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Blog > Pigeon Forge News 2011 > August 2011

These days a lot of couples and brides try to think of unique ways to make their wedding stand out from all the rest.  This doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot more money on your wedding you just have to think of very unique ideas that would set your wedding apart from the rest.  Here are a few photos of unique ways people have made their weddings memorable. 

{Here’s a different take on sending out save the dates – your guests are sure to remember this cute card!}

{Love flowers?  Try adding more to the decor than just at the table.   This is a great way to display flowers at an outdoor ceremony!}

{I love outdoor weddings but hate the fact that you can usually see the bride coming before she even gets to the isle.  These doors are the perfect way for the bride to “enter” an outdoor ceremony.}

{Think outside the box when it comes to your decorations and centerpieces.  Really think about what is unique and special to the bride and groom and use pieces that tell a story about the happy couple.  You might try using family china or favorite trinkets.}

{These customized wedding signs are cute, personable and different.  They’re a great way to make sure your guests know where the restrooms are as well as where the reception tent is.  The best part about them is they’re easy to make yourself!}

**All images via Pinterest

Posted: 8/31/2011 3:25:04 PM by Jessica Bookstaff Doppelt | with 0 comments


If you’ve driven down the parkway in Pigeon Forge you’ve noticed some interesting attractions.  From the upside down building that is Wonderworks to the large replica of the famous ocean liner, the Titanic, and the newest Hatfield and McCoy building I’m sure another wacky addition wouldn’t surprise anyone. 

That’s exactly why the owner of Wonderworks, Robin Turner, will be opening a new attraction that will rise above all the others, literally.  They have plans to build a large tethered balloon that will be located behind Wonderworks.  The balloon will be illuminated at night and a very impressive sight as you drive down the Pigeon Forge parkway.  This is obviously not your average balloon, it will stand 105 feet high on the ground.  Then the helium will carry the balloon and its passengers about 400 feet up for a view of the city and the Great Smoky Mountains.

This balloon will be smiliar to the big balloon you will find at Disneyword and other big cities in the world such as Paris and Rome.  The same company will be making and operating the Pigeon Forge Balloon.  The ride will be competely silent because it runs off of helium.  Also there will not be any ads on the balloon, so it will not become a floating billboard.  The balloon will be considered a ride but really it’s more of a leisure trip up about 400 feet for a nice view instead of a thrill ride. 

Ready to ride the balloon?  They are projected to be open by next Easter! Be sure to keep checking back for the official open date so you can be one of the first riders!

Posted: 8/31/2011 3:03:19 PM by Jessica Bookstaff Doppelt | with 0 comments


The Grand Fall Rod Run is an event that all car lovers and fans of classic cars look forward to each year, and this year is no different.  All of Pigeon Forge is gearing up for a fun weekend of classic cars and friendly faces all along the parkway September 15 – 19, 2011.  There will be classic cars lining the parkway almost all week with those excited to show off their treasures.  Starting on Wednesday, September 15 the street vendors will start lining up and you will see plenty of spectators in their lawn chairs ready to check out the cars and make new friends.

Be sure to join us for this year’s Grand Rod Run! Start planning your fall trip to Pigeon Forge today! There are plenty of things to do and fun fall events coming up!

Posted: 8/29/2011 3:26:25 PM by Jessica Bookstaff Doppelt | with 0 comments


Come help us celebrate the Grand Opening of the Great Smoky Mountain Lumberjack Feud! The official opening is August 26th, 2011 and we are so excited! The Lumberjack Feud is not your ordinary dinner show. With competing ESPN Lumberjack Athletes, ziplines, draft horses, timber dogs and gut-bustin’ comedy, it will have your family on the edge of their seats!

This ain’t no song and dance show! Taking place in a new ten million dollar arena, its axe swinging, logrolling, tree climbing, chainsaw-carving action will offer an experience unlike anything else in the Smoky Mountains! Don’t miss the rowdiest good time in the Smokies at the Lumberjack Feud! Call 865-428-8688 to make your reservations now!

Posted: 8/26/2011 3:32:44 PM by Jessica Bookstaff Doppelt | with 0 comments


If you’ve been in the Park recently, you may have noticed more bears than usual. According to Smokies Wildlife Biologist Bill Stiver the reasons for recent increases in bear/people encounters and bear activity in general are basically 2 fold-

1) This summer’s berry crop has been poor. In the low elevations where berries have already come and gone, the blackberry crop was subpar, producing berries that were small and few in numbers. The berry season that seems to be in an arrested state of development with very few blackberries ripe in the high elevation, and almost no huckleberries or blueberries to speak of. 

Typically during the break between summer berries and the fall hard mast black bears, especially in Cades Cove, have cherries to help get them through this lull, but there also seem to be few if any cherries ripe.

2)  Two seasons ago we had a fall mast crop failure, which meant that few females gave birth to cubs the following season. This put most of females on the same birth year cycle. Last year the fall mast crop was good.  Therefore, this season a very high percentage of females have cubs, which only add to the stress of the food situation.

Diminished availability of food often results in increased visibility of bears in both the front and backcountry areas of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Here’s what we all can do to be responsible users of our national park, and help protect park bears.  Always remember- A fed bear is a dead bear.  Let’s make sure we don’t contribute to bears becoming habituated to humans or our food and garbage.

- Keep campgrounds, picnic areas, parking lots, and roadside pullouts clean and litter free.

- Know before you go!  Check the Park’s website to see which backcountry sites and trails are closed because of increased bear activity.  www.nps.gov/grsm

- Spread the word.  Share this message with others you know who visit Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Help raise awareness of the need to use our park safely and responsibly.

- Never leave your backpack unattended.  When in the backcountry, use the food storage cables at all of the backcountry camping sites and shelters.  Do not leave empty backpacks or gear (which still smell like food to hungry bears) inside shelters or on the ground.

- When day hiking, if you take a break from the trail, do not leave your backpack unattended. 

You can help by reporting significant bear activity in our national park to the staff at Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  If you observe any of the following behaviors while in the Park, please report them immediately to rangers or volunteers at Sugarlands Visitors Center, Oconaluftee Visitors Center, or Cades Cove Visitors Center.

1) any bear in a developed area (day or night) such as a campground, picnic area, backcountry campsite, horse camp, etc.  BE SPECIFIC about the location or campsite.

2) bears harassing or following people along a trail.  BE SPECIFIC about the trail name and any significant information about the location along the trail if possible.

3) sick or injured bears,

4) dumpsters tipped over, or

5) any other type of unusual observation/behavior.

Posted: 8/26/2011 3:27:40 PM by Jessica Bookstaff Doppelt | with 0 comments


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