Posts Tagged ‘Pigeon Forge’

Four Performers Advance to Path to Fame Talent Competition Finals from Nashville Auditions

More than 150 people registered for open call auditions in Nashville on April 21.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (April 24, 2018) — Four performers advanced in Saturday’s Path to Fame Nashville auditions at Skyville Live where more than 150 people registered for a chance to advance their entertainment careers.

The four semi-finalists from Tennessee are:
female vocalist Brenna Beatty from Springfield;
female vocalist Alaya Morris from Nashville;
duo Ashley Tragler and Christian Simcox from Bristol;
family trio Sheridan Hill from Mt. Juliet.

Four performers advanced one step closer to realizing a lifetime dream of an entertainment career. Nashville-based talent executive John Alexander will focus on artist development with the grand champion, including career development consultations with GRAMMY-nominated, platinum-selling country star Kelsea Ballerini and other entertainment executives representing all aspects of the entertainment industry. Alexander discovered Ballerini, spent over a decade at Great American Country television network, managed artists such as Patty Loveless and is co-founder of the Nashville-based artist development company Bandtwango.

“The incredible talent Music City is known for was well represented at the auditions on Saturday. Our semi-finalists possess that hard-to-define ‘it’ factor and are actively pursuing ways to pursue their path to fame,” Alexander said. “This group is one step closer to achieving that dream with the proper connections and opportunities that winning this competition would provide.”

Beatty is an aspiring singer-songwriter actively pursuing performing opportunities surrounding her hometown and writes at least five songs every week. Last year, her supportive family moved across the country from Oregon to Music City to make the 17-year-old’s dream more attainable. Beatty performs at writers’ rounds and anywhere she has the opportunity to share her music in Nashville and the surrounding areas. She performed an original song “Georgia.”

Morris stunned the judges with her powerful vocal performance of “I’m Goin’ Down” by Mary J. Blige. The Belmont student is a commercial voice major gearing up for graduation in December and looking for ways to continue making her passion for music the center of her life. She performs with a vocal ensemble and does background vocalist studio work.

The duo Ashley & Christian met on their church’s worship team and immediately felt a musical and personal connection. The couple has been performing together for several years in the Tri-Cities area and shared an acoustic rendition of Chris & Morgane Stapleton’s “You Are My Sunshine” that perfectly highlighted Christian’s instrumentals and Ashley’s voice.

Sheridan Hill of Mt. Juliet is made up of two brothers and their father, who had actively been pursuing his own musical career when he discovered his two sons’ own talent. The group performs original music and a variety of covers from Americana to R&B genres. Sheridan Hill brought its own spin of acoustic instruments and harmonizing vocals to the stage during its performance of an original song “Long Way Down.”

The final competition will take place in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., on June 16 where one grand champion will be selected from 12 competing performers.

Performers have one more opportunity to audition for the Path to Fame Talent Competition in Atlanta, Georgia, on Saturday, May 12.

More information for the Path to Fame Talent Competition can be found at PFFame.com. More information about visiting Pigeon Forge is available at MyPigeonForge.com.

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Link to photos of PigeonForgePathtoFameNashvilleAuditions.

Link to b-roll of PigeonForgePathtoFameNashvilleAuditions.

Group photo identification from L to R: Sue Carr, marketing manager for the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism; John Alexander, Nashville talent executive; Christian Simcox, semi-finalist; Ashley Tragler, semi-finalist; Brenna Beatty, semi-finalist; Alaya Morris, semi-finalist; Dylan Beavers, semi-finalist; Dakota Beavers, semi-finalist; Lance Beavers, semi-finalist; Michael Headla, entertainment director for Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment; Zac Woodward, on-air personality at WRVW-FM 107.5 The River.

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:
Jess Pangrazio
jpangrazio@bohanideas.com
615-327-1189 ext. 350

Four Cincinnati Performers Advance to Path to Fame Talent Competition Finals

More than 200 people registered for open call auditions in Cincinnati on April 14.

CINCINNATI (April 17, 2018) — Four Cincinnati performers advanced in Saturday’s Path to Fame auditions at the 20th Century Theater where more than 200 people registered for a chance to advance their entertainment careers.

The four semi-finalists from Ohio are:
female vocalist Taylor Deaton from Springboro;
female vocalist Sheila Gardner from Fairfield;
duo Michaela Back from Mason and Aaron Cramer from Cincinnati;
male trio BL3SSED from Cincinnati.

