April Showers Bring May Flowers!

 

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Spring has sprung in the Great Smoky Mountains! With the spring rains filling the rushing river and the flora starting to come alive, now is the time to come experience what the Great Smoky Mountain National Park is all about.

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The rain has lent a hand in shaping our areas most beautiful waterfalls. In fact, here in the park we can get so much rainfall that it’s nearly equal to that of a temperate rain forest! While the water is still gushing, come see the numerous waterfalls in our area! If you’re not ready to brave the elements just yet, we have a few autumn waterfall 250x vertwaterfalls you can drive right up to. These include The Sinks, Meigs Falls, and Place of a Thousand Drips. If you’re not afraid of getting out there, then stop by our personal favorites. Some of the shorter trails include Laurel Falls, Indian Creek Falls, and Grotto Falls. If you’re ready to make a day of it, check out Rainbow Falls or Ramsey Cascades. Don’t forget to prepare with hiking essentials before you go! If you need some tips check out one of our other blog posts here.

 

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With the rain feeding the river, the river is feeding the Park. It’s still early in the season but the blooming has begun! The spring ephemerals that are popping up now won’t be here long, they die off around the end of April, so you’ll have to hurry if you want to catch them! The most prominent in this area would be the trillium, of which we have 10 different species. Several types of orchids, fire pink, bleeding heart, and violets are a few other the other prominent ephemerals also. The Red Maple’s flowers will be a brilliant red along with the bright white of the Dogwood trees.

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We’re kicking off the season with our 66th Annual Wildflower Pilgrimage starting April 19 and going through April 23, 2016. These five days are full of over 150 guided walks, instructional workshops, and demonstrations. Sign up here if you would like to attend this years Pilgrimage. We do recommend either downloading the wildflower checklist or purchasing a wildflower book for the area.

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This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

Will You Be Our Valentine?

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It’s no surprise that Gatlinburg was named the “Wedding Capital of the South” according to Destination Wedding Mag. Gatlinburg is teeming with romance around every corner, making it the perfect place to spend your Valentine’s Day Weekend! If you’re looking to settle down and spend a relaxing weekend inside with your sweetheart, or get out there and have an adventure, look no further!

 

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ERA In The Smokies has many cabins to enjoy a romantic weekend in. If you’re looking for a heart shaped jacuzzi and wood burning fireplace, Cub Path is perfect for two! Cozy Chipmunk Haven is a great escape for couples looking to get away from the world. Adventure lovers will appreciate the awesome views from the hot tub of Southern Comfort.

 

Plan your Valentine’s Dinner at one of our favorite restaurants. These are the local favorites for a couple’s night out.

  • Bistro 109
  • 3 Jimmy’s Restaurant
  • Cherokee Grill
  • The Peddler
  • Greenbrier Restaurant
  • Alamo Steakhouse
  • Melting Pot

 

Itching for an adventure? A whimsical hike through the Smokies would be a perfect getaway. Visit our list of day hikes in the area to see which one would best fit your preferences. If you prefer to drive, head over to Cades Cove to see the beauty from inside your car. Early birds should catch the splendid sunrise at Newfound Gap. Don’t forget to pack a lunch to enjoy a picnic in the woods! Be mindful and don’t forget to practice the Leave No Trace guidelines.

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If the outdoors aren’t your style, why not treat yourself to a nice massage or spa day. All About You Salon & Spa is running several specials for this weekend. Even featuring one All About Him! If you want to stay in for the weekend, try out Gatlinburg Mobile Massage, where they come to you!

holding hands sxcMarried couples who want a little something special should end the weekend with a renewal of your vows. Gatlinburg is home to several Churches and Chapels who offer more than just marriage services. Rev. Captain Jimmy C. Maples will come to you! He offers in cabin weddings and vow renewals and more. Bring back the romance with a ceremony of celebration for your anniversary or even ‘just because’!

 

 

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This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

 

 

 

 

Snowed In? Snow Day!

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Here in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, we experience our fair share of snow days. While getting out of school or work is exciting, spending the day inside can be a bore. We’ve come up with some activities that are perfect for a good snowy day.

Make Snow Cream!

Snow Cream is a delicious treat that you can’t get all year long. Kids 10890636_1572602209620477_2098604635_nlove getting involved in the kitchen -especially if they get to bring snow in the house! All you need is milk, vanilla extract, and some clean, fresh snow. We recommend setting a big bowl out once the snow starts falling. Once you mix everything together add in any toppings you would like. Sprinkles, chocolate chips, coconut, and honey are some favorites.

Do Yoga!

Yoga is a great way to warm up on a snow day. Practicing yoga has many benefits. These include increased blood flow, boost in immune system, boosts metabolism, and much more. Loosen up after walking around with all those layers from playing in the snow. Try out some basic poses like the Mountain Pose, Tree Pose, and Downward Facing Dog.

