We ended up renting a cabin a while back when we stayed in Pigeon Forge. Made it a lot more enjoyable. Wasn't significantly more than local hotels were, either. Another option to consider depending on how much time you're looking to spend in the area.
We tried a smattering of mountain coasters and our favorite (family of 5) was the Rocky Top coaster just outside Dollywood on route 449. We loved Goats on the Roof as a tourist trap, but not the coaster - it was very short. Rocky Top is quite lengthy and "themed."