on a typical day there are more than 20,000 phone calls around the country that are placed to domestic violence hotlines.

“Passion for Life: Nicole Brown Simpson” will honor Nicole and through her help raise awareness about the warning signs of domestic violence. Some of the artifacts in the exhibit that belonged to Nicole include:

A place setting of her china, reflecting her love of entertaining.

  • Favorite pieces of clothing and Chanel jewelry.
  • A handwritten poem that was read at her funeral by her sister Tanya.
  • Photos from the Brown family, going back to Nicole’s childhood.
  • The exhibit will also feature the original song and music video I Remember Nicole by two-time Emmy Award winner Renee Sotile and Mary Jo Godges. Working as a video-journalist, Sotile covered the trial of Nicole’s ex-husband O.J. Simpson and never forgot the impact Nicole’s death made on her. Sotile and Godges wanted to find a way for the world to remember Nicole’s story and all women who continue to suffer from domestic abuse.

“It’s hard to believe that it has been 25 years since the world violently lost my sister, who was a beautiful soul,” says Tanya Brown, Nicole’s youngest sister. “I’m touched that there is a chance to honor her memory with this exhibit and I hope that it brings domestic violence as an issue to the forefront, so that we can bring it to an end.”

Those in immediate danger from domestic violence should call 9-1-1. There is also anonymous and confidential help available 24/7 for those who need it. For help, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233.

Many are familiar with the famous O.J. Simpson white Ford Bronco chase scene that played out on television. Yet, we tend to forget what he was running from, that he was wanted in connection with the murders of Nicole and Ronald Goldman. Nicole and Ron were found murdered outside of her home on June 12, 1994. Simpson, who Nicole had divorced in 1992, was found not guilty in the criminal trial. However, Simpson was found liable for both deaths in a civil suit and ordered to pay the families of the victims $33.5 million. The white Bronco from the chase is also on display at the museum.

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 I Remember Nicole

The driving force behind I Remember Nicole are filmmakers/songwriters Renee Sotile and Mary Jo Godges, with a mission of creating art for activism. Nashville songwriters Pat and Pete Luboff joined Sotile and Godges in co-writing. I Remember Nicole is a 501(c)3 non-profit allowing for tax deductible donations. www.IRememberNicole.com

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 Sources:

NCADV. Statistics. https://ncadv.org/statistics

Editor’s Note: Photography is available upon request.

Wilderness Wildlife Week 2019 Invites Outdoor Enthusiasts to Pigeon Forge for Excursions, Seminars, and More This Spring

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (April 10, 2019)—Featuring more than 200 free sessions and activities spanning five days, Pigeon Forge’s award-winning Wilderness Wildlife Week is set for May 7-11. The event is headquartered at the LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge.

In its 29th year, Wilderness Wildlife Week offers a variety of workshops, lectures, seminars, concerts, hikes and other activities designed to introduce or reacquaint participants of all ages with the great outdoors.

“Whether it’s a hike through Great Smoky Mountains National Park, learning about wildflowers, or participating in our kids’ trout fishing tournament, Wilderness Wildlife Week brings together leading experts with outdoor enthusiasts of all ages and experiences,” said Leon Downey, Pigeon Forge executive director of tourism. “Over the course of five days, participants have an opportunity to learn about the beautiful Smoky Mountains that we call home.”

The event’s headline session features Jeff Rennicke in a program entitled Hiking Towards Hope: Empowering the New Greatest Generation in the Great Outdoors (May 7 at 7 p.m.). Forensics expert Dr. Bill Bass (May 8 at 7:45 p.m.) returns with special guest emcee Frank Murphy to discuss forensic cases throughout the Smoky Mountains region.  Ken Jenkins, Judy Felts and friends host the moving program Heaven & Nature Sing (May 9 at 7:30 p.m.) with Ken providing a second evening session entitled Inside Adventure: My Unplanned and Exciting Happenings in the Smokies (May 11 at 5:30 p.m.).  Additionally, Pulitzer prize finalist Ben Montgomery shares the story of Grandma Gatewood and her experience on the Appalachian Trail during The Fascinating Story of Grandma Gatewood’s Walk: The Inspiring True Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail (May 10 at 7:45 p.m.).

Outdoors enthusiasts, nature lovers or those who simply want to learn more about Great Smoky Mountains National Park can choose from lecture topics ranging from the area’s rich heritage to conservation.  Workshops focus on photography, fishing, wildflowers and more.

Among the new sessions this year are Love, Trails and Dinosaurs: The Inspirational Story of the First Person With Autism to Complete All Great Smoky Mountains National Park Trails with Theresa Moore, Cherokee Myths and Truths with Jon Elder, I Found It in the Archives: Researching History and Family at

Great Smoky Mountains National Park with Michael Aday, Neatless, Wheatless and Sleepless: East Tennessee’s Contributions to World War II with Kathy Gwinn, and Ephemeral by Nature with Stephen Lyn Bales where he looks into some of the unusual animals in the Smokies including Appalachian pandas.

Outdoor excursions of all levels are available throughout the week. Highlights include an 11-plus-mile hike to the Mt. Cammerer Fire Tower located less than a mile off the Appalachian Trail (May 10 from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), a six-hour hike highlighting the People and Places of Cades Cove (May 10 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.), and a nearly five-mile Hen Wallow Falls trek that takes hikers through a hemlock and rhododendron forest (May 10 from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.).

A special kids’ fishing tournament kicks off on Saturday, May 11 with registration at LeConte Center Circle Drive covered pavilion. The Wilderness Wildlife Week Youth Trout Tournament will run from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. for children ages seven to 12. There is no fee to participate in this tournament. Fishing supplies are not provided to participants.

