Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass

Sevierville’s 8th Annual Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass festival returns May 18-19.

Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass is back and better than ever for its 8th year with exciting new events beginning Friday, May 17 and running through Saturday, May 18 downtown. There will be something for everyone including a new mascot parade and dance competition on Friday evening. Then watch as the kids fire up their grills for the annual Knoxville TVA Employees Credit Union Kids’ Que.

Of course, there are lots of new food vendors and plenty of great new entertainment. Hear The Bluegrass Album Band performs live on stage Friday May 18th in a free concert. This iconic bluegrass group has only performed live together a handful of times in the last thirty years. For bluegrass fans, this will be a concert-of-a-lifetime opportunity. See all of the original band members, including Doyle Lawson, J.D. Crowe, Tony Rice, Bobby Hicks and Todd Phillips live on stage. Plus, Rickey Wasson and Phil Leadbetter will join them.

Speaking of new food vendors, Carolina BBQ Company, Carolina Rib King, Smoky Mountain Smokers, Evelyn’s Ice Cream, The Diner and Tony’s Kettle Korn are just a few of the vendors that will be on hand offering some of their best recipes over the weekend.

Friday evening, bands like The Roys, Jimbo Whaley & The Greenbrier, and Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver will take the stage to the delight of all in attendance.

On Saturday, take time to browse through all the unique handcrafted items before seeing the bands on the main stage. Saturday performances include:

11 am – Cirque de Chine (Back Porch Stage)
11:30 am – Mountain Soul Vocal Competition (Back Porch Stage)
11:30 am – Lumberjack Feud (Main Stage)
Noon – Cirque de Chine (Main Stage)
1 pm – Mountain Ruckus (Main Stage)
1:30 pm – Lumberjack Feud (Back Porch Stage)
2 pm – Rickey Wasson & American Drive (Main Stage)
3 pm – Cumberland River (Main Stage)
4 pm – The Rigneys (Main Stage)
5 pm – Rickey Wasson & American Drive (Main Stage)
6 pm – Cumberland River (Main Stage)
7 pm – The Rigneys (Main Stage)
8 pm – The Bluegrass Album Band (Main Stage)

For those who love to Que, come to Sevierville early and enlist in our BBQ Boot Camp. May 15, 16 & 17, pick up tips and tricks for backyard BBQing, advanced BBQ smoking and even learn some new summertime dessert recipes! BBQ Boot Camp classes will be taught at the Rel Maples Institute for Culinary Arts at Walters State Community College in Sevierville, TN. This new facility offers state-of-the-art kitchen facilities rivaling major cooking schools nationwide.

For more information on this year’s festivities, check out

Walters State

Walters State Community College in Sevierville is a public community college aimed at educating East Tennessee residents and improving the overall economic offerings of the Smoky Mountain region.

Walters State offers an educational curriculum that prepares students to earn associates degrees in Arts, Science, Science in Teaching, and Applied Science, or certificates in programs of study of one year or less. Walters State also supports non-credit programs that offer workforce development.

Established in 1970, Walters State serves around 7,000 credit students and over 4,000 non-credit students between its campuses in Sevierville, Morristown, Greeneville, and Tazewell, TN.

Currently, Walters State fields 6 nationally competitive intercollegiate athletic teams in the sports of baseball, softball, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, golf, and volleyball.

The Walters State Great Smoky Mountains Expo Center hosts over 60 events annually including horse and livestock shows, BMX racing, boat and RV shows, concerts, high school and college graduation ceremonies and rodeos. Located in White Pine, TN, the expo center is a 98,000 square-foot pavilion with a 300′ x 150′ show ring and seats 3,900 comfortably. Also included the Ray and Barbara Bible Equestrian Center, which includes four horse barns (100 stalls each), a covered warm-up ring that connects to the pavilion and an outdoor ring. A campground for RV’s with 32 parking spaces that include water and electric hookups is located on the property as well.

