Nearly 450 Bluegrass artists appearing at Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Presented By BUSH'S®

Perhaps the best way to celebrate the approaching summer is a trip to Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass presented by BUSH’S®, May 24-June 2. Thanks to an impressive lineup of talented bluegrass musicians and menus full of expertly-prepared barbeque from Dollywood’s culinary team, the hardest part for guests may be deciding where to start! This 10-Day festival runs May 24 - June 2.

Celebrated Bluegrass Artists

The event kicks off in style with a blockbuster opening weekend featuring bluegrass music’s biggest names performing at DP’s Celebrity Theater. Multi-time International Bluegrass Music Association Vocal Group of the Year, Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver (May 24), and the “Queen of Bluegrass” Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (May 25-26) headline the first three days of the festival. The hits keep coming from the finest musicians in the genre, including Dailey & Vincent (May 27-28).

Artists appearing at DP’s Celebrity Theater:

  • Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver (May 24)
  • Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (May 25-26)
  • Dailey & Vincent (May 27-28)
  • The Grascals (May 29)
  • Sister Sadie (May 30)
  • Flatt Lonesome (May 31)
  • Joe Mullins and The Radio Ramblers (June 1)
  • Blue Highway (June 2)

One of the largest bluegrass events around, Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass offers guests more than 40 individual performances—all included with park admission—every day of the festival. That means nearly 450 bluegrass performances take place during the run of the event.

Groups featured at Dollywood’s Showstreet Palace Theater:

  • Sugar & The Mint (May 24)
  • Former America’s Got Talent contestants Summer Brooke and the Mountain Faith Band (May 26)
  • Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper (May 27)
  • Lonesome River Band (May 28)
  • The Kenny and Amanda Smith Band (June 1)
  • Volume Five (June 2)

Additional performances take place at The Plaza Stage at Wilderness Pass:

  • Gate 10 (May 24)
  • The Burnett Sisters (May 28)
  • Turning Ground (May 30)
  • Unbridled Strings (June 2)

Several roving performers keep the sweet sounds of bluegrass music echoing throughout the streets of Dollywood, including the unique championship buckdancing and fiddling of Nashville’s Hillary Klug (May 24-June 2).

For a complete lineup of concert performances and show times, please visit or view the Dollywood App. It’s a heaping helping of free daily concerts from an amazing collection of talented performers.

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Stellar Barbeque Selections

Dollywood’s award-winning foods team has turned up the heat on the culinary offerings during this festival with a plethora of delights that perfectly complement the amazing music ringing through the air. Traditional items, including smoked ribs and slow-smoked pulled pork highlight the menu, while a number of additional options are sure to become favorites.

Dollywood chefs took advantage of the park’s partnership with BUSH’S® Beans to include several tantalizing recipes, including Cowboy Kettle Beans, while BBQ pork nachos, roasted corn on the cob, and even BBQ shrimp skewers are sure to be hits.

For more information, show times and food information for Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass presented by BUSH’S®, please call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD, visit or download the Dollywood App.

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Dollywood’s Season of Showstoppers really heats up during Barbeque & Bluegrass presented by BUSH’S® May 25 - June 10.

The festival features a stellar lineup of bluegrass music’s best artists as well as expertly-prepared barbeque from Dollywood’s Golden Ticket Award-winning foods team.

The opening weekend of the festival kicks off with The Gibson Brothers (May 25) and the “Queen of Bluegrass” Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (May 26-27). Dailey & Vincent (May 29-30), Molly Tuttle (May 31) and The Seldom Scene (June 5) are among the headliners during the festival. Seven-time International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Vocal Group of the Year Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver (June 7) also makes an appearance during the event.

“When I decided this would be the Season of Showstoppers,” Dolly Parton began, “I couldn’t wait to see what kind of talent our folks would be able to round up to perform during my Barbeque & Bluegrass festival. Well, I’ll tell you they definitely did me proud, because it’s quite the lineup. It’s always a real treat to have these performers with us, folks like Doyle Lawson and my good friend Rhonda Vincent. All these performers are the best in the business.

“Plus our foods team—which won a pretty big award last year—is cooking up some great barbeque to go along with all that good music. You know how much I love their ribs! I suggest everyone sit down with a big plate of them and take in those beautiful bluegrass sounds.”


Doyle Lawson is a regular during this festival. He counts Dollywood among the best places to perform. He said,

“Just as Dolly is an exciting entertainer, Dollywood is an exciting place to entertain! Great venue, great audience.”

