Gatlinburg Farmer’s Market

gatlinburg farmers market logo

On Saturday mornings the residents of Sevier and Cocke county come together to create a haven of locally grown produce, jellies, baked goods and topical products. The Gatlinburg Farmers Market has been in full swing for several weeks now. From May 11,2013 to October 12,2013 the Farmers Market will be up and running from 8:00 A.M. to 11:00 A.M.. The market provides locals and visitors with local produce for fair pricing while supporting and stimulating the local economy. The vendors this year are:

  • On Cosby Day-lilies- Beautiful garden day-lilies of many different varietiesveggies
  • Mountain View Orchard- Vegetables, jellies, jams, baked goods, and apples in season
  • Brewers Mushrooms- Gourmet mushrooms: Lions Mane, Shitake, Oyster and Reishi
  • Smoky Mountain Spinnery- Sourdough bread and other baked goods
  • Knotty Gecko Handcrafts- Topical products: lye soap, lotions, lip balm, wooden wick soy wax candles (all natural ingredients and earth friendly)
  • Line Market Garden- Pesticide free fruits and vegetables and cut herbs and flowers
  • Happy Skin Naturals- All natural creams, lotions, scrubs, lip balm, bar soaps, etc. No animal by-products; made from edible oils, sugars and plant based emulsifiers
  • Crooked Letter Farms- Vegetables, fruits, cut herbs and flowers, jellies, jams and baked goods
  • Catskill Farms- Large farmer who sells a variety of vegetables and vegetable plantshoney
  • Ely’s Mill- Seasonal honey
  • Josie Lemming- Pesticide free vegetables and cut herbs and flowers
  • Michael Ogle- Vegetables

“Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circles of nature, is a help. Gardening is an instrument of grace.” -May Sarton

farmer's market booth

Directions to the Gatlinburg Farmers Market: Stoplight #3 in Gatlinburg turn north onto Highway 321 toward Cosby, Market is located about a mile on the left in the Alamo Steakhouse parking lot. (705 East Parkway Gatlinburg, TN 37738)

Grilled Corn on the Cob with Roasted Garlic & Herbs

Total time: 1hr 35 min

Servings: 6201007-r-grilled-corn

Ingredients:

  • 2 heads garlic
  • 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped tarragon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 large ears of corn, in the husks

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Cut off the top third of the garlic heads. Stand them cut side up on foil and drizzle with 1 teaspoon of oil. Wrap the garlic in the foil and bake for about 1 hour, until very soft. Squeeze the garlic into a bowl. Stir in the lemon zest, butter, cilantro, tarragon and the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Light a grill. Peel back the corn husks, keeping them attached. Discard the silk. Spread the herbed garlic all over the corn. Fold the husks back over the corn and tie the tops with string. Wrap the corn in foil.
  3. Grill the corn over moderate heat, turning, until the kernels feel tender, 15 minutes. Remove the foil. Grill the ears over moderately high heat, turning, until the husks are nicely charred, 5 minutes, then serve.

Notes: One serving- 186 cal, 7 gm fat, 2 gm sat fat, 31 gm carb, 4 gm fiber

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Free Parkway Trolley

Gatlinburg_Free_Parkway_Trolley-2

Traveling through Gatlinburg will become even more convenient starting June 14,2013 when a new addition to the trolley system allows visitors to travel along the Parkway for free! The specially painted open-air Gatlinburg Free Parkway Trolley will operate from 10:00 A.M. to 10:00 P.M. daily through August 17,2013. This trolley makes 40 stops on its specially

signtrolley1designed route. To ride the trolley all day long there is a small fee of $2 per day that provides unlimited access to the Red, Blue, Purple, Yellow and Green trolley routes. The $2 all day pass is sold at City Welcome centers, Gatlinburg City Hall and the Mass Transit Center. Don’t miss out on this money saving opportunity during your visit to the Heart of the Great Smoky Mountains!

trolley4All of the Gatlinburg Trolleys are handicap accessible.

In 1980, the Gatlinburg Trolley System began with only six trolleys, but has grown to more than twenty trolleys traveling 50 miles of trolley routes! Gatlinburg’s Trolley System is now the fifth largest mass transit system in the state of Tennessee. The Gatlinburg Trolley is an easy and fun way to get around town without all the hassel of traffic and finding a parking spot. It’s environmentally friendly too!

