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Dollywood Discussion Thread

P. 791: Big Bear Mountain family coaster announced for 2023!

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^There is no evidence, just an assumption. The whole original attraction of the train ride was taking the journey up the mountain with the loop going around the top of it. It provided the illusion of taking a train ride through the Smoky Mountains. Now that they have excavated all of that and it is just a flat, treeless piece of land (which will now have the park expanding onto it) it will seem kind of silly to just loop around it and not have a way to get off.

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Is there really any substantial evidence point to them adding a second station to the train ride though? I haven't ridden this one yet, but it seems like it would ruin the train ride as a signature attraction of it's own and reduce it to just a transport means.


A second station would work out nicely for them actually. It's a 5 mile round trip. And you pass all the same scenery twice. Breaking that up into two seperate but equal trips would be easy. It might also afford them the ability to add another train and double capacity at the same time. I could totally see them creating some sort of Moonshine themed backwoods village. Perhaps a whole Smokey Mountain area based on the movie Deliverance. They could have a dueling banjos show. An awesome a canoe adventure that could have a shooting dark ride portion. They could even have a Dumbo style ride with squealing pigs just for the kiddies. So much potential with this concept alone. I'm shocked Disney hasn't already scooped up the Deliverance rights.

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So from a lot of the recent discussion I'm gathering that AM was more somewhat poorly thought-out for the park with bad capacity and taking up real estate that is already needed for park expansion. It wouldn't be a big deal at all if it weren't for the fact that they shelled out $6million for this thing and got just three seasons out of it. After the cluster that was Timber Tower, it's kind of concerning to see that happen again....


Is there really any substantial evidence point to them adding a second station to the train ride though? I haven't ridden this one yet, but it seems like it would ruin the train ride as a signature attraction of it's own and reduce it to just a transport means.


Timber Tower's troubles were all because that product from Huss was a lemon. I think it only worked properly for a few weeks, so that is 100% Huss' screw up (in my opinion - based off my observations). And TT is not at all related to what's going on with Adventure Mountain.


The top tier executives of the park has changed. Ken Bell, the former prez of dollywood just retired, so there's new blood and new and different ideas coming up. I think there's a press release (in the press release section of dollywood.com) about the VP retiring as well, so that's a big shakeup. New people will want to put their thumbprint on dollywood, so I think what we're seeing here is a transition between the old gaurd and the new. It doesn't seem to me to be cause for alarm, but rather i am excited to see what else is in store for the future.


Adventure Mountain will live on somewhere else, so they will get more return on their investment.


As far as the train is concerned, i don't see why they couldn't add to the route and go further around the property. Who knows what they have up their sleeve.

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Dollywood touts new ride, shows in 2013-14




Two Dollywood theme park attractions, Adventure Mountain and Imagination Cinema, will not return for the 2013 season.


Adventure Mountain, which is coming up on the end of its third season, will be replaced by a new attraction that will open in 2014. Details of that project won't be released until next year, Dollywood spokesman Pete Owens said.


"With the popularity of that area, we felt this is the perfect location of what has been designed. We know some people will be disappointed, but we think they will be pleased with the new project," Owens said.


Dollywood introduced Adventure Mountain, a $5 million, 2-acre play area in 2010 after being delayed a year because of the economy.


It features more than 100 obstacles including swinging beams, suspension bridges, flying islands and a tire traverse along a hillside, across from the park's newest roller coaster Wild Eagle.


The new project will encompass that property and some more, extending in front of the water raft ride River Battle, Owens said.


Meanwhile, plans have been made to convert Imagination Cinema into a 500-seat venue for a new Dolly family show. The theater, which is currently showing The Polar Express 4D Experience, will reopen in spring 2013.


The additional venue will be part of the park's plans to debut five more shows next year.


Earlier this year, Dollywood opened Wild Eagle, the first wing coaster in the U.S. Next year, it will open the state's first water coaster, RiverRush, in Splash Country.


In September, Dollywood dropped plans to partner with Gaylord Entertainment to build a $50 million water and snow park in Nashville, saying it would focus its attention on the Pigeon Forge theme park.


"When your business grows, it is important to evaluate and improve the experiences you provide to your guests," Dollywood President Craig Ross said in a statement. "For 2013, we're excited about Dolly's new family show and its new venue. Our guests will start to see construction activity for the new 2014 attraction as soon as the park opens next season. … (Families) are going to be thrilled and excited about the new additions. They'll be like nothing you've seen before."


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Was at the park on Saturday and noticed the "new" (since 2005) walkway connecting The Village to Country Fair has been removed (near Heartsong, with the pickle/potato displays along the path). Does anyone know what happened or why it was removed? It has been completely covered with dirt and landscaping.

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Wow...that certainly stinks about Adventure Mountain.


I did it last year when I was there over Christmas and had a blast. Such a unique attraction and one that actually utilized exercise for families...it was quite the work-out & kids seemed to really love it. I will definitely make sure that I hit the course for one last time when we go over Christmas!


I'm sure what they're planning will be awesome though & I like the idea of eventually putting something up at the train loop, although that could be one heck of a trek to get up there, if not by train.


