Dollywood Theme Park

Dollywood’s “Year Of The Family” Continues With More Family Fun

Published June 15, 2017 / Last Updated June 15, 2017
Team Dolly

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
Team Dolly

New rides and shows, plus fireworks and extended park hours highlight annual summer tradition for families at Dollywood’s “Year of the Family”

To celebrate summer during Dollywood’s “Year of the Family,” the park offers families even more of what they already love—time together at the world’s friendliest theme park. Summer at Dollywood (June 17- Aug. 6) provides the ideal atmosphere for families to create lifelong memories sure to put a smile on every face. Dolly Parton said,

“Summer in the Great Smoky Mountains truly is something special. When I was growing up, our entertainment was catching lightnin’ bugs and looking up at the stars. We could only dream about what it would be like to take a family vacation together.”

New Attractions & Shows

Dollywood celebrates the season with two new attractions, Drop Line and Whistle Punk Chaser. Also, The Little Engine Playhouse will feature two new stories. Guests can look forward to spectacular nightly fireworks. And a Dollywood favorite, The Gazillion Bubbles Show, returns this summer during “Year of the Family.”

Dolly’s Nights of Many Colors, a spectacular synchronized fireworks show, paints a colorful canvas across the Smoky Mountain sky each evening. The fireworks extravaganza lights up the night at 9:30 p.m.

The Gazillion Bubbles Show is in D.P.’s Celebrity Theater, offering an amazing facility to fill with the “unbubbleievable” tricks and fun of the bubble-making spectacle. Extended park operating hours—10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily— give guests more time to create the perfect summer getaway. Additionally, Dollywood’s hours are extended to midnight for the first time ever on July 1 and 8. Dolly said,

“We had heard about big rides and shows and festivals at places like the World’s Fair, but we never dreamed that it could all be right here in the Smokies! Places like Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Dollywood are now everything we could imagine for a family vacation together.”

The Little Engine Playhouse

It’s story time again as The Little Engine Playhouse showcases two new children’s stories. Coat of Many Colors is based on Dolly’s newest children’s book of the same name. Pretend, based on Jennifer Plecas’ book, features sing-along songs that kids of all ages will enjoy. And, of course, everyone’s favorite, The Little Engine That Could, returns to the stage. It’s a delightful reminder of what can happen with just a little bit of determination.

Thrilling Rides

Dollywood guests have an amazing amount of entertainment options to enjoy during their visit. They also can experience the park’s award-winning rides in a completely different environment once the sun sets. After dark, Dollywood’s trademark attractions, like Wild Eagle and Thunderhead, provide a unique experience for those who climb aboard. These rides thrill guests who race through the summer night with no idea which way the track will turn next!

Learn more about Dollywood’s Year of the Family, or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

Team DollyDollywood’s “Year Of The Family” Continues With More Family Fun

Smoky Mountain Adventures Cast – Avie Lee Owens & Lee Parton

Published June 14, 2017 / Last Updated June 14, 2017
Team Dolly

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
Team Dolly

Introducing Diana and Andre, who play Avie Lee Owens and Lee Parton in Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Adventures.

Each night, Diana and Andre wow audiences as Avie Lee Owens and Lee Parton at Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Adventures. Together, they perform unbelievable aerial acts alongside an incredibly talented cast.
Here, they talk about how they met and developed their craft. They also chat about their different homes and share what they love most about living here in the Smoky Mountains.

Diana – Avie Lee Owens

Where are you from?
“I was born in Venezuela, and my family moved to Miami when I was nine years old.”

How is life in the Smokies different from Miami?
“It’s very different. I traded palm trees for mountains. We don’t have mountains in Miami.”

The Owens and Partons love to play family games. What types of games did you play as a child?
“I loved to draw and watched gymnastics and I danced a lot.”

So how does a girl from Miami end up starring in Smoky Mountain Adventures here in Pigeon Forge?
“I attended a special school for gymnasts. There, I was introduced to acrobatics and that’s where I started aerial training. Those things prepared me for the acts that are such a big part of the show.”

What is your favorite part of Smoky Mountain Adventures?
“I love performing the “Mountain Boy Holler Girl” scene with Andre and I really like the show opening too.”

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Diana met Andre during her training in Miami, FL. The two hit it off and have been working together for about three years before joining the Smoky Mountain Adventures cast.

Andre – Lee Parton

Where are you from?
“I was born in Siberia and yes it is way colder there than here!”

Siberia! Wow, besides the temperature, what are some of the other differences between your home and your new life here in Tennessee?
“It is really beautiful here and the climate here is nice. The forest is beautiful. In Siberia, it is mostly hills and pine trees, so there are some similarities that remind me of home.”

