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For 9 months out of the year, visitors enjoy the world-class rides, award-winning dining, and incredible entertainment that Dollywood has to offer. But what goes on at the park during the off season? Visit My Smokies has all the details on what happens when Dollywood is closed.
What Happens When Dollywood Closes
Dollywood closes for the season in early January. Once all the Christmas decorations are taken down, the park has just 67 days to perform all the tasks that need to get done before the new season begins. Though Dollywood is closed to visitors, the park is far from empty. Maintenance crews, construction workers, and more park employees are hard at work getting the park ready for the following season. Every department at Dollywood does cleaning, inventory checks, budget planning, strategizing, and hiring.
Preparing the Park for the Upcoming Season
A lot of things happen at Dollywood during the offseason to prepare the park for the upcoming season. Every year, Dollywood is looking for ways to improve guests’ experiences at the park. This includes newly paved and upgraded walkways, upgraded lighting, new air and heat units, new food equipment, and upgraded restrooms. In addition, crews are hard at work painting! Everything from common guest areas to kitchens and food prep areas around the park are given a fresh coat of paint. The carpentry team stays busy as well, replacing about 5 miles of lumber every offseason.
What’s New at Dollywood in the 2019 Season
One of the reasons workers stay so busy when Dollywood is closed is to create new things for guests to enjoy. From rides to walkways, there is always a variety of things for visitors to try when the park reopens! Here’s a look at what’s new at Dollywood in the 2019 season:
Of course the one thing visitors are looking forward to the most is the opening of Wildwood Grove, which is part of Dollywood’s largest expansion ever! This new land will open May 10 and 11 and create a whole new experience for guests visiting the theme park. At the center of Wildwood Grove sits the Wildwood Tree, which offers a platform for performances throughout the day and night. The tree is decorated with colorful butterflies, and the bark of the tree has carvings of musical instruments. Wildwood Grove is a place where imaginations can run wild and family fun never ends. Here are some of the new rides and experiences at Wildwood Grove:
- The Dragonflier
- Mad Mockingbird
- TreeTop Tower
- Black Bear Trail
- Frogs & Fireflies
- Great Tree Swing
- Hidden Hollow
- Wildwood Creek
Southern Pantry at the Sweet Shoppe
Also new at Dollywood this season is the Southern Pantry at the Sweet Shoppe. The Sweet Shoppe is home to a variety of candies and taffies to satisfy any sweet tooth. The Southern Pantry adds a new array of goodies for visitors to try, from pastries to pickled items. It’s the perfect place to stop on your way in or out of the park!
New Acts & Food at the Festival of Nations
Kicking off the new season at Dollywood is the Festival of Nations, which will include both new acts and new food! The popular festival will have two new acts performing, including a dance troupe from Cuba at Celebrity Theater and a group called Drumstruck at Showstreet. When you walk into Showstreet for the Drumstruck performance, you’ll find a drum at your seat so you can drum along with what’s happening on the stage! In addition to new performances, visitors can sample new foods like pastries and nachos from around the world. There is even a USA booth with pot roast and apple pie!
March 16 is the opening day of Dollywood’s 2019 season! Purchase your Dollywood tickets today and start planning your visit to the world-class theme park.