If you’re a smoker and plan on visiting Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge or any other part of TN, then you need to be aware of a statewide smoking ban starting July 1, 2007 the affects all enclosed public areas, which means restaurants no longer allow people to smoke inside. The exceptions are:
- Private Clubs
- Bars that only allow 21 and over at all times
- Accomodations (there will still be smoking rooms that you can stay in)
- Tobacco stores
- Businesses with less than 3 employees
Another exception is possibly any open-aired patios at restaurants. If you’re a smoker, you may want to find restaurants with outdoor seating. If it’s winter time…well, I guess you have to figure out how badly you need a puff!
Spring in Gatlinburg means festivals galore. From barbeque to wildflowers, there’s a celebration for everything.
To say that Spring is just around the corner would be false, but we can eagerly look ahead during these long, cold January days. With every Spring, Gatlinburg ushers in a busy festival season in the old town.
Gatlinburg’s Smoky Mountain Springfest celebration begins March 12 and continues through June 2. People can witness the town’s transformation into Spring when the streets overflow with baskets of beautiful blooming flowers and plants. Pansies, daffodils, tulips, mandevillas, bougainvilleas, lantanas, and wave petunias are among the many varieties of flowers that can be seen throughout town.
On Easter morning, March 31, join in the local tradition and attend Ober Gatlinburg’s 14th Annual Easter Sunrise Service enhanced by the beauty of the Smokies. Free tram rides to the mountain top begin at 5:45 a.m. and continue in 15 minute intervals until the service begins at 6:30 a.m. Complimentary parking at the resort will be provided for those who prefer to drive. A breakfast buffet will be waiting and available at the Ober Gatlinburg Restaurant from 7 a.m. Until 10:30 a.m.
The smell of hickory-smoked barbeque will fill the air as folks roll up sleeves and dive in to sample their secret sauces on delectable ribs and wings from vendors from all over the Southeast in April at Gatlinburg’s Ribfest & Wings from 5-8pm. This festive street party features live entertainment, lots of fun and barbeque ribs and wings on the open grill just for your tasting.
The 63rd Annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage & Greener Living Expo, set April 24-28, is another great event, especially for hikers and nature lovers who love to see delicate wildflowers in bloom. Hosted by the Gatlinburg Department of Tourism, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the University of Tennessee Botany Department, this five-day program offers more than 150 different hiking tours of trails ranging from easy to strenuous, exhibitions, demonstrations, classroom lectures and delightful motor excursions into the wonderful season of spring in the Smokies.
Members of Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community will display unique handcrafted wares as they gather at the Gatlinburg Convention Center to host their annual Easter Arts & Crafts show March 28-30.
To learn more about these and other events in Gatlinburg, call 800-56-VISIT (568-4748) or visit the Gatlinburg website at www.gatlinburg.com.
Winter Magic Tunes and Tales will turn downtown Gatlinburg into a wintery wonderland of carolers and holiday cheer this season.
There’s nothing like FREE entertainment right? Gatlinburg’s Winter Magic version of its annual Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales program will be seen on the parkway downtown Friday and Saturday nights between Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. So, if you weren’t able to catch the performers during the year, you’ll have another chance, except this go round it be holiday-themed tunes and Christmas tales.
The carolers are members of the Walters State Community College chorus under the direction of Deborah Hicks. You’re also bound to see the Gatlinburg-Pittman High School barbershop quartet at some point. They were regulars this past summer during Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales and performed to rave reviews. Catch them at the Gatlinburg Festival of Trees opening show as well as Gatlinburg’s performance of the Nutcracker Sweet on Friday and Saturday, November 29-30, both at W.L. Mills Conference center.
You’ll be able to recognize the carolers by their Dickens-style holiday garb. These are traditional Victorian-era costumes with top hats and bonnets aplenty. They’ll be strolling down the parkway in downtown Gatlinburg from 5-9 p.m. from November 23-24 and from December 1, 7-8, 14-15 and 21-22.
You might even catch a glimpse of Zeno the Gatlinburg bear as he delays hibernation to catch visitors walking along the parkway and take in the holiday magic.
Winter Magic is an annual Gatlinburg holiday celebration in which the town is covered with spectacular lighting displays and Christmas decorations sure to take you back to your own childhood and the impending excitement of Christmas. Gatlinburg’s downtown area becomes a forest of branches and scrolls, accentuating the timeless Smoky Mountain displays visitors have come to know and love over the course of 22 years. From animals who call the Great Smoky Mountains National Park home – black bears to wintery snowmen, toy soliders and a shiny rocking horse, it’s a Christmas wonderland of past and present delight.
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