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.

 

 

 

 

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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.

Mark Your Calender…

This years fall colors are still coming through, even though we have reached the month of November this week. Many trees have already shed their leaves, however there are those located in middle elevations that are still displaying an array of colors. The Oak trees are just beginning to change, although their hues are somewhat muted compared to others. Some hues of emerald can still be seen, so there may still be some fresh colors to appear if this mild weather carries on for a few more weeks.
 

rodrun_2_1_KME7Looking to see the vibrant colors of those grand classic cars against the colorful hues of the Smoky leaves ? Then come see The Cruise the Smokies Fall Rod Run on Friday, November 8th thru Saturday, November 9th, join hundreds of other car enthusiasts at the 14th Annual Fall Cherokee Rod Run! There will be numerous pre-1985 classic cars and custom parts vendors. Participants in this fall tradition compete for cash prizes and feast on the local BBQ. Visitors will also have the opportunity to cruise the Blue Ridge Parkway and country roads surrounding beautiful Cherokee, NC. The event is scheduled from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM Friday and Saturday. Admission is $5 each day and is free for children 6 and under. Registration is $35 at the event. Well, if your not up for the drive, then drive over to the classic setting of the DINER. A 50’s style family diner located off of Winfield Dunn Parkway in Sevierville. On Saturday, November 9th they are hosting their, Diner’s Veteran’s Day Cruise. There will be trophies for Best of Show Car, Truck & Bike, THE DINER Pick, will be from noon to 6:00 PM, drawings & prizes will be awarded before 6:30 PM. On Monday the 11th  they will have an American Legion Flag ceremony and music by Gary’s Sound Machine.

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While your here…..Celebrate Veterans Day with us!

On Monday, November 11th the city of Gatlinburg will extend their gratitude to those who served with the 11th annual Veteran’s Day Celebration! It will begin at 11:00 AM at the Ripley’s Aquarium Plaza. This event will include a military aircraft flyover, recognition of those who have fallen along with those who are in attendance. On Thursday,November 12th the city of Pigeon Forge will host their 3rd annual Veterans Day Salute Parade. This year’s Grand Marshall will be Vietnam Veteran Rocky Bleier a former Pittsburgh Steeler. The parade will begin at 4:30 PM and wrap up around 5:00 PM at Patriot Park, a park which was dedicated to the veterans from Sevier County that have served during the time of war. The conclusion of this event will then proceed into the  24th Annual Winterfest Kick-OffPatriot-Park (1)

The Winter Kick-Off and will include the traditional lighting of more than five million lights on the Winterfest displays, followed by evening fireworks. The event will include:

  • A Kids’ Play Area
  • Food Vendors
  • Photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus
  • Musical Entertainment

While Gatlinburg’s Winter Magic Kickoff and Chili Cook-Off will take place on Wednesday, November 13th from 5:00 PM to 8 :00 PM on the downtown Parkway. The Chili Cook-Off will feature local companies restaurants and businesses, as they participate for a variety of awards. Those attending are encouraged to vote for their favorite chili. These votes will be tallied to award the coveted People’s Choice Award. A panel of judges will cast their votes for other awards, including: Best Presentation, Best Chili Apron, and Best Chili.

 
 
 

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The natural allure of the Smokies is portrayed by those artists & artisans that live within its reach. Their artistic interpretations can be seen throughout the month of October as Gatlinburg welcomes the 2013 Fine Arts Festival and the Fall Arts & Crafts Fair.

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The 38th Annual Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair – scheduled from October 10 – 27, 2013 at the Gatlinburg Convention Center.  A unique characteristic of the Fair is that the artisians make their art available for viewing and sale, and demonstrate their talents and skills during this show. You can find almost 200 booths some of the finest work. Tentative hours are 10:00 AM – 6: 00 PM daily  and 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM on Sundays 12:00, 2:00 and 4:00 PM daily. Live Country and Bluegrass music is scheduled at 12:00, 2:00 and 4:00 PM daily and 12:00 & 2:00 on Sundays.

Still want to see more… Visit the Gatlinburg’s Historical Arts & Crafts Community. This historical 8-mile loop has been designated a Tennessee Heritage Arts & Crafts Trail. Established in 1937, these artisans whittle, paint, sew, cast, weave and carve to create original

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candles, ceramics, baskets,  scrimshaw, quilts, silver smithing, brooms, leater, pottery, stained glass, oils, jewelry, watercolors, dolls, wearable fashions, photography

The National Basketry Organization conference – Basket makers from across the country are showing both traditional and sculptural basketry this week at the Arrowmont School of Art’s & Crafts in Gatlinburg for the National Basketry Organization Conference.VLUU L110  / Samsung L110

Basket makers from across the country are showing both traditional and sculptural basketry this week at the Arrowmont School of Art’s & Crafts in Gatlinburg for the National Basketry Organization Conference.

