Dollywood Christmas 2012 – Lights, Action and Bring Your Camera!

This whole Smoky Mountain area, from Seviervile to Pigeon Forge to Gatlinburg, is ablaze with lights and light shows this Christmas, but be sure not to miss out on the fantastic Christmas being served up daily and nightly right now during Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas season through December.

image courtesy of Dollywood

Dollywood alone has over 4 million lights on display this Christmas, turning the 150-acre park into a wonderland full of delights. Dollywood’s shows are always of exceptional quality, rated tops again this year by the amusement industry, which also rates the theme/amusement park as the friendliest.

No argument there – Dollywood always offers its ever increasing variety of shows, foods, rides and activities for all ages in a super family-friendly way. Here are just a few of the wonders to entrance you this season:

  • Christmas on Ice – this year performed by the Ice Theater of New York, an indoor ice-skating spectacular featuring amazing spins and spirals geared to the seasonal theme
  • Christmas in the Smokies – Dolly Parton’s favorite out of the many stage shows presented, with a 12-member cast performing favorites celebrating the joy of the season.
  • Santa’s Workshop – the kids will love this giant toy store, with spectacular toys and interactive activities, and Santa too.
  • Parade of Lights – Dollywood’s own daily parade of lights and floats through the park

Be sure to check the Dollywood web site for details and times – most events happen several times every day. And in the evening be sure to bring your video recorder for the amazing Carol of the Trees, a 15-minute extravaganza of lights and sound playing several times each evening.

Carol of the Trees

Carol of the Trees turns the entire park area around Rivertown Lake into a perfectly choreographed outdoor display of lights, music and spoken word celebrating Christmas. This is worth catching, it may be the best production of its kind you’ve ever experienced. Dollywood calls the total effect a “symphony for the senses.”

Here are two recordings of the event, first the 2011 Carol of the Trees (that I couldn’t resist because of the Dolly Parton song added to the front):

And next – every year a YouTube user called DracoAzule records this event on his iPhone, and he has 2012 recorded already. Just remember, the videos are only a fraction of what it feels like to experience – see you there!


About Carrie Waxler

I've worked for Gatlinburg Falls since March 2011. Lived in TN since 1996. I have now hiked Mt. LeConte three times. I've been on every trail that leads to the top. The last one we hiked up the Boulevard. I have walked my first 2.7 miles on the Appalachian Trail. Only 2176 miles to go. I plan to hike the Appalachian Trail when my children graduate. I also love lake kayaking on Cherokee Lake and Douglas Lake. We take our kayaks camping to middle Tennessee as well for river kayaking. I love talking to guests from the places I've visited or lived. Brings back many good memories. I love to be where people are having fun.