What kinds of games were you interested in as a kid?
“We played army and sword fighting, you know, typical boy stuff.”

How did you find your way from Siberia to Pigeon Forge?
“Sure, when I was 14 years old, I started lifting weights and really got into gymnastics more and more. I did high bar and I loved to breakdance. Later, I came to the US for more training. Then, about three years ago, I met Diana and we started working together. Our three years of experience together really helped prepare us for our performances here.”

What is your favorite thing about performing at Smoky Mountain Adventures?
“Honestly, I love that I get to do so many things. We have a really talented cast and I love that I can learn so much from the people I get to work with every day.”

Do you have a favorite part of the show?
“Yes! I love the Hootenanny. It’s so fun and lively and involves everyone.”

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Food, Songs & Dolly

Diana and Andre also sat down together to answer a few questions about the show, the dinner and, of course, Dolly Parton.

What’s your favorite part of Avie Lee’s Sunday Dinner?
Diana – “The fried chicken!”
Andre – “Yes, I like the chicken, too, and the corn on the cob.”

Do you have a favorite song from the show?
Diana – “I love ‘Something More’ I always sing it in my head during the show.”
Andre – “‘Clear Blue Morning’ that’s my favorite one.”

Outside of the show, do you have a favorite Dolly Parton song?
Diana – “Yes, ‘Jolene’ is my favorite, I love that song! I love singing it.”
Andre – “For me, it would have to be ‘9 to 5.’”

See Diana and Andre perform at Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Adventures this summer in Pigeon Forge, TN!

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Team DollySmoky Mountain Adventures Cast – Avie Lee Owens & Lee Parton

Dollywood’s Eagle Mountain Sanctuary Graduates Two Eaglets

Published June 2, 2017 / Last Updated June 15, 2017
Team Dolly

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
Team Dolly

Two eaglets born in the Eagle Mountain Sanctuary at Dollywood this season will graduate to the Hack Tower on Douglas Lake.

The American Eagle Foundation (AEF) says bald eagles Eleanor and Roosevelt became first-time parents seven weeks ago. Both showed remarkable skills as they learned to care for their eaglets, and ER2 and ER3. The eaglets grew strong and healthy under their care.

On May 30, 2017, with great care, the eaglets received a physical examination. Afterward, they were taken to the AEF Hack Tower overlooking Douglas Lake. At approximately 13 weeks of age, they will be released into the Great Smoky Mountains.

At the Hack Tower, they will be together inside their new 8’ x 8’ x 8’ nesting compartment. There they will acclimate to their new home surrounded by trees in the natural lake setting. A few years after their release, it’s possible, they could return with a mate to raise babies of their own.

While in this lake setting, the eaglets will not come into contact with humans. AEF caregivers will be there, unknown to the eaglets each day. They will provide fresh food and water (through sliding drawers) and make sure the eaglets are doing well.

The AEF’s hacking program has resulted in the release of 150 young bald eagles and 12 golden eagles from 1992 through 2016.

Plan a visit to Dollywood and see Eagle Mountain Sanctuary

Dollywood and the AEF will hold ceremonies for American Eagle Day on June 17, 2017.
Visit 
American Eagle Foundation to learn more. 

About Eagle Mountain Sanctuary at Dollywood

In July 1990, Dolly Parton announced the construction of a major eagle complex at Dollywood. The five-part complex includes Eagle Mountain Sanctuary, the country’s largest living showcase of American bald eagles; the Wings of America theater, featuring a birds of prey show; the neighboring Birds of Prey viewing facility added in 2008 which showcases raptors from the show; and an eagle breeding and rehabilitation facility which includes an eagle medical clinic and nursery that is not open to the public. Eagle Mountain Sanctuary and the Wings of America theater have entertained and educated Dollywood visitors since its April 1991 debut. As a matter of fact, one of the most often asked questions of Dollywood guests upon entering the park is, “Where are the eagles?”

The eagle complex is a cooperative effort between Dollywood and the AEF, a non-profit organization with permits from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency to possess, care for, exhibit, rehabilitate and breed birds of prey.

Team DollyDollywood’s Eagle Mountain Sanctuary Graduates Two Eaglets

Visit Dolly’s Home In The Smoky Mountains: Some Place Special

Published June 1, 2017 / Last Updated June 2, 2017
Team Dolly

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
Team Dolly

Dolly Parton invites everyone back to the Smoky Mountains – Some Place Special!

Visit the beautiful Smoky Mountains and experience nature’s renewal along with your own. Dolly invites families back to the Smokies and shares why they really are some place special. Here families can laugh, play and stay as they rejuvenate their spirit and make lasting memories together. Dolly says,

“Come on back; we’re here and better than ever.”

