DOLLYWOOD & Splash Country
Pigeon Forge, Tenn.
Herschend Family Entertainment
---- THE LATEST BUZZ ----
(5/7/21) Dollywood Ready To Open Splash County with DreamMore Waterpark Room Packages (MORE...)
(3/13/21) Dollywood's Summer Celebration Will Be Out of This World (MORE...)
(3/12/21) Dollywood - Mystery Mine and Lightning Rod Details From Passholder Preview (MORE...)
(2/27/21) More Details About What's New for 2021 (MORE...)
(2/26/21) Lightning Rod Seen Testing And Should Be Ready When The Park Opens (MORE...)
Dixie Stampede (2016) Review
FireChaser Express - Grand Opening & Review
Dolly’s Splash Country Waterpark - Official Screamscape Review
Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort - Official Screamscape Review
General Park News - (5/7/21) Dollywood’s Splash Country waterpark is now set to open for the season on May 15th and if you haven’t seen what Splash Country is like, then be sure to check out Screamscape’s highlight video of the park below. Without a doubt, Dolly’s Splash Country is one of my all time favorite waterparks.
And while we’re on the subject of Splash Country, there is currently a special waterpark package available to guests looking to stay at Dolly’s DreamMore Resort that comes with four free tickets to Dollywood’s Splash Country waterpark good for the 2021 waterpark season (May 15 - Sept. 6) that is worth checking out.
(3/13/21) Dollywood has announced a few more details about what guests can expect this summer as part of Dollywood’s Summer Celebration event, taking place June 25 through July 31. “New during Summer Celebration is a groundbreaking, multi-sensory experience that paints the night sky above Dollywood with stunning animations and superior storytelling to create a symphony of light that represents a true evolution in traditional theme park entertainment.”
”Taking place every night during Summer Celebration, this sensational show features hundreds of drones flying high above the Smoky Mountain destination to create stunning 3D animations that tell a dynamic, Dollywood-exclusive story. As seen at some of the biggest events around the world, the drones—which are accented by a musically-choreographed fireworks show—create a visual and audial event of epic proportions.”
“As part of the half-a-million-dollar production, a hyped DJ and energetic dancers bring the fun to the streets in Wildwood Grove and make guests part of the action during a 30-minute party that ensures every member in the family is on their feet. As the dancing nears its finale, the party takes to the sky when the drones launch into the air for an unforgettable end to the evening.”
Later in the year the park will put on Dollywood’s Harvest Festival (Sept 24 through Oct 30) along with Dollywood’s Great Pumpkin LumiNights after dark. Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas will then take place from Nov. 6 through Jan. 2, 2022.
Before all that Dollywood’s Flower & Food Festival will kick into gear from Apr 23 through to June 7, featuring amazing floral displays throughout the park the return of the popular Umbrella Sky display from last year and a wide assortment of special foods and culinary treats to enjoy.
(2/27/21) Dollywood released a few more details about what’s going on right now at the park on their blog. As expected, the Festival of Nations event will not happen in 2021 once again, as international travel restrictions for the various performance acts will not allow it. Instead the park will focus on more domestic performers, including some of Dolly’s own family members who will hit the stage in Harmonies of the Heart.
During the Flower & Food Festival event (April 23 - June 7) the park will introduce several contemporary Christian and Southern gospel groups as part of the Melodies of Spring concert series that will include over 25 different bands. Oh, and Dollywood will offer a Dining Day Pass for the Festival, for $29.99 you can choose any fire entrees to sample from the festival menu throughout the day!
Regarding the coasters, it seems like most of them have been getting some TLC over the winter. We’ve been reporting on Lightning Rod replacing most of the previous “Topper Track” with new IBox track from RMC, but according to the blog “the same team is also working on Blazing Fury for us. We plan to keep this ride for a long time, so trackwork is very important!” So Blazing Fury is getting work done by RMC? Consider me very curious now! Of course longtime readers know that Blazing Fury, as one of the park’s oldest rides, has been the subject of countless upgrades over the years to both the ride system as well as updates to the scenery and lighting within.