The Red route travels from River Road to the Convention Center, the Blue route travels from East Parkway to the Community Center, the Purple route travels from North Gatlinburg Parkway to the Welcome Center on the Spur, the Yellow route runs to the Arts and Crafts community, and the Green route runs from the Historic Nature Trail to the Convention Center. For a satellite map of the trolley routes visit, gatlinburg.otvia.com.

GatTrolley09

firefliesbanner

Every June, a unique phenomenon occurs in and around Great Smoky Mountains National Park: Synchronous Fireflies! This year, make plans to take part in this magical event held in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park from June 6, 2013- June 13, 2013

fireflies 1

Fireflies, also called lightning bugs, are actually beetles! They take from one to two years to mature from larvae to adult and live as adults for only about 21 days. The light is produced by chemicals and enzymes in their abdomens and is called “bio-luminescence”.

There are at least 19 different species of fireflies in the Park, but only one provides a stunning light show every year in mid-June for about 2 weeks. The Synchronous Firefly (Photinus carolinus) is the only species in North America whose individuals have the ability to flash in unison. The only other place in the world you can see this unique display is Southeast Asia.

Learn about the fireflies' flash pattern!  Why Do They Flash?

Fireflies emit light to attract a mate. In most species of firefly, both males and females are capable of flashing. Each species has its own “flash-code” to help males find females of the their same species with which to mate. The males fly and flash while the usually stationary females respond with a flash. Most species produce a greenish-yellow light, but one species produces a bluish light. How and why these fireflies are able to flash synchronously is a more complicated question. Several researchers have studied these beetles in search of an answer. UConn researcher Andrew Moiseff has been trying to Unravel the Mystery of the Fireflies’ Flash for years. No one knows for sure why they flash together, but it is likely related to competition among males.

Viewing the Light Show!

national_park_service_logo

There are lots of places to view the light show in and around Great Smoky Mountains National Park. According to Discover Life in America, these fireflies are found in every watershed in the park. The best places to view them are at the edges of moist wooded areas. The display starts at full dark, usually around 9:30 and lasts until about midnight.

One of the best places to see light show is at Elkmont Campground. From late May to early June, the road to Elkmont will be closed after 5 p.m., but you can park at Sugarlands Visitor Center and take a Trolley to Elkmont for $1 roundtrip. Contact the Park for more information: 1-865-436-1200.

Fire Fly Etiquetteflashlight

  • Please use your flashlight as little as possible and cover it with blue or red cellophane -this light is not as bright and won’t disrupt the show for others.
  • Do not catch the fireflies; just like all other wildlife in the park, they are protected!
  • Stay on the trail.
  • Take your trash with you out of the Park.

Hope you are able to visit us in the Smokies this June and experience this natural wonder firsthand! Remember, this event is a sell out each year, so be sure to  book your Gatlinburg cabin with ERA in the Smokies!

Gatlinburg Adventures Zip, Zorb & More!

Subscribe to A Day In The SmokiesSummer is a great time to enjoy all the adventure the Smokies has to offer!

Go Ziplining!Ziplines
Just imagine… gliding through the shady emerald tree tops, the cool wind brushing across your face, and of course, luscious, verdant views all around! Ziplining has become quite a big deal around here. There are places, right off the main Parkway, where you can enjoy easy access, and still experience the thrill off the wind whipping across your face. If you want to enjoy ziplining in the lush green forest canopy, there are places that offer this as well! Check out our related post Zipline Fever.

Enjoy the Thrill of Rafting!Rafting and Tubing
As an East Tennessee kid, rafting and tubing were an integral part of my childhood! A week of summer camp wasn’t complete without at least one or the other, if not both! If you love thrill and adventure, look no further than a day of white water rafting! You will be an irreplaceable member of your rafting team, as you learn to paddle together according to your guide’s instructions! Experience the thrill of making it through those roaring rapids, and in the intensity, don’t forget to look at the gorgeous creation around you! If you are more interested in viewing the creation and less interested in thrill and adventure, perhaps tubing is for you! Enjoy a lovely afternoon floating down a calmer section of a creek or small river as you gaze at the beautiful surroundings! Either way, don’t forget the sunscreen! There are tons of places around here that can provide these aquatic adventures for you! See our related posts for more info Let’s Get Wet.

