Fall Fun in the Smokies: The Perfect Family Reunion Destination

Once upon a View cabin balcony view. Photo by Renuka Christoph

By Renuka Christoph

Finding the perfect spot for large gatherings can be a tough. It needs to be a destination offering plenty of options for all ages, from attractions to dining. All this combined with a place to stay can make it a challenging decision. 

Perhaps one of the best options is just four hours from Nashville. Scenic Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge are certain to entertain all age groups. Find luxury cabins and of course, Dollywood, for guaranteed enjoyment. 

Where to stay

Take in some breathtaking views within a luxury cabin in Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg. Recommended is a cabin by Cabins for you. Nestled off of the winding roads and along the mountainside are massive retreats among the treetops. Choose from economy to large scale, including cabins with up to six bedrooms. Discover scenic balconies furnished with wooden rocking chairs along with a gas grill and a hot tub. For some indoor downtime, the entire family will enjoy watching a movie on a large screen with theater seating. Visit www.cabinsforyou.com for more information.

What to do
Celebration Dinner Show

Plan for an uplifting evening with a dinner buffet and entertainment at the Celebration Dinner Show in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. It’s a night filled with acrobats, music, comedy and stunning stage sets. The special effects capture the attention of all guests, including the Fire-wheel, which has a performer twirling and spinning several stories high.

The buffet includes creamy vegetable soup, homemade biscuits, sugar-cured ham, pan fried chicken, signature macaroni and cheese, sweet potato delight, and a specialty dessert. 

Dollywood

The Dollywood theme park delivers pure fun with live performances, thrill rides, diverse attractions and unique shopping. The Great Pumpkin LumiNights at Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana kicks off Sept. 28- Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. 

Last year’s popular pumpkin displays—like the pumpkin spider and the pumpkin dance

Smoky Mountain River Rampage

party—are joined in 2018 by a number of elaborate, new additions, including a couple of Dolly Parton-inspired displays. 

The Plaza at Wilderness Pass serves as a centerpiece for the event with an area for character interaction, additional displays—and the focal point—a 40 ft. tall expertly-carved pumpkin tree. With the addition of Great Pumpkin LumiNights to the Harvest Festival in 2017, a number of families created new traditions and memories they’ll share forever, something Parton expected to happen once she first saw the renderings for the initial event. 

Families will bask in the glow of thousands of intricately-carved pumpkins as they wander through displays throughout Dollywood’s Timber Canyon, Wilderness Pass and upper Craftsman’s Valley areas. Beyond the impressive displays, guests can find a number of exciting activities to create thrilling memories together. With so many carved pumpkins needed to create Great Pumpkin LumiNights, Dollywood has “pumpkin artists” who will host demonstrations to help guests learn how to produce the perfect pumpkin masterpiece. 

During the Harvest Festival, more than 30 visiting artisans from across the country bring their wares and share their talents with Dollywood guests. Craft demonstrations include textile art, inspirational jewelry, loom weaving, paper marbling, bentwood boxes, rug hooking, fiddle making, dulcimer making, and much more.  

For more information about Dollywood’s Harvest Festival and Great Pumpkin LumiNights, visit www.dollywood.com, call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD, or download the Dollywood App. 

Facebook Comments