The park also confirms more work has been done to Thunderhead, which once again has been a process taking place every off-season for many years now. While Thunderhead got a little rough around the time Lightning Rod opened, it was wild, crazy and fun in 2020 so I can’t wait to enjoy it again in 2021 after the latest batch of improvements.
Dollywood has confirmed that Mystery Mine wont be ready to open with the park however, as it takes a little longer to get everything they need from the manufacturer (Gerstlauer) overseas, so they expect Mystery Mine to “open a few weeks after Dollywood opens for the season”. As we reported last time, new track for the outdoor portion of the ride has now arrived on site, as this section of the ride will be getting rebuilt to make it smoother and more enjoyable.
Elsewhere in the park, they’ve been working on widening several of the park’s more narrow pathways (especially in Craftsman’s Valley) and to add more dining space for guests to enjoy at various food stands and eateries, including the Dogs N Taters stand and a new covered eating area for Hickory House.
One more big change is the removal of the park’s old blacksmith shop, which is being relocated and upgraded into a bigger facility that will give guests the opportunity to make your very own knife. The new blacksmith shop will be ready to open with the park, but various other interactive elements will be added to it later in the season.
(2/17/21) Dollywood has posted an update to their Blog this week showcasing the official list of in-park Entertainment and Shows you will find when the park opens for the 2021 season. Yes, live entertainment is coming back to Dollywood this year, as they are sure to mention that all of the park’s theaters will be open once again. Make the jump on over to read all about what’s coming to the park when it opens and even more acts will be announced as the Flower & Food Festival begins.
(2/3/21) Dollywood has announced that the park is expecting to open for the 2021 season on March 13. They have also set the dates for this year’s Flower & Food Festival to take place from April 23 through to June 7 where the park experience will be enhanced with large plant sculptures and other special decor, plus an assortment of special food items to try.
(1/22/20) In a press release from Dollywood, they passed on the unfortunate news that Dolly Parton’s brother, Randy Parton, had passed away at the age of 67 after a long battle with Cancer. Randy used to travel the road with his sister Dolly as her original bass player in the ‘Family Band’ before retiring from the road to work at Dollywood where there is a good chance you may have seen him perform over the years.
My condolences go out to Dolly and the entire Dollywood family for their loss.
(1/20/21) The Dollywood Blog has posted a new update showing off a lot of the off-season work that has now started at the park. In addition to removing all the Christmas decor, they mention that the Blacksmith & Foundry is being relocated to provide more space to the Hickory House eatery, such as a new covered dining area. While not going into detail they also mention that in addition to Lightning Rod, Mystery Mine and Thunderhead will be getting a lot of attention over the off season as well.
(12/8/20) I took some of the Screamscape crew out to Dollywood the day before Thanksgiving for a quick look around the park at the Smoky Mountain Christmas lights, and for a quick look to see what’s going on over at Lightning Rod for 2021. (Click here for Lightning Rod photos). In addition to our photos from the visit, Dollywood has also sent out a video featuring one of Santa’s elves who tells us about the kind of experience with Santa guests to the park are getting in 2020.
(11/29/20) Dollywood has announced the park’s longtime leader, Craig Ross, will be depart Dollywood to take on a new corporate role of COO at the Herschend Family Entertainment main office. So our congratulations to Craig Ross in his new leadership role!
Replacing Craig Ross at Dollywood will be Eugene Naughton who joined the park back in late 2019 as a VP of Park Operations. Naughton came to Dollywood with over 30 years of experience in the theme park biz, serving at other parks for both Six Flags and Paramount Parks over the years.
(10/20/20) According to the local news one of Dollywood’s historic steam train engines caught fire on Sunday evening. The fire started while Engine #70 (aka: Cinderella) was in the backstage maintenance area when some grease on the side of the engine started a small fire. The good news is that the fire was put out quickly and no one was injured.
