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Five Spunky Day Summer Activities in Pigeon Forge. A summer family vacation in the Great Smoky Mountains means cool nights with sunny days and the chance to participate in spunky, energizing activities which deliver mini thills, and memorable moments.Great Smoky Mountans Wheel at the Island in Pigeon Forge

Here's the scoop. The variety of choices means no two days need ever match which is a huge benefit when the family mix includes opinionated members.  It is an eclectic destination with elegance and solitude nestled comfortably among quirky, carnival-like spots, super charged amusements and oodles of family entertainment options. It is a destination where it is possible to do nothing or do everything. Its compact geography makes both possible.
 
I have five family-tested reasons to leave the comforts of your vacation cabin’s deck. 

Discover island action in the mountains.  Our afternoon at the Island last summer was enjoyable and exhausting. The choices are many; the only thing missing is a wave pool and a beach. The complex is truly an island packed with family-friendly ways for all ages to have fun. From sky walking on the amazing ropes course and the riding the Great Smoky Mountain Wheel to family-friendly eateries, rides and arcade games, and live music, it is a blast for families with diverse ideas about how to have fun. The eclectic mix of shops makes shopping worthwhile. The magic shop is intriguing, the puzzle shop addictive and the Appalachian crafters offer a sense of place not to be missed.Twist & Shout at the Island in Pigeon Forg  Bonus Points: Sky Tykes, is for anyone less than 48” tall who seeks a challenge, but may prefer to be just a little bit closer to the ground. This course has nine different elements and parents can walk on the ground beside their child for encouragement and help whenever necessary.  Here’s the deal! While many things are free or affordable there are always deals to be had by visiting the website. (131 The Island Drive Pigeon Forge, TN 37863. (865) 286-0119 or The Island in Pigeon Forge.

Zip, zig, zag, and zorb. 
 The Outdoor Gravity Park just off the parkway is the place for new age thrills. The hillside at the park is the home base for five zorbing route thrills. Choose the route and make it wet or dry, straight or loopy. The larger than life sized bubble spheres allow for solo runs or shared rides. Bonus Points: The newest option for fun is the Fishpipe barrel ride, basically a stationary 10 foot diameter inflatable barrel which spins riders 45 rotations per minute. Here’s the deal! Check their website for discounted tickets.  (203 Sugar Hollow Road Pigeon Forge, TN 37863. http://outdoorgravitypark.com).Alpine Slide Wears Valley Road Pigeon Forge

Experience authentic Alpine thrills.
With more than a mile of track laced among the trees which cover the forested hillside, Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster is the longest downhill ride in the Southeastern United States. The ribbon like circuit which takes about eight minutes to run looks exciting in the misty morning light and simply thrilling once the sun sets and the track lights mark the pathway. Each sled travels a maximum speed of 30 mph with an automatic speed control for safety. Even though the weather in Pigeon Forge can be unpredictable at times, Alpine Coaster provides adventures for the intrepid in rain or snow. Here’s the deal!  Tykes who are three to six years of age and meet the weight requirement may ride along for only $ 5. (867 Wears Valley Rd, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863 (865) 365-5000 or www.smokymountainalpinecoaster.com).Speed Zone Elevated Go Carting in Pigeon Forge

Make a classic play date. While not as edgy as zorbing, go-carting is a classic American activity and the Smokies has an array of possibilities. The only one I have tried is Speed Zone Fun Park so I am not an expert on the activity. The families I spoke with were jazzed by the choices. The obvious benefits, the Zone (a teen reference) has an impressive nest of elevated wooden tracks meaning it delivers exciting racing routes and they have carts for solo as well as tandem runs. Each race lasts about six minutes long and the speed depends on the track choice which includes a slick track for speed and an easy track option for young children. Here’s the deal! Speed Zone offers a “ParkHopper Pass” which provides seven go-cart runs plus laser tag and mini golf at a savings.  (3315 S River Rd, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863. (865) 908-7255).

Enjoy trail riding and cowboy antics. Walden’s Creek Riding Stables provides the Smokies with Tennessee style spunk and cowboy spirit. During the day trail rides introduce riders of all skill levels to the natural beauty of the 500-acre ranch land. Each week during the summer months, they offer a cowboy campfire cookout complete with frontier-style entertainment which begins with a hay wagon ride. The show includes a pretend Western shoot-out, a singing posse, corn hole competitions, horseshoe toss, plenty of storytelling, and marshmallows toasted over a crackling camp fire. Bonus Points: A stocked pond on site means guests and little anglers may fish without a license.  (2720 Walden’s Creek Rd. Sevierville, Tennessee 37862. (865) 429-0411or www.waldenscreekstable.com).

Zip, zig, zag, and zorb.  The Outdoor Gravity Park just off the parkway is the place for new age thrills. The hillside at the park is the home base for five zorbing route thrills. Choose the route and make it wet or dry, straight or loopy. The larger than life sized bubble spheres allow for solo runs or shared rides. Bonus Points: The newest option for fun is the Fishpipe barrel ride, basically a stationary 10 foot diameter inflatable barrel which spins riders 45 rotations per minute. Here’s the deal! Check their website for discounted tickets.  (203 Sugar Hollow Road Pigeon Forge, TN 37863. http://outdoorgravitypark.com).

Make it happen. For more great family vacation ideas try www.mypigeonforge.com.

Content researched and posted by Nancy Nelson-Duac, Curator of the Good Stuff for the Family Travel Files. Images from Family Travel Files archives.  Copyright 2017.


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