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P. 771: Onsite employee housing under construction at Dollywood

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I'm curious if they will build anything else up there with the Barnstormer. Not a coaster of course(unless it's compact), but maybe another Thrill ride of some sort in the future. Maybe...a Drop Tower? =D I can't really remember how large the area is and of course I don't know how large of an area Barnstormer will take up.


I may be wrong, but with the way the terrain is in that area, there will probably not be enough room for anything else. Plus, you have Daredevil Falls and the Slidewinder right in that same area. Other parks have of course done miracle work with fitting rides in small places but there is plenty of other places for new rides to go before they would need to squeeze one in there.

Edited by ernierocker
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Ahh, okay. I wasn't sure how much space was in there. I agree, I'd like to see something placed somewhere else where there's space than have it squeezed all together. I know a place in wilderness pass that would be big enough to fit a drop tower if DW would ever do that.


About that mansion i mentioned earlier, what used to be in there anyway?

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^Ahh, Okay, Thanks. They really need to do something with it instead of letting it sit there like it is now. I'm still going for the coaster station idea for that,lol.


Did they announce the slide last year pretty late? It's possible but it still may be too early to tell. They may try finishing up The Barnstormer before moving on to DSC. Are there still slide pieces left for the water park that was going to be built at Stone Mountain?

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^ You are right there, it was pretty late.


Another random, am I the only one who is eagerly awaiting the Dollywood resort hotel? It was greenlit a couple of years ago, but hasn't been picked back up yet. That could round out the experience somewhat. It seems like they are using 'Dollywood Vacations' to set them up for the eventuality of the hotel opening, though.

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I dunno. I guess it would be pretty cool, but I don't think I would ever stay in it myself unless the rates are pretty reasonable or there's some kind of perk that would make me want to stay there. Like stay 3 nights and get free admission to the park or maybe discounted tickets and early entry for people staying at the resort. The idea is cool, and I bet a lot of people would stay, but It would have to include some perk like that for someone who is looking for a cheap-ish hotel to want to stay there I would say.

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^ Well, they do offer some pretty great deals for guests of the Dollywood Vacations cabins as we speak, I think that proves they are open to providing some great little perks!


It's just one of very few things that keeps Dollywood from reaching the 'national' level, in my eyes. They could use a B&M too... -whistles-

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Yeah, I didn't think about the cabin rentals. The perks are pretty nice too. I hope they carry that on to the resort when it opens, especially the pass for unlimited visits for the price of one dollywood ticket and the free splash country ticket. Free parking is nice too. I would consider stayin there of they continue all that.


Yeah, I agree. Especially that B&M. You know from when I posted on TN that I've been hoping for that Beemer for a long time,lol. I guess I wouldn't mind seeing something from intamin either as long as it's reliable and they don't have to go changing the ride design because it was eating wheels and making people black out. =\

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  • 4 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
Dollywood has FINALLY been updated on Google Earth! It looks neat finally seeing the Timber Tower, Mystery Mine, River Battle, SkyZip, and Adventure Mountain from 'space'. I also found it cool how there is a large cloud of smoke where the train depot is.


I love that you can see trains running on all the coasters! This was long overdue.

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  • 3 weeks later...

^the ride is still physically there as of my last visit before the park closed for the season, just not on the map or on the website. They've said before (last fall i think it was) they weren't removing it....i'm not aware of anything changing since then. Screamscape had the scoop on it.

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Press Release about 2011 season highlights...




March 08, 2011 12:25 PM Eastern Time

Barnstormer, Return of Barbeque & Bluegrass Festival, New Christmas Show Highlight Dollywood’s 2011 Season

Season opens March 26 with Festival of Nations international celebration.


PIGEON FORGE, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dollywood, the world’s reigning Applause Award-winning theme park, adds the Barnstormer, revives the popular Barbeque & Bluegrass fall festival and debuts a Christmas ice skating show for guests visiting the Smoky Mountains in 2011.


“Their tricks would entertain us for hours on end, and I just know that my new Barnstormer ride is going to be every bit as exciting to folks today. I can’t wait to see the looks on folks’ faces as they dip and soar!”

The Applause Award, the most prestigious award within the amusement and theme park industry, honors a park whose management, operations and creative accomplishments have inspired the industry with its foresight, originality and sound business development. The award is presented every other year by Liseberg amusement park located in Gothenburg, Sweden.