As of Monday, the Dollywood train is closed to guests as the park’s other Engine, #192 (aka: Klondike Katie) is currently out of service, awaiting a repair on a wheel bearing. According to the statement from Dollywood, they are hoping to be able to finish the repairs on Klondike Katie with the goal of having it ready to run by Wednesday.
(10/17/20) I have a confession to make… and maybe I’m not the only one, but as someone who has been to Dollywood a fair number of times the announcement that came out the other day surprised me. I’m not talking about a new ride but rather an announcement that the Southern Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame exhibit inside Dollywood would be leaving, as the park is not renewing the museum’s lease and will be close at the end of 2020.
My confession is… I had no idea such a thing was inside the park. Looking at the picture in the post, I was even more flabbergasted, because I know this location is just to the left after y ou enter the park. Even more… I don’t think I’ve ever seen the door to this building open… ever… so I always assumed it was some kind of backstage area for the Showstreet Palace Theater. I guess this is probably the reason I never tried to go up the steps to look, that and at this point I was probably in mid-travel up the hill to Thunderhead, but it is interesting that this space will soon be vacant.
Nothing has been said about what kind of plans Dollywood has for the space. I suppose the building could be expanded into the backstage area to make a space big enough for a dark ride, but not without blocking access to the backstage access to the Showstreet Palace Theater. Size wise it could easily be turned into some kind of new restaurant I suppose as well. I guess we’ll have to wait and see what is in the works. Oh, and don’t assume this will actually be any kind of public addition at all… at theme parks office space is always at a premium and the building could very well be used for internal staff purposes as well simply because expansion options here are limited due to the theater access and railroad tracks behind it.
(9/18/20) Sounding similar to some of the surveys Dollywood did not long ago, the park has released a 2021 renewal plan for current passholders. According to a post on the site starting Oct 19 passholders will be offered the chance to expand their current passes that end on June 15, 2021 through to the end of 2021 for $79 + tax, or convert them into 2-Park Super Passes for $99.
Extra perks to be added also include a Christmas 2020 Bring a Friend Ticket, three flexible 2021 Bring A Friend tickets, a free souvenir mug good for .99 cent refills through the end of the 2021 season, and the ability to spread out your payments over a 10 month period. Follow the link for the official details.
(7/3/20) According to a reader who just visited Dollywood again this week and reports back that while the crowds were still very light, it appears there has been a slight change to the park’s mask wearing policy. They noticed that the ride ops had changed their procedure and were now asking riders to wear their masks while on the rides.
If you haven’t had a chance you read my detailed report about what a visit to Dollywood is like in 2020, make the jump over to BlooLoop to give it a quick read. I’ve also finally put together my video report from the day as well so you can get a look around the park for yourself.
(4/26/20) Dollywood fans… I know that if there is one thing you are missing right now, other than the chance to see Dolly herself, you are likely having a serious need to stuff some of Dollywood’s famous cinnamon bread into your mouth. Travel + Leisure has come to the rescue, claiming that they were able to secure the decadent recipe from Dollywood. Follow the link to try your hand at making your very own Dollywood Cinnamon Bread at home.
(5/15/19) This week I shared my latest thoughts all about the Dollywood Resort and how their mission of putting the “family experience” front and center in everything they do, and decided to share this vision with our friends over a BlooLoop as well. Read on and learn what drives every new experience at the Dollywood Resort.
2021 - Lightning Rod & Mystery Mine Upgrades - (3/12/21) Screamscape dropped into Dollywood on friday for the Passholder Preview event to get a first hand look at the latest developments in the park. Unfortunately Lightning Rod was not ready to open in the morning, so we hiked up the hill to enjoy Thunderhead and take a quick look at the changes to Mystery Mine.
As previously mentioned, some of the outdoor track for Mystery Mine has not only been replaced, but redesigned. The previous drop off the trestle crossing into the half-pipe style banked turn is now no longer connected to the ride. The half-pipe turn is still there, but as soon as the trains cross the bridge and head right for it, they make a suddenly left turn and drop down an all new hill into a rebuilt 180-degree turn back up into a mid-course brake before moving on to an old section of spiral drop track that sends the train back across the trestle bridge and back into the mine building.
