Spring. Just thinking about dogwood trees blooming, tulips in the front flower bed and more hours of daylight in the evening makes me so happy. And Easter candy. Particularly the deliciousness of marshmallow Peeps.
Seriously though, one of my favorite things about spring is Easter weekend. It marks the re-birth of so many different areas of life – from the most spiritual to the return of flowers and trees and everything green in the beauty of nature that is the Smoky Mountains.
I love that there are so many places to enjoy the Easter holiday in and around the Smokies. You can start on Saturday, April 1 just before sunset at 6:30 p.m. with the Easter Extravaganza in downtown Sevierville. There are stories and crafts and an egg hunt and the Easter Bunny! Plus, they’re showing “The Velveteen Rabbit” movie, and everything is free. I think I’m going to be first in line so I can get my photo made with the Easter Bunny!
Easter holiday happenings at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa are so big that they are going to take two weeks! There will be all kinds of activities and celebrations there – both inside and out. Yummy dining specials, an Easter egg hunt and Easter Sunday sunrise service are all ways for families to celebrate this special holiday at Dolly’s resort. Can’t wait to make my own Eastern fashions at Camp DW like a festive Easter Bonnet or Easter Hat – then I can wear it during the Easter Parade – and of course, the Easter Bunny is going to be the parade’s Grand Marshal!
Speaking of the Easter Bunny, the Easter Parade isn’t the only time you can see the holiday’s hoppin’ hero at the resort – he’s on hand for several days during Easter week for photos with kids (and maybe some older kids like me!) I may just have brunch with the Easter Bunny as well – he’s gonna hop down the bunny trail to breakfast with guests on both April 8 and 16, and you’re gonna hop up to an Easter Bunny breakfast with so much deliciousness on the menu that the worst part of the meal will be deciding what to choose. One part you will NOT choose against? A selection of delectable pancakes with your choice of toppings!
On Easter morning, my family can begin the holy day with a special sunrise service at 7 a.m. led by Dollywood Chaplain Joey Buck. Then we’ll top off our stay at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort with Easter Brunch. Already made the reservation and can almost taste everything from the carved ham, roast beef and turkey to omelettes made-to-order to an assortment of seafoods, salads, pasta and breakfast favorites to a dessert selection that makes my mouth water just thinking about it.
Okay, I’d tell you more about this delectable holiday buffet but if I do, I’ll be too hungry to finish telling you about a couple of other things about Easter in the Great Smokies, so I’ve got to move on …
Here are more things to consider when planning for Easter fun and memory making in the mountains. If you just can’t get enough of the Easter Bunny, he’ll be hanging out at The Incredible Christmas Place in Pigeon Forge (christmasplace.com). If you love everything to do with big holidays like Easter and Christmas, this allows you to get it all in one place!
On the Saturday of Easter weekend, head to Pigeon Forge’s Patriot Park for an enormous Easter Egg Hunt. Event experts tell me that the eggs go fast so be sure and get there early to get your share! Then you might want to head over to Dollywood for family fun galore during a great getaway weekend.
Another option for your Easter morning plans: watch the kaleidoscope of colors in the spring sky at Ober Gatlinburg’s Easter Sunrise Service beginning at 6:30 a.m. Free rides on the Aerial Tram begin at 5:30 a.m. and will take you to the service at the mountain top parking lot at Ober Gatlinburg for this
ecumenical service sponsored by the Gatlinburg Ministerial Association. Then you can enjoy an Easter Breakfast Buffet at Season’s of Ober Restaurant from 7:30 – 10:30 a.m.
You might also want to experience Easter and the life of Christ told at the inspirational attraction of Christ Museum and Gardens on Gatlinburg’s River Road. I am amazed by the lifelike scenes telling the stories of Jesus’ life and ministry.
Hope this helps you plan your own Easter extravaganza so you can more easily stroll down the bunny trail and explore the Smoky Mountains. Now I’ve got to remember where I hid the Easter egg decorations last year and make my shopping list for Easter candy – you know Peeps in chicks and bunny form will top my list.