Walters State Community College is currently presided over by Dr. Wade McCamey, president.

Walters State Community College
Sevierville Campus
1720 Old Newport Hwy
Sevierville, TN 37876

Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland at Smokies Stadium

Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland opens at Smokies Stadium on November 11.

Just in time for the Smoky Mountain holiday season, Shadrack Watersports and RV will bring their Christmas Wonderland to Smokies Stadium in Sevierville, Tennessee during the 2012-13 Winterfest Celebration.

The lighting spectacular, which kicks off November 9 and runs through January 6, is one of America’s largest drive-through, fully computerized LED light shows. Hundreds of thousands of lights are included in this perfectly synchronized show filled with holiday tunes done by the Shadrack crew themselves.

Like at other Shadrack Wonderland sites of the past, this will be a drive-through event nearly one mile in length and running approximately 20 minutes. “Christmas Wonderland at Smokies Stadium presented by Shadrack will be a great addition to Sevierville’s Winterfest Celebration this year,” said Amanda Marr, Sevierville Chamber of Commerce Marketing Director. “There are already millions of people who come to our area during Winterfest but having a new attraction like Christmas Wonderland will give those visitors something new and exciting for this year as well.”

New this year is Santa’s Village with a petting zoo, pony and camel rides, photos with Santa, a Christmas tree lot, and festive refreshments including hot cocoa, apple cider, funnel cakes, Christmas cookies, pizza, and kettle corn.

Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland at Smokies Stadium will continue through January 6, 2013. Hours of operation are 6-10 pm daily. Admission is $20 per car (excluding Holidays and Dec. 20-23), $35 per Activity Van / Mini Bus, $75 per tour or school bus. Rates include tax. Proceeds will benefit area charities. For more information, call (423) 652-0120. Located at the Smokies Stadium – 3540 Line Drive – Kodak, TN 37764.

Sevierville’s Harvest Festival & Halloween Happenings

The annual Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival is just one of a handful of events happening in October as Sevierville celebrates fall and the oncoming Halloween holiday.

October in the Smokies means a crisp, clean breeze, leaves beginning to change color, and the arts & crafts community really begins to come alive. Fall in the Smokies is a time of year like no other. If you have never experienced the Sevierville/Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg area during spring or summer, then you don’t know what you’re missing! Get to Sevierville before October 31 and before the colors disappear for another year!

The Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival is a county-wide celebration that includes Sevierville, Gatlinburg, and Pigeon Forge. The event lasts through Halloween on October 31. It’s  a celebration of all things autumn and numerous local businesses in the Smokies participate. Throughout Sevier County you will find an assortment of “fall displays” with scarecrows, stacks of hay, pumpkins, cornstalks, and all sorts of other fall decorations aligning the streets, in business windows and around every corner.

In Sevierville, you will experience traditional Appalachian music along with gospel and bluegrass. Artisans with the local arts and crafts community share their wares and promote their talents which include; basket weaving, candle making, jewelry, quilting, pottery, doll making, leather, stained glass, scrimshaw, fine photography, various art works, and more. This isn’t a month long “made in (insert foreign country here)” tourist trap either… this is genuine, mountain-made, good ‘ole folks crafts and artwork! Here, you’re able to meet and talk to the artists face-to-face as they demonstrate their craft before your own eyes. Numerous visitors come back to the same shops every year to add to their collection of jewelry, pottery, art, etc. Nothing this unique and personal can be found anywhere else. It’s a Smoky Mountain tradition.

If you’re going to be in town closer to Halloween, head on up to BassPro in Kodak for their It’s The Great Pumpkin Halloween Event. From October 19-31, you’ll get a chance to shop for the latest in outdoor equipment while the family enjoys a number of Halloween festivities including: Continue reading “Sevierville’s Harvest Festival & Halloween Happenings”

Great Smokies Flea Market in Kodak

Great Smokies Flea Market in Kodak where there’s something for everyone. From produce, clothing, to collectibles and pet products, it’s all here.