The Taste of Autumn – Gatlinburg’s Taste of Autumn will be held on Tuesday, October 29 at the Gatlinburg Convention Center. Attendees can enjoy unlimited sampling from each of the participating groups featuring some of the best foods and drinks to be found in the Smoky Mountains! Live music will be provided for listening enjoyment from 5 to 8 p.m. 

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Attendees can sample unlimited offerings from some of the area’s finest restaurants and attractions. Last year’s participants included: Calhoun’s, Calhoun’s Catering, Charles Richard Resources, Cherokee Grill, Coca-Cola, Climbworks Canopy, Dick’s Last Resort, The Fox and Parrot Tavern, Gigi’s Cupcakes, Hard Rock Café, Mellow Mushroom, Ober Gatlinburg, Park Grill Steakhouse, The Park Vista Doubletree Hotel, Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, Smoky Mountain Brewery, Smoky Mountain Ice Cream & Fudge Co., Smoky Mountain Winery and Sugarland Cellars. Tickets are $25 (children under 7 are free).

 

Motorcycle Trails!

 

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Gatlinburg, TN has attracted many visitors traveling by motorcycle over the years. With it’s winding roads and gorgeous mountain views, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a wonderful place to have fun riding motorcycles and take in the beauty of the mountains. Throughout the many different motorcycles trails there are quaint mountain tours offering culture and history to visitors. Stop in each town and have a meal and discover what the natives have to offer. The trails range from moderate in difficulty to strenuous in difficulty for all levels of experienced drivers. Have fun and remember to always put safety first when riding!

Here is a complied list of great motorcycle trail in the Smokies:

  1. Gatlinburg, TN tour NC, TN- Approximately 225 miles round trip. Travel along the Blue Ridge Parkway heading West and onto Gatlinburg, TN. Abrp terrific road with abundant scenery. Time permitting, drive onto Pigeon Forge, TN and then return home after lunch.
  2. Cherohala Skyway tour NC, TN- Approximately 320 miles round trip. Truly a road in the sky! Typically less traffic than the Blue Ridge Parkway and much more isolated. Arrive in Tellico Plains, TN and have lunch along the river. Return home on the same road with a totally different view of the scenery.
  3. Cherokee/Casino tour NC- Approximately 180 miles round trip. Ride the Blue Ridge Parkway over to Cherokee and learn about the Indian heritage in the area. If you are a gambler, Harrah’s Casino offers an abundance of gambling diversions to take your money.
  4. biltmorefront3Biltmore Estate tour NC- Approximately 65 miles round trip. Ride the Blue Ridge Parkway into Asheville and then to the Biltmore Estate, “America’s Castle”. Spend as much time as you like exploring the Estate and Gardens and have lunch while you are there.
  5. Oconee Forest/ Highlands tour NC, SC and GA- Approximately 150 miles round trip. Travel through a canopied forest and up a back road to highlandsHighlands. This is one of the more spectacular curvy mountain roads around. Have lunch in the quaint mountain village of Highlands and experience some great shopping afterwards and then head home.
  6. Deals Gap tour NC, TN- Approximately 200 miles round trip. Travel to Bryson City and beyond to Deals Gap and the “Tail of the Dragon”, 318 turns in 11 miles. This is the longest trail in the Smokies, but possibly the most rewarding.tail of the dragon
  7. Hot Springs tour NC- Approximately 160 miles round trip. Travel scenic mountain roads to North Carolina’s only natural hot water springs/baths. Be careful, the springs really relax you.
  8. The Newport Trail tour TN- Enjoy scenery of mountain streams, rivers, mountain coves and valleys, town of Newport, TN and the river gorge.
  9. The Dandridge/ Douglas Lake Trail tour TN- Enjoy scenery of mountain streams, river gorge, mountain coves, mountain lake, historic town of Dandridge, TN, Douglas dam and bypass around Pigeon Forge, TN.
  10. The Waynesville/ Cherokee Trail tour NC, TN- Enjoy scenery of mountain streams, river-cut canyon through the Great Smoky Mountains, quaint mountain resort towns and the Cherokee Indian National Reservation. A final ride over the high range of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a grand finale for this scenic and entertaining trail.
  11. The Maggie Valley/ Blue Ridge Parkway Trail tour NC, TN- Enjoy scenery of mountain streams, river-cut canyon through the Great Smoky Mountains, a quaint mountain resort town with regional amusement park combined with spectacular views at roadside overlooks, picnic areas and quiet trails along the Blue Ridge Parkway for one of the most popular motorcycle trails for locals and visitors alike.

Stay at an authentic mountain cabin with ERA In The Smokies and travel to all of the fun motorcycle trails!

Things to do in Gatlinburg- For Kids!

