Dollywood fall festival: What’s new, how to get in for $55 [2022]

Great LumiNights entrance

Dollywood's fall festival is a family-friendly event that is never scary (photo by Daniel Munson/TheSmokies.com)

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As the heat of the summer winds down, another special time of year arrives. Fall is a wonderful time to see God’s handiwork on full display in the Great Smoky Mountains.

Located in the middle of the Smokies, Dollywood’s beautiful theme park is the perfect place to bask in fall’s fresh mountain air and enjoy the cool evenings with a stroll filled with beautiful lights and decor.

By day, the Dollywood Harvest Festival in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., features culinary treats, live entertainment and seasonal displays. 

By night, the family-friendly Great Pumpkin LumiNights illuminates the park with great decorations that will glow with thousands of jack-o-lanterns and displays.

This annual guest-favorite event is presented by Humana and Covenant Health.

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How long does the Harvest Festival last at Dollywood?

Dollywood’s Harvest Festival will run from Sept. 23 through Oct. 29, 2022.

Dollywood will be observing a limited schedule throughout the event. The park will close on select days (mostly on Tuesdays and Halloween). Be sure to check dates on the Dollywood calendar for days of operation when planning your trip.

Otherwise, Dollywood will be open 10 am-9 pm each day of operation during the festival. The park naturally transitions into LumiNights each night at sunset, around 7:30 pm.

As you make your plans, remember you can get your tickets in advance and book with Tripster.

Also note that the park will continue to observe a limited schedule as it gears up for the Smoky Mountain Christmas event.

Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas runs from Nov. 5, 2022-Jan. 1, 2023.

How to get Dollywood tickets for $55 after 5 pm

In a bit of exciting news, Dollywood is bringing back its $55 after 5 pm promotion this fall.

During the fall festival, guests can enter the park after 5 pm for only $55 when they buy online.

Remember, this offer is valid for one day and excludes Saturdays. It is an online offer only, so be sure to plan in advance.

Dollywood cat pumpkins on display
Tens of thousands of pumpkins will be on display during Dollywood’s fall festival (photo by Marie Graichen/TheSmokies.com)

What is there to do at Dollywood in the fall?

Dollywood’s Harvest Festival features seasonal food selections, colossal pumpkin displays, live shows and festive handmade crafts.

Guests will also enjoy listening to Dollywood’s dreamer-in-chief Dolly Parton narrate the autumnal transformation around the Wildwood Grove tree each night.

Are the pumpkins at Dollywood real?

Yes, the majority of the 12,000 pumpkins on display at Dollywood are real. Most of the pumpkins are hand-carved.

Dollywood is always outdoing itself.

Most notably, the colossal pumpkins weigh between 800 to 1500 lbs each. The massive, prize-winning displays come from growers across the East Coast. 

And we are happy to report that this popular oversized addition is expected to return for the 2022 season.

The large crop of sunflowers made of pumpkins is also expected to return.

pumpkins decorated like owls as part of dollywood's hoot owl hollow
The Hoot Owl Hollow display is an all-new feature at Dollywood this season (media photo courtesy of Dollywood)

What’s new at Dollywood’s fall festival in 2022?

In 2022, Dollywood is bringing a new great decoration, the Hoot Owl Hollow, a hideaway for a gigantic, glowing owl and a dozen siblings that will roost in the trees and on top of buildings.

Guests will be able to have a night stroll through a forest of glowing sunflowers, frogs and an enchanting towering Pumpkin Tree.

I just know folks are going to get a kick out of the new Hoot Owl Hollow. And in ‘owl’ seriousness, I hope our guests make their own precious Smoky Mountain memories while they are here. As I look back on my favorite family memories, so many of them took place during this time of year, and I hope our guests leave with the those special moments they’ll share forever.

Dolly Parton

Families will enjoy the glow around them as they wander through displays in Dollywood’s Timber Canyon, Wilderness Pass and Craftsman’s Valley areas.

The themes will surely create family memories and offer plenty of opportunities for photos.

Read Also My 1500-lb life: An exclusive interview with Dollywood’s giant pumpkin

Pumpkin Guitar at Dollywood's Harvest Festival
This larger-than-life guitar illuminates upon nightfall (photo by Daniel Munson/TheSmokies.com)

Does Dollywood have a haunted house?

