Home Gatlinburg Fall in Gatlinburg | Top events you need to know about

Fall in Gatlinburg | Top events you need to know about

by Corey Piccirillo
Fall in Gatlinburg is such a magical time

Fall is such a beautiful time of year in Gatlinburg. Fall colors light up the mountains like nothing else, and the crisp air invigorates you as you explore new trails. Fall in Gatlinburg means there are plenty of events to attend! Whether you’re looking for family fun or romantic getaways, we’ve compiled a list of our top Fall picks for things to do in Gatlinburg this Fall season.

Fall in Gatlinburg | October

The Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival is a 12 week celebration of the fall season. This year, it will begin on September 22nd and extend through November 11th. Enjoy new seasonal decorations, including life-size, 3-dimensional Scarecrow people.

Where: Downtown Gatlinburg

As Fall in Gatlinburg approaches and leaves turn colors across the mountains it is particularly special. Fall brings an exciting series at Gatlinburg SkyLift Park: Autumn Adventures with sunrises mountain views that make you feel like a kid again! You can enjoy spooky events for those who love their scares and trick or treat parties organized just for kids. The views here are spectacular and great for photos!

Admission Prices:

Age 12-64 – $28.95

Age 4-11 – $18.95

Age 3 & Under – FREE

Who: (865) 436-4307 | Where: 765 Parkway Gatlinburg TN 37738

There’s so much to glow about during fall! During this particular time, thousands of jack-o-lanterns create glowing experiences around every corner, and larger-than-life pumpkin displays light up the night. Plus, the smell of mouth-watering fall treats fills the air, and lighthearted, not-so-spooky entertainment abounds.

Admission Prices:

1 Day Park Ticket (Age 10 – 61) – $84

Who: (800) 365-5996 | Where: 2700 Dollywood Parks Blvd, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

Come enjoy a fall in Gatlinburg escape nestled in the Great Smoky Mountains this season with Autumn at Anakeesta. Running from September 24 through October 31, this seasonal event features live music every day, a garden full of fall plantings, autumn-themed dining and drink specials, enhanced nighttime lighting, Halloween family fun, and of course, the most beautiful Smoky Mountain fall colors!

Admission Prices:

Adults: (online value price) 12-59 $28.99
Children: 4-11 $19.99
Seniors: 60+ $21.99
3 and under FREE

Who: (865) 325-2400 | Where: 576 Parkway, Gatlinburg, TN 37738

Ober Gatlinburg’s 12th Annual OktOBERfest will be held from September 24 – October 31, 2021. This beloved Fall in Gatlinburg event takes place every October and celebrates some of the time-honored traditions of the original OktOBERfest in Munich, Germany. OktOBERfest at Ober Gatlinburg is the best way to experience the Smoky Mountains in fall! Changing leaves and cooler temperatures make it the perfect time to visit the area and enjoy this indoor/outdoor festival!

Admission Prices:

Fall Wristband – $39 Adults $35 Kids (5-11)** (Doesn’t include Aerial Tramway)

Who: (865) 436-5423 | Where: 1001 Parkway Suite 2
Gatlinburg TN, 37738

The Rocky Top Mountain Coaster is the longest coaster in east Tennessee and the first one in the world with FOUR uplifts! The ride features beautiful Smoky Mountains scenery, 360 degree turns, and several tunnels on over 20 acres of property. 

Each single cart can go up to 30 MPH and the driver controls the speed on this over 9 minute long ride! The frightful event features glowing lights and frightening surprises as you speed down the mountain.

Admission Prices:

Adults (age 13-Up) – $18

Youth (age 7-12) $14 

Kids (3-6) $5

Who: (865) 453-0033 | Where: 2940 VETERANS BOULEVARD PIGEON FORGE, TN 37863

Fall is the most breathtaking time to be in the Great Smoky Mountains and at the Gatlinburg SkyLift Park they’re giving you the opportunity to get VIP access to see the sunrise from the best view in Gatlinburg and get early access to the Gatlinburg SkyLift Park.

