Dollywood’s 36th Season: What I’m Most-Excited About in 2021

Grab your friends and family and mark your calendars to visit Dollywood frequently during its 36th season! The new season brings with it hope, faith, fun and as Dolly would say, brighter days!

I visited the park during Dollywood’s media day a couple weeks ago to catch a glimpse of new construction and other updates made throughout the park to enhance guest experiences. I left energized and excited to return with my family, which I got to do this past weekend during Passholder Preview Day.

As an aside, know that pandemic protocols are still in place to ensure guest safety including the  online reservation system, so be sure to check Dollywood.com for the latest updates.

Have you ever wondered what happens during Dollywood’s off-season? Let me tell you, it’s a lot! During our tour, the teams were hard at work on a number of construction projects to prepare for the new season.

Be sure to check out the new spacious seating areas added by Back Porch Theater across from Dogs N Taters as well as a beautiful new covered picnic area at Hickory House BBQ in Craftsman’s Valley.

Speaking of Craftsman’s Valley, be sure to look for the new location of the Blacksmith & Foundry as well as upgrades to several other shops.

Insider Tip

Coming soon: drop by the Blacksmith & Foundry now located next to the Robert F. Thompson Chapel for a NEW guest experience to make your own knife!

Perhaps I am most-excited for the return of indoor and outdoor entertainment including three NEW shows running now (with more new shows added throughout the season)! A Brighter Day is full of faith, fun and up- tempo songs performed at Back Porch Theater.

 The Tones brings acapella harmony to The Village near the train depot.

And don’t miss a special family reunion with Harmonies of the Heart a spirit-warming show packed with Dolly classics performed at Dreamsong Theater.

You’ll see other familiar characters and performers throughout the park, too.

I also want to tell you how eager I am for Dollywood’s Flower & Food Festival (April 23 – June 7) to get started. Loaded with inspiration, flowers and food, this is one festival you won’t want to miss! You’ll be surrounded by fresh spring flowers, beautiful living plant sculptures, chalk art adventures and a wonderful assortment of food!

Insider Tip

New this season is the Flower & Food Festival Dining Day Pass. For only $29.99 (plus tax), you can choose five culinary favorites! Season Passholders get it for $27.99 (plus tax)!

My family loves Christian music so I was thrilled to hear the lineup of weekly concerts throughout the festival! You won’t want to miss Sidewalk Prophets, Rebecca St. James, Matthew West, Big Daddy Weave, The New Respects, Willow City, Hannah Kerr, The Harlem Gospel Travelers, The Rees Family and The Martins.

The festivals you love will return to Dollywood this season including Summer Celebration (June 25 – July 31) which will introduce a just-announced half-a-million-dollar production including drones and fireworks!

Then, Harvest Festival featuring Great Pumpkin LumiNights (Sept. 24 – Oct. 30) will encompass Dollywood with fall colors and activities. We love how different the experience is from day to night!

Of course, the season wraps up with my family’s favorite: Smoky Mountain Christmas (Nov. 6 – Jan. 2, 2022).

Last, but certainly not least, is an update for all of the thrill-seekers! Dollywood has made a significant investment in some of the most popular coasters at the park. Lightning Rod, Mystery Mine, Thunderhead and Blazing Fury all received sections of retracking to help create a smoother ride for guests.

So, a little story about me. I grew up in East Tennessee and have visited the park since I was a little girl. Returning with my own children, there was one ride I remembered – Blazing Fury.  Yes, the ride has been around for three generations, and I’m one of them. I don’t ride coasters like I used to, but to this day, I continue to ride Blazing Fury. My children laugh uncontrollably and roll their eyes as I squeal at every drop. Memories like these are what Dollywood is all about. I hope you and your family create may wonderful memories of your own this season!

Insider Tip

It’s not too late to order your 2021 Season Passes and receive exclusive discounts, early park access, free parking and much more!  Learn more here.

By | 2021-05-03T17:37:56+00:00 March 15th, 2021|Attractions, Best Value|0 Comments

About the Author:

Michelle Borja (Dollywood Insider 2019-2021), a native of East Tennessee, recalls first walking the streets of Silver Dollar City when she was just a child. She couldn’t wait to share the experience with her son and daughter. As a marketing professional, Michelle enjoys storytelling and often shares Dollywood planning tips with friends. She homeschools her children which offers flexibility to visit the park often. Their favorite getaway is a stay at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, which Michelle calls “their home away from home.” They complete their schoolwork by the grand piano overlooking the pool, enjoy time at Dollywood and finish their day with a sip of Dolly’s pink lemonade by the fireplace.
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