Summertime Fun (and beyond) in the Smokies


If you’ve ever been to Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg, you know there is never a shortage of things to do. Miniature golf, laser tag, go karts, WonderWorks, the Titanic Museum Attraction, indoor skydiving, helicopter tours, hiking and biking, horseback riding, Cades Cove, the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community, the Hollywood Wax Museum, Dollywood and Dollywood’s Splash Country, arcades, The Escape Game, Ober Gatlinburg, The Island, Smoky Mountain Ziplines, Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies…the list goes on and on – and that’s just the attractions.

When you’re hungry you can fill up on funnel cake, ice cream, steak, seafood, tacos, burgers, pizza, pasta, creamy fudge, donuts, old-fashioned candy, fresh-pulled taffy, pancakes, biscuits and gravy, apple fritters, barbecue, Southern favorites, German treats, and more.

Then there’s the shopping. Brand-name shops like New Balance, Banana Republic Factory Store, Carter’s, Disney, Gymboree, Polo Ralph Lauren, Columbia, Fossil, Jared Vault, Bass, Brighton Collectibles, Corningware, Kirkland’s, and Bath & Body Works keep you busy at the Tanger Outlets, or you can head to Gatlinburg to browse at The Village shops. Along the Parkway in Pigeon Forge, unique stores sell everything from doll clothes, baskets, quilts, As Seen On TV gear, and knives to specialty jerky and spices, personalized kids’ toys, handcrafted belts, books, and Smoky Mountain souvenirs.

So add to the shopping, dining, and attraction choices in the Smokies a jam-packed community calendar, and you have an endless supply of things to do on vacation! Here as a couple? Check out wineries, arts and crafts fairs, moonshine distilleries, outlet shops, and romantic picnic spots in the Smokies. Coming with family? Play games, visit family-friendly attractions, and check out events like the cornhole tournament, car show, or Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales. There really is something for everyone in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, so come explore and find out why they call them the Great Smoky Mountains!

Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales | now – July 29 | Gatlinburg
As you stroll the streets of Gatlinburg, stop to tap your toes to the sounds of the mountains, presented by talented costumed performers and local artists.

Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair | July 14 – 23
Browse the booths at this annual favorite for great gifts, special pieces for home, or the perfect souvenir from your trip to the Great Smoky Mountains. You’ll find everything from pottery, baskets, and handmade jewelry to wood carvings, leather goods, and art.

SEAA Girls’ Fast Pitch World Series | July 17 – 23 | Pigeon Forge
Head to Wear Farm City Park on Wears Valley Road to watch the teams face off at the 2017 SEAA Girls’ Fast Pitch World Series tournament!

Celebrate Freedom | August | Pigeon Forge
To honor those who give and have given so much for our country, Pigeon Forge features “Celebrate Freedom” all through the month of August. That means discounts at businesses throughout the area for active-duty military and veterans, firefighters, police officers, and emergency responders.

8th Annual Smoky Mountain Cornhole Tournament | August 5 | Pigeon Forge
Held in The Old Mill Square, this annual cornhole tournament is part of Stringtime in the Smokies – a festival devoted to bluegrass music, food, games and more. The tournament is held in honor of Sgt. Brett Benton and is a great way to honor his legacy and have some fun with family and friends!

Shades of the Past Rod Run #35 | September 8 -9 | Pigeon Forge
Bringing in thousands of visitors each year, the Shades of the Past Rod Run is a showcase of hundreds of beautifully restored hot rods. They duke it out for the $10,000 cash prize and a 1932 Hi-Boy Roadster while others come to browse and chat with owners.

Dollywood National Southern Gospel & Harvest Celebration | September 29 – October 28
Buy regular Dollywood park admission during this event and you’ll enjoy free gospel concerts, great Southern food, and meeting talented artisans from around the United States.