Surprising no one, the Smoky Mountains are a favorite vacation destination for many who come to enjoy more than just time away, but to make memories with the many seasonal traditions and special events we come to expect each year.
In this post, we’re providing a preview into some of our favorite special events that we look forward to as much as our visitors do. This is just a sample platter of the great things we have going on in Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter and we would encourage you to visit www.mypigeonforge.com, www.gatlinburg.com and www.visitsevierville.com for the appropriate dates, locations and information regarding them.
Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas
Expected Event Timeline: Second week of November to January or a little after.
Dollywood is as close to a Smoky Mountain seasonal dreamland as it gets around here, and Christmas time is no different – you and your family will marvel at the exquisite designs, attention to detail, and holiday offerings spread throughout the park – holiday carolers, millions and millions of lights illuminating the night sky, Christmas parades, Santa’s workshop, hot cocoa and much more! www.dollywood.com
Winterfest Trolley Tour of Lights
Expected Event Timeline: Second week of November to late February.
The cities of Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg begin this seasonal highlight at their respective Winterfest kickoffs. Special trolleys are set up on special tours throughout the cities so that visitors get to see the million dollar lighting displays on the parkways. The trolleys are well heated and designed for families to enjoy during the holidays. www.mypigeonforge.com
New Year’s Eve Celebrations
Expected Event Timeline: Well, New Year’s Eve, usually…
The city of Gatlinburg will be having music, entertainment and then the fireworks with a countdown at the Space Needle towards midnight, while Pigeon Forge will have shows and fireworks at different locations throughout the city. www.gatlinburg.com and www.mypigeonforge.com
Wilderness Wildlife Week
Expected Event Timeline: Middle of May
If you love the nitty-gritty details and the dirt and all of what makes the mountains Smoky, this is your event. A full week of lectures, vendors, guest speakers, wildlife guests and even guided walks through the mountains, PLUS a photography contest. And we hadn’t even mentioned Admission is free – until now. http://www.mypigeonforge.com/events_winterfest_wilderness.aspx
A Mountain Quiltfest
Expected Event Timeline: Third week of March, usually the same time as Dollywood’s Festival of Nations.
The city of Pigeon Forge hosts a very popular festival in which over 20,000 visitors participate in many classes and seminars, and view some of the most gorgeous quilts in the country. More than 60 classes and seminars will be featured and a vendor mall will be onsite for enthusiasts to purchase supplies. http://www.mypigeonforge.com/events_quiltfest.aspx
Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament
Expected Event Timeline: One in Spring between late March and early April, and one in the Fall between late September and early October.
Visitors coming to the Smokies this weekend should bring their fishing gear, because the Annual Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament is going on Saturday and Sunday. Cash prizes will be awarded and if you’re interested in participating, contact Rocky Top Outfitter at 865-661-3474 or email email@example.com.
Dollywood’s Festival of Nations
Expected Event Timeline: The third week of March.
Dollywood opens every season with the most exciting Spring festival you’ll find in East Tennessee – the Festival of Nations gathers many of the countries of the world to Dollywood where many cultures will add to the entertainment of the park. Africa, India, China, France, Poland and more will all be there and providing some of the best shows you will see all year! http://www.dollywood.com
Smoky Mountain Tunes and Tales
Expected Event Timeline: Early-to-mid June to early-to-mid August
Ever wanted the Smokies to be filled with the old timey music and legends that it used to have way back in the day? Come to Gatlinburg for Smoky Mountain Tunes and Tales and you can experience Gatlinburg celebrating Appalachian Culture the way it used to. Music, stories, dancing all throughout the city on evenings. www.gatlinburg.com
Expected Event Timeline: Middle of April
Celebrate and enjoy the beauty of Great Smoky Mountains National Park with over 150 different programs, including hiking tours, motorcades, demonstrations and classroom lectures centered on the flowers, plants and wildlife in the great outdoors. http://www.springwildflowerpilgrimage.org
Bloomin’ BBQ and Bluegrass Festival
Expected Event Timeline: Between second and third weeks of May
Sevierville doesn’t throw as many parties and special events as Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg do, but when you imagine they’re saving it up for Bloomin’ Barbeque and Bluegrass, it makes much more sense and well worth the wait. It’s two solid days of barbeque feasting, gospel and bluegrass groups playing on a stage build behind the Sevierville Court House, many vendors selling everything from arts and crafts to guitars and art and honey and more! http://bloominbbq.com/
Annual Fourth of July Midnight Parade
Expected Event Timeline: Fourth of July, baby!
Saluting the valiant men and women of our military services, this annual showcase is the “First July 4th Parade in this Nation!” Parade starts at the stroke of midnight to begin Independence Day. Floats, balloons, and marching bands pay tribute to our country during this Southeast Tourism Society Top 20 Event. www.gatlinburg.com
Dollywood National Southern Gospel and Harvest Celebration
Expected Event Timeline: Early October to Early November
To celebrate the mountains and the culture, Dollywood invites a month’s worth of Gospel entertainment to play in the theaters while the most talented artisans in the country set up shop all over the park. With the cool air over a backdrop of orange and red mountains, this could be the most magical part of the year before Christmas, so be sure to stop by once you’re in town. www.dollywood.com
Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair
Expected Event Timeline: One show each season, two during Winterfest
Art, crafts and music lovers will discover over 200 booths featuring some of the nation’s finest work. Artisans and craftspeople are on hand to demonstrate their skills, answer questions and offer their unique art for sale. Live Country and Bluegrass entertainment. www.craftsmenfair.com
Those are just a fraction of the amount of special events we have going on throughout the year. Keep checking back at the websites listed above and at our main site at www.summitcabinrentals.com for more information and news on special events in the Smokies.