About one hour's drive from our home, nestled into the gorgeous Tennessee Smoky Mountains, lies the fabled entertainment mecca known as Dollywood. Yesterday, the Cinderoo and I took the plunge and paid a visit.
|My Season Pass|
We left home at 9:00 on a beautiful, clear morning; blew through downtown Knoxville, drove southward on Chapman Highway; turned toward Pigeon Forge when we reached Sevierville, and finally arrived at Dollywood a little after 10:00, when the gates open for business.
|Want a Thrill? Ride the Wild Eagle, America's First Winged Coaster!|
|This is the Thunderhead Coaster, One of Four Full-Scale High-Performance Coasters in the Park|
|Another View of the Thunderhead Coaster, Taken From the Train|
|Get Ready to Get Wet!|
And then the machine moved slowly forward, our feet dangling into space beneath us. That alone was a thrill. But then, the mighty beast angled sharply and slowly upward and adrenalin began to enter our bloodstreams. Up, up, up...the beauty and grandeur of the Smokies became our view.
|An Incapacitated Eagle That Cannot Exist on Its Own in the Wild. We Counted Four of these magnificent Raptors in The Park.|
|Dollywood is a Shelter for Incapacitated Bald Eagles. These are Three of Their Chicks|
And then, the end came abruptly, decelerating and leveling off at the finish. WOW!!!
When we got off the ride, I was in a super-adrenalized state. I looked at Cindy, however, and she was obviously stricken in some manner. Her stomach was, she said, in knots. She had a green patina covering her face. She wasn't moving very smoothly.
I got her to a lady's room, where she spent some time trying to compose herself. But truth be told, she never could get herself back to normal. Even after we sat for awhile and then had a light repast, she just felt a little sickly.
|Cindy Took This Close-Up of These Gorgeous Flowers. The Park is Full of Such Beauty|
I felt sorry for her. We took it easy from there on out. We rode the train around the park. While that may sound boring, it was not! The train has full sized cars and is powered by a steam, coal-fired locomotive from the 1920s. It took us all around the park and we saw a lot of the surrounding forest, also. Very enjoyable.
After the train ride, we stopped in most of the shops and browsed. We got some of the world-famous cinnamon bread and made love to it as we strolled the huge park. I noted that the shops all present high quality goods. There is none of that cheap, touristy stuff one sees so often in other parks.
I didn't dare suggest we try another challenging ride. Cindy was slowly returning to her old self.
|The Blacksmith's Fire dances Magically in The Foundry, Where High-Quality, Custom Made Gifts Are Forged|
|We Stopped in The Chapel. Very Nice. Services Are Held Here on Sunday|
The ride home was anti-climactic. We were tired from all the walking. Even though we only rode a couple of rides, it was a special day. And, since we have season passes, we will be returning soon to experience more of the park and rides.
|This is Me, Browsing Through the Southern Gospel hall of Fame|
We stopped at Papa Murphy's Pizza and picked up a large chicken-spinach-artichoke thin-crust pizza for din-din. Ahhhh. Life is gooood.
|Cindy Took This Shot of Us Through A Decorative Mirror in One Of the Shops|