DOLLY PARTON ANNOUNCES $2.5 MILLION PARADE SET TO DEBUT DURING DOLLYWOOD’S SMOKY MOUNTAIN CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL

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Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas presented by Humana has long been known as one of the world’s best holiday theme park events. Dolly Parton today unveiled plans for an awe-inspiring new parade—dreamed up as only she can—which will add even more excitement to this family-favorite festival.

Named The Parade of Many Colors, the new $2.5 million addition helps make this year’s event the best and brightest in the park’s history. The parade perfectly complements Dollywood’s spectacular Christmas offerings which include four million festive lights, the remastered Christmas in the Smokies, the all-new It’s a Wonderful Life, and the joyous holiday atmosphere guests have come to enjoy during this lively festival.

Like her new NBC holiday movie, Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love, Parton’s new parade celebrates the fun, faith, family and harmony of the holidays. Vibrant floats, interactive characters and a few other surprises help spread cheer throughout Dollywood this holiday season.

“The joy I feel during the Christmas season makes my heart sing because of the love and sweet Christmas memories I have of family and friends from when I was a child,” Parton said with a smile. “Christmas is the time of year when traditions, faith and family come together to create experiences we all remember forever. That is why my new movie and this parade are so important for me. I truly believe The Parade of Many Colors will inspire some of those same lifelong memories for the families who see it.”

The Parade of Many Colors represents another significant investment made by The Dollywood Company as part of the $300 million investment strategy announced in 2013. The company also recently announced the addition of TailSpin Racer to Dollywood’s Splash Country for 2017.

Dollywood has added two days to its calendar, December 6 and 13, to provide guests more time to experience the eight-time winner for Best Christmas Event. One of Dollywood’s greatest entertainment offerings is remastered in 2016, as Christmas in the Smokies, returns to its traditional home at D.P.’s Celebrity Theater. Guests can celebrate the joy of the season while a cast of singers and dancers performs hometown holiday favorites while accompanied by a band of live musicians!

Dollywood’s entertainment team brings a Christmas classic to life with the debut of It’s a Wonderful Life. Based on the timeless holiday story of love and generosity, small town businessman George Bailey discovers the true value of life, family and friends with a little help from his guardian angel, Clarence.

For more information about Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas or The Parade of Many Colors, please visit www.dollywood.com or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

Award-winning Bluegrass Musicians, Tangy Barbeque Create Perfect Harmony During Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass

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Sweet sounds from the biggest names in bluegrass and the tangy tastes of the greatest barbeque in the South create a perfect harmony for guests during Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 13-22).  Rhonda Vincent & The Rage, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Blue Highway, Dailey & Vincent, and The Willis Clan are just a small selection of the talented bluegrass pickers taking to the stage during this annual tradition.

“It always is a special treat to have these great bluegrass performers during my Barbeque & Bluegrass festival at Dollywood,” Dolly Parton said. “There is nothing like listening to these award-winning performers when they take the stage to share their talents with our guests. There is only one thing that makes the music better and that is a plate full of our famous southern barbeque—especially the ribs!”

Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (May 15-16) are among the acts to help get the festival started on a high note. An impressive calendar of bluegrass talent performs throughout the event with more than 250 concerts scheduled during the festival. Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver set up shop May 18 while Dailey & Vincent take the stage May 18-19. Other Barbeque & Bluegrass artists include Blue Highway (May 20), The Boxcars (May 22) and Balsam Range (May 22). The lineup also includes The Willis Clan (May 15), stars of the TLC show The Willis Family.

Vincent, one of bluegrass music’s most well-known performers, is a mainstay during the park’s annual festival and says the experience is unlike any other for her.

“We always love performing at Dollywood,” exclaimed Vincent. “There’s a special excitement in the air every time we perform there, and it comes through in the show and in the response of everyone in the crowd. We can’t wait to get there!”

All concerts are free and included with park admission. For a complete lineup of concert performances and show times, please visit Dollywood.com.

Dollywood’s award-winning food perfectly complements the sounds of bluegrass music’s finest. The aroma of bold barbeque wafts through the air, thanks to expertly-prepared pulled pork, smoked sausage and chicken, and slabs of ribs. Bountiful barbeque entrees are accompanied by Southern favorites like baked beans, corn on the cob and more. Guests also can find a number of sweet treats to put an exclamation point on their meal!