Who: (865) 436-4307 | Where: 765 Parkway Gatlinburg TN 37738

The Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair October is the premier holiday shopping destination! We are your one-stop-shop for everyone on your list. Join us in our 46th year of celebrating arts and crafts in the Smokies. Visit over 200 of the finest craftspeople from all over the United States. Watch as they demonstrate their skill, answer questions and offer their unique art for sale. Artisans in nearly 400 fairs voted our Fairs 5th All-Time Favorite Fair in the nation!

Admission Prices:

Adult – $10 

Under 17 – FREE with Adult Ticket

Who: (865) 436-7479 | Where: 234 Historic Nature Trail, Gatlinburg, TN 37738

Celebrate the season of fall and its glory at Southern Gospel Fall Fest 2021. Presented by Praise 96.3, this month-long event features gospel shows Wednesday through Saturday at the Biblical Times Dinner Theatre in Pigeon forge. Southern Gospel Stars on the bill include: Lulu Roman, Tony Gore, Michael Combs, and the Browder.

Who: 865-233-2390 | Where: Biblical Times Theatre Light #2, 2391 Parkway Pigeon Forge

This property features tons of open concrete space, and what a better way to utilize it than by turning The Island into a canvas? All artists, professional and aspiring, are invited to create a masterpiece. Chalk and concrete provided.

Theme: A trip to Pigeon Forge is not complete without a visit to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. As the cities of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Sevierville have grown, so has our impact and relationship to the environment. For these reasons, the theme this year is… Nature!

Who: 865-286-0119 | Where: 131 The Island Drive Pigeon Forge, TN, 37863

Alcatraz East honors National Police Week with specials for Law Enforcement! Free Museum Entry for all law enforcement and family members/accompany guests 50% off.

Who: 865-286-0119 | Where: 131 The Island Drive Pigeon Forge, TN, 37863

Monsters on the Mountain is a 3-day Classic Rock Festival set against the backdrop of the beautiful Great Smoky Mountains, headlined by such notable acts as Tesla, Night Ranger, Vince Neil, Winger and many more!

In addition to music, there will be access to a Rock N’ Roll market featuring Rock N. Roll dry goods as well as an outdoor interactive fan setting, with games and a beer garden.

Who: (865) 429-7432 | Where: 2986 Teaster Lane Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

Though this festival does feature traditional fall elements such as amazing artisans, pumpkin patches, tractors and incredible southern food, its focus is to highlight the mission of Keep Sevier Beautiful – to reduce waste, prevent litter and to create beautiful spaces out of public places!

Throughout the Fest, participants can learn how to care for our environment – here in Sevier County and everywhere!  From craft vendors making crafts from repurposed items to entertainers using spoons and washboards – you’ll learn how to reduce, reuse and recycle to make our world a better place.

Who: (865) 774-6677 | Where: 3179 Wears Valley Road, Sevierville TN 37862

So, if you’re looking for something to do this weekend that’s a little different and doesn’t involve sitting at home or going out clubbing then I highly recommend checking out the Smoky Mountain Car Meet & Cruise. It’ll be an experience you won’t soon forget! Just don’t forget your camera because there are some beautiful landscapes along the way. And, as always, feel free to share with friends who might find it interesting too!

(11am-6pm)  Where: Sugarlands Visitor Center, Gatlinburg, TN 37738, 

Join us for a one-of-a-kind breakfast experience full of feathered friends, keeper chats, photo opportunities, and early-access to the Aquarium! A portion of ticket sales will be donated to the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB), internationally recognized for their conservation and rehabilitation efforts.

Who: (865) 430-8808 | Where: 88 River Rd, Gatlinburg, TN 37738

One of country music’s truest traditionalists, Tracy Lawrence has sold more than 13 MILLION albums and has charted 18 No. 1 songs. He has garnered numerous CMA and ACM awards and nominations, as well as a Grammy nomination. Most recently, Lawrence released his latest album, “MADE IN AMERICA.” The album is a milestone for Lawrence — penning 8 of the 12 songs featured on the album.

