Dollywood's Got a Family-Friendly July in Store
By Jon Hoffman © 2012, All Rights Reserved

July is a month of mixed emotions for kids. It’s the height of summer vacation, but the new school year is just weeks away. You can make the month a memorable one by planning a trip to the Great Smoky Mountains. Specifically, make your target Pigeon Forge, Tennessee: the home of Dollywood.

Dolly Parton’s signature theme park is an ideal place for a lively afternoon, a long weekend, or a weeklong vacation. You and the kids will enjoy fun-filled times together in a family-friendly setting that rivals other theme parks.

Dollywood KidsFest

Check out Chris Perondi’s Stunt Dog Experience: a lively crew of canines that are all rescues from local pounds. These mutts take the spotlight in all their high-flying, rope-jumping, disc-catching glory. True celebrities, Chris's crew has appeared on national TV shows.  Your kids will be absolutely astonished at the tricks and antics these pups put on.

The KidsFest experience continues with the Gazillion Bubbles Show: a laser-lit extravaganza designed around 75 minutes of jaw-dropping spectacle. You and your family will not soon forget the sight of gigantic bubbles pulsating with colorful lights – especially when kids are called onstage to join the performers. The Gazillion Bubbles show runs Tuesdays through Sundays throughout July.

Splash Country

What better way to beat the July heat than by making a splash? Dollywood’s Splash Country draws big crowds of cool-seekers during the hottest months. With more than 20 water slides and thrill rides, there are plenty of attractions on tap for everyone. Among the wild rides are the Big Bear Plunge, an adventure in whitewater rafting that winds and drops through a simulated raging river, before depositing you safely into the pool.  For smaller splashers, Little Creek Falls delivers exciting, safe fun in a tyke-size pool that abounds with chutes, slides and other activities.

Dolly Parton's Stampede

Your trek through the park is bound to build up an appetite for food and fun. Dolly delivers both with the Dolly Parton's Stampede. This family favorite marks its 25th anniversary this year, and celebrates with a foot-stomping good time. Stunt riders, dancers, lumberjacks and other performers take to the arena, all to the beat of a bluegrass band. A four-course feast features kid-friendly corn, chicken and biscuits.  Yum!

Dollywood Nights

If your trip to Dollywood begins later in the month, you’ll want to include Dollywood Nights (July 30 through August 12) in your plans. During this limited-time attraction, the park remains open and the rides stay active throughout extended evening hours. Get a whole new perspective on the park when you ride the renowned rollercoasters Thunderhead, Tennessee Torpedo and Mystery Mine in the dark. And for a truly sensational experience, climb aboard Wild Eagle – America’s first wing coaster. You'll take a nighttime flight 20 stories in mid-air. Breathtaking!

Take the Plunge

July can take on a whole new appeal with a stop at Dollywood. With plenty of activities and events, it’s easy to build the ideal getaway for your family and create memories to last a lifetime.


Jon Hoffman is Reservations Manager of Volunteer Cabin Rentals specializing in Pigeon Forge vacation cabins. Visit the main website to book cabins for your next vacation in Pigeon Forge, TN.