Performers lined up outside the venue as early as 2 a.m. for a chance to audition. Four advanced one step closer to realizing a lifetime dream of an entertainment career. Nashville-based talent executive John Alexander will focus on artist development with the grand champion, including career development consultations with GRAMMY-nominated, platinum-selling country star Kelsea Ballerini and other entertainment executives representing all aspects of the entertainment industry. Alexander discovered Ballerini, spent over a decade at Great American Country television network, managed artists such as Patty Loveless and is co-founder of the Nashville-based artist development company Bandtwango.

“The number and caliber of performers at Saturday’s auditions in Cincinnati demonstrate how important it is to help connect music industry professionals with up-and-coming talent in hopes of advancing these performers’ careers,” Alexander said. “These four acts brought their best on Saturday and achieved that next step. Cincinnati is rich with entertainment, and they’ll represent this city well in the Pigeon Forge finals.”

Deaton performed a soaring rendition of Adele’s “One and Only.” The solo, female vocalist showcases her broad range performing music from country to soul genres. She realized her dream of singing when she was eight years old and had the urge to sing a Dixie Chicks song onstage at a strawberry festival. She has not stopped performing since that moment.

Gardner, a vocal instructor in the Cincinnati area, performed “Not for the Life of Me” from the Broadway production “Thoroughly Modern Millie.” Gardner has over 30 years of solo, group, and stage performing experience and has performed at the Grand Ole Opry House and Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tenn. as well as numerous venues in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana.

The duo Michaela & Aaron, performed an acoustic version of Elle King’s “Ex’s & Oh’s.” The couple met in high school and have been singing together for five years. Most recently, Michaela & Aaron have booked performances throughout the tri-state area.

BL3SSED is a gospel trio of best friends Jamaal McMullen, Davosk Lavizzo and Ke’Vaughn McDowell. The group has been performing together for over six years. They showcased their electric harmonies in a performance of “Old Enough” by the William John Brothers.

The final competition will take place in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., on June 16 where one grand champion will be selected from 12 competing performers.

Performers have two more opportunities to audition for the Path to Fame Talent Competition—in Nashville, Tennessee, on Saturday, April 21, and Atlanta, Georgia, on Saturday, May 12.

More information for the Path to Fame Talent Competition can be found at PFFame.com. More information about visiting Pigeon Forge is available at MyPigeonForge.com.

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Link to photos of PigeonForgePathtoFameCincinnatiAuditions.

Link to b-roll of PigeonForgePathtoFameCincinnatiAuditions.

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:
Jess Pangrazio
jpangrazio@bohanideas.com
615-327-1189 ext. 350

5 Infamous Killers’ Artifacts on Display at Alcatraz East Crime Museum

Alcatraz East Crime Museum offers visitors a rare glimpse at artifacts once owned by infamous killers

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (March 22, 2018) – We live in a society where there is a strong fascination of crime, this is apparent by its prevalence in pop-culture. The subject of crime and serial killers is often the topic of books, TV shows and movies. In fact, Zac Efron will be transforming himself into Ted Bundy in Hollywood’s upcoming movie “Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile.” And Disney Channel’s Ross Lynch plays the role of Jeffrey Dahmer in “My Friend Dahmer.” There is a strange curiosity that propels us to learn more about who these people are and how they can do such horrible things. Those who want to learn more about some of the most infamous killers in America should plan a visit to Alcatraz East Crime Museum.

“We have many artifacts on display that are connected to infamous killers in the country,” states Janine Vaccarello, chief operating officer for Alcatraz East. “Like any piece of history, we hope that the stories throughout this museum create conversations. We want the victims to never be forgotten, we want law enforcement to be honored- while bringing awareness to the crime itself, which might prevent other crimes from occurring.”

Visitors of Alcatraz East Crime Museum can expect to see many crime-related artifacts on display and learn about ways to help prevent crime. Here are 5 infamous killers’ artifacts that are on display at the museum:

1. Charles Manson Guitar & Beach Boys single “Never Learn Not to Love” – This guitar was recently added to the museum’s collections. It was taken into custody in Inyo County California, during a raid on the Barker Ranch when Charles Manson was also arrested. In 1969, the song “Never Learn Not to Love” appeared as a Beach Boys single, and later on an album, credited to Dennis Wilson, although Manson had originated the song under the name “Cease to Exist.”

