PHOTOS: Go Inside Dollywood’s Harvest Festival, the Ultimate Fall Experience in the Smokies

Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone
Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone
Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone

A little over three hours from Nashville, near the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, lies Dollywood – a 160 acre theme park filled with fun for the entire family. 

The park is owned by the one and only Dolly Parton, and it’s just as spectacular as fans would expect it to be (let’s face it, everything Dolly touches is absolutely fabulous!). 

Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Lauren Jo Black
Dollywood’s Harvest Festival; Photo by Lauren Jo Black

Dollywood is home to thrilling rides and attractions for all ages, live music, shows and delicious food, and come September, the park celebrates the fall season with its annual Dollywood Harvest Festival.

For Parton, fall is a special time of year, and there’s no better way to celebrate than at Dollywood.  

“God’s handiwork is on full display for everyone to enjoy when they come to visit,” she says. “It’s also the time when the heat of the summer fades and the crisp, cool evenings make it just right to enjoy the fresh mountain air. Some of my most treasured family memories took place during the fall, and I want our guests to make their own wonderful memories while they are here.”

Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone
Dollywood’s Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone

Running now through October 30, 2021, Dollywood’s Harvest Festival is a must-see event that transforms the park into an autumn oasis.

During the day, guests are invited to enjoy displays of giant pumpkins, weighing in at 800 to over 1,500 lbs., colorful fall floral displays and even a giant pumpkin “tree,” each making the perfect backdrop for a family photo. 

Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone
Dollywood’s Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone

Nighttime, however, is when the magic happens. As the sun sets amongst the Great Smoky Mountains in the distance, the park comes to life with the Great Pumpkin LumiNights – a glowing display of pumpkin carvings and spooky scenes guaranteed to dazzle park guests. 

Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone
Dollywood’s Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone
Dollywood's Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone
Dollywood’s Harvest Festival; Photo by Randy Simone

Great Pumpkin LumiNights boasts thousands of carved pumpkins and unique displays such as a pumpkin guitar sculpture, a field of pumpkin sunflowers, a massive pumpkin tree and a stunning pumpkin butterfly. 

Another can’t-miss is the Wildwood Tree, which comes to life with a whimsical story narrated by Parton. Located in Wildwood Grove, the tree is filled with butterflies and makes for a one-of-a-kind photo opp. 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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In addition to the must-see Harvest Festival displays, there are a few MUST-EAT treats to enjoy as well. Special seasonal items such as Sweet Potato Poutine, an Apple Pie Milkshake, BUSH’s Three Bean Pumpkin Chili and Pumpkin Spice Churros with Pumpkin Fluff are available for purchase throughout the park. 

Dollywood’s signature Cinnamon Bread from the Grist Mill is available year-round, but trust us, you can’t visit the park without indulging on this world-famous bakery treat. The freshly made candy apples inside the Sweet Shoppe Candy Kitchen are also to die for! 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Dollywood’s Harvest Festival also features entertainment with a number of special guest headliners confirmed to perform throughout the month of October. 

Among the list of confirmed performers are CeCe Winans (Oct. 9), Pam Tillis (Sept. 29), Jimmy Fortune (Oct. 2), Shenandoah (Oct. 20-21), Karen Peck and New River (Oct. 3), Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver (Oct. 4), Taylor Red (Sept. 24), Rhonda Vincent and the Rage (Oct. 14-15), Janelle Arthur (Sept. 26) and the Lee University Singers (Oct. 17). 

It’s no surprise that Dollywood’s Harvest Festival was named America’s #1 Fall Family Event by USA Today Readers – it’s truly a unique experience that should be added to your fall family bucket list. 

Dollywood is open 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. each day of operation (Sept. 24- Oct. 30) during the Harvest Festival. The park is closed on Tuesdays throughout the festival. Admission to the park includes Dollywood’s Harvest Festival. 

For more information and to plan your visit to Dollywood, click HERE

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