While they could remove the half-pipe track in the future, the way things looked, I think they were leaving it there as a visual gag, and reminder of the old track design, as riders may not see the new turn until the last second. While I was in this area I snapped a few photos and video clips of it, but there was no testing going on. Looking on social media, it seems testing did take place later in the day however, which is a good sign that Mystery Mine will be ready to open to guests sometime in the next few weeks.
The good news is that Lightning Rod did open to guests later in the day, but within a very short time the line was said to be 90+ minutes, and there were significant delays between the dispatching of the train from the station. On a personal note… I do have to wonder if they have adjusted the restraint system at all to be more restrictive. While I have ridden Lightning Rod a few times in the past, and the restraints were always a bit of a squeeze for me, I’ve actually dropped about 20 pounds since the end of 2019 and was hoping for a much more comfortable ride today, but instead I found that the seat belt on the test seat in front was so short that I probably needed to still loose another inch before it would latch now. This was certainly not the case when first rode Lightning Rod at the end of 2016.
So just a word of warning to other riders of size, that you may have difficulty. While every body type is different, for comparison’s sake I will say that I rode the rest of the major thrill rides (Thunderhead, Dropline, Wild Eagle, Firechaser Express, Tennessee Tornado) without issues, though in the past the closed Mystery Mine has given me some issues as well.
(2/26/21) Good news, a special preview tour of Dollywood took place on Wednesday to shows off what’s going on in the park right now and what’s planned for 2021. (Sorry, I couldn’t make it myself…)
The good news is that it looks like the work on Lightning Rod is finished and they are currently testing it once again with the new iBOX track, with the plan to have the coaster ready for guests on the opening day of the season.You can see a video of the train FLYING down the final hills towards the station and it is just seriously MOVING! Looks like Lightning Rod may very well be more intense than ever before this year.
(2/21/21) According to what I’ve been told some new track pieces for the rebuild of Mystery Mine’s mid-ride outdoor track section are currently sitting up in Dollywood’s Preferred Parking lot area along with signs of construction activity already taking place on the attraction itself. Since the park is closed, there is no good way to get a good view of it unless your staying in a cabin on the hillside overlooking the park, but with the 2021 season set to start on March 13th it wont be long until we get a close up look at what’s going on.
(12/16/20) A new set of photos on Twitter show off even more of Lightning Rod’s track exchanged for the RMC IBox track system, including the entire launch hill.
(12/13/20) Construction crews are hard at work at Dollywood working on replacing the track on Lightning Rod with new RMC IBox Track. A reader dropped by the park and sent in three new pictures of work taking place near the end of the ride’s layout.
Also, I believe it was relayed somewhere along the way that Lightning Rod will likely not be ready in time for the opening of Dollywood’s 2021 season, but was expected to be ready to reopen before the start of the summer season, so look for the updated version of Lightning Rod to be ready to roll sometime in mid-Spring 2021.
(12/8/20) While at Dollywood late last month I took a few pictures of the work taking place on Lightning Rod. You could see the old Topper Track transition into I-Box track shortly after leaving the station, which means the launch hill will be converted as well. It is nearly impossible to see the majority of the layout for Lightning Rod but workers were also working on converting the finale track elements just before the break run and I could just barely make out some of the downhill track coming out of the mountains where it looks like they have already removed all the old rails from the track.
(11/22/20) The transformation of Lightning Rod at Dollywood has officially begun. In pictures shown in a Tweet from Behind the Thrills you can see RMC crews on site who have begun the process of replacing sections of the coaster’s track with new brown RMC IBox track. According to what has been confirmed by Dollywood’s Pete Owens, about 2,160 feet of track on Lightning Rod will be replaced with the new IBox hybrid coaster style track when it reopens for the 2021 season.