Ever been traveling east bound down Interstate 40 on your way to Sevierville and notice the large warehouse surrounded by clusters of smaller buildings? If you’ve ever wondered about that place and what it is, well, it’s none other than the Great Smokies Flea Market. Located in Kodak, TN, the Great Smokies Flea Market is one of the largest in the Southeast. Sometimes it can be easy to miss speeding by at 70 mph on your way to the Smokies, or Asheville, NC.

If you’ve already found out about the Great Smokies Flea Market, you’ve probably already found some good bargains. In all, the building is over 200,000 square feet of heated and cooled indoor space, and there’s even more space outdoors where over 1,000 vendors rotate. From things you need to others that you want and a least a few things that you can’t live without, you’re sure to find something at the Great Smokies Flea Market. Over the years, the average daily attendance is anywhere from 2000-5000. And it goes all the way up to 15,000 on the weekends.

Situated at the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, the flea market is located just off interstate 40 at exit 407. The market is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 8am to 5pm year round. There’s plenty of free parking, restrooms and food. If you’re like a number of people, you’ve already found out about such things as the great lemonade located in the outdoors area. Get you one before going inside, they’re very refreshing after walking amongst the various vendors outdoors.

So, what should you expect to see if you decide to go? Well, all kinds of products and services, from animals to electronics. There’s literally something for everyone. On a recent trip the following was spotted:

  • Fresh produce
  • Jellies, jams, and relishes
  • Locally grown honey and homemade candy
  • Rocks, crystals, and minerals
  • Cowboy boots
  • Pet supplies
  • Sports collectibles
  • Clothing, handbags, and jewelry
  • Kitchen products
  • Leather goods
  • Collectible coins and notes
  • Books

One more tip – bring cash. Most of the dealers only deal in cash, though there are those that will take credit cards and checks, but why take a chance. Come early, stay late, buy local, and have a lot of fun!

Great Smokies Flea Market
220 W. Dumplin Valley Road
Kodak, TN

Winterfest in Sevierville

Winterfest commences in Sevierville, Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, TN on Nov. 7.

Fall in the Smokies is an incredible time of year not only to visit the Smoky Mountains, but to take part in all of the fall events happening not only in Sevierville, but in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg too. The sights, sounds, and smells are so unique this time of the year. They provide a wonderful look into the world of Appalachian life past and present. As fall turns into winter, though, many visitors wonder what there is to do in Sevierville. Well, look no further than Sevierville Winterfest – Nov. 7 through Feb. 29.

This incredible series of events held yearly throughout Sevierville, Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg has received honors from the likes of the American Bus Association as being one of the top events in the entire country, much less the Southeast! But don’t take our word for it, come see it for yourself. Pack up the car and bring the family to Sevierville, TN for the weekend, a week, or even the entire month! You’ll soon see why Sevierville’s Smoky Mountain Winterfest is an incredibly popular event. Continue reading “Winterfest in Sevierville”

Scenic Helicopter Tours

Come Fly the Scenic Skies

What is the best way to see the Smokies?  Well, if you talk to the great people at Scenic Helicopter Tours, the best way to experience the Smokies is in one of their helicopters.  Let one of their professional pilots take you above the crowds, the traffic and the bustle of the Smoky Mountains and see the sights from an entirely different point of view.

Scenic Helicopter has been around, flying over the Great Smoky Mountains National Park since 1972.  They are one of the oldest and most respected helicopter tours in the area and they fly more flights over the National Park then anyone else.  To fly over a national park, your flights have to be approved by both the FAA and the National Park Service.  Scenic Helicopter Tours has more approved flights and they fly over more of the GSMNP then anyone else.  They will fit their flight times and their flight patterns to fit your needs, to the point of working with you and your group to produce a customized tour that lets you see the sights you want to see and in the time frame that fits your vacation.


