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Dollywood’s Harvest Festival Feels Fresh, Yet Familiar

Published September 22, 2020 / Last Updated September 22, 2020

The annual Harvest Festival features fall fun, immersive music and thousands of pumpkins.

After being named by USA Today as the country’s best fall theme park event last year, Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana (Sept. 25-Oct. 31) is back this season with several fresh changes that echo many of the same warm traditions that make this nationally-known event a favorite for so many.

A colorful, lively atmosphere greets guests each day as the warm autumn sun casts the surrounding Smoky Mountains in bright daylight, displaying the rich, bold hues which blanket the hillsides surrounding Dollywood. The splendor of the mountains highlights the experience for guests with many vibrant new features providing surprises for them throughout the day.

Great Pumpkin LumiNights

By night, Great Pumpkin LumiNights presented by Covenant Health continues its expansion into Wildwood Grove, providing more pumpkin perfection to enjoy. In only its fourth year, Great Pumpkin LumiNights has given families a multitude of memories to glow about. New this season, guests can purchase a reduced-price ticket which provides entry after 5 p.m. for those who want to make a quick trip to the park to experience the pumpkins as they glow to life. The limited-time offer, which is just $35 plus tax, is available online only; blackout dates apply.

“We know folks are ready to get out and enjoy the colors of fall and the fresh, crisp Smoky Mountain air,” Dolly Parton said. “This year has been challenging for everyone, but we hope the comfort they feel from coming and visiting us gives them that warm, familiar feeling they’ve shared with their friends and loved ones for so many years here at Dollywood. We have a few surprises planned this year, and I think everyone will agree this is that special escape ‘back home’ we all need right now.”

It is within this backdrop that captivating new experiences will enliven the senses of sight, sound, smell and taste. Throughout the park, reinvigorated decorations and visually-impactful landscaping techniques immerse visitors in a fresh, new look. It will be hard to overlook one of the festival’s newest additions, as guests can peruse more than a dozen colossal pumpkins, ranging from 800 to more than 1500 lbs. each. The massive displays come from growers across the East Coast who look forward to sharing their prize pumpkins with Dollywood park patrons.

Over 800 Concerts

Music plays an integral part of this festival, with the largest number of performances during any event ever at Dollywood! Guests can enjoy more than 800 concerts during the run of the festival from Southern gospel and bluegrass artists appearing on eight different outdoor stages. The sounds echo through the park, creating a highly-engaging entertainment offering. Additional artists can be found roaming the park, literally taking the music to the streets!

Fall Flavors

Culinary creations abound, thanks to the bountiful supply of crops from a Smoky Mountain harvest. The smells of smoked beef brisket, turkey legs and sausage pair nicely with the fresh tastes of fried green tomatoes, fire-roasted corn and sweet potato casserole. For sweet treats, the ever-popular pumpkin spice is in full supply with items ranging from pumpkin spice milkshakes and cinnamon rolls to a twist on the park’s beloved cinnamon bread. Pumpkin praline funnel cake, hot wassail and harvest kettle corn are perfect to carry and enjoy while admiring the beauty of Dollywood in the fall.

With so many opportunities for creating vibrant new family traditions, Dollywood’s Harvest Festival is a must-see experience this season.

Dollywood is open 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. each day of operation (Sept. 25- Oct. 31) during the Harvest Festival. The park is closed on Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the festival. For more information and a park operating calendar, please visit Dollywood.com or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

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 DollyDollywood’s Harvest Festival Feels Fresh, Yet Familiar