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It’s Only My Opinion

So you still haven’t made plans for that vacation the family has been anxiously waiting for? Here’s a thought you just might want to consider. Exactly 708 miles from Brooklyn, in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, is the town of Pigeon Forge. If your Toyota gets 20 MPG, it will get about 24 on the highways. At $2.69 a gallon, the cost of fuel for the 12−hour drive will be about $79 each way. That’s a far cry from the $1,600 cost of four airline tickets (you are taking the kids. aren’t you?) to Knoxville plus another four hundred bucks to Mr. Hertz for a vehicle to drive to this super−sensational, ultra−fantastic town. The money you just saved will amply cover the cost of lodging, food and some of the greatest entertainment my roommate and I have seen in years.

Let’s begin by checking into a low−rate, high in value, economy family motel. We arrived early in the season so we were willing to take a gamble on using the coupons from the green RoomSaver books available at Welcome Centers on the road. Ask to see the room first. Some motels, at about the same price, are a whole lot better than others and with very few exceptions, they include free breakfast. We stayed at the new River Bend Motel…..clean, conveniently located, indoor pool, large rooms and fantastic rates. Give the extremely helpful managers, Jyoti and Jay, my best regards.

The highlight of Pigeon Forge is …STOP! There are so many highlights with so many sights and sounds suitable for every member of the family that I cannot mention just one. This is Dolly Parton territory and heading to Dollywood is a must. Dollywood is the only theme park in the U.S. that is owned by a celebrity. It boasts several theaters with 30 live shows a day for kids of all ages. There are 40 different rides and attractions, 30 unique shops, and 20 restaurants that serve up vittles for every kind of taste including some real Southern home cooking. Dollywood is an all−day affair so don’t waste time lingering over that second cup of coffee. Get there early.

Don’t forget to pack swimsuits. There’s also a Dollywood Splash Country Adventure Park that has a leisure pool, a wave pool, a lazy river with free tubes, more than two dozen thrilling water slides and lots more.

This award winning, thrilling area is loaded with theaters filled with magic, dance, celebrity impersonators, marvelous country western shows and more. The mega−magnificent Motown sounds of the Temptations, who recently closed in Las Vegas, have signed up to do their act at the Smoky Mountains Theatre in the heart of Pigeon Forge – a two and a half hour hand−clappin’, toe−tappin’ , dancin’ in the aisles thrill of the seventies. Nate Evans who sang with the originals has reincarnated his old quintet and will be in town till autumn.

I am telling you that if “My Girl” doesn’t stir you and have you moving, somebody better check to see if you’re still breathing. More about Pigeon Forge next week.

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