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Experience Dollywood's Great Pumpkin LumiNights This Fall!


Thanks to our friends at Dollywood for providing us with tickets for our visit. All thoughts are my own.

While visiting the gorgeous Great Smoky Mountains, you'll want to be sure to build in time for a day (or two) at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge. One of the highlights of our trip included celebrating B's birthday high in the sky, and enjoying all of the sights, sounds, and incredible soaring that Dollywood offers families. Not to mention, Dollywood offers seasonal sights and sounds, too! Fall is an incredible time to visit and experience one of Smoky Mountain's true gems!

I've been a fan of the legendary Dolly Parton since my childhood. She is not only a talented performer, but she's also the real deal! From singing to acting, beautiful Dolly does it all with a smile and much grace. As an adult, I have come to admire Dolly for the charitable work she does, building a foundation that cares deeply about children and their families, and encouraging opportunities for every child to have access to books, through Dolly Parton's Imagination Library.

Our family of four, ready for a fun day at Dollywood!

Dolly created beautiful Dollywood in the beautiful Smoky Mountains of TN, for all to enjoy- a place to relax, unwind, have fun, and experience wonderful Gospel and Country music, amazing shows, and of course, larger-than-life attractions.

The birthday boy, ready to celebrate his special day!

Our day at Dollywood was so much fun. I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate our son's birthday. Upon entering the gate, the staff gave B a big birthday welcome, and a special button to pin on his jacket. He was so tickled and excited!

Since this was our very first Dollywood experience, we grabbed a park map and scoped out the lay of the land. We knew the kids would want to spend a lot of time in the children's area, enjoying rides geared toward younger kids, so we headed there first.

Rainy day? No problem! Bring a rain jacket and enjoy the fun!

It was raining off and on during our visit, but that didn't deter us at all. We came to the park prepared, with rain jackets and extra socks. You almost have to expect rain in the mountains (same as the beach). Bringing along light layers is a fantastic idea, any time of the year. The weather is unpredictable, and it's much easier to throw on a light shirt or jacket.

Awesomely fun rides and attractions for families, like the Shooting Star will keep you smiling all day!

Dollywood is a fantastic theme park for families with young children. I often wondered whether or not taking S to a place like Dollywood would be more trouble than fun, but I was so excited to find that Dollywood makes it easy for families with kids of all ages to have a lot of fun and enjoyment at the park. The Measuring Station helps families determine which rides kiddos can ride on safely, according to their height. I would suggest stopping here first, to get correct measurements, before attempting to wait in line for rides. You'll know which rides your kids can or cannot ride, and it will likely save you some tears.

The Carousel, a classic ride, was perfect for our little cowgirl.

B loved this slower-paced, but still absolutely fun ride.

I'll never give up a chance to enjoy a ride on the carousel. It's nostalgic and still a lot of fun for kids of all ages (even kids in their 30s!).

My kids are both tall of their ages, so that meant that they were able to ride a lot of the rides in the kids' area. All of the children's rides are in the County Fair area, and this area includes rides like Firechaser Express, Rockin' Roadway, the Carousel, and more! My kids had such a blast at the County Fair, and I have to say- my husband and I did, too! The rides are fun for the kids, but the adults can ride most of the rides, as well- making it fun for everyone! Our youngest (S) showed us just how much of an adrenaline junkie she is by asking to ride some of these fun rides over and over again!

Check out some of our favorite rides at the County Fair!

The scrambler was so much fun for S and her daddy!

What a fun and adorable ride for S!

The Rockin' Roadway is so much for your little speedsters!

Firechaser is so much fun!

There are so many amazing rides for the kiddos at the County Fair. One of our favorites was the lemonade cups! They were so much fun to spin around in, but be warned- they can go pretty fast, and are not the best choice for those who easily become dizzy! We rode the cups many times, and had an absolute blast!

Don't forget to hop on the train for an exciting ride through the park!

All aboard! We loved the train ride!

