Smoky Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund

Published December 14, 2016 / Last Updated January 5, 2017

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman

Dolly Parton and a host of artists and celebrities took to the airwaves on Tuesday night during Smoky Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund.

They had one goal in mind, to raise funds for the victims of the Tennessee wildfires. The three-hour star-studded event was packed with beautiful performances, emotional stories and a collective message of hope.

Viewers pledged their support by calling, texting and going online to DollywoodFoundation.org.

The night’s performances included songs by Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers, Hank Williams Jr., Chris Stapleton, Reba McEntire, Alison Krauss, Michael W. Smith, Chris Janson, Big & Rich, LOCASH, Chris Young, Montgomery Gentry, Jamey Johnson, Cyndi Lauper, Don McLean, Amy Grant, Alabama, Aaron Lewis and Rhonda Vincent.

The heroic efforts of the first responders were celebrated during the live telecast. Also, viewers were reminded of Sevier County’s world-famous hospitality and renowned entertainment venues ready and waiting for them in East Tennessee. Dolly encouraged people to visit Sevier County and the Great Smoky Mountains.

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam and First Lady Crissy Haslam made a special appearance, and several celebrities greeted viewers in heartfelt video messages including Katy Perry, Carrie Underwood, Larry King, Steve Harvey, Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts, Kiefer Sutherland, and Today Show’s Willie Geist.

Dolly shared her hosting duties with friends HLN’s Robin Meade, GAC’s Suzanne Alexander and Nan Kelly, The Bobby Bones Show’s Bobby Bones, SiriusXM’s Storme Warren, Crook & Chase hosts Lorianne Crook and Charlie Chase, NASH Nights LIVE’s Shaun Parr and Elaina D. Smith, and TuneIn Country Roads’ Kelly Sutton.

Celebrities donating their time to answer phones included: Paula Deen and her sons Bobby and Jamie, Chrisley Knows Best cast members Todd, Julie and Savannah, Moonshiners’ cast members Mark and Digger, Nashville’s Charles Esten, cast members of Dolly Parton’s Christmas of Many Colors, country hit-makers Chris & Morgane Stapleton, Terri Clark, Mark Wills, Lee Greenwood, Larry Gatlin, T.G. Sheppard, Highway 101’s Paulette Carlson, John Conlee, Ronnie McDowell, Kristian Bush, Tim Rushlow, T. Graham Brown, Dolly’s nieces Rebecca Seaver and Danielle Parton, bluegrass hitmakers Lorraine Jordan and Darrin Vincent, comedian Henry Cho, KC of KC and the Sunshine Band, hot new country artists Brett Young, Cassadee Pope, RaeLynn, Danielle Bradbury, Lucas Hoge, Denny Strickland, songwriter Becky Hobbs, and members of the Tennessee Titans.

Nearly $500,000 of donations were committed before the Smoky Mountains Rise telethon began. The ACM donated $100,000 to the fund, with Taylor Swift matching the amount, while the CMA donated $125,000 accompanied by a matching donation by East Tennessean Kenny Chesney.

About My People Fund

More than 1300 families have been displaced due to the wildfires which spread across Dolly’s home area of Sevier County, Tennessee in late November. The entertainment icon established the Dollywood Foundation My People Fund to provide $1000 each month for six months to every family who lost their primary residence. Currently, the monthly pledge is in excess of $1.3 million each month.

Donate Online At DollywoodFoundation.org

About Tennessee Wildfires

On Nov. 28, devastating wildfires burned some 17,000 acres in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The fires also affected parts of Gatlinburg and Sevier County, TN. Sadly, 14 people lost their lives in these terrible fires, and over 100 confirmed injuries were reported. Over 14,000 people were evacuated during the fires which damaged or destroyed more than 1,700 structures (homes, businesses and churches). In Gatlinburg alone, officials estimate the wildfires caused more than $500 million in damage.

Team DollySmoky Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund

My People Fund To Distribute Wildfire Assistance Checks

Published December 12, 2016 / Last Updated December 12, 2016

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman

My People Fund assistance checks will be distributed to wildfire survivors beginning Dec. 15.

The Dollywood Foundation will begin distributing checks to those affected by the Great Smoky Mountain wildfires on Dec. 15, at 10 a.m. at the CARE MORE Assistance Center inside the LeConte Event Center.