While I like the train ride, the loop part (where there is literally nothing other than a turn around in a large, empty field) could be so much better if they themed it and added another stop with some rides/attractions. The first time we rode it I was a bit disappointed that there really wasn't anything there as I was expecting a bit more after seeing some of the shacks and other theming they had on the way up.

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^Not exactly sure which pathway you are referring to. I didn't notice anything different when I was last there in August.


It must have been covered/removed earlier this year-- it's already covered on this year's Google Map Satellite image. The path wound between Sky Rider and the Flying Elephant rides.

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  • 1 month later...

Lo-Q will be at Dollywood & Splash Country for a few more years...



Lo-Q Says Dollywood's Splash Country To Instal Its Q-band Solution


1/22/2013 2:33 AM ET

technology solutions provider Lo-Q Plc. (LOQ.L) Tuesday said Dollywood's Splash Country will install the company's Q-band water park solution system for the 2013 season for an initial 3 year period.


The agreement extends the terms of Lo-Q's existing contract with the adjacent Dollywood, which was due to expire on December 31 to December 31, 2015. Under the terms of the Agreement, Lo-Q will continue to supply its Q-bot solution to the Dollywood theme park in which it currently operates.


Tom Burnet, CEO of Lo-Q said, "We are delighted that Dollywood has decided to not only extend our Q-bot contract but that the agreement now also includes implementation of our Q-band solution at the nearby Dollywood's Splash Country. These two elements together further demonstrate the strength of Lo-Q's technology offering."




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^ Cool!


Somehow, that Adventure Mountain news snuck by me. That's definitely one of the oddest ride/attraction removal stories in recent history, and I'm disappointed to see it go...regardless of the reasoning behind it. At least they're not removing any restaurants as of yet.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I never got to check out Adventure Mountain. It's a shame because it seemed to fit in very well with that section of the park, but Dollywood is absolutely top-tier when it comes to park design and maintenance, so I trust that their decisions are good ones. Can't wait to head back to the park this year, IF our plans to do so hold up.

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Pete said they did not know what would happen to Adventure Mountain. Parts of it could go to Stone Mountain in Georgia, as they have a smaller version of Adventure Mountain, but he said a decision hasn't been made at this point.


The rumor at Screamscape is still that it will end up at Stone Mountain. It makes sense to keep it in the Herschend chain.

Edited by larrygator
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River Rush update!


Dollywood released a POV of River Rush on their Facebook page.




The local media has toured the site...looking great!


KnoxNews, several pictures included: http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2013/feb/07/construction-of-6m-riverrush-coaster-nearly/?partner=RSS

PIGEON FORGE — Construction of a new $6 million water coaster slated to open in May at Dollywood's Splash Country is on schedule despite this winter's record rainfall, park officials said Wednesday.


RiverRush, the largest investment made to Splash Country since it opened next to the theme park in 2001, is 95 percent complete and has been set for a Mother's Day weekend opening.


"It's a thrilling experience. This is a high adventure ride, but a ride that families will want to do together," Dollywood spokesman Pete Owens said.


Visible from Veterans Boulevard at the Western end of the park, RiverRush will be the state's first water coaster.


The 1,175-foot long linear tube track covers more than an acre in a newly-developed area between the park's Big Bear Plunge white water rafting inspired slide and Bear Mountain Fire Tower.


Unlike traditional water rides, RiverRush will lift riders up on a conveyor belt. Using what officials called "a unique technology" for the water park industry, four-person toboggan-style boats are propelled up hills and around curves by linear induction motors that use an alternating magnetic field beneath the slide surface.


Four stories tall, riders climb 237 feet before making a 25-foot, 45-degree drop and launched through tunnels, rapids and three more drops. A netting covers parts of the ride to keep leaves and debris out.


The ride lasts about one minute and 20 seconds and is expected to run 720 passengers an hour. Riders, who must be at least 42-inches tall, get on and off at the same spot.


The closest outdoor water coaster using similar technology is at Holiday World in Santa Claus, Ind. The ride at Splash Country represents


manufacturer ProSlide's fourth longest.


Construction on the coaster, which took advantage of the existing wooded terrain, started in August, said Brian Dudash, director of construction and development for Dollywood.


The project was initially estimated at $5 million, but additional expenses were incurred because of rock.


"It's a huge investment for the water park, especially one that's open about 90 days a year," Dudash said. "This is about two and a half times what we would normally spend at an attraction here."


Details of Dollywood's 2014 expansion is expected to be announced this summer. It will be located on the site of Adventure Mountain, which closed at the end of last season.


Owens described the project as "a significant family attraction" in scope between the park's $17.5 million Mystery Mine steel coaster and $20 million Wild Eagle, the first wing coaster in the U.S.


With Splash Country's new water attraction and Dollywood's Wild Eagle addition last year, Splash Country hopes to increase its attendance by about 10 percent to more than 400,000 visitors, General Manager Mike Brown said.


"Our goal would be to eventually be a 500,000 a year park," he said.


The water park will open a couple of weeks early this year to have Dolly Parton, who will be in town to kick off Pigeon Forge Springfest, present at its launch.


Dollywood opens to the public on March 22. Splash Country opens May 11, with a special opening on May 10 for season pass holders.


© 2013, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.



Report from WATE, with video:



Report from WBIR, with video:



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