Who: (865) 453-2003 | Where: 129 Showplace Blvd Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

Every year, the Pigeon Forge Community Center hosts a safe, non-scary event for families to go trick or treating. This event takes place at the Pigeon Forge Community Center the Thursday before Halloween. At the event you’ll find vendors from local Pigeon Forge businesses offering candy for the kids. Some of the vendors will have some fun displays and interactive elements for you and the family to enjoy too! In addition to the trick-or-treating, you’ll be able to enjoy entertainment and a haunted house. This event is totally free, and a must-attend tradition of the Pigeon Forge Community.

Who: (865) 429-7373 | Where: 170 Community Center Dr, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

Ripley’s Haunted Adventure takes haunted houses to the next level. Live actors lurk behind every corner of this creepy renovated mansion, just waiting to “welcome” you to their home. That high pitched scream you hear…yea that’s you. But remember, you must be at least six (6) years-old to enter, if you dare!

Who: (865) 436-5096 | Where: 800 Parkway Gatlinburg, TN 37738

Fall in Gatlinburg | November

 From November through late January (except Christmas Day) with SkyLift Park lit up at night with over 40,000 lights including a 300-foot tunnel of lights on the SkyBridge, a 30-foot Christmas tree structure with lights animated to music, and much more. It’s a truly magical experience that every visitor to Gatlinburg simply must see.

Who: (865) 436-4307 | Where: 765 Parkway Gatlinburg TN 37738

The Townsend Grains & Grits Festival is a festival of southern spirits and gourmet grub. We have created a unique opportunity for you to experience our thriving craft spirits and gourmet food community, while discovering some of the region’s legendary distillers and blenders, taking place in the Peaceful Side of the Smokies. The Townsend Grains & Grits Festival provides an intimate sampling event, offering something for consumers, foodies, bartenders and spirit professionals alike.

Who: (800) 525-6834 | Where: 7906 E Lamar Alexander Pkwy, Townsend, TN 37882

Experience a traditional Christmas in the Smoky Mountains with our award-winning festival, named the best in America for over a decade. See more than 5 million glistening lights and Christmas fireworks that light up the winter night sky. Favorite Christmas traditions unfold this year with award-winning shows, culinary delights, seasonal shopping and, most importantly, the light that brings us all closer together. 

Admission Prices:

1 Day Park Ticket (Age 10 – 61) – $84

Who: (800) 365-5996 | Where: 2700 Dollywood Parks Blvd, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863

Hey locals, we love you. November 1-7, residents of Sevier, Cocke, Knox, Jefferson, Blount, and Hamblen Counties who present a valid ID, or a current paystub showing proof of employment in Sevier County will gain admission to the SkyLift Park for just $5 a ticket!

Who: (865) 436-4307 | Where: 765 Parkway Gatlinburg TN 37738

For over 30 years, Gatlinburg has celebrated the kickoff of Smoky Mountain Winterfest with the annual foodie festival, Gatlinburg Chili Cookoff Presented by Bush’s Chili Beans. On November 11, 2021, the tradition continues with live entertainment and mouth-watering homemade chili sampling.

Who: (865) 436-4178 | Where: See Map

THE POLAR EXPRESS™ with the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad is back in 2021! The 1¼ hour round-trip passenger excursion comes to life as the train departs the Bryson City depot for a journey through the quiet wilderness for a special visit at the North Pole. Set to the sounds of the motion picture soundtrack, guests on board will enjoy warm cocoa and a treat while listening and reading along with the magical story. 

Who: 800-872-4681 | Where: 45 Mitchell St, Bryson City, NC 28713

We’re so excited to share that we are remaining committed to continuing our holiday tradition of ice skating at the resort! That’s right! From November 12-January 9th a 3,200 square foot portion of our outdoor wave pool will once again be converted into a festive, real ice skating rink, where hotel guests and the public can have fun together in an outdoor, social distanced manner. Music and holidays lights will add to the fun atmosphere.

