Winter is typically known as the season where everything takes a break. However, in the Smoky Mountains, winter is just another fun and exciting time families will enjoy thanks to the festive Smoky Mountain Winterfest.
One of the longest-running Smoky Mountain events, Winterfest is one of the few events where Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville come together to bring one magical winter wonderland experience to all their guests. That being said, there are a few things about this beloved cold-weather festival that even the most-loyal patrons may not know.
To find out what they are, read below!
Celebrating 25 Years
It is hard to believe that our beloved Smoky Mountain Winterfest has now been around for 25 years. It seems like only yesterday when the cities of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville first flipped the switch to illuminate the Parkway for guests to admire.
At Auntie Belham’s Cabin Rentals, we really hope to see this magical winter festival continue for another 25 years!
Do you have a favorite Smoky Mountain Winterfest story? Let us know on the Auntie Belham’s Cabin Rental’s Facebook page!
3 Day Kickoff Celebration
Typically, when it comes to a kickoff celebration for a Smoky Mountain festival, families and guests are invited to join in one large celebration. However, the excitement at the Smoky Mountain Winterfest cannot be contained with just one event. That is why we are happy to announce that this year’s kick off event will last three full days!
Leading the series of thrilling events, the city of Sevierville invites visitors to join them at the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce on November 10 as they jump start the festivities. Food and entertainment will also be provided.
The following day, on November 11, the city of Pigeon Forge will continue the celebration with their annual Salute to Veterans parade beginning at 4:30 p.m. The parade will start at 4:30 p.m. with Winterfest celebrations immediately following. All Pigeon Forge events will be located in and around Patriot Park.
Finally, on November 12, the city of Gatlinburg will finish off the weekend of celebration with their annual Winter Magic Kick Off and Chili Cook Off. Here, guests are invited to sample the best chili in the Smoky Mountains from representatives from local restaurants, shops, service groups and more, as well as sit back and admire as downtown Gatlinburg comes to life with all of the twinkling lights.
Over 5 Million Lights
Speaking of the twinkling lights, one of the things that makes Winterfest in the Smoky Mountains so magical is the over 5 million lights that illuminate the area each night. From the moment guests get off the interstate to when they reach the other side of downtown Gatlinburg, they will experience a stunning display of holiday-themed lights. These displays include Santa Claus, snowflakes, reindeer, snowmen, nutcrackers, and more!
When visiting the area for the 2014 Smoky Mountain Winterfest, be sure to experience the Trolley Tour of Lights in Pigeon Forge. For only $5 per person, guests will be able to take a guided tour of all the sparkling lights throughout the city. Tours run Monday-Friday until the end of December.
For more information on the trolley tours, be sure to check out the Pigeon Forge Trolley System’s website.
Stretching from the beginning of November to the end of February, Winterfest will run for a total of 120 days, making it one of the longest-running festivals in the Smoky Mountains.
Important dates to keep in mind when planning your trip for this year’s Smoky Mountain Winterfest include:
- November 7-January 4: Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland at Smokies Stadium
- November 28-December 20: Gatlinburg’s 7th Annual Winter Magic Tunes & Tales (Fridays and Saturdays)
- December 5: Gatlinburg’s 39th Annual Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade
- December 6: Sevierville’s 52nd Annual Christmas Parade
- December 31: Gatlinburg’s 27th Annual New Year’s Eve Fireworks Show & Ball Drop
- January 24-31: Pigeon Forge’s 25th Annual Wilderness Wildlife Week
- February 18-22: Pigeon Forge’s 15th Annual Saddle Up Event
- February 28: Sevierville’s 6th Annual Rose Glen Library Festival
Looking for a relaxing place to stay for when you and your family come to visit for this year’s Smoky Mountain Winterfest? Be sure to check out one of the many spacious Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg cabin rentals offered by Auntie Belham’s Cabin Rentals.
All located just a short drive from the Parkway, these cabins are perfect for guests looking to experience the excitement of this winter festival while also unwinding for a few days in the peaceful Smoky Mountains.
Click here to learn more about our Smoky Mountain cabin rentals.Smoky Mountain cabin rentals.