More than 900 people have applied for funds, with more expected to complete the application. For efficiency, The Dollywood Foundation encourages only the head of household to report on the day that correlates with their last name. The head of household should be prepared with photo I.D. The Dollywood Foundation emphasizes that funds will not run out. This is the first of six distribution periods.

DATES:
Thursday, Dec. 15 — Last name A – F
Friday, Dec. 16 — Last name G – L
Monday, Dec. 19 — Last name M – R
Tuesday, Dec. 20 — Last name S – Z

HOURS:
10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

LOCATION:
CARE MORE Assistance Center inside the LeConte Event Center
2986 Teaster Ln., Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

About My People Fund

The Dollywood Foundation’s My People Fund was established to assist those families (owners or renters) who lost their primary residence in the wildfires (complete loss or uninhabitable). Eligible families receive $1000 a month for up to six months.

Applicants are urged to pre-apply by visiting Dollywood Foundation online. County officials are using the U.S. Geological Survey of the damage and cross-referencing with official documents to ensure the families who lost everything receive these funds.

Team DollyMy People Fund To Distribute Wildfire Assistance Checks

Dolly Parton Telethon To Benefit Tennessee Wildfire Survivors

Published December 8, 2016 / Last Updated January 5, 2017

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman

Dolly Parton and more will perform during the Dec. 13 Smoky Mountains Rise Telethon.

Update December 11, 2016: The impressive lineup of performers continues to grow for Smoky Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund on Tuesday, Dec. 13 at 8 p.m. (EST). Hank Williams Jr., Cyndi Lauper, Alabama, Don McLean, Ronnie Dunn, Jamey Johnson and Lauren Alaina have been added to the star-studded telecast, which will be broadcast on GAC, AXS-TV, RFD and The Heartland Network.

A number of celebrities will answer phones during the telethon. Paula Deen and her sons Bobby and Jamie, RaeLynn, Dailey & Vincent, Moonshiners’ Mark & Digger, T.G. Sheppard, Jason Crabb, Larry Gatlin, comedian Henry Cho, Tim Rushlow and more will help man the phone lines during the telethon. All of the celebrities are donating their time and performances to help the effort.

Smoky Mountains Rise Viewing Opportunities

All artists are donating their performances to help the effort. Dolly said,

“I’m truly honored that these artists are giving their time and energy to help us raise money for everyone affected by the wildfires. I’ve got so many great friends in the industry, and I’m so proud that they were so ready to step up and help me help my people in the Smoky Mountains through this telethon and the My People Fund.”

DOLLY PARTON
REBA
KENNY ROGERS
CHRIS STAPLETON
CHRIS YOUNG
BIG AND RICH
CHRIS JANSON
LOCASH

Update Dec. 9, 2016: Several famous names have been added to the growing list of celebrities set to perform during Smoky Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund on Tuesday, Dec. 13 at 8 p.m. (EST). Chris Stapleton, Chris Young, Big & Rich, Michael W. Smith, Amy Grant, LOCASH, Chris Janson and Montgomery Gentry are just a few of the new names added to perform during the event, which also has added three new broadcast partners.

Dolly Parton and a number of her friends, including Reba McEntire, Kenny Rogers and Alison Krauss, are set to perform during Smoky Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund on Tuesday, Dec. 13 at 8 p.m. (EST) on Great American Country (GAC). All proceeds (100%) from the telethon will benefit those displaced by the recent Smoky Mountain wildfires. Dolly said,

“My home in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee is some place special. Wildfires have affected many of the people—my people—who live in those beautiful mountains. We want to provide a hand up to those families who have lost everything in the fires. I know it has been a trying time for my people and this assistance will help get them back on their feet.”

All money raised by the telethon will be distributed to families in need through the Dollywood Foundation’s My People Fund. This fund will provide $1000 each month for up to six months to Sevier County residents whose homes are uninhabitable or were completely destroyed in the recent Smoky Mountain wildfires. The fund raised more than $1 million in its first 36 hours, but the need is much greater. During the telethon, viewers will be asked to call 1-866-CARE MORE or 800-942-9026 to donate to the My People Fund.

Smoky Mountains Rise also will be simulcast across multiple radio chains, including iHeart Media’s digital and select on-air platforms, Cumulus Media’s NASH Nights LIVE, TuneIn’s Country Roads channel, and several other platforms which are set to be announced shortly. Other celebrities joining Smoky Mountains Rise will be announced in the coming days.