With the award-winning atmosphere of Dollywood theme park, America’s must-see water park, Dollywood’s Splash Country, and multiple lodging options, families can create a unique experience they’ll remember for a lifetime.

Families can also find world-class entertainment in Pigeon Forge at Dixie Stampede Dinner Attraction and Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Adventures – the all-new dinner and show now in its premier season.

Plan an exciting summer getaway in the Smoky Mountains – Some Place Special!
Dollywood
Dixie Stampede Dinner Attraction
Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Adventures

Team DollyVisit Dolly’s Home In The Smoky Mountains: Some Place Special

Extraordinary Bluegrass Entertainment & Tasty Barbeque At Dollywood

Published May 24, 2017 / Last Updated May 24, 2017
Team Dolly

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
Team Dolly

Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 26-June 4) features extraordinary bluegrass acts and delicious barbeque!

With Dollywood’s award-winning chefs offering up tasty barbeque and the biggest names in bluegrass serving up some sweet sounds, Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 26-June 4) continues the “Year of the Family” with a special treat for the senses.

Steep Canyon Rangers (May 31), Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (June 4), Dailey & Vincent (May 29), and seven-time International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Vocal Group of the Year Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver (May 28) are among the acts helping the festival reach a high note. Dolly Parton said,

“There’s no doubt bluegrass holds a special place in my heart. There is something so beautiful about the sounds of that good ol’ mountain music. That’s why it’s a treat to have these great bluegrass performers, like my good friend Rhonda Vincent, at Dollywood during my Barbeque & Bluegrass festival. These really are the best in the business, and I’m glad we’re able to share their gifts with the guests who come visit us. Heck, I might even grab a plate of those ribs and sit down and enjoy some of the shows myself!”

Award-Winning Acts

Dailey and Vincent at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Dailey and Vincent at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass
Rhonda Vincent and the Rage at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Rhonda Vincent and the Rage at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass
Hot Rize at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Hot Rize at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass
Mark O'Conner Band at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Mark O'Conner Band at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass
Steep Canyon Rangers at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Steep Canyon Rangers at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass
Flatt Lonesome at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Flatt Lonesome at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass
Blue Highway at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Blue Highway at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass
Cricket Tell the Weather at Dollywood's Barbeque and Bluegrass Cricket Tell the Weather at Dollywood's Barbeque and Bluegrass
The Gibson Brothers at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass The Gibson Brothers at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass

This year’s festival includes a number of IBMA and Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music of America (SPBGMA) award winners. Award-winning acts include Flatt Lonesome. This rising new group won the 2016 IBMA Vocal Group of the Year. They also received Album of the Year and Song of the Year the same year. The group headlines the festival on June 3. Kelsi Robertson Harrigill of Flatt Lonesome said,

“Flatt Lonesome always looks forward to being part of the Dollywood Barbeque and Bluegrass Festival. It is a great event that features all our favorite things – roller coasters, barbeque and bluegrass music, and the folks that come to the shows are always so much fun to play for. We sure hope to be part of this great festival every year!”

Artist Line-Up

An impressive calendar of bluegrass talent performs throughout the festival. Guests can enjoy more than 25 individual concerts scheduled each day on stages across the park. Legendary bluegrass group Hot Rize kicks off the festival on May 26. The Gibson Brothers (May 27) and Band of Ruhks (May 28) are also playing on opening weekend. Other Barbeque & Bluegrass performers include Blue Highway (June 3), Cricket Tell the Weather (June 3) and Farmhands (June 2). The lineup also includes the ETSU Pride Bluegrass Band (May 30). Also, catch Carson Peters and Iron Mountain (May 26) and The Loose Strings Band (May 31). Six-String Soldiers, the bluegrass arm of the United States Army Field Band, play, appropriately enough, on Sunday, May 28 and Memorial Day Monday, May 29. Andrea Asprelli of Cricket Tell the Weather said,

“As a singer and a songwriter who loves bluegrass music, it’s an honor to be able to play at Dollywood this year. I first listened to Dolly on the ‘Trio’ albums, and soon learned that her powerful vocals were just as inspiring as her creative, entrepreneurial and loving spirit.”

All concerts are free and included with park admission.

Delicious Barbeque

Dollywood’s award-winning food perfectly complements the sounds of bluegrass music’s finest. The aroma of bold barbeque wafts through the air, thanks to expertly-prepared pulled pork, smoked sausage and chicken. Bountiful barbeque entrees are accompanied by Southern favorites like baked beans, corn on the cob and more. Guests also can find a number of sweet treats to put an exclamation point on their meal!

Dollywood’s Year of The Family provides amazing new memory-making moments for families to celebrate.

Learn more about Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass online or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

Team DollyExtraordinary Bluegrass Entertainment & Tasty Barbeque At Dollywood