The Barnstormer, Dollywood’s newest family thrill ride, takes flight for the 2011 season. Situated on a ridge alongside Craftsman’s Valley adjacent to the Mountain Slidewinder, the Barnstormer “landed” on Owens Farm. Passengers are seated back-to-back on two giant pendulum arms that reach 81 feet in the air. The journey to the treetops reaches a maximum speed of 45 miles per hour and 230 degrees of rotation. Situated amid a big, red barn, the Barnstormer’s barnyard theme includes activity-filled children’s play areas. Lil’ Pilots Playground features a 22-foot by 16-foot wooden bi-plane while Granny’s Garden & Pig Pen offers play structures and water fountains. To add authenticity to the Owens Farm area and the Barnstormer attraction, Dollywood partnered in the project with Tennessee Farmers Cooperative.


“When we were kids, we were absolutely amazed when we saw an airplane do stunts in the sky,” Parton said. “Their tricks would entertain us for hours on end, and I just know that my new Barnstormer ride is going to be every bit as exciting to folks today. I can’t wait to see the looks on folks’ faces as they dip and soar!”


Home to five of the South’s largest festivals, Dollywood’s revives its popular Barbeque & Bluegrass festival Aug. 19-Sept. 5. Free concerts by the biggest names in bluegrass music get under way with Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder Aug. 19 and 20 with two shows each day. Other performers include Sierra Hull & Highway 111 (Aug. 21 & 22), The Grascals (Aug. 24), Riders in the Sky (Aug. 26 & 27), Rhonda Vincent & The Rage (Aug. 28 & 29), The Gibson Brothers (Sept. 2 & 3), Marty Raybon (Sept. 4 & 5) and many more.


“My love for bluegrass music runs real deep, and after hearing from lots of folks, I know the same is true for them,” Parton said. “And that’s why I’m so very proud to bring my Barbeque and Bluegrass festival back this year. We’ve got fine pickers and mighty fine barbecue to spice things up, too!”


For the holidays, Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas festival presented by Humana, a three-time winner of America’s best Christmas event, welcomes Christmas on Ice. The spectacular indoor ice skating production, with spins and spirals choreographed to the sounds of the season, features the Ice Theater of New York. The show joins the park’s award-winning lineup of Christmastime shows, including the perennial favorite Christmas in the Smokies.


Other festival highlights include The Gazillion Bubble Show, Cloudy with a Chance of Meat Balls™ 4D Experience and two new children’s shows performed by the Penguin Players—Otis and Ladybug Girl and the Bug Squad—all during KidsFest (June 17-Aug. 7). National Southern Gospel & Harvest Celebration presented by Humana begins with the return of Southern Gospel Music Association’s Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and the Singing News Fan Awards on Sept. 28. Dollywood Nights, a week of extended park hours, is slated for Aug. 8-14.


Dollywood is a 150-acre family adventure park in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. Open nine months a year (March 26-Dec. 30), Dollywood offers more than 40 rides and attractions; award-winning live entertainment featuring country, bluegrass, gospel and mountain music; and a dozen crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region. For more information, call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD or visit dollywood.com. Operating days and hours vary.


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Lo-Q (LON:LOQ) has secured a three year extension to its existing contract with Dollywood of Tennessee, the state’s largest tourist attraction with over 2.5 million visitors last year.


Dollywood, which is owned by Dolly Parton and operated by Herchend Family Entertainment Group, has used Lo-Q's virtual queuing system since September 2006. The contract also covers technical assistance and support as well as software updates and maintenance.


The financial terms of the extension were not disclosed.


“I am very pleased to have signed this extended agreement with Dollywood. To have signed a three year extension is a real endorsement of our Q-bot technology and the benefits which it brings not only to the end user, but also to the park operator,” said chief executive of Lo-Q Tom Burnet.


Lo-Q designs, installs and operates systems which allow members of the public to make ride reservations when they visit a theme park or other attractions.


Its flagship product, VQ2020, is a virtual queuing system which uses hand-held units called Q-bots.


The company’s systems are installed in a total of 11 Six Flags theme parks in the US and Canada, including Dollywood, and Legoland Windsor.


There will be large-scale trials of the of the firm’s Q-credits wristbands at two US water parks this year.


However, Lo-Q has said that even in the early stages of development the new product has been “exceptionally well received”.


Back in February the company released its 2010 results, revealing that revenues grew by nearly 16 percent to £20.3 million giving profit before tax of £2.32 million, up 18.4 percent. The company has just over £6 million of cash.


The results were about in line with projections made by Arbuthnot Securities last year. The broker then reiterated its “Strong Buy” recommendation for the stock along with a price target of 155 pence.


Lo-Q traded at circa 95 pence at that time and has since soared to 153.5 pence.