Who: (877) 325-9453 | Where: 1424 Old Knoxville Hwy

Join the Heritage Center for our annual Holiday Handcrafters Fair! This fantastic holiday tradition is the perfect way to kick off the Christmas shopping season! The Handcrafters Fair features dozens of vendors located in and around the Smoky Mountain Region, and all goods are handmade and/or handcrafted. There are no manufactured or “second quality” items to be found.

Who: 865-448-0044 | Where: 123 Cromwell Dr Townsend, TN 37882 USA

The ceremony will feature special performances and appearances by the Gatlinburg-Pittman High School Band, the American Legion Post 202 Honor Guard, distinguished vocalist Jay Teter and a dramatic presentation by the American Eagle Foundation. Retired Gatlinburg Police Department Captain Jim Maples will present the POW-MIA Table/Invocation.

 Where: See Map

See all the sparkling lights in Downtown Gatlinburg for the Holiday Season 

 Where: See Map 

The Festival of Trees runs from November 24th to 28th and kicks off with Candy Canes and Cocktails Reception on the evening of Tuesday, November 23rd. The Festival will feature a children’s craft and play area, entertainment, photos with Santa Claus and, of course, the beautifully decorated Christmas trees and wreaths. Please join us in continuing the tradition of ringing in the Christmas season with the 2021 Festival of Trees!

 Where: W. L. Mills Conference Center at stoplight #8, Historic Nature Trail, Gatlinburg, TN.

The Tennessee artists and craftspeople here create beautiful and useful things with techniques handed down for centuries. Find gorgeous quilts, old-fashioned straw brooms with hand-carved handles, exquisitely woven baskets, hand-dipped scented candles, Victorian ceramic pitchers, pottery, dulcimers, stuffed bears and leather vests. There is handmade jewelry, unlike anything you’ll find in the malls back home. Painters capture scenes of landscapes and mountain life, while potters and weavers work magic with clay and cloth.

Who: (865) 277-8967 | Where: 234 Historic Nature Trail, Gatlinburg, TN 37738

The Smoky Mountain Gift Show brings Tennessee’s largest selection of top-name souvenirs, resort gift lines, and innovative tourism products, together under one roof for optimum buying convenience. Only in Gatlinburg will you have an opportunity to shop an unrivaled selection of top name lines and new products from hundreds of leading manufacturers and innovative newcomers in the souvenir, resort and gift industry.

 Where: 234 Historic Nature Trail | Airport Road Gatlinburg, TN 37738

The Cades Cove Loop Lope is the only organized footrace held inside Great Smoky Mountains National Park, to benefit Friends of the Smokies. All funds raised benefit park projects and programs such as historic preservation, wildlife conservation, native plant and grassland restoration, and much more. There are two course options, a 5K or a USATF Certified 10-Mile Loop. Participation is limited to 750 total runners. The 2019 in-person Cades Cove Loop Lope sold out in just a few weeks, so don’t wait to register!

Who: 865.932.4794 | Where: PO Box 1660 Kodak, TN 37764-7660

Every year, the space outside the Tennessee Smokies’ Stadium transforms from a mere parking lot into a Christmas miracle between November and early January. Talented locals come together to form the most impressive light show in the region. The unique experience is bound to put you in the holiday spirit, especially if you attend with children.

Enjoy the beauty of Shadrack’s light show from the comfort of your car. The show begins at dusk and extends until 10 pm on weeknights, and sometimes later during the weekend. Light displays feature Christmas bells, angels, mangers, and a variety of other familiar holiday images. Creative images such as Santa on a tractor or wearing an inner tube also abound. Light displays are regularly updated to ensure that returning visitors witness new sights.

Who: (423) 652-0120 | Where: 3540 Line Dr Kodak, TN 37764

Fall is finally here, and with it comes some of the most beautiful colors in all of Tennessee. The leaves are changing on the trees, creating an entire palette for you to explore as you walk down Gatlinburg’s streets or hike its trails. We can’t wait for you to take in all the Fall in Gatlinburg this season! With so many things to do this time of year, we wanted to share our favorite events happening around town during your visit. If you found this list helpful, definitely share it with a friend or family!

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