Blue Ridge Parkway: MP 312 to MP 423
Follow the parkway to these great cities and towns:
- Big South Fork,
- Johnson City,
- Oak Ridge,
- Pigeon Forge,
- Sevierville &
East Tennessee’s beauty is wild as whitewater, peaceful as a Smoky Mountain cove and bright as the big city lights of Knoxville. Tales of frontier life come alive along the paths of westward-bound pioneers.
Tennessee’s Smokies are as vast as the view from the state’s highest point, Clingman’s Dome or as cozy as the sheltered pioneer settlement of Cade’s Cove. Dollywood draws families to Pigeon Forge for thrilling rides and musical shows while those in search of the “peaceful side of the Smokies” head for Townsend. Artisans and craftspeople display their talents at the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community in the town of Gatlinburg, where couples still head to say their vows in a mountain chapel.
There are “quieter” sights to see in the state’s northeast corner such as the first territorial capital, Rocky Mount; the oldest town, Jonesborough, where storytelling is an art; or the last covered bridge still in use at Elizabethton. Stop at small towns along the Old Stage Road and delve into the area’s Revolutionary War, pioneer and Civil War history. Try boating on a TVA-lake or hike one of the area’s many trails.
Shamrock City - March 8-16, 2014, Lookout Mountain. (800) 854-0675.
Spring Break Lantern Tours - March 10-11, 2014, Chattanooga. (423) 821-2544.
A Mountain Quiltfest – March 11-15, 2014, Pigeon Forge. Hundreds of beautiful quilts, plus classes to learn about making them. (800) 251-9100.
13th Rossini Festival International Street Fair – April 12, 2014, Knoxville. (865) 524-0795.
Windrock Park Spring Jamboree – April 24-26, 2014, Windrock Park, Oliver Springs. (865) 457-4545.
Sheep Shearing Day – April 25, 2-14, Museum of Appalachia, Clinton. (865) 494-7680.
Dolly’s Homecoming Parade – May 2, 2014, Pigeon Forge. Pigeon Forge salutes its favorite celebrity and native daughter, Dolly Parton in an Americana classic parade with Dolly in the lead float. (800) 251-9100.
June Days in Englewood – June 30-July 1, 2014, Englewood. Community celebration with music, crafts, and food ending with a community street dance. (423) 887-5455.
Fun Fest 2014 – July 12-20, 2014, Kingsport. Nine-day family festival, hot air balloons, 8K race, music, sports events, kids’ area. (423) 392-8806.
National Storytelling Festival – October 3-5, 2014, Jonesborough. World-Renowned tellers spin their tales throughout the town. (800) 952-8392.
Tennessee Fall Homecoming – October 10-12, 2014, Museum of Appalachia, Clinton. Old-time musicians and pioneer-type craftspeople. Frontier, mountain and rural activities. (865) 494-7680.