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The company’s systems are installed in a total of 11 Six Flags theme parks in the US and Canada, including Dollywood, and Legoland Windsor.


To me this made it sound like Dollywood and Legoland were Six Flags parks.


Anyway... Long live Q-bot!

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The Q-Bot is a MUST when our family does the annual 4th of July trip to Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg when the park fills up the whole parking lot. Without it during that week of the year, I don't know what I would do!


Anyways, Dollywood's new area, Owens Farm, is about ready to open up on Opening Day! Dollywood has posted new photos (taken 3/14) on the Barnstormer website. Look's to be a very nice and unique area for Dollywood. A much needed improvement over the germ pit known as Dreamland Forest, haha! The website is a bit strange, click on "Flight Prep" once you get it pulled up to see the pictures. http://www.dollywood.com/land/Barnstormer/index.html


Can't wait to try it out!

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PIGEON FORGE — Even before their new ride for this year, the Barnstormer, is open to the public, the folks at Dollywood are apparently already looking ahead to what new attraction they will have to offer visitors next year.


Plans for that ride are on the agenda for the Pigeon Forge Planning Commission’s meeting set for 3 p.m. Tuesday in City Hall, though they don’t reveal much. Even the name is being kept under wraps, with the item appearing on the agenda and the site plan renderings at City Hall as “Dollywood Attraction 2012.”


Sevierville firm Vision Engineering and Development Services drew up those plans, which are what some in the planning office speculated could be a new roller coaster. It’s not clear even what part of the park the ride will be in, though the maps submitted by Vision indicate three buildings will have to be relocated to make way for it.


All the secrecy is intentional, with the park working with city officials to guard its plans until it is ready to announce them. It’s a practice they’ve become known for, though this year it seems it may get a new twist that comes in the way the plans are revealed.


“We are focused on 2011 and our introduction of Barnstormer, but we are looking to the future and we are planning a major 2012 addition,” Dollywood spokesman Pete Owens says. “We are planning a very unique announcement sometime later in the summer. We look forward to entertaining families with Barnstormer this year, this new attraction next year and other projects into the future.”


The park has made a habit recently of making an annual addition, with the last few years bringing Timber Tower, Mystery Mine, River Battle and Adventure Mountain, as well as the stage show Sha-Kon-O-Hey! and a walkway connecting the Timber Canyon and Craftsman’s Valley areas.


While he won’t say anything about the attraction planned for 2012, Owens says more information will be revealed shortly after the park opens later this week. He’s also working hard to build expectations for the announcement, saying it will be unique and outsized.


“I don’t know that anyone has ever announced a new theme park attraction, maybe not even a new business, in the manner that we’re planning to announce this,” Owens said.


So if three buildings need to be moved, then that must mean this will be in an older section of the park.

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Whatever it is, its Approved! Located near the Sky Zip platforms, long, lengthy and winding track But i'm perplexed by the "11 Foot" at its highest, hopefully a typo.




Planners OK 2012 addition for Dollywood

The Mountain Press

By DEREK HODGES, Staff Writer


PIGEON FORGE — There weren’t many details and there was no discussion as the Pigeon Forge Planning Commission voted unanimously Tuesday to approve the proposal for Dollywood’s 2012 addition.


Not even a name was assigned to the new ride, which one planning staffer has said looks in draft plans like some type of roller coaster, as it was presented to the group. Still, there was some additional information beyond what the site plans in the planning office provide revealed by the engineer who presented the proposal, which requires approval by the planning group as does most any addition to a property in the city.


Vision Engineering and Development Services staffer Guy Wantiez told the group it will be a large project near the intersection of the Wilderness Pass and Craftsman’s Valley areas, at the entrance of Sky Zip. Work is expected to begin even while the park is open for the season, which starts Friday.


“A large portion of that is located outside the public area, so we can get started on it early,” Wantiez said.


Typically work at the park has only been possible during the stretch from January to late March when it is closed.


The site plan approved by the group shows considerable excavation that will have to be done on the hill below the Sky Zip platforms to carve out a place for the ride. It also depicts a lengthy and winding ride track, the relocation of a few buildings, and plans to construct a couple new ones. One of those structures is being considered for a retail space, Wantiez said.


At its highest, the attraction will stand 11 feet. The project has already received approval for its stormwater impacts from state regulators, Wantiez said.


Outside that there weren’t many secrets given away about “Dollywood addition 2012,” as it has been billed in the plans. Park spokesman Pete Owens has said there will be some hype for the new ride starting perhaps as early as April. The full announcement, which Owens said will be unlike anything ever done to promote a planned theme park addition, is expected in the summer.

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