One of the best parts of our visit to Dollywood was taking some time out to ride the train through the park. It gave mom and dad a few minutes to breathe and relax and gave everyone a chance to rest our tootsies after a fair amount of walking. The train is a fun experience for all ages. It was a chance for us to learn some of the park's history, and see the rest of the park with gorgeous mountain views while getting a sneak peek at the newest part of the park which is currently being built.

After our train ride, we took a chance in the river rapids ride. We knew we'd get wet, but we were already wet from the rain,  so we didn't care! It was so much fun. A rip roarin- good time!

Since it was raining, there weren't very many shows going on, but we were able to sit and listen to some beautiful Gospel music being performed live. Dollywood is known for its incredible live shows and highly talented singers and performers. There are multiple shows going on throughout the park during the day. I definitely recommend stopping to sit in for a show during your visit- it's a real treat, especially for music lovers.

Dolly's signature symbol- looks for the butterflies all over Dollywood!

After all of the fun and excitement we had during the morning, we decided to grab some lunch, and then walk through the aviary area, which is home to some absolutely precious birds. Lunch was great- our kids were happy with chicken tenders and fries, which made mom and dad happy, too! There are tons of options for dining and treats at Dollywood!

B loved his birthday ice cream treat!

We stopped in for some ice cream during the afternoon, before making our way through some of the other rides and attractions. There were a lot of fun roller coasters to check out, and we had to give my hubby a chance to ride some of the bigger rides... he's the biggest kid of all, and was super impressed by the roller coasters at Dollywood. The kids loved the kids coasters, and S rode it at least 10 times. It was her very first coaster experience, and we couldn't get her to want to ride anything else after this... she was all about the need for speed!

Pumpkins, anyone? The pumpkins at Dollywood are amazing!

One of the most amazing things about visiting Dollywood in the fall is the Great Pumpkin Luminights. Dollywood is decked out with the most beautiful pumpkin statues, carvings, and displays I have ever seen! We lived walking through and looking up at all of the tall pumpkin statues... they were truly larger than life, abd we were in awe of their intricately carved designs. Aside from the fun of the rides and the fun music and food, I could have spent the entire day just looking at all of the gorgeous fall decor, flowers, and pumpkins. Since Halloween wasn't far off from our visit, there were a lot of spooky and fun Halloween displays, too! 

Check out some of the amazing pumpkin statues and displays at Dollywood this fall!

Ah! Spooky and fun for all ages!

Whimsical pumpkins at every turn!

The kids loved finding all kinds of different faces in the pumpkins!

The biggest jack-o-lanterns we have ever seen!

A very friendly spider, made of pumpkins, of course!

A beautiful pumpkin butterfly.

Gorgeous decorative pumpkin designs!

I loved the live pumpkin carving going on by artists in the park. I think I stood at one of the pumpkin carving tables for almost half an hour, just watching an artist carve a beautiful butterfly (Dollywood's signature symbol) into a fresh pumpkin. Artists were working on a lot of beautiful carvings and were even taking requests from guests. It was such an impressive thing to witness.

Dollywood in the evenings is beyond magical!

At night, the entire park is illuminated with glowing pumpkins! It was certainly a sight to behold... simply stunning. The kids and adults all had such an incredible time enjoying Dollywood, and the glowing pumpkins just gave us all the fall feels. It was that extra oomph our trip needed, and it was beyond magical.

Tuckered out after a long day enjoying all of the fun at Dollywood!

We wished we could spend more time at Dollywood. One day didn't seem like enough time to see and do everything, but we felt like we covered our bases well, and got to see and do the things we wanted to the most. We know that we'll visit Dollywood again! The kids are already begging to go back, and who could blame them? It was such an incredible experience, nestled into such a gorgeous setting. We can't wait for another trip to Dollywood!

Want to go? Plan your visit!

Head on over to the Dollywood website to plan your Dollywood adventure! Check out the beautiful Dollywood Resort if you're looking for a fun and incredible place to stay during your visit to the Smokies. Dollywood offers both a theme park and a water park, so be sure to plan accordingly depending on the time of year you visit. Connect with Dollywood on Facebook and Instagram.

Have you ever been to Dollywood? If not, what are you waiting for? The mountains are calling!

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