No, Dollywood does not have a haunted house.

LumiNights is family-friendly, never spooky and safe for all ages to enjoy.

Pulled pork sandwich at Dollywood
During a media event at Dollywood recently, our staff was able to preview this Pulled Pork Sandwich with Pumpkin BBQ Sauce (photo by Daniel Munson/TheSmokies.com)

Seasonal fall treats at Dollywood’s Harvest Festival 2022

Also, Dollywood’s culinary team is at it again. They have created a smorgasbord of creations to take advantage of the bountiful supply of crops provided by the Smoky Mountain harvest.

The smells of Smoked Bratwursts and Smoked Andouille Sausage Mac and Cheese pair nicely with the fresh tastes of Sweet Potato Poutine, Spiced Pumpkin Bisque and Bush’s Three Bean Pumpkin Chili.

For sweet treats, the ever-popular pumpkin spice is in full supply with items ranging from Pumpkin Spice Churros with Pumpkin Fluff to Pumpkin Spice Iced Coffee.

Items like the Maple Pecan Bacon Funnel Cake, Hot Apple Cider, Wassail or an Apple Pie Milkshake are perfect to carry and enjoy while admiring the beauty of the theme park.

Excited to try the treats? Dollywood is offering a Harvest Festival Tasting Pass so guests can try up to five festival foods for $34.99 during the event. Gold and Diamond passholders can save $3 off the tasting pass.

Dollywood also regularly offers theme park favorites like turkey legs and funnel cakes.

Sunflower display of pumpkins at Dollywood in the fall
The sunflower display is a fan favorite at the Dollywood fall festival (photo by Daniel Munson/TheSmokies.com)

Dollywood is the ‘Best Theme Park Halloween Event’

Dollywood has been nationally recognized for its Great Pumpkin LumiNights event, once winning the USA Today’s top spot for “Best Theme Park Halloween Event”.

Dollywood’s competitors included fan favorites such as Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios and Knott’s Scary Farm.

Read Also: 10 best ways to enjoy the Smoky Mountains this fall [2022]

Wildwood grove sign at Dollywood in the fall
The entire park is filled with lights and pumpkins during the Harvest Festival and Great Pumpkin LumiNights (photo by Daniel Munson/TheSmokies.com)

Live fall shows and entertainment at Dollywood 2022

Finally, no festival at Dollywood is complete without award-winning entertainment and concerts.

Several genres are represented with a wide range of Southern gospel and bluegrass artists, as well as Americana acts and classic country performers.

In all, more than 1900 performances take place during the Harvest Festival.

From “America’s Got Talent”, Chapel Hart will take the stage of Dolly’s Celebrity Theater on Oct. 2.

Country music legend John Anderson also visits the park on Oct. 10.

Knoxville’s Emily Ann Roberts, who placed second on season nine of NBC’s “The Voice”, will perform on Oct. 20.

Performances take place on indoor and outdoor stages throughout the park to ensure an awesome family-friendly feeling for all guests.

Additional festival headliners who will appear in theaters in 2022 include:

  • Monroeville
  • The Young Fables
  • The Guardians
  • Johnson Edition
  • Angela Primm
  • Mike Snodgrass
  • Chapel Hart
  • Sounds of Jericho
  • The Woods
  • Frontmen of Country
  • Karen Peck and New River
  • The McNeills
  • The Primitive Quartet
  • Dale Ann Bradley
  • Crystle Elam
  • Seals & Crofts 2
  • Rhonda Vincent and the Rage
  • Lee University singers

Visit Dollywood.com for the full lineup and schedule of performers.

Have you been to Dollywood’s Harvest Festival or LumiNights event in the Great Smoky Mountains? Let us know your favorite places to visit in the fall in the comments below.

Disclaimer: While we do our best to bring you the most up-to-date information, attractions or prices mentioned in this article may vary by season and are subject to change. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any mentioned business, and have not been reviewed or endorsed these entities. Contact us at [email protected] for questions or comments.

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2 thoughts on “Dollywood fall festival: What’s new, how to get in for $55 [2022]”

  1. We enjoyed Dollywood Luminights in 2020. The pumpkins were beautiful. The crafters were awesome! And the food was great. Be sure to stay till dark and make the loop around the whole park to enjoy all of the lit pumpkins!

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