2. Ted Bundy’s 1968 Volkswagen Beetle – The Beetle that was integral in both of his murders and conviction, containing important DNA evidence, is on display for visitors to view.

3. John Wayne Gacy’s clown suits- “Pogo” and “Patches” – The serial killer was arrested in 1978. He had confessed to killing 30 people. Despite him being a serial killer, he would dress up in clown suits to entertain children.

4. Judy Buenoano’s last photograph and prison blanket – Convicted of murdering her husband and son, she was also suspected in several other deaths. Her last known photograph and prison blanket are both on display at the museum.

5. Jeffrey Dahmer’s handcuffs– An American serial killer, he was convicted of the murder of 17 males, which included rape, dismemberment, and cannibalism. His handcuffs are on display at the museum for visitors to view.

The museum also recently added new exhibits and artifacts, with there being something for everyone. Their new interactive exhibits give people the ability to test their pirate skills at tying knots, give people the ability to share their own 9/11 experiences, and give them the chance to offer a thank you message to law enforcement departments around the nation. One of the most popular items on display at the museum is the O.J. Simpson white Bronco from the infamous police chase that unfolded on television before millions of viewers.

The museum continues to add to their collection monthly 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.

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CONTACT:
Cher Murphy
571.263.2128

Dollywood’s Aunt Granny’s Restaurant Recast with New Look, Menu Items

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Wednesday, March 21, 2018)— One of Dollywood’s best-known restaurants has been recast in 2018 with a little help from another iconic Tennessee brand, Lodge Manufacturing Company. Aunt Granny’s All-You-Care-To-Eat Buffet, which earned its name from the loving nickname Dolly Parton’s nieces and nephews have called her for years, receives a fresh look this season complete with new menu items which will have guests ready to pull a seat up to the table.

Now named Aunt Granny’s Restaurant presented by Lodge, the eatery features a number of changes designed to create a bright and airy space to serve as a comfortable respite for guests to slow down and enjoy a meal together. Interior renovations include action stations, like a new carving station, where guests can watch Dollywood chefs create a number of delightful delicacies.

“Dollywood is known for its quality southern food offerings, and a visit to the buffet at Aunt Granny’s certainly should be on the list for any foodie,” said Dollywood Vice-President Phil Bernard. “With our continuing focus on great food, we felt the time was right to recast the restaurant and add new menu items, while also keeping many of the old favorites.

“The opportunity to partner with Lodge, which is another iconic Tennessee brand, also made perfect sense. When you think of traditional southern foods like fried chicken, cornbread, or apple cobbler, you think of cast iron cookware. And when you think of cast iron cookware, there’s only one company that comes to mind—Lodge.”

The unique partnership with South Pittsburg, Tennessee-based Lodge brings a selection of the company’s famous cast iron cookware into the dining experience. The iconic cookware adorns displays throughout the restaurant, while food on the buffet line will be served from Lodge products.

“We are extremely excited about the collaboration between these two great Tennessee companies,” said Mike Otterman, President of Lodge Manufacturing Company. “We share company values, consumers, location and brand similarities that should allow us to grow together for many years.”

With more than 130 different items, Lodge Cast Iron produces the largest selection of cast iron cookware on the market, including skillets, griddles, grill pans, Dutch Ovens and restaurant serving pieces.

Founded by Joseph Lodge in 1896, Lodge is the oldest continuously operating cast iron cookware foundry in the U.S. The company is also the oldest family-owned cookware company in the country. Henry Lodge, CEO, and Lee Riddle, Vice President of Sales, are fourth and fifth generation descendants of Joseph Lodge.

Located in Dollywood’s Rivertown Junction, Aunt Granny’s was constructed in 1986 and opened during the park’s inaugural season. It has been a favorite spot for guests, as its all-you-can-eat format offers up a wide selection of the southern staples Dollywood’s foods team has cooked up for years.

Fresh off winning Amusement Today’s 2017 Golden Ticket Award for Best Theme Park Food, the foods team has refreshed the menu with a number of items that will surely become new guest favorites. Among those new offerings are Southwestern herb baked chicken, country chicken & dumplings, roasted red-skinned potatoes with cheddar cheese & bacon, corn puddin’, and much more. Stone Soup, inspired by Parton’s famous story about how her mother would use the classic fable to encourage her children when they might be discouraged, also finds its way on to the buffet. Those with a sweet tooth have plenty to select from including apple cobbler, various cupcakes, brownies and more.