From bluegrass favorites and tangy barbeque at Dollywood’s Barbeque and Bluegrass to the park’s award-winning rides and family-friendly atmosphere, every season features amazing new memory-making moments to celebrate.

For more information about Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass, please call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD or visit www.dollywood.com.

Dollywood Announces Lightning Rod, A Launching Wooden Coaster, for 2016

Dollywood today announced the addition of Lightning Rod, both the world’s fastest wood coaster and the world’s first launching wood coaster. Set to roll to the starting line in March 2016, Lightning Rod adds another groundbreaking roller coaster to the park’s already impressive portfolio of world-class attractions. The thrilling $22 million ride also marks the single largest attraction investment in The Dollywood Company’s history.

Themed after a tricked out 1950s-era hot rod, Lightning Rod launches riders from zero to 45 mph more than 20 stories up its lift hill to one of the ride’s first airtime moments. At the crest of the hill, riders face twin summit airtime hills before tackling the daring first drop. Lightning Rod races down the 165-foot drop and propels guests along its 3,800-ft. track to a top speed of 73 mph, the fastest speed for a wood coaster in the world.

“Lightning Rod reminds me so much of those colorful cars cruisin’ up and down Main Street in downtown Sevierville back when I was in high school. I remember all those souped up cars; but what I remember most were those good lookin’ boys behind the wheel with those flat top and ducktail haircuts,” Dolly Parton said with a laugh.

“I’m truly excited about this ride because it will let our guests experience something just as fast as those hot rods I remember,” she continued. “Even better, it’s the fastest wooden roller coaster in the world, so I think we’re going to see a lot of people coming from all over to peel out on the Lightning Rod.”

Located in Dollywood’s Jukebox Junction, Lightning Rod rockets riders around its massive wooden structure on an adrenaline-charged lap through the trees in the hills and valleys surrounding Dollywood. During the ride, guests experience nearly 20 seconds of airtime. The coaster train is comprised of 12 cars, carrying two passengers each, for a total of 24 people per train.

Dollywood’s development team has tapped Rocky Mountain Construction (RMC) as the ride manufacturer. RMC is no stranger to out-of-the-box coaster projects, having designed a number of innovative attractions around the world. Lightning Rod employs several unique features including the lift hill launch, twin summit airtime hills, a 90+ degree banked breaking wave turn, a 90+ degree outside banked turn, and a non-inverting half loop.

Lightning Rod puts riders in the driver’s seat of Johnny Rev’s newest hot rod. After months of tinkering, Johnny invites Dollywood guests to step behind the wheel for the first test drive of his flashy new creation. Like any proper hot rod, massive header pipes and an imposing injector scoop peer out from the train’s flamed bodywork.

Lightning Rod is the newest member of The Dollywood Company’s collection of award-winning attractions. In March 2012, Dollywood opened the $20 million Wild Eagle, the country’s first wing coaster. The company introduced RiverRush, Tennessee’s first and only water coaster, at Dollywood’s Splash Country in 2013. FireChaser Express, the nation’s first dual-launch family coaster, was added at Dollywood in 2014. Dollywood mainstays Thunderhead, consistently among the world’s top five wood coasters, Mystery Mine, Blazing Fury and Tennessee Tornado round out the park’s list of innovative coasters.

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For more information about Dollywood’s attractions, please visit www.Dollywood.com or call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD.

Dollywood announcing record-breaking 2016 attraction project on Friday, August 7

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On Friday, August 7 we will be attending a news conference at Dollywood where they will be announcing their new for 2016 ride! From the invite: “Join Dolly Parton as The Dollywood Company announces exciting details about the newest attraction racing in to Dollywood Theme Park. Set to open in 2016, the innovative project marks the largest attraction investment in the history of the award-winning park.”

This record-breaking attraction represents the next project in the $300 million expansion plan first announced by Parton in 2013.” This should be where we learn the details of the rumored RMC launching wooden coaster, ‘Lightning Rod’. We will be bringing you updates starting at 10:30 am central time. Keep an eye on our twitter  and our Facebook  as we learn about this exciting new attraction!