Try Indoor SkydivingIndoor Skydiving
This vertical wind tunnel that allows you to experience the freedom of human flight and is located at traffic light #5 in Pigeon Forge. As a flyer, participants attend a 20-minute training class, receive a suit, helmet & other safety equipment. Following a short review of the basics, a group of 5 flyers enters the wind tunnel with their instructor. Almost anyone can fly as long as you weigh at least 40 lbs. Watch this video for a preview of kids in flight. Link to pricing & coupons.

Bungee Jumping!Bungee Jumping
I remember when I was on vacation with my family in Pigeon Forge as a kid, sitting at an ice cream shop, eating our ice cream, and watching people bungee jumping down the road. It certainly is a thrill! And it’s an institution of Pigeon Forge. You can enjoy both bungee jumping and the SkyFlyer, meant to give the sensation of sky diving, at The Track. While you’re there, the slightly less adventurous members of your group can enjoy mini golf, bumper boats, and of course, the Wild Woody Go Kart Track, as well as a few others!

Rock Wall ClimbingRopes Courses and Climbing
If you are looking for challenging, professional level rock climbing, especially on real rocks, we may have to plan a day trip. But if you are fairly new to climbing, or perhaps would enjoy an easy day, just for the fun of it, we have several options to choose from! The closest place to climb some real rocks is near Townsend, a place called Look Rock. It is said to provide some great views from an observation tower that is also there. There are two rock walls that I’ve heard about. WonderWorks in Pigeon Forge has one that’s fun for adults and children alike, not too difficult. The Nantahala Outdoor Center in Gatlinburg also has one that boasts different routes for all ages and skill levels! WonderWorks also has an indoor ropes course, and Dollywood has an outdoor one. The elements in each are fairly similar to each other, but I would say Dollywood’s course has a little more variety. Also, Dollywood’s course, Adventure Mountain, has 3 distinct “trails” (and a 4th trail for the little bitties!) which you go through, and each “trail” has 3 different tracks you can choose from and switch between at each element. The WonderWorks course is a web of varying elements which you travel through in any order you choose. Both are quite enjoyable and come with general admission to the larger attraction they are in- great deal!

ZORBZorb– The only ZORB™ location in the United States is located in the Smoky Mountain area. ZORB™ is the sport of rolling down a hill inside a giant inflatable ball and according to their website, “where New Zealand, once again leads the world in stupid things to do while you’re on a vacation.” See the video(follow the link if your browser does not display) below:

YES, that’s a person in the middle of this big ZORB™ ball! The ZORB™ ride is just a totally bizarre and fun adventure experience where you’d be protected by a massive cushion of air whilst sphering down a hill.

Throw in a bucket of water, hop inside the inflated ZORB™ ball, run, tumble, flip or slide inside it, doesn’t sound fun enough yet? Take up to 2 of your mates with you inside the ZORB™!

Visit Forbidden Caverns!Explore the Caves Under the Smokies
Why not go spelunking?! (I just like to use that word!) Or at least take a guided tour of the caves under the Smokies. “Tennessee is home to the most caves in the United States, with over 8,350 caves registered to date. Forbidden Caverns, located in Sevierville, Tennessee is one of America’s most spectacular caverns. Visitors are provided with an entertaining and educational tour past sparkling formations, towering natural chimneys, numerous grottos and a crystal clear stream. Special lighting effects, a stereophonic sound presentation and well-trained tour guides combine to make this a most enjoyable experience. The trails are well-lighted, with handrails at all necessary points.”
“Carved over tens of thousands of years in one of the earth’s oldest mountain chains, Tuckaleechee Caverns at Townsend, Tenn., are known as the ‘Greatest Site Under the Smokies’. Estimated to be between 20 and 30 million years old, the Caverns are rich in history and lore in recent years as well.”

