This Tennessee City Is Packed With Family Entertainment
From amusement parks to mini-golf and go-karts to ropes courses and museums, Pigeon Forge, TN, contains more than enough family entertainment to fill a vacation itinerary. In fact, there’s so much to do, it would be impossible to do it all during just one visit. Of course, that means a return trip will be necessary, so no one misses out on their favorite activities.
Spend Time With Dolly
There’s no shortage of fun at Dollywood (2700 Dollywood Parks Blvd., Pigeon Forge, TN), the amusement park named after country singer Dolly Parton, who is also one of the owners. Filled with roller coasters, water rides, live entertainment and more, kids of all ages will find something they love at this park. For exclusive water fun, head to Dollywood’s sister park, Splash Country (2603 Veterans Blvd., Pigeon Forge, TN). You'll enjoy a wave pool, lazy river and water slides at this water park. And if that’s not enough to keep families busy, check out the dinner show at Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede (3849 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN). The show theme features the North versus the South and includes expert horse-riding stunts, fun contests with the kids and a beautiful patriotic tribute.
Go Aboard the Titanic
There’s something about the Titanic and its fateful voyage that capture the imagination of visitors of every age. At the Titanic Museum Attraction (2134 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN), guests actually “become” one of those passengers. With the purchase of their tickets, guests receive a passenger card that states who they are, a little bit of their history and what class they traveled in aboard Titanic. Even kids receive cards representing actual children who traveled on the ship. As you go through the museum, you’ll see numerous artifacts recovered from the Titanic, learn the differences in passenger quarters based on their classification (don’t forget to check your passenger card to see where your passenger stayed), and experience what it was like the night the ship went down. At the end of the museum, take your card and find your person to see if he or she survived. Visiting this museum is an immersive experience that makes learning history enjoyable for both kids and adults.
Tee Off the Competition
Take the family to one of Pigeon Forge’s mini-golf courses, and challenge each other to see who can claim victory with the lowest score. Choose a course based on your favorite theme, such as Fantasy Golf (3263 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN) with its dragons and Firehouse Golf (2528 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN) with its firefighting critters and cascading waterfalls, or see if you can find the treasure at Professor Hacker’s Lost Treasure Golf (3010 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN). From the first hole to the last, the competition is on to see who will rule the putting greens.
Fulfill the Need for Speed
Another popular family attraction in Pigeon Forge, go-kart tracks are everywhere in this Tennessee city. It’s simply a matter of finding the courses the entire family wants to conquer. For instance, at Adventure Raceway (2945 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN), you'll find an elevated course with three levels. For indoor and outdoor tracks, go to Blake Jones Racing Center (2891 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN), or choose from four different tracks at SpeedZone Fun Park (3315 S. River Road, Pigeon Forge, TN). Note: In many cases, children must be at least 36 inches tall to ride as a passenger in a go-kart. Drivers must be at least 10 years old and 54 inches tall.
Take in a Show
There’s something about live entertainment. The atmosphere, the crowd and the energy all combine to create an experience that is hard to replicate in other activities. In Pigeon Forge, families will find a large variety of live shows sure to please every member of the group. For great music, head to Country Tonite (129 Showplace Blvd., Pigeon Forge, TN), which showcases the best of country music from past to present. Find out if seeing really is believing at the Magic Beyond Belief show (2135 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN), which features Darren Romeo. Those who want to laugh the night away can do so at The Comedy Barn Theater (2775 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN). Of course, these are just a few of the live shows taking the stage every day in Pigeon Forge.
When You Go
Pigeon Forge welcomes visitors to come, stay and play year-round. Spring and fall offer the best weather, but fall is extremely busy with fall festivals and those coming to see the colorful fall foliage. Summer is another busy time since the kids are out of school, plus the weather can be hot and humid. Even winter brings a lot of travelers thanks to Pigeon Forge’s annual holiday celebrations. Planning a visit comes down to personal preference. Just remember, while many of the sights and attractions are open all year, some have limited schedules or even close for the winter, so verify operating hours for the activities everyone wants to do before you go.
Karon Warren has covered travel for nearly 20 years with numerous print and online publications. Her byline has appeared in USA Today, USA Today’s 10 Best, WorkingMother.com, FamilyVacationCritic.com. and many others. She is a member of both the Society of American Travel Writers and the American Society of Journalists and Authors. In addition to her freelance work for other clients, she also writes for her own travel site, ThisGirlTravels.com