An impressive calendar of bluegrass talent performs throughout the festival with more than 350 individual concerts—all included with park admission—scheduled during the festival.

Groups Performing In Celebrity Theater:
The Grascals (May 28)
Blue Highway (June 2)
Flatt Lonesome (June 3)
Darin and Brooke Aldridge (June 10)

Groups Performing In Showstreet Palace Theater:
Po’ Ramblin’ Boys (May 25)
Phil Leadbetter’s Bluegrass All-Stars (June 9)
America’s Got Talent semi-finalists Mountain Faith (May 30)

For a complete lineup of concert performances and show times, please visit or view the Dollywood App.

Darin and Brooke Aldridge make their first trip to perform at Dollywood and eagerly anticipate performing at the place they’ve grown up visiting for years.

“We are so excited to make our very first appearance at Dollywood this June,” Brooke Aldridge said. “It’s been a theme park we’ve always loved and attended since we were kids. The shows there are always stellar, and we can’t wait to showcase our musical talents in Dollywood’s family-friendly environment.”


Fresh off Amusement Today’s 2017 Golden Ticket Award for Best Theme Park Food, Dollywood’s foods team offers dining options that create a sweet harmony with the music from the finest in bluegrass. Traditional items, including hickory-smoked ribs, slow-smoked pulled pork and beef brisket, highlight the menu, while a number of new favorites make their debut.

Dollywood chefs took advantage of the park’s new partnership with BUSH’S® Beans to create several tantalizing new recipes, including Cowboy Kettle Beans. BBQ pork nachos, pork belly mac & cheese, and the BBQ bowl—featuring pulled pork atop Dollywood’s famous BIG SKILLET potatoes—are new this year. Chicken and waffles funnel cake, Dollywood’s twist on chicken & waffles, appears for the first time as well. Grilled watermelon salad and a bacon-wrapped hot dog on a pretzel roll also are new in 2018.

For more information, show times and food information for Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass presented by BUSH’S®, please call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD, visit or download the new Dollywood App.

Showcasing acts from the park's upcoming year, Dolly Parton helped launch Dollywood's Season of Showstoppers during a special preview event.

Dollywood kicked off its 33rd season with a special preview event hosted by Dolly Parton. This incredible year is one which surely will be remembered for the amazing quality of entertainment. Dollywood's entertainment team invested $1 million more in its 2018 offerings than any other single year of entertainment in its history.

The preview event featured performances by the National Dance Company of Siberia, PAINTJAM featuring Ricardo Barazza, Janie Fricke, Orleans, Larnelle Harris and others. For the finale, Dolly joined Ladysmith Black Mambazo backed by Orleans for a beautiful performance of "Peace Train." Dolly recorded the song written by Cat Stevens on her 1996 "Treasures" album which featured Ladysmith Black Mambazo.

Dollywood has won Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Award for Best Theme Park Entertainment for nine years. And with 2018's commitment, the park again looks to lead the way for the award.

Dollywood's Season of Showstoppers

Festival of Nations (March 16 -- April 9)
Spring Mix Music Series (April 11 - April 29)
Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 25 - June 10)
Summer Celebration (June 16 - August 5)
Rock The Smokies (August 25)
Harvest Festival (September 28 - November 3)
Smoky Mountain Christmas (November 10 - January 5)

Aunt Granny's

Opening day also served as the unveiling of the newly renovated Aunt Granny's restaurant. The eatery is named after the affectionate nickname Dolly's nieces and nephews have for her as she acts as both aunt and granny to them as well as to some of her younger siblings. The restaurant is one of the parks original features. Its buffet style dining offers guests delicious comfort foods including Mama's Stone Soup. Read famous Stone Soup story in A Mother's Love & Inspiration - Avie Lee Parton.

For more information about multi-day ticket options, 2018 Dollywood season passes or Dollywood’s Season of Showstoppers visit or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

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Photo Credit: Curtis Hilbun

Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass has arrived with award-winning bluegrass artists and delicious tastes of the greatest barbeque in the South.

Sweet sounds from the biggest names in bluegrass and the tangy tastes of the greatest barbeque in the South create a perfect harmony for guests during Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 13-22). Rhonda Vincent & The Rage, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Blue Highway, Dailey & Vincent and The Willis Clan are just a small selection of the talented bluegrass pickers taking to the stage during Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass. Dolly Parton said,

“It always is a special treat to have these great bluegrass performers during my Barbeque & Bluegrass festival at Dollywood. There is nothing like listening to these award-winning performers when they take the stage to share their talents with our guests. There is only one thing that makes the music better and that is a plate full of our famous southern barbeque—especially the ribs!”

Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (May 15-16) are among the acts to help get the festival started on a high note. An impressive calendar of bluegrass talent performs throughout the event with more than 250 concerts scheduled during the festival. Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver set up shop May 18 while Dailey & Vincent take the stage May 18-19. Other Barbeque & Bluegrass artists include Blue Highway (May 20), The Boxcars (May 22) and Balsam Range (May 22). The lineup also includes The Willis Clan (May 15), stars of the TLC show "The Willis Family."

Rhonda Vincent, one of bluegrass music’s most well-known performers, is a mainstay during the park’s annual festival and says the experience is unlike any other for her. Rhonda said,

“We always love performing at Dollywood. There’s a special excitement in the air every time we perform there, and it comes through in the show and in the response of everyone in the crowd. We can’t wait to get there!”

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, and slabs of ribs. 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!

From bluegrass favorites and tangy barbeque at Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass to the park’s award-winning rides and family-friendly atmosphere, every season features amazing new memory-making moments to celebrate.

All concerts are free and included with park admission. Discover more about Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

Stars of their own reality show on TLC, The Willis Clan will bring their special brand of music and entertainment to Dollywood's Barbeque & Bluegrass Festival on May 15.

Whether it’s performing for the nation on "America’s Got Talent," sharing the stories of their day-to-day life on their own TLC reality show, or treating Dollywood guests to a toe-tapping concert, the Willis family shows no signs of slowing down.

Among the many talented performers during Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 13-22), The Willis Clan is slated to take the stage on May 15 for what promises to be a fun show for guests. The extremely talented family band is comprised of Toby and Brenda Willis’ 12 children. While the band has performed at Dollywood in the past, it was a recent appearance on NBC’s "America’s Got Talent" which saw their fortunes rise.

As one may expect, playing on national television was a game-changer for the family. The family’s third-oldest child, Jennifer, serves as the road manager for the band. She is also a multi-talented musician, counting the accordion, fiddle, piano, mandolin, electric and acoustic guitar, banjo and ukulele among her instruments of choice. Jennifer said,

"'America’s Got Talent' changed our normal life. Our fan base really grew because of it. We didn’t get as far as we would have liked, but it was enjoyable and everything happens for a reason. TLC saw us on the show and that is how the ball started rolling."

While their time on season nine of "America’s Got Talent" ended in the quarterfinals, TLC saw great potential in the family, creating a show named "The Willis Family" to document their daily experiences. The Willis Clan sees the show as an opportunity to inspire their viewers through both good and bad times they may be facing. Jennifer commented,

"There are pros and cons to a reality show. The pros are that it is great exposure for the band, and we love sharing our talents, our music and our core family values. The downsides are that people see when you struggle through things. They see when you have bad days, but we think it is important for people to see what is authentic. If everything was always good, people couldn’t relate. We all struggle; we want to be good role models by the ways in which we handle our issues."

Watching the show, viewers quickly understand two things; The Willis Clan likes to have fun, and they enjoy doing what they love as a family. Jennifer said,

"We feel so blessed and fortunate to do what we love as our business, and on top of that, we feel honored to do it with our family. So many people have to leave their family to do their job, we feel blessed to have the opportunity to do what we do with family."

When it comes to having fun, there is no better place for The Willis Clan to perform than Dollywood. Having visited the park as both guests and performers, Willis says her family knows they are in for a treat every time they visit the award-winning park. She said,

"We absolutely love it. I was born in Chicago, so I was a city kid. When I was young, coming to Dollywood was a blast. It was a highlight of the year to go to Dollywood. The rides and the theme park are great, but being from a musical family, and an artistic family in general, we loved the music, the crafts and the shops, too.

"Dollywood was the whole package for us. Mom and Dad, all the way down to the younger kids, could enjoy it. Coming to play now is such an honor for us because it was such a magical place to us growing up, and we love being integrated in to it now."

For guests ready to see the family in action, Willis said there may be a few surprises in store during the Dollywood appearance. Jennifer explained,

"The band is going through some good changes. People are growing up and starting to take on new roles. The show will have a great variety, lots of music, definitely some dancing, but you may see new members of the band getting up and performing. You also may see other members doing things they wouldn’t normally do. People are starting to branch out, and we are really excited about it."

Discover more about Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass



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