Anyone who would like to make a tax-deductible contribution to the My People Fund may visit DollywoodFoundation.org. For those wishing to send donations via mail, those contributions should be sent to:

My People Fund
c/o Dollywood Foundation
111 Dollywood Lane
Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

About My People Fund

Any family who lost their primary residence (renters and homeowners) due to the wildfires in Sevier County are eligible to receive assistance from the My People Fund. A pre-application for those affected is available at DollywoodFoundation.org. Completion of the pre-application is not required but is encouraged to expedite the distribution process.

The first funds will be distributed Dec. 15-16 and Dec. 19-20 from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. at the CARE MORE Assistance Center at the LeConte Events Center in Pigeon Forge, TN. One check per household per month will be issued. All recipients must show a photo I.D. Families can receive aid for up to six months. Anyone needing assistance in the application process should call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

Team DollyDolly Parton Telethon To Benefit Tennessee Wildfire Survivors

Donate to the “My People Fund”

Published November 29, 2016 / Last Updated January 5, 2017

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman

Update December 2, 2016: The My People Fund has been established to help Sevier County families who lost their homes in the wildfires. The Fund will provide $1000 each month for up to six months to any family who lost their primary residence (renters and homeowners) due to the wildfires.

The primary resident of the lost home will need to visit us in person at our CARE MORE Assistance Center located at the LeConte Center (2986 Teaster Lane, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863) on December 15, 16, 19 or 20 from 10am to 7pm.

Visit DollywoodFoundation.org and complete the My People Fund Pre-Application.

Anyone can donate to the My People Fund online or by mail. 100% of your donation will go directly to the families affected by the wildfires.

To learn more visit DollywoodFoundation.org.

Update December 1, 2016: In a video message, Dolly Parton announced a new effort by The Dollywood Company and The Dollywood Foundation to establish a fund to assist the victims of the Great Smoky Mountain wildfires in Tennessee. The new My People Fund will provide $1000 each month to Sevier County families who lost their homes.

Anyone who would like to contribute to the My People Fund may visit DollywoodFoundation.org.

More information on the program will be released on Friday, December 2. Dolly said,

“I’ve always believed charity begins at home and my home is some place special,” Parton explained. “That’s why I’ve asked my Dollywood Companies—including the Dollywood theme park, and DreamMore Resort; my dinner theater attractions including Dixie Stampede and Lumberjack Adventure; and my Dollywood Foundation—to help me establish the My People Fund.

“We want to provide a hand up to those families who have lost everything in the fires. I know it has been a trying time for my people and this assistance will help get them back on their feet.”

Special Statement: Sevier County Wildfires

Update November 29, 2016, 5:00 pm: After assessing the damage wrought by recent wildfires in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, Dollywood is focusing its efforts for the next two days supporting the community.

Dollywood hosts have joined in supporting the needs of their fellow hosts affected as well as assisting other area businesses in supplying personal care items to the shelter at the LeConte Center in Pigeon Forge and they continue to feed and house firefighters and first responders.

Thanks to the hard work by community firefighters and first responders, Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort is open to guests. The Dollywood theme park will resume normal operation on Friday, December 2 at 2 p.m.

 

Wildfires in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains continue to affect several areas of Sevier County including Dollywood. In a special message Dolly Parton said,

“I have been watching the terrible fires in the Great Smoky Mountains and I am heartbroken. I am praying for all the families affected by the fire and the firefighters who are working so hard to keep everyone safe. It is a blessing that my Dollywood theme park, the DreamMore Resort and so many businesses in Pigeon Forge have been spared.”

An assessment this morning revealed no damage to the Dollywood park itself but more than a dozen cabins managed through Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins were damaged or destroyed. Also, no damage to either Dixie Stampede nor Lumberjack Adventure.

As the cities continue to assess the damage and impact of the fires, Dollywood has suspended park operation for Wednesday, November 30. Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort will be open on a limited basis for those in need and for registered guests. Additionally, Dixie Stampede and Lumberjack Adventure have suspended show operation for Tuesday, November 29.

Last night, for the safety of our guests, resort staff evacuated families in 50 rooms staying at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and families staying in 19 cabins at Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins.

We continue to assist firefighters and rescue personnel in any way we can and will provide details of any further developments as and when they are available. For those interested in helping victims of the wildfires, contact the American Red Cross 1-800- Red Cross or text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate ten dollars to American Red Cross disaster relief.

Team DollyDonate to the “My People Fund”