For those doing the math… Lightning Rod is listed as being 3,800 feet long, so they are replacing about 57% of the ride’s track. If we guess that they are unlikely to replace the existing brake-run and station track (which I’d estimate to be about 400 feet in length), then you can see the percentage of conversion of the remaining layout actually rises to about 63.5%. If they opt to keep the Topper track on the track from the station to the top of the launch hill then that adds up to about another 400 feet of track which raises the possible conversion to about 72% of the layout from the top of the hill to the start of the brake run to be replaced.
(11/16/20) According to a post on Facebook by ACE Southeast, during an event at Dollywood this weekend it was revealed during a Q&A session that the plan for Lightning Rod for 2021 would be to use a combination of Topper Track and IBox track, with some new sections of IBox track used to make the coaster “more reliable and improve maintenance issues going forward. The layout will remain the same with no changes.” This last part is interesting, given that some of the land near the ride’s finale was just cleared, though perhaps while the layout will remain the same, maybe they feel that the track support system needs to be changed in certain spots.
An additional note says that it was also mentioned that Mystery Mine would have some track work done to the “helix area” after the trestle section of the ride, shortly after the cars first venture outside following the first lift hill. Additional work is also slated to be done to the structure of the trestle bridge to allow it to be rethemed. It should be noted that virtually all theming on the trestle bridge was removed earlier this year after a piece of theming fell and struck a guest.
(11/11/20) Coaster Crew posted some interesting new pictures of Lightning Rod at Dollywood to their Facebook channel this weekend. While there are some yellow tarps over a small section of the launch hill, this is likely to keep something exposed from getting wet. The interesting aspect to me is that the park has now cleared the trees just behind the entrance to the brake run, as well as looking like they have fenced off and cleared a section just to the left of the coaster.
This makes it appear as if the finale element just before the brake run may be getting modified or transformed into something new.
(11/7/20) While we don’t know exactly what Dollywood has planned for the upgrade to Lightning Rod in 2021, something very odd was reported to be spotted in the woods behind the coaster. I really can’t say how legit this is, or what it could really mean, but if you watch this video they claim two pieces of blue RMC style iBOX steel track were supposedly spotted in the woods behind Lightning Rod.
Before all the fan boys freak out, let me point out a few things. Based on how they are painted, I’m not sure exactly how “new” these track sections are, as the blue paint is darker in sections and very light or faded looking in others, along with some blotches of either red/orange which could perhaps be primer. I suppose it is possible that they could have just set these up in the woods to try out some different colors to see how visually it would look in the ride’s setting, but I guess we need to address the idea as a whole.
Does this mean Lightning Rod, which is currently still a true wooden roller coaster experience, could possibly be transformed into an RMC Hybrid coaster through the replacement of the existing track with the iBOX style track? While that is a possibility, the current layout of Lightning Rod also makes it completely unnecessary, especially as Lightning Rod has no inversions. But “Ah-ha!” you may be saying aloud right now… yes, it would be a possibility for Lightning Rod to go under the knife with an even more serious agenda to add new track elements, and possibly inversions.
However, none of these options really fit in with the hint Dollywood put on the sign outside the ride, claiming that “In 2021, lightning strikes twice.” That bit has bugged me more than you know to determine the meaning, because the only thing that make sense to me would be to either add on to Lightning Rod with an extra section of track and new elements at the very end. If you’ve seen Lightning Rod, you know that it comes blazing down the mountain at top speed and hits that final hill and the brake run with more than enough momentum that they could easily add on to the ride. Another fun idea would be to create an double-tracked experience, Twisted Colossus style, allowing with another lift up the mountain and a whole new section of track with different thrills that could interact with the original track layout.