Make it a Spa Day!

There’s nothing more relaxing than a day at the spa, but no one wants to trek out into the snow to do so! Grab some ingredients from your pantry and put together some DIY spa treatments. Combine coconut oil, honey, and lemon juice for a fantastic face mask. For a hair mask use 1/2 a ripe avocado and mix it with coconut oil and vitamin E oil. After throwing snowballs all day, your hands will want some love too. Mix coarse sugar with lemon juice and coconut oil for a silky hand scrub.

Set up a Photoshoot!

10525552_347616358767131_1087180128_nGrab any type of camera and head for the pretty white blanket that has covered your yard. Snow makes for such a fun backdrop to candid
photos. Have someone snap several pics of you tossing up the snow,
trudging through it, shaking a tree to cover yourself, the possibilities are endless! The lighting on snow days is perfect for pictures so even if you’re just using your phone, there’s bound to be a good one!

Build a Fort!

Tap into your inner child and break out the extra pillows and sheets for nostalgic purposes. Everyone loved building forts as kids and now that we understand construction a little better it’s a great time to get your creative juices flowing. You can get really creative with all of those left over boxes from Christmas and put together a cardboard fort. Just attach some tape to secure them together. Mr. McGroovy’s sells boxes of rivets to help bring your creation to life. They also have tons of downloadable plans if you’re not up for designing your own.

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Play Outside!

Of course playing in the snow is the best part about snow days! Step your snowball game up by using a ball press. You can also get a snowball launcher to have even more fun! Build a snowman, snow bear, or any other snow creature that may be native to your area. Grab a sled or a tube and find the nearest hill to spend hours entertained or even just plop down and make a snow angel.

 

Now that you have a day full of activities planned, go ahead and get started! Enjoy your day full of snow!

 

 

LOGO with text This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

A Smoky Mountain New Year

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The Space Needle of Gatlinburg has been doing a NYE Ball Drop and fireworks show from their spectacular tower for over 20 years. Outfitted with LED lights from top to bottom, here’s one attraction you just can’t miss! The tower stands an impressive 407 feet tall with a 360 degree view from the observation deck at the top. Every year they kick off the New Year’s celebration with a Countdown Clock before the Ball drops at midnight. Then cue the fireworks and you’ve got yourself the ‘South’s Best New Year’s Show’. Pyro-Shows of LaFollette, Tennessee will be constructing this years fireworks show. 

All the local businesses join in on the fun to start the year off right. Many restaurants are doing a champagne toast at midnight. Some shops give out party favors and whistles. Vendors set up along the strip to sell hats, lights, and any other festive wear you can think of.

 

Blaine’s Grill and Bar is located next to the Space Needle. For New Year’s Eve they are offering 4 different packages. These include Premier Dining at $88, Dance Floor at $61, Sport’s Bar at $49, and General Admission at $20. These all include a champagne toast. Their feature dinners are Prime Rib and Grilled Chicken. Dinner starts at 6:30pm.

Bubba Gump Shrimp Company which is located across the street from the Space Needle is offering priority seating for their Landry Select Members. The restaurant offers window dining with views facing the Space Needle.

Kennedy Concepts is offering a $25 Hopper Pass for 3 of their restaurants starting at 9pm. This includes access to all 3 locations, loco.jpgparty favors, and a champagne toast. Loco Burro is doing a $35 Hopper Pass if you want rooftop access. As Gatlinburg’s only rooftop bar featuring patio dining, this is a great spot to watch the fireworks kick off.  Crawdaddy’s Restaurant  has a second level balcony overlooking Downtown. Pucker’s Sport’s Grill also features an outside verandah that looks out towards the Strip.

Three Jimmy’s is throwing a Masquerade Ball to bring in the New Year. They will be featuring a full course meal, champagne toast, a live band, and costume contests with $1,500 in cash prizes. Tickets are currently on sale, with limited seating, $55 for singles and $100 for couples. They will also offer tickets at the door for $20 (does not include dinner). Doors open around 7pm.

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The streets will be packed with fellow party-goers and families looking to enjoy the show. The crowd fills up fast, so we recommend getting there early. Free entertainment will follow the ball drop including music, dancing , and other activities. Can you think of a better way to kick off the New Year?

 

 

LOGO with textThis blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

 

Sit Back And Enjoy The Show(s)!

Christmas is a very special time to visit Tennessee. The Smoky Mountains come to life with all sorts of ways to celebrate this special time. Indoor shows are a great way to stay warm while visiting the Smokies during your holiday season. Because Christmas means something different for each and every person and we have a show for every one of those!

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If you’re looking for laughs, visit the Hatfield’s and McCoy’s for their Christmas Disaster Dinner Show. They understand that getting everyone together for the holidays can sometimes be more than you bargained for, or even a downright disaster!opryxmas3.jpg

Smoky Mountain Opry is a classic show with all of your favorite Christmas songs and scenes. Their show is what
Christmas is all about, a new born Savior! They feature the largest living nativity in the area.  Prepare to be blown away by the vocals and performances of these amazing artists.

