I love the opportunity to share behind-the-scenes content with you. The rest of 2020 is going to be really fun, because there are several new elements to tell you about. Let me start with telling you that our Product and Planning Team really wanted to make Dollywood’s Harvest Festival a fresh experience for you this year. Coming off the heels of being named the best fall theme park event in the country by USA Today last year, we wanted to keep setting the bar high!
Thanks to Great Pumpkin LumiNights, a lot of what we’re known for is our nighttime elements. But don’t miss the daytime experience, too! Today, I want to give you a peak at some of the new features you’ll find this season in Wildwood Grove.
We now have a field of 48 pumpkin sunflowers. The idea grew (pun totally intended!) from the popularity of the sunflower pumpkins on the feature wall across from The Plaza at Wildwood Grove. We saw a LOT of Instagram pictures with those sunflowers, so our team took that idea and dreamed a little.
What you’ll find is pumpkin “totems” that range in size from six to 9.5 feet tall. The stalks and flowers are all hand-carved—as all of our pumpkins are—and each of the 48 units took an hour or two to craft. Then, construction and installation took a little longer as our crews had to figure out how to stack the pumpkins so that it looked like one continuous piece. You can find the sunflowers on the right after you pass the window for Sweets And Treats. They’re pretty to see during the day, AND it’s a completely different experience to see at night. Check out this video from behind the scenes!
Also take notice of the entrance to Wildwood Grove this fall: you’re welcomed by the signature Wildwood butterfly on several pumpkins. This statement is small but impactful. It’s already one of the most-photographed vignettes I’ve seen during this Harvest Festival. Don’t miss it!
A subtler element is the jack-o-lantern shutters on the restrooms between Treetop Tower and Great Tree Swing. We’ve had these on the Dippin’ Dots building in Timber Canyon, but now you’ll spot them in Wildwood Grove, too!
These new touches add to the gorgeous Pumpkin Butterfly (across from Great Tree Swing) and the fitting mountain scene (across from The Mad Mockingbird) that adorn Wildwood Grove in the fall. When thinking of things to do this fall, be sure you plan to spend time in this land before and after sunset for the full experience!