This journey to The Overlook contained a couple of minor tasks, however principally we booked it to have some enjoyable with the youngsters. They’ve been such troopers coming forwards and backwards to the realm whereas we received this property and Candy House Bearolina up and operating, that we promised them a visit only for enjoyment. Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge have SO a lot family-friendly enjoyable to supply, and we knew we wished to kick these off with what might be essentially the most nicely known- Dollywood! Particularly in October so we may go to throughout Dollywood Harvest Pageant.
In the event you aren’t aware of Dollywood, it’s worthwhile to be. Dollywood is thought for it’s down-home allure. Nestled within the east Tennessee mountains of Pigeon Forge, the theme park was named Dollywood when Dolly Parton stepped onto the park’s board in 1986. Her mission was to boost the financial system of her native Sevier County. And boy, did she! As we speak Dollywood boasts “rides, slides, music, enjoyable, and laughter” with one thing for everybody, from thrilling curler coasters to a plethora of exhibits and music, and a lot in between.
We selected to go to the park on Monday and invited Mema to affix us. We had been thrilled she agreed and all of us headed to the park after lunch. We sprung for most well-liked parking and it’s price it. You stroll proper into the park as an alternative of ready for a parking tram, and also you’re additionally the primary to have the ability to exit on the finish of the day.
The enjoyable factor in regards to the go to is that we actually had no clue what to anticipate, so we had been all instantly tickled once we entered and instantly had been surrounded by pumpkins. SO MANY pumpkins. Pumpkin lined the streets, carved pumpkins had been themed and lit up round each nook, and pumpkin themed characters even made appearances. If you’re a fall lover, that is the occasion for you.
We spent the primary hour simply wandering round and guffawing in any respect the festive decorations and trying out the rides. If we discovered something at Disney, it’s that Hailey and Kaitlyn usually are not large thrill journey seekers. I hoped they’d nonetheless discover some enjoyable, so we eased into the rides with some easy sights, just like the Lumberjack Lifts and the acorn journey.
Properly, we discovered their pace. They beloved the straightforward rides, so we headed over to the County Truthful part of the park, which is fabulously designed for youthful friends, or those who favor the extra mild rides.
We took our time on the stroll over, admiring the hundreds of thousands of mums, trying out blacksmiths at work, listening to reside music, seeing how horses can assist grind sugar cane, and choosing up some cotton sweet. I might have voted for the cinnamon bread, however their eyes lit up on the concept of a bucketful of cotton sweet, so we went with it.
They may have spent the entire day on the County Truthful. From the swings to the scrambler, they had been of their aspect and darted from one journey to the following. The great factor about Dollywood is that even on a ravishing and busy day, I by no means noticed a single journey (even the large coasters) that had a wait over half-hour, and most had been nearer to the 15 minute mark, with some being no line in any respect.
We lastly dragged them away from the County Truthful searching for meals. We headed to the meals truck part of the park the place the women received burgers and the adults received burritos. It’s not low cost (what park meals is?), however I appreciated that the portion was hearty. We devoured our meals as we watched the solar begin to set. As nightfall settled in, the harvest pageant space got here much more alive with glowing lights and fog machines. The children LOVED it.
In contrast to my kids, I really like curler coasters. David is down for no matter, so Mema generously supplied to take the youngsters again the pirate ship journey they’d eyed earlier whereas David and I took on a much bigger curler coaster, the Wild Eagle. This journey is so cool, as you’ll be able to’t see the monitor since you are sitting off the both aspect of it.
There was no line (at prime time on a busy day… significantly, wonderful) so we walked journey on. I screamed the entire time and beloved each second of it. I may have ridden it a number of extra occasions, however as an alternative we snapped an image in entrance of the eagle to commemorate our coaster expertise, and headed over to affix the youngsters and Mema on the pirate ship (which the youngsters rode 5 occasions in a row as a result of it was their favourite journey of the day).
The one down a part of the day was how shortly the time ticked by. Quickly it was darkish and we realized we had been operating out of time to journey the Dollywood Categorical. The steam engine has a cool historical past, because it was utilized in Alaska throughout World Battle II. Now it takes friends on a 5 mile loop via the park and the encompassing mountains.
The final journey departed and eight:00 and once we realized that we made a mad sprint throughout the park and made it simply in time to snag seats earlier than it left the station. It was neat to see the park all lit up at night time and made for a festive and becoming approach to finish our day at Dollywood.
We received off the practice and Kaitlyn was begging for extra rides, but it surely was clear each youngsters had been exhausted, so we headed out of the park near it’s closing time of 9:00. And, poetically, Kaitlyn ended up leaving the park in the identical fashion she did once we visited Dollywood in 2017 with my mother, dad, bro, SIL, and my nieces- asleep on her dad’s shoulder.
Thanks for the candy reminiscences, Dollywood Harvest Pageant- you’re a particular place!