The Glow Grows

If you visited Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana last season, I’m sure you remember how popular Great Pumpkin LumiNights proved to be. It certainly was an overwhelming guest-favorite, and because of the popularity, we knew we needed to grow the glow this year. Great Pumpkin LumiNights returns with several new immersive harvest-themed displays, exciting activities and an expanded footprint that is more than twice the size of 2017’s version. Even better, the Harvest Festival itself grows with six additional operating days for families to enjoy.

We’re going to be open every day Sept. 28- Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., giving you more time to enjoy the festive fall fun of harvest time in the Smokies. After the glowing reviews from last year’s Great Pumpkin LumiNights, we knew the event was ripe for growth (I know you’re enjoying the puns!). Last year’s popular pumpkin displays—like the pumpkin spider and the pumpkin dance party—are joined in 2018 by a number of elaborate, new additions, including a couple of Dolly-inspired displays. I won’t tell you what they are; you have to come out to see them for yourself!

The Plaza at Wilderness Pass serves as a centerpiece for the event with an area for character interaction, additional displays—and the main attraction—a 40 ft. tall, expertly-carved pumpkin tree. You’ll bask in the glow of thousands (and I mean thousands!) of intricately-carved pumpkins as you wander through displays throughout Timber Canyon, Wilderness Pass and upper Craftsman’s Valley areas. As I mentioned, the footprint of Great Pumpkin LumiNights is more than twice what it was last season. Beyond the impressive displays, you’ll find a number of exciting activities to create thrilling memories together. With so many carved pumpkins needed to create Great Pumpkin LumiNights, we’ve even brought in “pumpkin artists” (or Pumpkin Picassos, as I like to call them) who will host demonstrations to help you learn tips and tricks on how to produce the perfect pumpkin masterpiece.

Alongside Great Pumpkin LumiNights, the biggest names in Southern gospel music visit the park for the Southern Gospel Jubilee. Thanks to the additional operating days, more than 625 individual Southern gospel performances take place on stages throughout the park during the run of the festival—making it the biggest Southern gospel event in America.

Finally, we celebrate Smoky Mountain crafts all year with our well-known master craftsmen. During the Harvest Festival, however, more than 30 visiting artisans from across the country bring their wares and share their talents in their respective fields. Craft demonstrations include textile art, inspirational jewelry, loom weaving, paper marbling, bentwood boxes, rug hooking, fiddle making, dulcimer making, and much more.

If you’re looking for a different harvest activity that is not scary and just a little spooky, and that every family member can enjoy, come visit us for our Harvest Festival featuring Great Pumpkin LumiNights and the Southern Gospel Jubilee!

By | 2018-09-24T08:49:28+00:00 September 24th, 2018|Festivals|0 Comments

About the Author:

While he is originally from Gate City, Virginia, Wes Ramey has long considered Dollywood and the Smoky Mountains region his second home. Many weekends of the year, he would travel with his parents and grandparents to the Smokies to enjoy some his favorite attractions in the area, including the Space Needle, the Gatlinburg Sky Lift, go karts, and of course, Dollywood. Based on his love as a three-year-old for Dollywood’s Convoy ride (there is a picture on his desk), Wes first told his parents he wanted to become a truck driver when he grew up. He also enjoyed the Flooded Mine because: A.) it was the only ride his mamaw was brave enough to ride, and B.) she was usually scared halfway through! When Wes isn’t working to tell people about the awesome things you can do at Dollywood with your family (scaring your grandparents doesn’t count), he enjoys spending time with his wife Lyndsey and young children. Most of his days are filled with reading Imagination Library books and baking imaginary cupcakes for tea parties, but when he has time, he enjoys anything with wheels and an engine. While Wes doesn’t own his own race car (yet), he does enjoy watching the professionals do their thing each week. For now, he fulfills his need for speed on Lightning Rod, Thunderhead, Wild Eagle and the Rockin’ Roadway!
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