The problem with all of these ideas is that it is now November… and the guests are going to be expecting the new Lightning Rod to be ready for the 2021 season when the park opens, which is usually around March. Even with a late opening in May or even June, I don’t believe Dollywood has the time to make those kind of massive alterations. This brings me back to square one… scratching my head about just what in the world Dollywood really has planned, because swapping out the current Topper Track for an iBOX track system just doesn’t seem like a needed upgrade, unless the intensity of Lightning Rod has just been tearing up the old track to the point where the new beefy iBOX track system appears to be the best solution. Keep in mind that iBOX track does not mean it has to have inversions either, as the first RMC conversion to IBOX track was The New Texas Giant at Six Flags over Texas which also has no inversions.
In the end however, and I’m going to say this in the nicest way, we don’t know that the photo of the blue iBOX track was even really taken at Dollywood. The entire video post could be a big fake out. There are a couple of still images of blue track sitting in the woods in the video, and then it jumps to footage of Lightning Rod, but at no time did I see a picture of Lightning Rod or any part of Dollywood in the background of the track photos. So for all we know this picture of blue iBOX track could have been taken at Six Flags over Georgia while they were putting together Twisted Cyclone. So until I see some kind of proof otherwise that can accurately place the location of the track at Dollywood, I’m saying we should all be skeptical of this rumor for the time being.
(9/27/20) Bad news for Dollywood fans, as the park has now confirmed via signs up in the park that “Lightning Rod is closed for the balance of 2020 as it receives an upgrade from manufacturer Rocky Mountain Construction”. Keep in mind the word “upgrade” was used and then the next part gets interesting, as the sign says that “In 2021, lightning strikes twice.”
To be honest, I’m not quite sure what to make of that last bit, because I don’t think they are going to send the train around the track twice, nor is there a place in the layout to add a second launch (and nor is one needed, Lightning Rod is fast enough already). So anyone else have any idea just what the “lightning strikes twice” mentions could be in reference to?
2022 - Wildwood Grove Dark Ride - Rumor - (2/28/20) We’ve been sent a couple of interesting tidbits that seem to point towards a possible new dark ride coming to Wildwood Grove in 2021 or 2022. First of all some new whispers on the Screamscape Spy Network report that the park may have been in talks with Sally Corp to bring this new dark ride project to life, though this doesn’t mean Sally is the only one involved. For example a team of companies, including Sally, all worked together to bring the Justice League dark ride to life for Six Flags, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see this project also a mix of sorts.
Also tied into this rumor is a new guest survey Dollywood is sending out, asking guests about a new family ride experience in development where 6-riders would compete against each other to collect ‘items’ during the ride. I think they may be pitching a few different name variants on this one, but so far I’ve heard “Undergrove Quest” and “Cryrstal Cavern”.
The plot is you are enlisted to help a “rock-hound” character in search of the long-lost “Hidden Crystal Cavern” that is full of rare gems. Guests will use an on-board device to collect these gems and see who can get the most by the end, but beware… you never know what hidden dangers you might encounter along the way!
Quite a few other dark ride concepts were pitched in the various new attraction surveys we posted about below, but this one seems to be a mix of some of the various elements of those rides, but given it’s own unique story instead.
2022/2023 - New Roller Coaster - (2/29/20) Time to look into the Magic 8 ball regarding the future of Dollywood. While I reported the rumor about a dark ride in the works for the park, I can’t ignore all you roller coaster loving people out there, and neither will Dollywood. If the rumors are true, Dollywood is working on plans for their next big coaster, and from the sound of things it will be a crowd pleaser. This is something that many have been dreaming about for some time now, and it looks like Dollywood is looking into adding a Hypercoaster style coaster to the park, their way… which can only mean they’ll go the extra mile like they did with Lightning Rod and Wild Eagle, and make this sucker fly through the hills and trees, leaving as much of the natural smoky mountain landscape as possible intact.
While everyone will assume they would go to B&M for this, there is the issue that Dollywood sits within the area exclusive range of Carowinds and Six Flags over Georgia, and neither Intimidator or Goliath are 20 years old yet. Of course I’d love to see something unique, like the first Hyper-Inverted, or perhaps they could work a loop-hole and make it a floorless coaster with a Hyper style layout, and maybe add an inversion or two. The other rumor, once we’ve actually heard whispers start mentioning, is that Herschend could tap Mack Rides once again after opening Time Machine at Silver Dollar City, but ask them to create something more like DC Rivals.