For more information about Dollywood’s 2018 Season of Showstoppers, please visit www.dollywood.comor call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

 -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 30 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 26 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). The park is located near Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which celebrated record attendance in 2017. Dollywood was named a top three US theme park by USA Today in 2014 and 2017, and TripAdvisor recognized Dollywood as a top-20 worldwide theme park in 2015. Dollywood is open nine months a year (late March through early January) and offers rides and attractions, shows, and 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. The 300-room 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: Director of Communications, (865) 428-9486, (865) 755-7972 or powens@dollywood.com

Wes Ramey: Public Relations Manager, (865) 428-9484, (865) 640-3805 or wramey@dollywood.com
Amber Davis: Publicist, (865) 428-9601, (865) 591-1002 or aldavis@dollywood.com

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

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

Pigeon Forge Special Events Garner Recognition from Two Southeastern Organizations

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (March 2018)—Two Pigeon Forge (Tenn.) events—Wilderness Wildlife Week 2018 and A Mountain Quiltfest 2017—were recently recognized with regional awards by the Southeast Tourism Society (STS) and the Southeast Festival and Events Association (SFEA).

STS selected Wilderness Wildlife Week as one of the STS Top 20 Events in the Southeast for May 2018. Wilderness Wildlife Week and A Mountain Quiltfest tied for top honors in SFEA’s Best Event Program category with each earning a Gold Kaleidoscope Award. A Mountain Quiltfest also received the Kaleidoscope Award for Best Event Within an Event (bronze) for the silent quilt auction to benefit the My People Fund and the Best Other Merchandise Award (gold) for the event thimble.

A Mountain Quiltfest takes place March 20-24, and features a free quilt show and vendor mall. Classes and lectures are offered for all levels of quilting skills (fees apply). Wilderness Wildlife Week, May 8-12, offers workshops, lectures, seminars, concerts, hikes and other activities that introduce and reacquaint participants with the great outdoors; all are free. Both are headquartered at the LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge.

“Members of both the Southeast Tourism Society and Southeast Festival and Events Association are authorities on special events, and they recognize the value of these events to our tourism industry,” said Leon Downey, executive director of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. “The awards are certainly appreciated, but we are also grateful to both STS and SFEA for their efforts to promote Wilderness Wildlife Week and A Mountain Quiltfest to their audiences.”

Events considered for STS Top 20 recognition must be at least three years old and have attendance of at least 1,000. Travel industry experts select 20 events per month, and STS publicizes them throughout the United States. The complete list is published at Southeast Tourism Society.

“The Southeast is home to unique and memorable events throughout the year. In spotlighting the Top 20 festivals and events each month, STS is not only giving these events the recognition they deserve but we’re also creating a quick reference guide to some of the best festivals in the Southeast,” said Bill Hardman, president and CEO of STS. “These events are important to the economic vitality of our communities and this is a way for us to acknowledge the time and resources organizers have tirelessly spent to create memories for their attendees.”

The Kaleidoscope Awards ceremony was Feb. 26 in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, in conjunction with the 15th Annual SFEA conference. Top festivals and events throughout the Southeast were recognized for their outstanding contribution to the events industry. A panel of experts in event planning, marketing and tourism spent an entire day reviewing entries from eight states. The judges looked for originality, creativity, media impact, volunteer programs, and the overall impact to the community. The categories are also diverse, ranging from Best Marketing Campaign to Best T-Shirt to Best Festival or Event.

“The quality of submissions continues to increase each year making it more difficult for the judges to select the winners,” noted Brenda Pierce, executive director for SFEA.  “Of course, to ‘win gold,’ becomes all the sweeter when there is additional competition and the recognition a festival receives for winning is priceless.”

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Media Contact:

Trish McGee for the Pigeon Forge Dept. of Tourism

tmcgee@bohanideas.com

615-327-1189 ext. 327

About the Southeast Tourism Society (STS):

STS, founded in 1983 and headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting tourism to and within 12 states—Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.

 

About the Southeast Festivals & Events Association (SFEA):

The Southeast Festivals & Events Association (SFEA) is a 501 (c) 6 membership-based organization comprised of festival and event planners, venues, and industry service providers. SFEA was founded in 2009 to strengthen the festival and event industry throughout the southeast United States by hosting educational sessions, networking opportunities, award recognition, and additional events throughout the year; thus, allowing for continued professional growth within the festivals and events industry. Membership is open to those in the festivals and events industry as well as those wanting to get their start and learn more about this exciting profession.