Throughout the concourse more than 40 exhibits and vendors, including the not-for-profit Cades Cove Preservation Association, East Tennessee Historical Society, and Keep Sevier Beautiful, are open daily during the event beginning at 10 a.m.

This spring celebration of the great outdoors is free and open to the public. For more information, a complete schedule and registration details, visit MyPigeonForge.com.

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 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.

 

Media Contact:

Katherine Henry

khenry@bohanideas.com

615-327-1189

Festival of Nations Kicks Off Dollywood’s Biggest Season Ever

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (March 15, 2019)-Dollywood’s thrilling 2019 season begins with one of the park’s greatest Festival of Nations lineups ever! The event, which runs now-April 14, features exhilarating new headline shows, the return of the Passport to Foods and special cooking demonstrations, including opportunities to see world-renowned Chef Pepin whip up his favorite dishes.

Guests can experience the spirit of the Smokies at Dollywood while also taking a trip around the globe thanks to authentic glimpses into a number of fascinating cultures. It’s a vibrant and exciting way to celebrate spring break!

Guests can start their globetrotting adventure by enjoying the great new headline shows visiting this season. Lizt Alfonso Dance Cuba is a fusion dance and music company that mixes Hispanic and Caribbean cultures into each performance. Considered to include some of the best performers from Cuba, the group has been together for more than 25 years and has entertained on five continents. Lizt Alfonso Dance Cuba can be found in DP’s Celebrity Theater.

Billed as the first interactive drum-theater experience, Drumstruck leaves families laughing and creating memories to remember for years to come. As guests enter Showstreet Palace Theater, they will find drums placed in each seat throughout the venue. Members of the audience use these drums to become part of the performance. This high-energy production weaves South African music and culture with West African rhythms.

Guests also can let their taste buds travel the world thanks to the new Passport to Food. This expanded international menu lets guests enjoy savory and sweet delights from a number of countries, including grilled beef skewers from Trinidad, poutine and fried cheese curds from Canada, and beef bulgogi nachos over wonton chips from South Korea. A number of refreshing drinks also are available and serve as the perfect complement to the delectable dishes available as part of the passport. A wide range of international pastries and desserts tempt those with a sweet tooth.

Chef Pepin, a well-known celebrity chef from Cuba, hosts several cooking demonstrations during the opening weekend of the festival, while additional chefs share their secrets each subsequent weekend during Festival of Nations. Cooking demonstrations currently are scheduled to take place each Saturday and Sunday at noon and 2 p.m. in Dollywood’s Market Square area.

Dollywood’s 2019 Festival of Nations lineup also includes the following shows and acts:

Invaders Steel Orchestra- One of the world’s oldest and most respected steel drum bands, Invaders Steel Orchestra celebrates more than 75 years of creating festive music for audiences around the world. This guest-favorite group returns to Dollywood to bring the tropical sounds of the Caribbean to the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. While the songs they play are familiar, the unique sounds of Invaders Steel Orchestra’s drums will transport guests to a sandy beach far away.  Location: The Valley Theater (Performing March 20-April 14)

Atahualpa – Hailing from Ecuador, Atahualpa combines native Incan instruments with contemporary backups to celebrate the history and culture of the Andes Mountains. Atahualpa’s mix of songs includes contemporary music, South American dance rhythms, and the traditional music of the Andes. Through their sharing of music, culture and heritage, Atahualpa hopes to promote brotherhood, friendship and peace to all the people of the world. Location: Showstreet Gazebo

De Temps Antan- Traveling from Quebec, Canada, De Temps Antan explores and performs the time-honored melodies from Quebec’s musical past. This talented trio combines contemporary music, uncontrolled laughter, deep-routed couplets and sudden, impromptu shifts for memorable songs that speak to the familiar rhythms of yesteryear. Location: Back Porch Theater (Performing March 16- 24)

Les Grands Hurleurs- Les Grands Hurleurs of Quebec, Canada has pushed boundaries and incorporate a variety of musical influences for their own special sound. Paying respect to their traditional roots while creating original music, this trio flirts with classical, Manouche, electronica and folk music for shows that bring audiences alive. Prepare to experience a musical journey with groovy, energetic and swing styles. Location: Back Porch Theater (Performing March 27- April 14)

GoGaucho Duo- GoGaucho Duo is an exciting, fast-paced show which blends the traditional folk dancing of Argentina with the thrill of modern showmanship. This duo wows audiences with unique and entertaining dances, music and the mesmerizing skills of champion boleadoras dancers. Location: The Valley Theater (Performing March 16-18)

Dollywood’s Festival of Nations begins what is to become the park’s biggest season ever. The largest expansion in the park’s history, Wildwood Grove, opens this spring to provide families with thrilling new experiences and attractions for guests to explore together. Summer kicks off with Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 24- June 2), while the park’s Summer Celebration (June 22- Aug. 4) features later hours and the first chance to experience the wonder of Wildwood Grove at night. Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana (Sept. 27-Nov. 2) features Southern gospel’s greatest performers alongside the guest-favorite Great Pumpkin LumiNights. Dollywood’s 2019 season concludes with the 11-time winner for Best Theme Park Christmas Event, Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas presented by Humana, Nov. 9-Jan. 4, 2020.

If there has ever been a year to take advantage of the value of a Dollywood season pass, this is it. With the opening of Wildwood Grove and a vast amount of entertainment and festivals (all included with park admission) available throughout the season, guests certainly will want to make several return visits in 2019.

Guests can learn more about Dollywood’s biggest season ever by visiting www.dollywood.com or calling 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

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