When it’s time to try to figure out what to do for an evening out, it usually comes down to this question: dinner or a show of some kind? As luck would have it, the best answer to this question is a dinner show! So when I can spend a night in Pigeon Forge, a Smoky Mountain dinner show is definitely on the menu.
Then it’s about decisions, decisions, decisions. Like equestrian excitement and a four-course feast? There’s a dinner show for that. Like mountain music with a little mayhem and all-you-can-eat of Southern favorites like fried chicken and mashed potatoes? There’s a dinner show for that. Or is a high seas adventure with pirates and mermaids your thing – with dinner, of course. There’s a dinner show for that, too. Let me tell you from experience what I like best about each of these dinner shows, and trust me, I’ve had lots of experience!
Dolly Parton’s Stampede Dinner Attraction
It’s almost impossible for me to pick a favorite part of this show, Pigeon Forge’s longest running dinner show in its 34th season. I probably have been to this “most fun place to eat in the Smokies” 50 or more times, but I’m always wowed by all the different elements of the dinner show and how it all fits together so seamlessly. How do they get the buffaloes and the longhorns to venture out into the arena like they are on a Wild West cattle ranch, and how does the comic relief Skeeter get the girl in the barrel trick back to her seat in the audience? The audience participation always makes me laugh, but my heart belongs to the two stars of the show every time: the 32 magnificent horses jumping through hoops of fire, trick riding and barrel racing and that four-course feast. Get me to the Stampede – it’s time for some creamy vegetable soup!
Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud
One of my favorites for fun in the Smokies is the Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud. My husband and I first time during the holidays and couldn’t stop laughing – except when we were busy eating fried chicken, mashed potatoes, corn on the cob and lots of other deliciousness that’s all you can eat. I come from a big, fun and sometimes crazy family myself, so I felt right at home with this bunch! When the show starts (after my second or third piece of fried chicken!) the feud is action-packed with “battles” of musical talents, clogging and dancing, some “explosive” stunts that give the show a true bang, and dozens of crazy diving stunts in the 24-foot deep swimming pool that is part of the show set. How can you not love a show with a swimming hole right in the middle of the stage or main characters who just decide to clog to prove a point to the other family? That’s fun no matter who you are, so come find what all the fuss is about in the Smokies!
Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show
It’s a pirate’s life for me when I pick the Smoky Mountain dinner show that is a swashbuckling adventure combined with a captain’s feast to celebrate the pirate spirit and appetite! Dolly went overboard (pun intended) with the Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show in Pigeon Forge, and there is not a single part of this show that I don’t love. From the acrobatics and diving stunts into the 15-foot-deep lagoon to the antics of the sea lions to “actual” mermaids and battles both on land and sea between the Crimson and Sapphire pirates – wow! And did I mention that there’s a four-course pirate feast and you can say Aarrgh and Shiver Me Timbers and Sea Ya Soon and all kinds of crazy pirate talk, and no one will think anything of it. Ahoy, that’s just another seaworthy reason to set sail to this show. Ok, I’m finished with the pirate lingo – it’s just so much fun!
There are even more show options if you already have dinner plans, including The Comedy Barn, celebrating more than 25 years of clean comedy in Pigeon Forge, but that’s another show story or two for another day. Until then, I’m putting on my cowgirl attire, clogging shoes and pirate hat and heading out for some Smoky Mountain dinner show fun.