Try Riding ATVs!ATV (and other off-road) Adventures
If you want to stay closer to the Smokies and/or don’t have your own ATV to ride, check out the ATV rides available with Bluff Mountain Adventures! They provide the ATV, safety equipment, and a guided tour. Ride types range from introductory to challenging, from 5 to 20 miles, and from $37.95 to $177.95 (plus tax and insurance). They have great reviews, so check them out! If you have your own ATV, dirt bike, Jeep, etc., and would like to enjoy a great OHV area, try Coal Creek, about 1.5 hours away from here. It would be a great day trip! “The Coal Creek OHV Area is 72,000 acres of off-road fun, located in Oliver Springs, Tennessee. Hundreds of off-roaders can be found every weekend enjoying our trails. The trails are open to everyone and just about any type of vehicle. ATV’s, motorcycles, mountain bikes, Jeeps, buggies, trucks all enjoy some of the best off-roading in the country.”

Enjoy a Haunted Tour of Gatlinburg!Haunted Tours
There are a few haunted houses in Gatlinburg. “Ripley’s Haunted Adventure is a multi-million dollar haunted house featuring live actors, animatronics and bone chilling special effects.” “Experience the terror and horror of a classic, turn of the century, truly haunted house at Mysterious Mansion. Walk into a chilling haunted house with secret passageways, a damp, dark dungeon, spooks, creaks, creeps and plenty of things that go bump in the night. There’s an army of ghosts, and grisly creatures awaiting your arrival, all designed with fright in mind. Ghastly. Grisly. Grim. They can not describe the horror that awaits you at the ultimate scare in town – Mysterious Mansion. Don’t dare miss it! And, what ever you do, don’t go there alone!” For something a little more serious try the Haunted Ghost Tour of Gatlinburg. While haunted houses may be frightful, the ghost stories you’ll hear on this tour have a much larger measure of truth in them. Hear the actual ghost stories of the Smokies as you walk around town and view the places where the stories are said to have taken place. Learn a little about the history of Gatlinburg as well. And take your camera! Your guide will instruct you to take pictures at certain key locations, and you may be surprised by what you find when you look back at your pictures afterward!

After an exhausting day of grand adventures snuggle down in your own cabin to rest up for another exciting day in the Smokies!

ERA In The Smokies Realty and RentalsThis blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more info. on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

Synchronous Fireflies 2012 ~ A truly amazing event!!

Subscribe to A Day In The SmokiesEvery June, a unique phenomenon occurs in and around Great Smoky Mountains National Park: Synchronous Fireflies! This year, make plans to take part in this magical event held in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park from June 2, 2012 – June 10, 2012

Find more about this event on the National Park's website!Fireflies, also called lightning bugs, are actually beetles! The light is produced by chemicals and enzymes in their abdomens and is called “bio-luminescence”.

There are 14 different species of fireflies in the Park, but only one provides a stunning light show every year in mid-June for about 2 weeks. The Synchronous Firefly (Photinus carolinus) is the only species in North America whose individuals have the ability to flash in unison. The only other place in the world you can see this unique display is Southeast Asia.

Learn about the fireflies' flash pattern!  Why Do They Flash?

Fireflies emit light to attract a mate. In most species of firefly, both males and females are capable of flashing. Each species has its own “flash-code” to help males find females of the their same species with which to mate. How and why these fireflies are able to flash synchronously is a more complicated question. Several researchers have studied these beetles in search of an answer. UConn researcher Andrew Moiseff has been trying to Unravel the Mystery of the Fireflies’ Flash for years. No one knows for sure why they flash together, but it is likely related to competition among males.

Discover Life In AmericaViewing the Light Show!

There are lots of places to view the light show in and around Great Smoky Mountains National Park. According to Discover Life in America, these fireflies are found in every watershed in the park. The best places to view them are at the edges of moist wooded areas. The display starts at full dark, usually around 9:30 and lasts until about midnight.

Elkmont Campgound

One of the best places to see light show is at Elkmont Campground. From June 4-12, the road to Elkmont will be closed from 5 pm until midnight, but you can park at Sugarlands Visitor Center and take a Trolley to Elkmont for $1 round trip. Contact the Park for more information: 1-865-436-1200.

Fire Fly Etiquette

  • Please use your flashlight as little as possible and cover it with blue or red cellophane -this light is not as bright and won’t disrupt the show for others.
  • Stay In A Cabin When You Come See the Fireflies!Do not catch the fireflies; just like all other wildlife in the park, they are protected!
  • Stay on the trail.
  • Take your trash with you out of the Park.

