Gatlinburg News

Find out what is going on in Gatlinburg! Get the latest news... Season of Summer Fun Kicking Off in Gatlinburg: Entertainment, Events, Crafts Fairs and More
The season of summer fun has arrived in Gatlinburg, and it comes with no shortage of activities for the whole family.  This summer, visitors will have the chance to spend their evenings enjoying live entertainment, attending award-winning Independence Day festivities or getting a firsthand look at unique items hand-crafted in Gatlinburg for generations.

Gatlinburg’s award-winning 4th of July Midnight Parade is the First Independence Day parade held in the country and has garnered much national attention and award recognition for excellence in entertainment. For 40 years, the Parade has honored our nation’s Military Veterans and other U.S. Military Heroes with this classic, small town American parade. The parade steps off at the stroke of midnight on July 4th. The Army Band from the 129th Army National Guard Unit in Nashville will perform Friday night leading up to the parade. The following night, Saturday, July 4th, a 20-minute fireworks display will begin at 10:00 p.m. near traffic lights #3 and #5.

Back for its 10th season, Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales is a one of a kind experience for Gatlinburg visitors. Tunes & Tales is a summer-long street performance event featuring costumed musical performers, storytellers and artisans portraying characters from time periods as far back as 1800. Tunes & Tales runs from June 12 to August 1 every night beginning at 6 p.m.

Arts, crafts and music lovers can explore more than 150 booths filled with work from America’s largest group of independent artisans at the Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair held July 17 to 26 daily at the Gatlinburg Convention Center. Artists and craftsmen will be on-hand to demonstrate their skills, answer questions and sell their fine works of art. Live country and bluegrass music will also be on site for entertainment.

Best of all, navigating the summer festivities are made easy for visitors with the availability of free trolley service throughout the summer. From June 13 to August 15, the open-air trolleys will operate from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. The shuttle service will extend from traffic light #1 at the north end of town to light #10 at the entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Download Gatlinburg Apps on iPhone and Android!

Gatlinburg has two Apps to enhance the visitor experience. The Visit Gatlinburg app has mountains of information: Learn about special events and festivals, attractions and outdoor adventure, our unique restaurants, places to stay, maps and much more! Our other app is the Interactive Tours and Events App which includes tours that will help you find unique areas and locations in Gatlinburg. Follow our Winter Magic Light tour, Historic Walking Tour and many others. Also browse our special events listings for Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter. Learn more about each of these app and download here.

Forbes Touts Gatlinburg As One of America’s Prettiest Towns

All of us are aware of how special this place we live in really is. Now, has noticed, ranking Gatlinburg among the Prettiest Towns in America, along with such places as Newport, Rhode Island; St. Augustine and Key West, Florida; Taos, New Mexico; and Old San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The website created the rankings with input from sources such as National Geographic and The Travel Channel. To see the listings, please visit their website.

"With its charming, quaint old buildings in the center of town, its dramatic mountain backdrop and the only ski resort in Tennessee, Gatlinburg has become a popular tourist destination for regional fun-seekers. Located on the border of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg benefits from its location as a tourist draw and reinforces it with attractions such as an aerial tramway, an aquarium, whitewater rafting, hiking, and even a haunted house. But let’s not kid ourselves: as pretty and irresistible (as) the town is, the real draw in this part of Tennessee is the nature. 'The wildflowers around Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are absolutely spectacular in the spring as they burst with wildflowers at their peak,’ says Zain Habboo, National Geographic's director of travel."

"We are very thrilled with this honor from Forbes," said Gatlinburg City Manager Cindy Cameron Ogle. "We are blessed to live in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains and we take pride in being the gateway community to the country’s most-visited national park. It truly is a wonderful place to enjoy.”

The City of Gatlinburg is completing the sixth phase of its Underground Utilities and Streetscape Project. Since the late 1990s, Gatlinburg has been burying utilities underground and improving the aesthetics of the downtown area, something that Ogle says takes the cooperation of the City, the business community and residents. 

“Of course, it has taken a lot of people doing a lot of good things to allow us to earn this lofty recognition,” said Ogle. “It's been a great public-private collaboration of dedication that has dramatically improved the aesthetics of the Parkway and helped us blend in with the Smokies.” Come to Gatlinburg and see for yourself!

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