Pigeon Forge Path to Fame Talent Competition Seeks Top Talent Across Southeastern US

Auditions scheduled in Cincinnati, Nashville and Atlanta to select twelve semi-finalists who will compete for the grand prize in Pigeon Forge on June 16.  

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (March 15, 2018) – Tune your guitar, warm up your vocal cords and break out your best magic tricks— Pigeon Forge (Tenn.) is searching for top talent to participate in its inaugural Path to Fame Talent Competition. Auditions in three cities will determine 12 semi-finalists who advance to the final competition in Pigeon Forge on Saturday, June 16, 2018.

Path to Fame Talent Competition auditions take place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in:
Cincinnati, Ohio, on Saturday, April 14;
Nashville, Tennessee, on Saturday, April 21;
Atlanta, Georgia, on Saturday, May 12.

Four semi-finalists from each city will advance to the final competition in Pigeon Forge on June 16. Accommodations will be made for the semi-finalists and one guest to travel to the finals in Pigeon Forge. To register, visit PFFame.com.

“The caliber of talent featured in the many stage shows in Pigeon Forge is exceptional, and our shows are a major reason so many folks visit our city,” said Leon Downey, executive director of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. “Pigeon Forge’s Path to Fame talent competition lets aspiring performers benefit from the experienced theater community that we have here, with hopes that we’ll launch yet another performer—our grand prize winner—onto a Path of Fame.”

Pigeon Forge helped launch the careers of recording artists Carly Pearce, Janelle Arthur and Craig Morgan.

The grand champion selected at the final competition will receive a prize package comprised of tools to launch his or her path to fame including a one-year mentorship with Nashville-based talent executive John Alexander who discovered Grammy-nominated artist Kelsea Ballerini and spent over a decade at Great American Country television network. Alexander will be a key asset in establishing consultations, studio time and industry meetings for the grand champion. Additionally, the winner will perform at Pigeon Forge theaters during a complimentary return trip and receive assets and experiences to advance his or her career. To view the complete grand prize package, visit PFFame.com.

“Talented people are everywhere, but few have the opportunity to share that talent with industry professionals. We are going to Cincinnati, Nashville and Atlanta with the hope that entertainers from across the region can have that chance,” said Alexander. “Nothing excites me more than nurturing careers and connecting the right people to bring someone one step closer to the spotlight.”

A diverse judging panel will determine who advances to the final round. The judges at each audition include Alexander, representatives of Pigeon Forge’s theater community and a radio personality from the audition city.

There are four eligible talent categories; vocalist, instrumentalist, comedian and specialty act. Individuals and groups of five or fewer can register in advance to audition at PFFame.com. Onsite registration at the audition and check-in is from 8:30 a.m. to noon local time. Auditions will be on a first-come, first-served basis at each audition location. All contestants must check in between 8:30 a.m. and noon local time.

Located six miles from the entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Pigeon Forge is a family-friendly vacation destination that offers more than 80 attractions, including award-winning entertainment. This is an opportunity for the city to turn the tables and recognize the many talents its passionate visitors have and help guide the grand champion along the path to fame.

Follow the Path to Fame Talent Competition at Facebook.com/MyPigeonForgeTN or Instagram.com/MyPigeonForge.

More information and rules and regulations for the Path to Fame Talent Competition can be found at PFFame.com. More information about visiting Pigeon Forge is available at 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:            Jess Pangrazio
jpangrazio@bohanideas.com
615-327-1189 ext. 350

Can You Tie a Knot Like a Pirate? Alcatraz East Crime Museum Adds a New Pirate Interactive, Along With Several Other New Artifacts and Exhibits

Alcatraz East Crime Museum offers new hands-on experiences and one-of-a-kind historical artifacts throughout

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (March 6, 2018) – Crime enthusiasts, news buffs, and history lovers will enjoy the new additions to Alcatraz East Crime Museum beginning this spring. The area’s newest attraction intrigues visitors 365 days a year on what’s considered America’s favorite subject. In order to attract Pigeon Forge’s repeat visitors, the museum rotates items from its collection annually. This year, Alcatraz East has added interactive exhibits as well as new artifacts. The additions give visitors a chance to share their stories and test their skills, while the new artifacts expand exhibits on Jesse James, Charles Manson, and kidnapping victim Jaycee Dugard.

