When the self-styled “home of the world’s cleanest bathrooms, delicious barbecue, freshest food and friendliest beaver” announced plans to build the world’s largest convenience store in Sevierville, it generated a lot of attention.
The popular Buc-ee’s chain has stores in Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, Kentucky, and yes, the Volunteer state. And now, the Sevierville location has officially opened. And it is the largest of all the Buc-ee’s. At least, it will be for a while.
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RELATED VIDEO: A look inside the new Sevierville Buc-ee’s
When will Buc-ee’s in Sevierville open?
The Sevierville Buc-ee’s location in Tennessee is officially open. The store held a grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday, June 26, 2023. Local and state leaders attended the celebration, including Sevier County Mayor Larry Waters, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee, Buc-ee’s owner Arch “Beaver” Aplin III, Cherokee tribal leaders and many other partners and officials who helped Buc-ee’s bring the project to Sevierville.
The Sevierville store is currently the largest travel center in the world, at least for a while. The new location offers 120 fueling positions just outside its store with thousands of snack, meal and drink options for travelers on the go. The store’s 74,000-square-foot floor plan will remain the biggest Buc-ee’s until that record moves back to Texas, where construction is currently underway on a 75,000-square-foot location in Luling.
How was the grand opening at Buc-ee’s?
Much like its home state of Texas, it was big. And hot. The opening event filled the massive parking lot, which is not entirely surprising given the chain’s fans and followers. “They say everything is bigger in Texas, but not today,” said Cherokee Tribal Council Chairman Richard French. The opening festivities were paused after one of the attendees passed out and hit the ground mid-event from what was believed to be from the heat, although this has not been confirmed. He was transported from the event via EMS.
Otherwise, despite some friendly bickering amongst dignitaries regarding which was better – Tennessee or Texas – the overall theme was that this would be a mutually beneficial cooperation between East Tennessee and Texas. And everyone in attendance seemed happy about temporarily being the largest location, even if the “beaver man” himself called Dollywood “Dollyworld” instead.
Gov. Lee also spoke at the event. “As the governor of this state, whenever I get to see the people of Tennessee acknowledge the greatness of this state, it reminds me of the honor that we have here. I’m very, very fortunate to be in this spot,” said Gov. Lee. Overall, the grand opening event met its big expectations. The Sevierville location is now officially serving the same favorite Buc-ee’s staples as its Texan counterparts such as fresh BBQ, homemade fudge, their popular Beaver Nuggets, jerky, kolaches, fresh pastries and of course, their famous Buc-ee’s Brisket Sandwich.
Is there a Buc-ee’s in Sevierville TN?
Yes, although the official address is in Kodak. The new location for this massive convenience store is located on Exit 407 on I-40. Sevierville, for the uninitiated, is the gateway to popular tourist attractions including Dollywood, the namesake park of Dolly Parton, in Pigeon Forge, Anakeesta in Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The destination receives millions of visitors annually.
In fact, Exit 407 is one of the most heavily traveled sections of interstate in the country. For many, it is the first stop when they come to town for their family vacation. The gargantuan Buc-ee’s is located on land owned by Kituwah, LLC and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. The land was acquired previously after being dormant for years due to a failed development.
How big is Buc-ee’s in Sevierville TN?
Buc-ee’s covers a whopping 74,000 square feet of the 200-acre development along Exit 407. It is the world’s largest Buc-ee’s, at least for a while. It has a mind-blowing total of 120 fueling stations, EV charging stations and a car wash (nearly the length of a football field).
The previous biggest location of Buc-ee’s came in at 66,000 square feet. Buc-ee’s officials recently announced plans to build a 75,000 sq foot facility in Texas. Buc-ee’s Sevierville is the second Buc-ee’s location in Tennessee, joining Buc-ee’s Crossville, the first Tennessee Buc-ee’s, which debuted on June 27 last year. Buc-ee’s recently announced the brand is headed West with store groundbreakings in Colorado and Missouri.
In short, it’s a big dang deal
I’m glad we now have a location in Sevierville. In fact, I’ve been less than impressed with the gas stations near Exit 407 of late. Recently, I pulled into one – which shall remain nameless – and none of the gas pumps were working correctly. Did they have any signs that let me know? Nope. They just let me drive from pump to pump like a fool.
In addition, several of the bathrooms at those stations near the exit are extremely sketchy. However, the humongous Buc-ee’s features world-famous award-winning restrooms. In fact, their website claims you can “potty like a rock star”. Anyway, I welcome our beaver-loving, gas station overlords.
Other notable developments at Exit 407
There are more attractions on the way to Exit 407. For example, the area is expected to receive a Marriott Courtyard and The Smoky Gap District, an entertainment, dining and retail district opening in 2025. Previously, developers indicated the site might feature a “world-class” golf attraction (Editor’s Note: It better be a Top Golf) and a distillery experience.
Does Buc-ee’s have food?
The massive travel center isn’t just known for the clean bathrooms. Since its inception, the company is also known for offering a wide selection of food, snacks and other quality products. “Buc-ee’s is known for pristine bathrooms, a large amount of fueling positions, friendly service, Buc-ee’s apparel and fresh, delicious food,” reads a press release.
Why Sevierville, TN?
For Buc-ee’s officials, this beautiful community which serves as a gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains is the ideal stop to build their Taj Mahal of travel plazas. But don’t take my word for it, just ask Stan Beard of Buc-ee’s, Director of Real Estate.
“It is not a coincidence that we chose the 407 as our first big store location outside of Texas. We will be the proverbial welcome sign at the front door of the exceptional travel experience that the Smoky Mountains, Sevierville and Sevier County have to offer. You won’t forget your first visit to Buc-ee’s and it won’t be your last!” the exclamation point enthusiast said.
And we’ve not even mentioned the best part. What’s the only thing more exciting than giant gas stations and beef jerky you might ask? Jobs.
The Texas-based chain is bringing many permanent, full-time jobs with full benefits to the region. And starting pay is above minimum wage. Visit Buc-ee’s website for a list of jobs. Are you familiar with this popular chain from the Lone Star state?
Will you be starting out your Smoky Mountain adventure with a stop at this East Tennessee location? Let us know in the comments below!