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When vacationing in Gatlinburg, many visitors look for something fun to do with their kids. There are a range of activities to participate in from hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to riding bumper cars in downtown Gatlinburg. There are many cheap or free things to do in Gatlinburg also if you are on a budget. At the Nantahala Outdoor Center right before the National Park in downtown Gatlinburg, kids can climb the rock wall while you shop for new camping gear.Climbing_with_NOC_(001) The NOC is a great place for the whole family. There are several Ripley’s attractions throughout downtown Gatlinburg  including Ripley’s Aquarium in the Smokies with an interactive kids area, live mermaid diving shows and a specially designed kid friendly penguin exhibit, Davy penguinsCrockett mini golf, Ripley’s Haunted Adventure, Ripley’s Marvelous Mirror Maze and Candy store, Ripley’s Moving Theater, Ripley’s Fun Zone, and the famous Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museum. Ober Gatlinburg also has a lot to offer not only in the winter months, but in the summer months as well. Ride the Aerial Tramway from downtown Gatlinburg up to Ober Gatlinburg and enjoy the best views of the Great Smoky Mountains. After you get to the top, visit the Wildlife Encounter where you can see Bears. While on your visit to Ober Gatlinburg spend a few hours Ice Skating, ride the Alpine Slide, the Scenic Chairlift, the Blue Cyclone Rapids water slide and Ober’s Lightin’ Raft Ride and alpine slideShoot-the-Chute. There is also a fun-filled Amaze’n Maze and a Kiddie Land and Rides for children.

Gatlinburg also offers Zip-lining, Whitewater Rafting, hiking, biking, horseback riding and fishing noc raftingspots. You may book zip-lining and white water rafting trips through the NOC in downtown Gatlinburg as well as rent bicycles for the day and get information about where to go fishing. The Sugarlands Visitors Center is also a great place to take your children for free where the whole family can learn about the history of the park and go through the wildlife museum inside the Visitors Center. Get information about the Junior Ranger program and the activities that your children may participate in for free. Cades Cove is also an excellent place to take your family in the park. Take a ranger led hayride through Cades Cove for $14.00 per person.

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Mynatt Park, one of Gatlinburg’s City parks, is near downtown Gatlinburg. Take the family to the park for a picnic lunch, to play in the river, play on the jungle gym, or even play a fun game of tennis or basketball. All kids live candy, so while downtown visit any of the local Candy stores where the candy is made on site. Watch Saltwater Taffy being made at Ole Smoky’s Candy Kitchen.

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Stay with ERA In The Smokies and easily access all that Gatlinburg has to offer for the entire family!

15th Annual ERA for MDA Golf Classic

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ERA In The Smokies is sponsoring their 15th annual ERA for MDA Golf Classic on September 11, 2013. The golf Classic and Live Auction will occur Wednesday, September 11 at Bent Creek Golf Resort on Highway 321 in Gatlinburg, TN. Lunch will be served at 11:00 am, and players will tee off at noon. Teams will be made up of four golfers and players may bring a pre-made team or come alone and be placed in a team. The fee to play in the fund-raising tournament is $100 per player and includes lunch, green fees, cart fees, an embroidered golf shirt, goody bag, dinner and entrance to the live auction held after the tournament. Players will also have the opportunity to win a new car from Taylor Ford in Waynesville, NC during the Hole-In-One Competition.

ERA In The Smokies sponsors the MDA Golf Benefit to raise money to send local children living with Muscular Dystrophy to MDA Camp Discovery in Gainesboro, TN. 100% of the profits of the Benefit and Live Auction go to send local children to camp- no administration fees.

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What is MDA?

MDA is a non-profit health agency dedicated to finding treatments and cures for neuromuscular diseases, specifically muscular dystrophy, by funding worldwide research. The Association also provides comprehensive health care and support services, advocacy and education. Muscular Dystrophy is a group of genetic diseases in which muscle fibers are unusually susceptible to damage. These damaged muscles become progressively weaker. Most people who have muscular dystrophy will eventually need to use a wheelchair. Symptoms of the most common variety of muscular dystrophy begin in childhood, primarily in boys. People who have muscular dystrophy may have trouble breathing or swallowing. Their limbs may also be drawn inward and become fixed in that position- a problem called contracture. The heart and other organs may also be affected in some varieties of the disease. There is not cure for muscular dystrophy, but medications and therapy can help slow the progression of the disease.

“MDA campers dream about summer camp all year and often say it’s better than Christmas; some even say it’s changed their lives. Almost all campers agree that it’s “the best week of the year””

MDA camp offers a fun and safe outdoor experience, along with opportunities to engage in a variety of activities such as horseback riding, swimming, adaptive sports, arts and crafts, camp dances and much more. However, if you talk to some of the campers about their experience, they will tell you that the real benefits are the lifelong friendships, the increased self-esteem and confidence and the chance to spend at least one week of the year in a place where physical disabilities are the norm rather than the exception. MDA staff and volunteers assume all camper care, including physical and emotional support, allowing parents much-needed time to attend to their own need and, in some cases, spend some special time with the camper’s siblings.

Businesses or individuals may sponsor a golf hole for $100; signage for the Hole Sponsors will be present at the Hole sponsored on the day of the event. Items and/or services of value are needed for the Live Auction. All sponsors are recognized in the participant program  available on the day of the event. To become a sponsor or player, please call (865)430-3366.