In early March each year, Old Man Winter releases his icy grip on the Great Smoky Mountains, and the beauty of spring begins to bloom. Springfest in the Smokies celebrates the return of warmer weather and stunning landscapes with three months of activities that send the winter doldrums packing.
Easter Sunrise Service
Experience Easter morning as heaven itself might see it, from high atop Mt. Harrison at Ober Gatlinburg. This local tradition begins with a complimentary tram ride to the top of the mountain. You'll have a bird's eye view of the spectacular vistas that surround Gatlinburg, and at the top you'll enjoy a breakfast buffet while watching the mountains come alive in the morning sunshine.
Stroll along the streets of Gatlinburg and witness the miracle of the seasons as this quaint city is transformed into a gorgeous garden overflowing with blossoms. Pansies, tulips, daffodils, petunias and more vie for your attention, and every corner turned rewards you with another beauty to behold. If wildflowers are more your style, don't miss the Annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage. Each year the Great Smoky Mountains National Park along with the University of Tennessee Botany Department and the Gatlinburg Garden Club host his seven-day event. Hikers of every skill level will enjoy seeing the wildflowers in bloom in their natural habitat.
Ribfest and Wings
While you're in town, don't forget to check out Gatlinburg's Ribfest and Wings, and make sure you grab a handful or three of napkins. This street party features live entertainment and plenty of barbecue to go around.
Springtime in the Smokies is host to some of the areas finest crafters, and the Mountain Quiltfest is the highlight of the season. This annual show features hundreds of crafters competing for more than $20,000 in prizes. If you're not quite up to competing, you can take one of 80 classes covering every aspect of quilting from making a quilted pocketbook to creating a complex Tulip Dance quilt.
No visit to Pigeon Forge is complete without a visit to Dollywood, the thrilling amusement park named for Tennessee's most famous daughter. The kids will love the waterslides and roller coasters, and you'll love the arts and crafts, and other unique gifts available in the 40 plus shops inside this fun-filled family park. Dolly herself joins the Springfest activities every year as the Grand Marshall of the annual Dolly Parade. It's an event you won't want to miss!
Experience the Smokies in an Authentic Log Cabin
There's no shortage of places to stay in Gatlinburg and the surrounding areas. Choose a rustic or luxury cabin nestled in the quiet woods or a personal chalet with breathtaking mountain views. Cabins and chalets are available to suit every couple and family regardless of size or budget. You'll find sizes ranging from single bedroom studio style up to six bedrooms. Bring the whole family, there's plenty of room!
Whether your tastes run to wild, amusement park adventures, quiet worship at sunrise, or something in between, you'll love Springfest in the Smokies. This three- month festival is packed with fun things to do for the entire family, with activities for every age range and every skill level. Come on out, the weather's great, and the ribs are grilling!
Bennie McCann is Reservations Manager of Volunteer Cabin Rentals specializing in Smoky Mountain cabins near Pigeon Forge, TN. Visit the main website to book cabins for weddings, vacations, reunions and other special events.