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Erik & Misty's Smoky Mountain Adventures


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Funny...I've lived in SoCal my whole life and really like cars, but have never been to this museum. Shame on me for that. I'll have to make my way down to Hollywood and check it out at some point.

 

I have been to the Petersen Auto Museum down on Wilshire. That is worth a look-see.

 

Sometime in the next nine days, I'll be hitting the L.A. Auto Show at the Convention Center. Maybe I'll do a Photo TR.

 

Eric

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I'm also looking forward to the Titanic Update as we'll be in alternate universe Pigeon Forge (aka Branson) next year and staying right next to the Titanic Place!

 

Apparently, it is being built by the same people, and should be pretty much the same.

 

I'm looking forward to covering it, as well. But I'm a bit skeptical about the concept, to be honest. I mean, isn't the subject matter a bit...depressing?

 

"Hey kids, wanna have some fun? Then stick your hand into this 35-degree water! This is what killed 250 of Titanic's passengers within minutes!"

 

Supposedly, everyone who enters will be assigned the name of one of the real passengers. And at the end, you find out whether or not your person lived. I am not making this up.

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I’m still working on my Smoky Mountain Christmas update, but today I managed to sneak over to Dollywood for a couple of hours, beore it closed due to weather and low attendance. So here you go--a short, super-special update: Dollywood in the Snow!

 

Oh, and for a handful of slightly different photos, and to learn my detailed feelings on frozen precipitation, cruise on over to my blog: The Deep Black Sea: Walking In a Winter Dollywood.

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Walking in a winter wonderland!

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He sings a love song, as we go along...

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Here to stay is a new bird...

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Gone away is the bluebird...

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Walking in a winter wonderland.

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A beautiful sight, we're happy tonight...

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In the lane, snow is glistening...

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Sleigh bells ring, are you listening...

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I'm also looking forward to the Titanic Update as we'll be in alternate universe Pigeon Forge (aka Branson) next year and staying right next to the Titanic Place!

 

Apparently, it is being built by the same people, and should be pretty much the same.

 

I'm looking forward to covering it, as well. But I'm a bit skeptical about the concept, to be honest. I mean, isn't the subject matter a bit...depressing?

 

"Hey kids, wanna have some fun? Then stick your hand into this 35-degree water! This is what killed 250 of Titanic's passengers within minutes!"

 

Supposedly, everyone who enters will be assigned the name of one of the real passengers. And at the end, you find out whether or not your person lived. I am not making this up.

 

Yeah, they had that at the Field Museum here in Chicago a couple years ago. Pretty cool actually, when you enter, you are given a card with information about a passenger (class, age, gender, etc.). You basically walk through rooms with artifacts and videos, walk out onto the deck of the "ship", where temperatures are below freezing. One cool thing that I remember was actually being able to touch a frozen iceberg that was just sitting there, very strange. But yeah, at the end there is a large wall of names stating people who died, and you can see if your person actually made it through.

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I went to the Titanic Exhibition in Orlando (still there) many years ago; I still have my passenger ticket back home. I was already a huge Titanic buff so it really interested me (and yes, they had the iceberg touching thing), but I don't know about other people being nearly as engaged in the experience.

 

Oh, and for the record, my guy lived.

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Wooowwww. I'd kill to have been there to take photos! Soooo pretty!!!

 

Yeah, but all the rides were closed. So there's that to be taken into consideration.

 

It was probably more cool for me than it would have been for someone just visiting.

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The traveling Titanic exhibit that I went to in Birmingham a few years ago was the same with the boarding pass, iceberg, etc. I don't know if kids on vacation would find it very interesting, but I was absolutely fascinated. It's tragic and depressing, yes, but fascinating nonetheless.

 

I've read up on this museum and they're not going to have artifacts that were taken from the wreck site, but rather things that were brought off the ship by survivors, or were recovered from the sea during the rescue. So maybe not as depressing as the stuff pulled up from the ocean.

 

And awesome snowy Dollywood pics! I so want to come to the mountains for the snow. We don't often get snow down in Alabama!

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The exhibit is at the Minnesota Science Museum right now. I found it fascinating. They are also showing a video about the discovery of the ship called Titanica, which I almost wasn't able to sit through. The movie featured a ton of footage of the scientists just sitting in their tiny little submarine, monkeying with the controls, not worth the $9.00, although the exhibit was, definitly worth the price (around $20.00, I believe).

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20 years ago, the towns of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Sevierville all got together to discuss their mutual problem: the complete lack of tourism during the winter months. A solution was quickly agreed upon: lights!

 

For the first twelve years, all the lights were turned on, in all three cities, at the same time. But in the thirteenth year, this caused a county-wide blackout. So now the three cities all have their kick-off events on different nights.

 

Pigeon Forge's 20th Annual Winterfest Kick Off actually occurred back on November 5th. But it's taken me this long to decide that it would be more merciful to do three or four smaller Winterfest updates, rather than one great big one.

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That's it for Patriot Park and Pigeon Forge's 20th Annual Winterfest Kick Off. I do see more photos of lights in your future, though!

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The riverboat display and the Little Pigeon River.

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This one is a bit overexposed, but it does show off how the eagle swoops down from the mountain and scoops up a fish.

 

He does this all night, but never gains any weight. Know why??

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A southern plantation represents the backwards, racist part of the country (where we are).

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Though there are light displays set up all through town, the ones at Patriot Park are patriotic/nationalistic in nature.

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Let there be lights!

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Great moments in fail: All 85 members of the Duggar family are brought back to Pigeon Forge in order to flip one switch.

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...and free pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus were given out.

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Reindeer were brought in for petting...

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Oh, don't worry--it got weirder.

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There was also a stage, used primarily for underage school girls to dance on.

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For the kick off, several tent-booths were set up to sell food--as well as Winterfest apparel.

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Christened Patriot Park in 1993, during Operation Desert Storm, the park features this family-friendly missile as its centerpiece.

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Patriot Park is the location of Pigeon Forge's central trolley station, as well as the grounds for most outdoor city events.

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