Ice skating returns to the Smoky Mountains for the 2023 season
Ice skating always puts me in a festive mood. And when it comes to outdoor ice skating in the Smoky Mountains Wilderness, my favorite spot is at Wilderness at the Smokies. Wilderness at the Smokies is celebrating its 5th ice skating season this year starting Nov. 10, 2023, and ending Jan. 15, 2024. The ice rink, which occupies 3,200 square feet of the resort’s outdoor wave pool, will be open daily to the middle of January for hotel guests and also the public to enjoy. It’s the premier destination for outdoor ice skating in the Smoky Mountains. The admission can be discounted when using the code ICESKATE at the time of booking when guests make their reservations.
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Do you have to be a resort guest to ice skate at Wilderness?
Ready for some good news? The ice skating rink at Wilderness is open to the general public. This means anyone can skate for a fee, but skating admission fees are included with room rates if resort guests use the code ICESKATE at the time of booking. At check-in, guests will be able to purchase admissions for $29.99 for all persons in their room for the entire stay. Or guests can purchase daily admissions for $14.99 per person. At the rink, admission will be $18.99 for the public, which includes skate rental. Soaky Mountain Waterpark season pass holders can skate for the discounted rate of $10.99 if they show their wristbands.
When is the ice skating rink at Wilderness open?
The ice rink will be open from 10 am to 10:30 pm Saturday and Sunday during Thanksgiving week (Nov. 20-24) and Christmas break (Dec. 18-30) and 4 to 10:30 pm Monday-Friday. Additionally, an onsite DJ will be at the resort on Fridays and Saturdays from 7 to 10 pm. For a detailed calendar, visit the website as you make your plans. Wilderness will also be holding special events throughout the season, including:
- Skate it Off: Taylor Swift Night: 7-10 pm, Wed. Nov. 29.
- Pro Vision Hockey Academy game with Knoxville Junior Ice Bears: 7-11 am Jan. 7.
- Cool Sports youth hockey games with local area skaters: 7-11 am, Dec. 2 and Dec. 3.
Monty’s Youth Skate will be offered every Saturday (except Dec. 2) between 9-10 am before the rink opens for younger, inexperienced skaters to get time on the ice without bigger and faster people speeding around them. The resort will provide skating aids, a surprise Christmas gift and an opportunity for a photo with Monty or Molly. The cost is $9.99 per child and includes skates as well as the day’s admission to the rink.
Special winter events at Wilderness
I’d also like to recommend a few more fun things to do at Wilderness at the Smokies this holiday season including:
1. Skate for a Cause
On Saturday, Nov. 18, from 10 am to 10 pm, the resort will host a special fundraiser for Second Harvest Food Bank of East Tennessee. One hundred percent of the public ice skating admissions will directly benefit the organization.
2. Shadrack’s Super-Sized Christmas Adventure
Across from Wilderness at the Smokies, Soaky Mountain Waterpark will also be celebrating Christmas with Shadrack’s Super-Sized Christmas Adventure, Nov. 17, 2023 – Jan.7, 2024, from 6-10 pm in its parking lot. This event is open to the public. Tickets can be purchased online.
Guests of the Wilderness can get Shadracks tickets by using the promo code “SKATESHOW” at the time of reservation up to check-in. Admission includes ice skating for your entire group throughout your stay, and also a single-vehicle admission to Shadracks’ light show for $45. The post check-in price is $60. Standalone admission to Shadracks is also available at the time of reservation up to check-in for $30. Post check-in, the price will increase to $40.
This unique drive-through storytelling combines larger-than-life illustrated art with lights and sound, creating an immersive experience. After the show, guests can visit the new attraction Snowy Mountain. There will be extra-large yard games, a mixture of DJ and live music on select nights, a kids’ snow globe and ornament craft projects for an additional fee. Soaky merchandise and tasty treats will also be available for purchase.
Finally, if you have little ones in tow, you won’t want to miss any of Santa’s special appearances which include:
At Wilderness at the Smokies resort guests can enjoy Santa’s workshop in the Resort’s River Lodge Conference Room. Kids can decorate cookies, make holiday crafts, and also have the opportunity to write and mail a letter to Santa. It will be open Nov. 24, 12 to 6 pm, Nov. 25, Dec. 2, 9, 16 and 23, from 11 am to 8 pm, and Nov. 26, Dec. 3, 10, and 17, from 10 am -2 pm.
Santa will be making appearances at Wilderness at the Smokies interacting with guests Nov. 24, 2 to 6 pm; Nov. 25, Dec. 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 21, 22 and 23, from 3 to 6 pm. He will be in the outdoor Winter Wonderland by the resort’s ice rink during the first hour of each scheduled appearance and then in Santa’s Workshop during the last two hours.
Story Time with Mrs. Claus
Mrs. Claus will also be hosting 30-minute Christmas-themed story times for children staying at the resort in the resort’s River Lodge lobby on Friday, Nov. 24, Dec. 1, 8, 15, and 22, from 7 to 7:30 pm.
Wilderness at the Smokies is located at 1424 Old Knoxville Hwy, Sevierville, TN, in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains.
Have you experienced ice skating at Wilderness at the Smokies? What did you think? Let us know in the comments below.