Experience Christmas at Dixie, in Tennessee! Dolly has put together an interactive dinner show that immerses you in a winter wonderland. Complete with angels, elves, and kings, this is a show the kids will never forget. Pick your side- North or South Pole and get ready to have some fun!

Keeping it short and sweet (literally) with the shortest version of “A Christmas Carol” in the world, Sweet Fanny’s Festive Fruitcake Follies Holiday Celebration is unlike any show in the area. Full of wholesome cheer and flair, they know how to make you laugh til you cry. Walk on over from town to catch this ‘sweet’ show!

For those of you who have seen them all, Thomas Kinkade has a new experience for you. They’ve got a live music celebration, Christmas of Light, that portrays all of the beautiful artwork you’ve known for years and combines it with new holiday hits.

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From lights to music to shows, there isn’t a better way to get in the mood for some holiday cheer! No need to bundle up…the heat (and show) will go on!

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This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

 

♪ ♫ ♪ It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… ♪ ♫ ♪

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Here in the Great Smoky Mountains we like to kick off the winter season with our annual Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade. It’s the 40th anniversary of this tradition and around 60,000 people come from all over to join us for the parade. Our Grand Marshal for this year’s parade is celebrity Rachel Grant. So grab a chair and some hot chocolate and get ready to be dazzled!

Dollywood also has a Parade of Lights daily throughout the theme park. Along with that, they have the Smoky Mountain Christmas show schedule, meet and greet with Rudolph and Friends, and the Timber Canyon Festival of Lights.

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If you still want more, we’ve got you covered! With our Winter Magic lights set up from Gatlinburg all the way to Sevierville, we have an array of lights and displays to help get you in the holiday spirit. These feature animals and critters native to the area and historic scenes for the holidays. To view the entire loop, reserve yourself a seat on the Trolley Ride of Lights here.

Stop by Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland at the Smokies Stadium to drive at your own pace through their orchestra of lights. Just tune your radio station to theirs and enjoy the musical light show in the comfort of your vehicle. At $25 a carload for the show and free access to Santa’s Village it’s the perfect way to end your day.

Santa’s Claus-et in Gatlinburg has also put on their own little musical light show. They just moved locations to a new building right in town near Traffic Light number 3A. It’s a great place to shop for the holidays and enjoy the magical light show at the beginning of the Arts and Crafts loop.

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This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

Things To Do: Gatlinburg Summer Camps for Kids

Click Here to Subscribe by Email!We know you are always looking for fun things to do with your kids, but this time we have a slightly different idea! If you need a bit of a break from the kids, but leaving them behind is not an option, bring them with you to Gatlinburg, and send them to summer camp! You’ll still get to have them with you in the evenings and mornings, but from as early as 8:30 am, until as late as 3:30 pm, depending on the age(s) of your child(ren), you could enjoy some private time with your soul mate while your kids have a spectacular time enjoying the best fun our area has to offer!

The City of Gatlinburg is offering 6 Summer Camps for kids this summer! Unfortunately, we just now heard about it and 3 of them are already over. But there are still three more to choose from. (And hopefully we’ll get our report out a bit sooner next spring!)

Petting ZooPipsqueak Camp- Ages 5 – 7

July 7 -11, 2014 :: 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Cost: $50.00
This fun day camp for the little bitties includes a T-shirt at no additional cost. Please provide your child with a sack lunch. Children will visit a petting zoo, go swimming, watch movies, go bowling, try putt putt golf, go to Kid’s country, try ice skating, and visit the Knoxville Zoo!

Ice Skating at Ober GatlinburgSportacular Camp- Ages 8 – 13

July 14 -18, 2014 :: 8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Cost: $50.00
Your super little athlete will get their fill in this busy sport camp! A T-shirt is included, but please provide your child’s own lunch each day. Activities include basketball, dodgeball, lasertag, swimming, capture the flag, bowling, tubing, Hot Air Balloon, soccer, flag football, ice skating, and go-carts.

Camping in Cades CoveSurvivor Camp- Ages 8 – 13

July 21 – 25, 2014 :: 8:30 am – 3:30 pm and one overnight camp-out
Cost: $90.00
If you have a young adventurer on your hands, look no further than Survivor Camp! Children will need to bring their own lunch with them each day (excluding the camp-out) and a T-shirt is included in the cost! This amazing camp includes a treasure hunt, Haunted Adventure, obstacle course, The Tomb, craft and puzzle challenges, dogeball tournament, tubing, White Water Rafting, and a camp-out at Cades Cove.

For more information, call the City of Gatlinburg at (865) 436-4990 or visit the City of Gatlinburg website!