Again… just rumors about possible developments at this point, but I wouldn’t expect to see anything until 2022 or 2023 at this point, so stay tuned!
(Feb 2019) An early rumor claims that Dollywood may be looking to build their next major coaster as a Phase 2 expansion to the 2019 project. Manufacturers are being looked at, but rumor has it they may be leaning towards B&M simply for a reliability standpoint. What kind of coaster may be up in the air as well, though after just opening Fire Chaser Express and Lightning Rod, they definitely are not looking to have another launched coaster at this point. While a B&M Hyper may be considered a likely choice, I believe Dollywood is too close to Carowinds and Six Flags over Georgia for that to happen with the typical B&M contracts that prevent similar coasters from being built too close together too soon. A B&M Inverted may be a possibly however, even though Carowinds has one as well, simply because Afterburn was built in 1999, and by 2020 enough time should have passed to allow for it. Plus I think it would be kind of cute to open the rumored family inverted coaster in 2019… and then follow it up with a monster sized version that could run wild through the mountainside and trees, much like Alpengeist at Busch Gardens Williamsburg.
That’s just a dream on my part however, Dollywood could very well opt to go with an entirely different manufacturer to get a Hyper or anything else they want. Stay tuned while we listed for more rumors on the wind.
Future Developments - New Attractions Survey - (4/10/19) Screamscape sources tell us that Dollywood is looking into more than just ideas for a new coaster… the park is also conducting guest surveys asking about a variety of dark ride themes and concepts (see images) they are considering for the park, as well as a Flying Theater attraction and even a “interactive walk-through immersive experience”... for the later one they show images from Universal’s Poseidon’s Fury.
(4/6/19) Screamscape sources tell us Dollywood was sending out guest surveys again this week to get reactions to a variety of new attraction concepts. One of the most exciting to all your thrill ride nuts out there may be for a new “Indoor Coaster” experience, one that would offer a “2 - 4 minute thrill experience” along with a high level of themeing that would mix slower scenes with animatronics, lighting effects and projection mapping with the high-speed thrill sections in order to tell a story.
They also ask about other new coaster concept as well however, including an out & back traditional Hypercoaster (over 200ft tall, 60mph, full of air-time hills) with an on-board soundtrack, as well as a Spinning Coaster experience, in which the intent is to make something similar to Time Traveler from Silver Dollar City, which came from Mack Rides.
The other concepts are more entertainment related, including a possible Summer Daytime parade concept that would include Macy’s style balloon floats as well as a Christmas Candlelight Nativity show experience.
???? - Second Dollywood Hotel - Planning - (11/27/19) Screamscape first reported that Dollywood was preparing plans to add a second resort hotel a little over a year ago (see below) and now we finally have an update on the project. According to the local news the theme park submitted a preliminary site plan to Pigeon Forge showing a 310-room hotel project with a 325-seat restaurant as well as conference space that would be located somewhere between the current DreamMore Resort and Dollywood’s Splash Country waterpark.
When approaching the current DreamMore Resort, as you reach the top of the first drive-way segment, you have to make a left turn to get into the DreamMore parking lot, but you may have noticed that the drive-way road continues on straight for another 10-15 feet before ending in the brush. That road will be extended to lead up to a round-about that will split traffic between the meeting space and guest room ends of the new resort property.
(11/12/18) During an interview with the local news Dolly Parton where they discuss a new Netflix series she is working on as well as the new Glacier Ridge addition to Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas, Dolly let another interesting detail slip out. While discussing meetings they have each season to go over what guests like, don’t like, and what people would really like to have added to Dollywood, they decided that they need to build another hotel. According to Dolly, "…just like we’re going to build a new resort because our resort stays busy all the time!”
If you haven’t seen it yet, Screamscape has stayed at and reviewed Dollywood’s Dreammore Resort and we loved it! You can see our official review and photos here.