  • Lake View Flight – 1,500 feet above the ground you get to take in views of beautiful Douglas Lake with Mt LeConte in the distance.  You will also get to see the French Broad River and Douglas Dam.
  • Bluff Mountain Flight – This tour takes you above historic downtown Sevierville as you wind your way toward Bluff Mountain.  This is the best way to see the lowland Sevier County area.
  • Mountain Valley Flight – This tour takes you away from civilization.  You get to explore the undeveloped and the underdeveloped parts of the Tennessee side of the Smokies.
  • National Park Flight – On your way to the GSMNP you get to pass over Sevierville, Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.  This adventure gets you into & above the Smokies.
  • The Scenic Special Tour – This tour focuses on the Great Smoky Mountains.  You will see:  Sevierville, Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, Dollywood, Mount LeConte, Blanket Mountains, Goshen Ridge and Cove Mountain.  You will not believe how miraculous the scenery is until you are soaring over it.
  • The Grand Tour – This the grand tour of the National Park.  You start through the three main cities on the Tennessee side of the mountains:  Sevierville, Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.  From Gatlinburg you will head toward Cades Cove.  On the way, you will pass over the Sugarlands area, Elkmont, Blanket Mountain and Tremont.  And if you like the 11 mile loop road around Cades Cove imagine the view from the air.
  • Smoky Mountain Spectacular Tour – This is the end-all-be-all for all of you that love the Great Smoky Mountains.  You will take in parts of the National Park that no one ever gets to see.  The flight path for this tour takes you over Greenbrier to North Carolina.  You will fly along the Appalachian Trail and over Clingman’s Dome.  You also get to view picturesque Fontana Lake and then back to Cades Cove.  A Once in a lifetime trip!
Remember, with all the tours above, that you are getting a professional pilot that will also act as a tour guide, telling you the story of the people and the history of the area.  Experience the Smokies from an entirely different point of view – from the aerial view – from a helicopter!  Fly with Scenic Helicopter Tours.

Scenic Helicopter Tours
Book Online!
1949 Winfield Dunn Parkway
Sevierville, TN

Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival (October 1-31)

The annual Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival is a wonderful time to visit Sevierville, Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains. Between the crisp air, leaves changing color, and the smell of campfires, it’s probably THE time to be in the Smokies. There is simply no other time like fall here. If you have never experienced it or have only visited Sevierville during the spring or summer, then you don’t know what you’re missing! I suggest getting your bags packed and cruising on down right now to visit Sevierville before October 31!

Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival in GatlinburgThe annual Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival is a wonderful time to visit Sevierville, Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains. Between the crisp air, leaves changing color, and the smell of campfires, it’s probably THE time to be in the Smokies. There is simply no other time like fall here. If you have never experienced it or have only visited Sevierville during the spring or summer, then you don’t know what you’re missing! I suggest getting your bags packed and cruising on down right now to visit Sevierville before October 31!

The Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival is a staple of fall in Smokies that includes the towns of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Sevierville. The event kicks off on October 1 and will last through October 31. It’s basically a celebration of autumn and many local businesses take part. There will be an assortment of “fall displays” throughout each town with pumpkins, scarecrows, stacks of hay, cornstalks, and all sorts of other fall decorations. Traditional Appalachian music can be heard in Sevierville, along with bluegrass and gospel. Artisans from the artistic community whose expertise include; basket weaving, candle making, pottery, quilting, dolls, scrimshaw, jewelry, leather, fine photography, art, stained glass, and much much more. This isn’t a “made in (insert foreign country here)” festival…no sir…this is a genuine, made in the Smoky Mountains by good ‘ole country folks crafts and artwork! You’ll get to meet and talk to the artists face-to-face, which you don’t get at many local festivals. Each year, so many festival-goers come back and visit the same shops in order to add to their collection of unique pottery, jewelry, art, etc. It’s a festival unlike anything outside the Smokies.