It’s almost time for one of our favorite summer celebrations: the Fourth of July is just weeks away! You’ll find many ways to celebrate the nation’s birthday with a BANG here in Pigeon Forge! From the all-day festival in Patriot Park to the fireworks extravaganza in Gatlinburg, you’ll have a blast when you celebrate the Fourth in Pigeon Forge!
Here are 5 ways to celebrate the 4th of July in the Great Smoky Mountains!
1. Check out Patriot Festival.
Patriot Festival is Pigeon Forge’s annual Fourth of July extravaganza, held each year at Patriot Park – located at light #7 behind the Old Mill Restaurant. We’re especially excited about this year’s event and can’t wait to celebrate with the food, games and FUN on tap. This free festival will feature carnival style games and inflatables for little ones, food vendors for the entire family and an array of musicians performing on stage, including the Pigeon Forge Community Chorus, the Tim Kellar Band, bluegrass group Adkins and Loudermilk, the Jimmy Buffet tribute band Sons of Sailors and the event headliners Lonestar!
The festival will open at noon on July 4, 2014, and will close with a banging fireworks display around 10 p.m. Some parking will be available at Patriot Park, but we recommend parking in the community/municipal lot off Teaster Lane and taking the free shuttle to the park. It’s also a good idea to bring lawn chairs and blankets as seating also fills quickly!
2. Parade down the Parkway in Gatlinburg.
Celebrate the birth of the nation before anyone else! This year’s first Fourth of July Parade will begin at 11:59 p.m. on July 3 in downtown Gatlinburg, Tennessee! This fun annual celebration will feature music, floats and more, and gives you a chance to enjoy the annual festivities and a cool nighttime setting.
This year’s parade will feature the 572nd U.S. Air Force Band, members of the U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marines, U.S. Air Force, and U.S. Coast Guard – plus vintage military vehicles, local area public safety agencies and many other local personalities. The parade route extends through Downtown Gatlinburg, from traffic light #1A on East Parkway, with the parade turning south onto Parkway at traffic light #3, then traveling the length of the downtown street to traffic light #10 at Ski Mountain Road.
3. Experience the Great American Summer at Dollywood.
The Fourth of July is all about Americana, and there’s no better place to experience this sense of nationalism and pride than at Dollywood during the Great American Summer festival! July 4th is the perfect time to experience the magic, wonder and shows of a full day with Dolly!
The Pigeon Forge theme park is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. throughout the festival. For more information, including planning information, click over to PigeonForge.com/Dollywood!
4. Enjoy the best of Pigeon Forge barbecue!
Chow down with the best in American eating for the Fourth – and we mean barbecue! Tennessee barbecue is famous around the world for its special flavor that’s the perfect combination of smoky, savory and sweet!
Our favorite Smoky Mountain barbecue joint is Bennett’s Pit BBQ. From appetizers to dessert, their menu will make your mouth water and help you get excited about this uniquely American experience!
5. Celebrate with fireworks over the Great Smoky Mountains.
Each year, the City of Gatlinburg celebrate the Fourth of July with a BOOM! The city’s annual fireworks display attracts nearly 100,000 viewers to the downtown area to see an amazing aerial display with the stunning setting of the Great Smoky Mountains.
The mountain skyline will erupt with booms and bangs and oohs and aahs at 10 p.m. on Friday, July 4. The show will start near Parkway light #3 in Downtown Gatlinburg, and can be seen throughout the city. We recommend arriving early to stake out your spot along the Parkway for the display. We’ve personally had a great time viewing in front of Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies!
How are you planning to spend the Fourth of July? This is one of the most popular times of year in the Smokies, and if you’re planning to celebrate here, it’s wise to book your lodging now. You’ll find that cabins, hotels and condos fill up quickly for this special weekend! Browse Pigeon Forge lodging now at PigeonForge.com.