“We have already experienced that visitors to this area come several times throughout the year, and we want to make sure they keep coming back to see us as well,” states Janine Vaccarello, chief operating officer. “We are happy to offer a place where visitors not only learn, but also remember and feel touched and inspired to get involved in crime prevention. With some of our additions, our guests will have the opportunity to share some of their own stories.”

The museum’s visitors are fascinated to see authentic artifacts, such as the white Bronco from the infamous O.J. Simpson police chase and Ted Bundy’s VW Bug. Others come to learn more about crime in American culture and the background of our law enforcement system. The museum offers something for everyone, including plenty of hands-on experiences.

There are several new interactive exhibits that have opened, including:

  • The ability to test your pirate skills at tying knots.
  • Share your own 9/11 experiences.
  • Thank law enforcement with a personal message. Those who may be interested in saying thank you to a particular officer or department can log onto their website to submit their story for display in the museum.

This spring, the crime museum has also added numerous exciting artifacts to their collection, including:

  • James Gang, Hite Revolvers – These two revolvers were used by James Gang members and cousins of Jesse and Frank James, Clarence and Robert “Wood” Hite. They rode with Jesse during his last days, until Wood Hite was murdered by Robert Ford, who also killed Jesse four months later.
  • Charles Manson Guitar & Beach Boys album “20/20” - This guitar was taken into custody in Inyo County California, during a raid on the Barker Ranch when Charles Manson was also arrested. The Tate-LaBianca Murders had taken place roughly two months before. In 1969, the song “Never Learn Not to Love” appeared on the Beach Boys album credited to Dennis Wilson, although Manson had originated the song under the name “Cease to Exist.”
  • Sheriff Richard Allen “Smoot” Schmid (1897 – 1963) Cowboy Boots - The four term Dallas County sheriff was 6’ 5 ½” with size 14 shoe. Dallas was home turf to Bonnie and Clyde, and Schmid set up an ambush on Nov 22, 1933 when they planned to meet their families. The duo escaped that night, slightly wounded.
  • Family Photos of Jaycee Dugard, Original “Jaycee Lee” recordings and flyers - In the summer of 1991, Jaycee Lee Dugard was kidnapped while walking to her school bus stop. A song was written by local radio DJ Larry Williams, featuring Jaycee’s mother Terry speaking to her daughter, and sales supported the continued search efforts. The exhaustive search went on for years. Jaycee was found and rescued in 2009.
  • Foxcatcher Medal - Foxcatcher Farm was the name of the estate and wrestling facility owned by wealthy heir John du Pont. On January 26, 1996, he shot and killed one of his Team Foxcatcher coaches and former Olympic gold medalist Dave Schultz.

“We like our visitors to see different pieces from our collection,” added Vaccarello. “Walking through the museum you get a sense of gratitude for those who fight crime, as well as a desire to help victims, we feel honored to share the stories.”

Alcatraz East Crime Museum is located at the entrance to The Island, at 2757 Parkway in Pigeon Forge, near the Margaritaville Hotel and Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen. Guests can also enjoy free parking available at The Island during their visit. The museum 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.

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 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.

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CONTACT:
Cher Murphy
Cher@chermurphypr.com
571-263-2128

24th Annual ‘A Mountain Quiltfest’ Brings Folk Art Extravaganza to LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Feb. 14, 2018) – Pigeon Forge (Tenn.) invites you to be immersed in the tradition of quilt-making at the 24th Annual A Mountain Quiltfest on March 20 – 24, 2018. More than 500 quilts will compete in a variety of different categories for $20,000 in prize money.

Located at the LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge (2986 Teaster Lane, Pigeon Forge, Tenn. 37863), the artistic quilts are displayed throughout the 232,000-square-foot event center, and attendees can peruse the vendor booths stocked with quilting essentials and one-of-a-kind accessories. Free parking is available at the LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge.

Quilt show and vendor hall hours:
Wednesday, March 21: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Thursday, March 22: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Friday, March 23: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday, March 24: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

A Mountain Quiltfest is an opportunity to not only admire the intricate handiwork used to create the popular American folk art, but to learn and expand your own quilting skills through classes tailored to skill level and technique. More than 70 classes are available during the five-day event for a fee, but admission to the quilt show and vendor hall is free. A complete class schedule and registration is available at MyPigeonForge.com/events/quiltfest.

