Pigeon Forge, Tennessee - CBS46 News

Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

When you think Pigeon Forge, you probably think Dollywood, right?

And as a HUGE Dolly Parton fan, there's nothing wrong with that initial impression of this mountain town. But there's a great history here too, and so much to do and see.

Okay, so first of all, what's the deal with the pigeons?  Pigeon Forge gets its name from the passenger pigeons that once were abundant in the region, and an iron forge that was part of the early settlers' lives.

If you're a history buff – you'll be in heaven – a not-to-be-missed stop is at The Old Mill, built in 1830. It still operates today, grinding corn and other grains for use in the Old Mill Restaurant and the Pottery House Café and Grille. It is on the National Register of Historic Places.

If you're a nature buff – this is a nature lover's paradise. Nestled in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains,  Pigeon Forge is a gateway to America's most visited national park, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Its annual visitation is more than nine million, covers 800 square miles and is the largest piece of wilderness in the eastern U.S.

Every January, Pigeon Forge salutes Great Smoky Mountains National Park with an event called Wilderness Wildlife Week. Almost 100 wildlife experts, nature photographers, historians and musicians present an array of programs and outdoor activities... and it's all free, a gift from the City of Pigeon Forge.

If you're a theatre buff  -- Pigeon Forge has more than a dozen theaters. Because several offer more than one production, visitors can choose among approximately 20 shows - music, comedy, magic and more.

If you like an active vacation – If you're one of those people that just has to be bopping around the whole time you're on a trip, you're in luck. You could fill a whole week with horseback riding, whitewater rafting, rock climbing or mountain biking.  There's even indoor skydiving, thrill rides, go-karts, laser tag and arcades.

If you like a relaxing vacation – there's many options of where to lay your pretty head at night after a day of sightseeing: cabins or camping give you the true Pigeon Forge experience, while great luxury hotel and condo options are great too, if you just want to be pampered. C'mon, you deserve it.

And, of course, if you're a Dolly fan – here's what you need to know about Dollywood:

  • Entertainer Dolly Parton, namesake of Dollywood, was born near Pigeon Forge in surrounding Sevier County. Dollywood, which is inside Pigeon Forge, is Tennessee's most-visited, ticketed tourist attraction.
  • At the Dollywood theme park, there is something for everyone to enjoy! This Pigeon Forge attraction has been recognized as one of the world's best theme parks, with the international Applause Award. From late March through December, Dollywood amusement park offers thrilling rides, award-winning entertainment and master craftsmen.
  • Here you'll discover great rides including the new family thrill ride Barnstormer! Plus there's the thrilling Thunderhead and Mystery Mine roller coasters.
  • While at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, TN you can enjoy country, bluegrass, classic rock ‘n' roll and Southern gospel music. There's with more than 30 performances daily! Don't miss Sha-Kon-O-Hey!—Land of Blue Smoke, a musical celebration of the people, spirit and heritage of the Great Smoky Mountains featuring eight songs written by Dolly. After a day at Dollywood theme park cool down at Dollywood's Splash Country waterpark.
  • Plus, throughout the season, Dollywood hosts five of the South's largest festivals.

So, are you ready to book your trip to Pigeon Forge? Don't just take my word for it, check out www.MyPigeonForge.com, and I'll see ya at Dollywood!

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