Welcome Home Vietnam

Ever want to say “Thank You” to the servicemen and women that live amongst us, people that include our neighbors, friends, and co-workers? Well, Pigeon Forge is providing the public with a great chance to do so April 15-18 with a slew of celebrations surrounding recognition of our veterans, and titled “Welcome Home Vietnam”.

Come celebrate the service and sacrifice of America’s Vietnam Veterans, as well as all of our veterans. The city of Pigeon Forge and the Theaters of the Smokies will be putting on this event. For those wishing to attend, a tour package featuring such events as a huge “Welcome Home Vietnam Parade,” a Tennessee Celebrity Concert, and live music shows with patriotic tributes. It’s just another great way to support to our troops and tell them “Thank You” for the sacrifices they’ve made.

Tour Features:

  • The “Welcome Home Vietnam” Parade (April 16)
  • A Patriotic Tennessee Celebrity Concert
  • Tribute to the Troops Variety Show
  • Dixie Stampede’s Salute to Vietnam Veterans
  • Gala Vietnam Veterans Charity Dinner
  • Three Nights First Class Hotel
  • Three Dinner Shows
  • Three Hotel Breakfast
  • Veterans Reunion Hall (Veterans Only)
  • Charitable Contribution to VVA, Vietnam Veterans of America
  • Local Attraction Discounts and Coupons
  • All Taxes & Tips on these services

For more information on Welcome Home Vietnam and the schedule of events, call 304 485-8687.

Pigeon Forge Welcomes Loretta Lynn!

In the Smokies, most locals could pick out Loretta Lynn in a crowd, having grown up with her music and with her roots regionally based. It should also be no surprise that an April concert at the Country Tonite Theater in Pigeon Forge featuring Lynn is drawing interest all over the South. More specifically on April 12 to what will likely be a sold out show.

Loretta Lynn is a country music icon that has been wowing audiences with her performances for over 50 years. Known the world over as the “Coal Miner’s Daughter”, her music has confronted many of the major social issues of her time, and her life story is a rags-to-riches tale familiar to pop, rock and country fans alike.

The nickname, Coal Miner’s Daughter, is a reference to Lynn’s hit single, as well as an album, a best-selling autobiography, and an Oscar-winning film. It all stems from Lynn’s upbringings in the Kentucky hills. “Coal Miner’s Daughter”, “You Ain’t Woman Enough (To Take My Man)”, “Don’t Come Home A’ Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ On Your Mind)”, and “Fist City” are just a few of the songs that made her famous and brought her millions of fans.

To say that she’s talented would be an understatement. Shes recorded over 160 songs and 60 albums, and appeared in number of films and television shows. Besides her ten No. 1 albums and sixteen No. 1 country singles, Lynn-has won a multitude of awards, including four Grammy Awards, 12 Academy of Country Music awards, eight Country Music Association and 26 fan-voted Music City News awards. She was the first woman in country music to receive a certified gold album for 1967’s “Don’t Come Home A’ Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ on Your Mind)”.

In 1972, Lynn was the first woman named “Entertainer of the Year” by the Country Music Association, and is one of six women to have received CMA’s highest award. She was named “Artist of the Decade” for the 1970s by the Academy of Country Music. Lynn was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1988 and the Country Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 1999. She was also the recipient of Kennedy Center Honors in 2003. Lynn was the first female country artist to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1977. In 2001, “Coal Miner’s Daughter” was named among NPR’s “100 Most Significant Songs of the 20th Century”.

Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament

This year’s fall Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament is set for September 29 and 30 weekend in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.

With so many mountain streams and rivers converging and running through Pigeon Forge, it’s no wonder that one of the area’s most popular and growing fall events happens to be the annual Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament. The accessibility of the streams and the fact that the town of Gatlinburg stocks the river make for good fishing for long-time anglers, as well as casual fishers. So, try your hand at it this year, wade into the river, start casting and land that big trout.

This year’s Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament – now entering its 14th year, features over $10,000 in cash and prizes for winners and others who place. For the spring tournament, April 6-7, contestants will vie for $500 for biggest trout, $500 for smallest trout (smallest trout must be 7 inches), gift certificates, trophies, fishing equipment, Dollywood passes, and much more. In all, over 20 miles of local streams have been stocked with 10,000 trout to accommodate for the tournament.