Class participants on Tuesday, March 20, can enjoy a special lunchtime performance by award-winning cowgirl poet Yvonne Hollenbeck and songbird of the prairie Jean Prescott. Students must register to order lunch in advance at MyPigeonForge.com/events/quiltfest.

In addition to the classes, many people visit A Mountain Quiltfest to get appraisals of heirloom quilts. Cindy Stuart, an American Quilter’s Society certified appraiser, will appraise quilts March 20 – 24 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. by appointment only on a first-come, first-served basis. (Make appointments by contacting Cindy Stuart at 865-980-2162 or cstuart1@hughes.net.)

Several antique quilt bed turnings are scheduled during which local quilters and guild members offer detailed information about collections of quilts made before 1966.

Due to popular demand in 2017, two new Historic Churches of Sevier County bus tours were developed by Kathy Gwinn and feature churches offered for the first time. Gwinn will conduct Tour 2018A on March 21 and March 23 and Tour 2018B on March 22 and March 24. For those who missed last year’s tours, local historian and storyteller Ruth Carr Miller will lead Tour 2017A on March 23 and Tour 2017B on March 24. For a complete schedule and to register for the bus tours, visit MyPigeonForge.com/events/quiltfest.

Information about visiting Pigeon Forge is at MyPigeonForge.com. Details of A Mountain Quiltfest are at MyPigeonForge.com/events/quiltfest.

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Photos of A Mountain Quiltfest available here.

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

Pigeon Forge Wins Seventh Emmy Award for “Home Alone” Commercial

PIGEON FORGE, Tennessee (February 2018) – A dog counting down the days until his family returns from a memory-filled Pigeon Forge vacation recently won the popular destination its seventh Emmy Award.

“Home Alone” is the title of the thirty-second TV commercial that took top honors in the Commercial Spot category. After staring longingly at a calendar posted on the fridge, the family dog moves to the sofa where he passes the time watching videos of the family’s previous Pigeon Forge vacations. Clips showcase a younger mom, dad, son and daughter, each enjoying the variety of Pigeon Forge attractions through the years, from go-karts to a dinner show to a roller coaster. Finally, the front door opens to reveal mom, dad and two teenagers having returned home from yet another Pigeon Forge vacation. See the commercial here.

Among the memories captured in the family’s Pigeon Forge vacation videos are the Outdoor Gravity Park, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, The Island, and Alcatraz East Crime Museum.

Pigeon Forge and its agency, bohan in Nashville, received the Emmy Award at the annual celebration of the Nashville/Midsouth Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences on Jan. 20.

This is the seventh time bohan commercials for Pigeon Forge have won what have been labeled “television’s highest honor.” Earlier Emmy Awards came in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2014, 2015 and 2017.

“Our Home Alone spot tugs at your heartstrings, not only because the dog is anxious for his family’s homecoming but mostly because it puts our vacation memories front and center,” said Leon Downey, executive director of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. “And memories are one of the most precious keepsakes folks take home from Pigeon Forge.”

“Having worked with bohan for 27 years, the agency understands that tourism is the lifeblood of Pigeon Forge,” Downey added. “Bohan continues to find fresh ways to showcase all that our family-friendly destination has to offer.”

Bohan, which has marketed Pigeon Forge since 1990, has won at least one Emmy Award in 13 of the last 14 years.

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Photo of Emmy Award presentation available here:

Pictured left to right: Bohan’s Account Supervisor Tony Gerstner, Executive Director of the Pigeon Forge Dept. of Tourism Leon Downey, Pigeon Forge Dept. of Tourism’s Marketing Manager Sue Carr, and bohan’s Sr. Vice President/Managing Director Brian Gilpatrick.

 

Contact:

Trish McGee

865-654-6242

tmcgee@bohanideas.com

 

“Magic Beyond Belief™” starring Darren Romeo reopens at Smoky Mountain Opry™ Theater, featuring a live magical unicorn!

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn., Feb. 9, 2018 “Magic Beyond Belief™” starring internationally acclaimed magician Darren Romeo will reopen for a fourth season on Feb. 16, 2018, after being closed for a four-month production hiatus. This newly revamped Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment show will resume back in the The Smoky Mountain Opry™ Theater in Pigeon Forge six days-a-week. The magical show will include approximately $250,000 in upgrades, most of which are in production elements.  The move back to the Smoky Mountain Opry™ is to enable Romeo to perform larger illusions on a bigger stage and allows for the return of large animals to the show.