 

Hope you are able to visit us in the Smokies this June and experience this natural wonder firsthand! Remember, this event is a sell out each year, so be sure to  book your Gatlinburg cabin with ERA in the Smokies!

ERA In The SmokiesThis blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more info. on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

Smoky Mountain Wildflower Pilgrimage 2012

About the PilgrimageJoin us in Gatlinburg as we celebrate the beauty of spring at the 62nd annual Wildflower Pilgrimage! 

The 62nd Smoky Mountain Wildflower Pilgrimage is a 4 day event offering 134 professionally guided walks and indoor presentations which explore the region’s rich wildflowers, fauna, ecology, cultural and natural history.

Most programs are conducted on the trails in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, while indoor offerings are held in Mills Conference Center and Sugarlands Training Room in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. All programs will be held rain or shine.

The 2012 Smoky Mountain Wildflower Pilgrimage will be held from April 25th through April 28, 2012. Online registration just started! Plan your trip to Gatlinburg now!

Programs

Wednesday through Saturday, there are all sorts of walks and hikes scheduled, with something for everyone! Take a short easy walk on the Cove Hardwood Nature Trail, a wildflower hotspot (program #3). If you are up for something more rigorous, sign up for the Road Prong Trail Wildflower Hike (program #23), a 5-mile moderate to strenuous trek starting at Newfound Gap.

Be prepared and download a printable Wildflower Checklist.

If you would like to learn about something other than wildflowers, there are plenty of opportunities for that too! Take a Fern Walk (programs 4, 58, 70, 123), a Bugs and Butterflies Walk (program #s 41, 75, 78), or a Black Bear and Wild Hog Walk (programs: 32, 66, 106).

Interested in history? Maybe you should sign up for Cultural History Walk (program #s18, 36, 45, 69, 79, 95, 116). Download a 2012 Wildflower Pilgrimage brochure to see the full schedule of hikes and workshops offered.

Exhibitors, Artists, & Merchants

Exhibits, Artists & Merchants

A gallery of exhibitors, artists, native plant vendors, and merchants located in Mills Conference Center will be open to the public during the pilgrimage at the followinghours:
Tuesday 5:00 PM–9:00 PM
Wednesday–Friday 8:00 AM–9:00 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM–Noon

Photography Competition

Photographers are invited to enter the 2012 photography competition. Entry categories include: 1. Flora 2. Fauna 3. Landscape 4. Youth Produced.

Winners for each category will be determined by the votes of registered pilgrims.

Register Now

Registration

 

On Site Registration: 
On-site registration will be held at Mills Conference Center, April 24-28, at the following times:

Tuesday 5 PM–9 PM
Wednesday–Friday 7 AM–1 PM & 5 PM–7:30 PM
Saturday 7 AM–12 PM

Please have your program choices and alternative selections, as well as your credit card information, in hand when you register on-site. A handy “Program Planner” is available on page to record your program choices.

 Registration Fees: 
All events are covered by the following registration fees, except for Wednesday’s luncheon event, program number 9. This event costs $25.00 and registration is not required to attend.

 Adults
 $50 for one day
$75.00 for two or more days

Students
$10 for one or more days (high school/colldge status will be verified at on-site registration with school id required)

Children under 12
Free (must be accompanied by a registered adult. All children must be registered for the program they are attending)

 Payment:

Payment may be made with Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover credit cards (cash or check at on-site registration only).

Refunds are NOT provided and your fees will be used as a contribution to help support this event.

 

 Register Now!

 ERA In The SmokiesThis blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more info. on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

An Early Spring ~ The Smokies are blooming early!

Folks who go looking for the Smokies’ annual spring color show at the normal times this year may think the wildflowers are pulling a little late April Fools’ prank on them.

While the spectacular display of blooms are usually at their peak in the latter weeks of April, this year spring blooming started in some areas as early as January and is likely to be waining by the time the annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage treks out April 25-28. With temperatures well above normal and relatively little snow, one can hardly blame the plants for being confused about what season it is.

“This year is definitely different,” Park Ranger and Naturalist Carey Jones said. “This is my 20th spring here and this is the earliest I’ve ever seen anything bloom.”

Read more: The Mountain Press – Splashes of Smokies color Spring turns national park green early

ERA In The SmokiesThis blog is sponsored in part by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg, TN. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.