Anyone wishing to compete in the tournament will need a special permit to fish. You can pick up one of those permits at the Welcome Center on 441 South, the ‘Spur,’ before you get to Gatlinburg or City Hall on East Parkway. Streams in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge are normally stocked on Thursday so fishing not permitted then, but any other day of the week is fine. The Gatlinburg Trout License has different rules and regulations depending on whether you are a Tennessee resident or not and there are a few exempt classes that do not need the Gatlinburg permit. You should ask those questions when you get your permit at the Welcome Center or City Hall.

There are some rules and regulations when fishing in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and the great Smoky Mountains. Fishing is permitted from thirty minutes before sunrise to thirty minutes after sunset. There are several children-only fishing areas in Gatlinburg: no one over 12 is allowed to fish in those areas. When fishing, you can only use one hand-held rod and you can only use a single hook. No multiple hook rigs are allowed. There are, of course, creel limits to the number of fish you can catch, so make sure that you ask about creel limits, type of bait and lures that can be used when you purchase your fishing permit. All trout must be at weigh-in located at Patriot Park, Pigeon Forge, traffic light No. 7 by 4 p.m. on Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday. Winners will be determined by total weight of the 2-day tournament.

If you’re looking for a place to stay while in town then be sure to check out our list of Pigeon Forge cabins. Also be sure to check out some of the best restaurants in Pigeon Forge like Mama’s Farmhouse and Smoky Mountain Brewery as well as the full calendar of events in Pigeon Forge, TN.

For more information, or to register for the 14th Annual Smoky Mountain Trout Tournament, visit smokymountaintrouttournament.com or call 865-661-FISH

Titanic Author’s Week

If you’re a Titanic  enthusiast, you’re not going to want to miss the Titanic Museum Attraction’s Authors’ Week the first week of April.

You’re asking yourself, Authors’ Week? What is that? In all, 10 celebrated authors of Titanic historical books and novels will appear together from Monday, April 1 to Sunday, April 7 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge, TN. It’s the first time they’ve ever carried out an event like this, but it won’t be the last.

Literally hundreds of Titanic books have been written about the ship, from the perspective of the night of, the passengers, basically from every angle of the incident. Titanic fans and followers will get the opportunity of a lifetime to meet and interact with all these authors. You won’t see this many respected voices on the events of the Titanic in one place very often, if at all. On top of all that, it’s a FREE book signing.

The Authors’ Week fair will be held outside in the parking lot of the Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge. Authors can be found in their own tented area. Visitors can stop by and talk everything Titanic as well as take pictures with the authors. As an added bonus, any Titanic books purchased during the event entitle the buyer to a discounted ticket to the Titanic Museum Attraction. This year, other than all the Titanic artifacts on display, visitors will get to view the brand new Discover the Children of Titanic display, dedicated to the Titanic’s child passengers.

Titanic books are the biggest selling items in museum’s gift shop. Both grown-ups and children are drawn to them. Jokes aside, bookmark the date, Monday, April 1 through Sunday, April 7, and plan to make the trip to the Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge during the first week of April.

Tickets are not required for the book signing fair, but are needed for tours of the attraction. The Titanic Museum Attraction opens daily at 9 a.m. in Pigeon Forge. Reservations for museum tours are strongly suggested since many days sell out entirely. Passengers may purchase tickets online at www.titanicattraction.com or by phone at 800 381-7670.

STIHL Timbersports Returns to Pigeon Forge this June!

One of the area’s most exciting and unique events is returning to Pigeon Forge in June. And if you guessed that the STIHL Timbersports series is the vent that is coming back to the area, well you’re a step ahead of all of us.

The STIHL® TIMBERSPORTS® Series is one of the premier lumberjack sporting events in the country. Recently, officials with STIHL, as well as RAM Trucks, announced the top 40 professional lumberjack athletes – choppers/sawyers who will compete in the 2013 U.S. Series. The Great Smoky Lumberjack Feud in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. will host the event – STIHL TIMBERSPORTS U.S. Pro and Collegiate Championships, for the second consecutive year, June 7-9, 2013.

All the best lumberjacks scheduled to compete in Pigeon Forge this year including Arden Cogar Jr., the 2011 and 2012 STIHL Timbersports Series U.S. Champion. Cogar, a civil defense trial attorney from West Hamlin, W. Va., returns to the series for his 26th season. Tim Benedict will be making his series debut this season after winning the 2012 Collegiate Championship at Penn State.