“Our Magic Beyond Belief show starring Darren Romeo is bigger, better and brighter this year,” said David Fee, president and chief executive officer of Fee/Hedrick Family Entertainment Group.  “We have a considerable bigger stage in a larger theater, but the show is still a very intimate experience.  This year’s show will be more family friendly and we have some new elements in the show including a live magical unicorn and a mermaid who swims among coral reefs and a sunken pirate ship. We also have the return of our serval cat and our amazing beloved white tiger named Hollywood.

“We have more vibrant colors in new lavish sets and costumes, improved state-of-the art mood-setting lighting and fantastic visuals throughout the entire production,” Fee said. “It is a higher energy show with spectacular effects.

“We are also installing a whole new sound system including a new sound board to enhance the audio quality in the theater,” Fee said.  “Two large video screens will complement the show, as well as engaging music.” Fee says the show will leave the entire family spellbound.

Romeo, the first and only protégé of Master Magicians Siegfried and Roy, will pay tribute this season to those who inspired him:  Bobby Darin (for whom he was named), Harry Houdini, Harry Blackstone Jr., Siegfried and Roy, famed American ringmaster P.T. Barnum, and many great military heroes. He will also showcase arrangements from his favorite Broadway melodies.

“We will have a circus atmosphere this year with tunes from the new hit movie, ‘The Greatest Showman,’” Fee said.  “Darren will have an entourage of animals both real and make believe, actors who play side show misfits, a girl shot out of a cannon, dancers and other oddities of magic. He will also pay tribute to a special pioneer in the entertainment industry with a song number in a ‘tale as old as time,’ where Darren and his assistants will invite the audience to ‘be our guest.’  At one point in the show children from the audience will even be allowed to come on stage and be part of the show.”

This full, two-hour “Magic Beyond Belief™” starring Darren Romeo production will feature stunning illusions, mind-boggling special effects, hilarious comedy, and vocal performance. Romeo will do some new parody celebrity impersonations this year including Darius Rucker, Lady Gaga and Dolly Parton.

“As a former magician myself, I have loved magic all of my life,” said David Fee, co-owner of the new theater. “Darren Romeo is one of the best magicians I have ever seen. He is extremely special and unique.  His show mixes amazing magic with music, and it is mesmerizing! We are very proud of Darren and of the success of his show in Pigeon Forge, and it became obvious to us that he needed a larger stage to do some of the illusions that he wanted to do so we have decided to bring him back to the Smoky Mountain Opry Theater.  This is a fun magical experience for the entire family!  It is Pigeon Forge’s biggest and best magic show!  Darren brings magic, mystery and music together for an incredible show the whole family will love.”

Romeo will appear Tuesday through Sunday, February through December, at The Smoky Mountain Opry™ Theater.  Romeo’s “Magic Beyond Belief™” starring Darren Romeo is known for his combination of live singing with the art of magic and illusion for a one-of-a-kind magical performance.

“Magic Beyond Belief™” at the Smoky Mountain Opry™ Theater is performed this season in the 8 p.m. evening time slot until Friday, March 2 when the Smoky Mountain Opry™ “Feel The Music” Show Opens.  After that the magic show will be performed in the afternoon matinee slot at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  It will also be performed at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday.  The theater is located at traffic light 0 at 2046 Parkway in Pigeon Forge.  Ticket prices are $34.95 plus tax for adults and $9.95 plus tax for children ages 3-11.  Children under 3 are free. For more information or reservations call the theater’s box office (865) 428-7469 or 1-800-768-1170 or visit www.pigeonforgemagic.com.

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

Magician Romeo said, “Magic is my passion, and I will be able to present the biggest and best versions of my show to date in The Smoky Mountain Opry Theater.”

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

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

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

In addition to all of the large illusions people would expect to see on stage from Siegfried and Roy’s protégé, Romeo will also perform close-up magic and sleight of hand tricks in the new show. Romeo will carry on Harry Blackstone Jr.’s legacy by performing his famous “Floating Light Bulb” Illusion.  He is the only magician in the world granted permission from the Blackstone family to perform this tribute.

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

“We want to provide clean wholesome entertainment for families who will return to see our shows again and again,” Fee said. “Darren’s new show will be Beyond Belief!”

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®” and The “Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud.™”

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Contact: Deborah Fee Newsom

(865) 414-6887 (cell)

(865) 774-8877

Deborah@FeeHedrick.com