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Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas: Now with 6 Million Lights!

Dollywood is always an amazing experience no matter the season. But for me, there is something a little more special when the park is decked out with more than 5 million lights…wait, check that. Sorry. There is something special about the park decked out with 6 million lights. Yes, you read that correctly. Our special events team is hard at work putting up an extra million lights throughout the park to bring the total number of shining, shimmering lights to 6 million as part of our popular Smoky Mountain Christmas presented by Humana (Nov. 5- Jan 1, 2023).

This event, which is the 14-time Golden Ticket winner of Best Theme Park Christmas event, shines brightly thanks to the warmth of those 6 million gleaming holiday lights, award-winning stage productions, Christmas culinary masterpieces and the warm family traditions so many guests have enjoyed throughout the festival’s 30 plus years.

Dollywood truly sparkles this Christmas season with new lighting elements throughout the park providing an element of surprise around every corner, even if you’re aboard the Dollywood Express. Visitors riding our guest-favorite attraction will enjoy a special light show draped across the field located inside the train’s upper turning loop. Another new lighted area is the Village Pass, which features a 130’ light curtain wall that includes programmed movement. This area leads from lower Craftsman’s Valley to The Village. Adventures in Imagination shines in pink, platinum and gold decorations—as well as 60 LED butterflies and a new 20’ ft. tall Christmas tree—in an area fittingly called Dolly’s Christmas.

You’ll also find hundreds of additional lighted trees throughout the park this year, as well as more new décor elements and eight different light zones to provide each area of Dollywood its own unique look and feel.

Returning this year on Friday and Saturday evenings is the “Merry & Bright!” fireworks display, which provides a sparkling ending to the day. “Merry & Bright!” lights the sky above Dollywood with a display set to the rhythm of upbeat contemporary holiday hits. After Christmas, the music changes to help guests get ready to ring in the new year. Additionally, the New Year’s version of the show takes place nightly Dec. 26- Jan. 1.

In one of the most unique experiences during the Christmas season at Dollywood, Old Saint Nick allows kids (and kids at heart) a sneak peek into his little cabin in the Smokies. Guests who visit Santa’s cabin can literally see inside as he reviews…the list! Kids discover whether their names are on the naughty or nice list, and they might even have their photo made as they peer through the window during this once-in-a-lifetime chance to catch Santa at work. Santa goes on a well-deserved vacation after Christmas Day, so families wanting to see him in action shouldn’t wait!

Glacier Ridge fills Dollywood’s Timber Canyon, Wildwood Grove, Wilderness Pass and Upper Craftsman’s Valley with an expansive arctic experience sure to inspire and delight guests. Wilderness Pass serves as one of the highlights of Glacier Ridge thanks to the Wonderful Christmas! Plaza Tree Show, which features a 50-ft. tall animated tree sparkling to life to present a fully-synchronized, dazzling light show throughout the evening. Each show is capped by an immersive snow finale!

Dollywood’s family favorite shows light up both indoor and outdoor stages. The festival’s headline show, “Christmas in the Smokies,” has been a must-see for families every Christmas season since it began in 1990. Many other Dollywood Christmas classics return including “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas,” “O’ Holy Night,” “Christmas with the Kingdom Heirs,” “Heart of the Holidays,” “Candlelight Carolers,” “The Mistletones,” “Appalachian Christmas with the Smoky Mountain String Band,” “Holiday Wild Roots” and more.

If you’re looking for food (like me!), our team of chefs have a menu full of culinary surprises sure to delight. From herb-roasted turkey breast and citrus-glazed carved ham to chicken pot pie in a bread cone, there are a number of savory items to satisfy every appetite. A number of unique items abound including eggnog cupcakes, gingerbread-dusted funnel cake, holiday limeade and more.

As always, you can experience all of our world-class rides amidst the hustle and bustle of the park during the holidays, as most rides are operational during the Christmas season. Nothing compares to racing quickly through the night sky with millions of lights twinkling below.

It doesn’t matter what makes Christmas special for you, Dollywood is the place to make once-in-a-lifetime family memories this holiday season.

By | 2022-11-02T09:22:18+00:00 November 2nd, 2022|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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