If you’re local you might just recognize two familiar faces who will be participating this year – Derek Knutson and Andrew Mattison, who both work at the Lumberjack Feud.

Other noted competitors include a slew of collegians moving up into the pro ranks like David Green from Sisters, Ore., Adam LaSalle from Fairplay, Colo., Walter Page from Tollhouse, Calif., Will Roberts from Cortland, NY, Logan Scarborough from Polkton, NC and Nathan Waterfield from Cherry Valley, NY. Additionally, three sets of father-son lumberjacks will compete this season, including Paul and Matt Cogar (cousins of Arden Cogar), Mel and Jason Lentz and Mike and Matt Slingerland.

In all, six professional lumberjack disciplines make up the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series pro competition. These methods include the hot saw, single buck, springboard chop, standing block chop, stock saw and underhand chop. Held in conjunction with the Collegiate Series, the qualifying rounds pit the top eight lumberjacks in the region against each other with the top four pro athletes from each advancing to the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series Pro Championship at the Great Smoky Mountain Lumberjack Feud. These four individuals will not only compete against other competitors from around the country for the championship crown, but will also join together to represent their regions in the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Relay Competition. In addition to the ultimate bragging rights in lumberjack sports and a Ram 1500 truck, the top U.S. competitor also advances to the World Championship in Stuttgart, Germany Oct. 25-26.

The STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series, established in 1985, is billed as the Original Extreme Sport and attracts the world’s top lumberjack athletes in a competition based on historic logging techniques. The Series is seen by millions of viewers annually in more than 62 countries on networks such as Eurosport, Outdoor Channel and ESPNU.

Dollywood’s Festival of Nations

Find out why Dollywood’s Festival of Nations is one of the best events to attend in Pigeon Forge, TN. The Festival of Nations at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee has entertainment for the entire family!

If you haven’t yet visited Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, the Festival of Nations is an excellent time to do so. Held between March 22 – April 23, 2013, this month long international event showcases performers from around the world, as well as highlighting many different cultures. The Festival of Nations at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, TN is a captivating sight, featuring some of the world’s best entertainment, plus art, dancing, music and food.

2013’s Festival at Dollywood features Spirit of the Dance, a wildly entertaining Irish dance troupe. This spell binding show is more than just your average tap performance. You’ll see a powerful, foot-stomping show with performers in fantastic costumes. This show offers incredible music and amazing dances seen by more than 30 million people around the world – you’ll be glad you chose to come.

Of course, Spirit of the Dance isn’t the only show you’ll see at Dollywood during the Festival of Nations. The Paper World Show by Mimirichi is a comedic performance by Ukranian clowns that will leave you chuckling in your seats.

Atahualpa, from Ecuador, offers South American traditional songs and dance rhythms. They play both native instruments and modern keyboards and guitars, resulting in a fascinating blend of cultures. Los Pampas Gauchos will bring their Argentinian flair to Dollywood. The show is filled with traditional dancing, as well as performances that include drums, boleadoras, knives, capes, and whips.

Zebra Stelzentheater of Germany will entertain the crowds with a fun and lively performance featuring stilt dancing that will have guests clamoring for an encore performance.

The Zambian Vocal Group brings different tribes together, forming one sound and creating a unified performance. They perform a capella, with no instruments, singing traditional hymns as well as original pieces. You’ll hear traditional African rhythms, complex harmonies, and unique vocal percussion, too.

If you’ve never been to Dollywood, this is the time to attend. You’ll see all the usual attractions, plus the wonderful performances and sights of the Festival of Nations. Also be sure to check out our list of tips for visiting Dollywood.

If you’re looking for a place to stay while in town then be sure to check out our list of the best hotels in Pigeon Forge, TN and our list of Pigeon Forge cabins. Also be sure to check out the full calendar of events in Pigeon Forge, TN.

2013 Saddle Up! Performers

Some of you might come to Saddle Up! for the great food, or maybe it’s just a chance for you to get out of your house with all your western duds on. Whatever the reason, the performers that Saddle Up! has lined up this year are some of the best in recent memory. Their musical talents rival some of the best in the country/western genre. You’ll hear stories, some of the finest fiddlin’ around and yodeling that will have you spinning around in your seat.

The all-star lineup of Saddle Up! performers includes Brenn Hill, Chris Isaacs, Waddie Mitchell, The Quebe Sisters Band, Dave Stamey, Sourdough Slim, T. Scot Wilburn and the Shut Up -N- Playboys, and Wylie & the Wild West. If their names don’t already have you guessing what type of performance they’ll give, well we can’t help ya. Come out to this year’s Saddle Up! festival in Pigeon Forge and see for yourself.

As for this year’s slate of performers, here’s a quick synopsis of each:

Brenn Hill

Western music that been passed down through the generations. Raised in Utah, Brenn and his music celebrate the land he grew up against, his story, and that of countless other musicians who fell in love with the promise of the West. His music paints a picture of love and faith. Hill is a rising star in his profession and he puts on a show you won’t forget.

Chris Isaacs

Come listen to the stories and poetry of Chris Isaacs. You’ll laugh and enjoy his point of view from a cowboy’s perspective. It’s a wonderful show that will leave you laughing out loud and applauding for more. Chris has won the Album of the Year and the Will Rogers Medallion Award of Excellence from the Academy of Western Artists, and his work has been published in numerous magazines.

Waddie Mitchell

Waddie Mitchell can spin a tale, whether in rhyme or not, that can be considered modern day cowboy poetry. In 1984, he helped organize the internationally recognized Elko Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Waddie has performed at venues around the world, appeared on numerous television shows and from the stage at Carnegie Hall.

Quebe Sisters Band

The Quebe Sisters Band’s blend of western swing, vintage country, bluegrass, jazz and Texas-style fiddling is as unique as there is these days. They’ve performed at the Grand Ole Opry, the Kennedy Center and the Ryman Auditorium, among other prestigious venues, and wowed crowds at each. Their performances with Ricky Skaggs, Merle Haggard and other music legends have made them a quite an act to contend with. You don’t want to miss this performance. They’re sure to bring out a lively crowd.

Sourdough Slim

Sourdough Slim is a veritable one-man western extravaganza, crooning western classics, playing accordion, guitar and harmonica, dancing a jig, twirling a lariat, dishing out hilarious comedic sketches and letting loose with award-winning yippie-ti-yi-yodeling. A favorite at cowboy gatherings and world-renowned music halls, Slim’s act draws crowds from every walk of life.

Dave Stamey

Dave Stamey has been a cowboy, a mule packer and a dude wrangler, and now he’s one of the most popular Western entertainers working today. Dave Stamey has delighted audiences in 14 states and numerous locales and finds that he prefers this to being stomped by angry horses.

T. Scot Wilburn and the Shut Up -N- Playboys

T. Scot Wilburn and the Shut Up -N- Playboys will make their debut at Saddle Up. Scot comes from a rich and colorful musical heritage and can play any instrument with strings. He’s put together a group of outstanding musicians that includes world- renowned steel guitarist Bobby Black. A deep passion for traditional western swing music will be evident when this band hits the stage.

Wylie & the Wild West

Wylie Gustafson describes the Wild West as a “good-time, cowboy band that hates to be boring.” This high-energy group has performed around the world and stateside, appeared on “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” and “A Prairie Home Companion,” and his voice has been heard in millions of homes as the prominent yodel of the Yahoo! ad campaign.

A Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge TN

This guide to the 2012 Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge, TN reveals many highlights this massive quilt show has to offer. Get entry forms, dates, contact information, and more for a Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee!

A Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge, TN is the perfect event if you’re interested in quilts and quilting. This show draws over 20,000 people each year from all across the country. What do those people have in common? They all love making, collecting, and learning about quilts!

Held March 12-16 this year, the 2013 Mountain Quiltfest has lots to offer . If you enjoy quilting itself, you’ll get a chance to learn from the best in the world. More than eighty-five sessions for instruction and master classes will be taught at this Pigeon Forge quilt show. There are courses for anyone from the beginning quilter to the long-time master. No matter who you are or how much experience you have in quilting, you’ll love learning from the well qualified, experienced instructors at A Smoky Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

This year, join us for the First Night Sneak Peak at the Music Road Convention Center on Tuesday, March 12, 2013 beginning at 6:00 pm. Instructors, vendors and sponsors will be on hand for questions and to meet your quilting needs. Enjoy a special showing of the quilts and shop for unique items prior to the public opening.

You can register for these quilting classes online at the Mountain Quiltfest website. Classes are first come, first served when it comes to registration, and may fill up quickly! Some entry fees are charged for courses as well, and range from $20-$60, depending on the materials supplied by the instructor. However, it’s worth it when you think about how much you’ll learn.

Learn about everything from designing a quilt to fixing an antique, and get tips on different classic quilt types, as well as table runners and more. Classes start on March 13th, so you may need to get there early. Take a free trolley ride between class sites so you know you’ll be on time.

In addition to classes, quilters will be able to enter their own works in the Smoky Mountain Quiltfest Quilt Show. It doesn’t matter how experienced you are or how fancy or simple your quilt is – you can enter. The only limit is that each person may enter no more than three pieces.

This show is judged professionally. A single viewer’s choice ribbon will be awarded, along with ribbons and cash prizes to other winners. Find the guidelines here: http://www.mountainquiltfest.com/guidelines.pdf and submit your masterpiece!

If you’d like to experience the best that quilting has to offer, A Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, is the place to do it. Find out more about this great event at http://www.mountainquiltfest.com, or call 1-800-251-9100. This really is the event for anyone who loves to see, collect, or make quilts.

If you are looking for Pigeon Forge lodging, be sure to check out our list of Pigeon Forge cabins and our list of the best Pigeon Forge hotels. If you would like to stay in Gatlinburg, TN we also have a list of Gatlinburg, TN cabins as well as a list of the best hotels in Gatlinburg.

Titanic Honors Teachers in February

Calling all teachers! Calling all local teachers! Looking to get a bit more familiar with the Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge? Especially for those of you looking at planning an upcoming field trip to the popular Pigeon Forge attraction. Be sure to plan a visit during Titanic’s Teacher Appreciation Days – February 1-28.

During the month of February, all teachers are invited to come tour and take part in the Titanic museum attraction at NO CHARGE (includes 1 free audio player). We’re talking about the whole month of February, the 1-28. It’s FREE to all area teachers. The Titanic Museum Attraction especially looks forward to hosting the area’s history teachers who include the Titanic as a part of their curriculum.

This year, the Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge is celebrating the year of the child. Exhibits focus on the children who were a part of the Titanic’s maiden voyage, their stories, what they wore and brought aboard the Titanic, where they came from, and how they came to be passengers. It’s a great link for teachers and make it the perfect time to visit the Titanic Museum Attraction in Pigeon Forge.

To purchase tickets, please call 800-381-7670 or you may purchase them at the door during the month of February. All teachers must present your ID Badge or Paycheck Stub/ID for a Public or Private School at the door upon arrival. (Other guests pay regular admission price).

To see how the Titanic Museum Attraction can work with you in providing your students with unique learning experiences click here.

2013 Pigeon Forge Winter Carnival of Magic

It’s that time of year again, well almost. We’re talking about Pigeon Forge’s 39th annual Winter Carnival of Magic. This year, the convention will be held from March 8-9 at the Country Tonite Theater. Over the years, the Winter Carnival of Magic has become a widely recognized event due to the number of talented performers that are showcased each year.

The two day Winter Carnival of Magic convention is a mixture of lectures, shows, and contests. The Ring 58 will be sponsoring the Winter Carnival of Magic. Ring 58, is the East Tennessee chapter of the International Brotherhood of Magicians. Each year, Ring 58 pick the top magicians worldwide to come and take part in the convention.

The whole family is going to have a blast at this year’s Winter Carnival of Magic, from laughter to looks of amazement at the tricks and illusions that some of these magicians will make happen. These are some of the most talented magicians around and they’ll prove it. As for all the other magicians that will be in attendance, but aren’t lined up to participate in the show, they’ll be showcasing their skills during the stage and close-up contest. A cash prize of $100 will be given away to the first place holder.

Start planning your perfect Pigeon Forge vacation today and include the Winter Carnival of Magic with it. You will not want to miss all of the fun of the Winter Carnival in Pigeon Forge. The Winter Carnival of Magic is an event that you will regret missing!!

If you are looking for Pigeon Forge lodging, be sure to check out our list of Pigeon Forge cabins and our list of the best Pigeon Forge hotels. If you would like to stay in Gatlinburg, TN we also have a list of Gatlinburg, TN cabins as well as a list of the best hotels in Gatlinburg.