Press Release

The Dolly Parton Experience Now Open at Dollywood

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Friday, May 24, 2024) – Dolly and Dollywood officials opened The Dolly Parton Experience—the park’s eagerly anticipated new attraction—to great fanfare this morning during a special event for invited media and VIPs. Thousands of Dollywood guests eager to see inside also were able to enjoy the multi-faceted experience, which is comprised of multiple buildings at the award-winning Smoky Mountain theme park.

“Our old museum really needed a facelift, but instead of a nip-and-tuck we just decided to start all over! There are a lot of interactive elements and technology all through the area, but luckily for all of you, there are no holograms of me in there anywhere. I think the last thing this world needs is a bunch of ‘Dolly-grams’ running around everywhere,” Dolly said with a laugh.

“Seriously though, I’m so proud of the work our people have put into this new experience to make sure it is something our guests will enjoy for many years. It’s been almost three years in the making, and it’s three times larger than anything like this we’ve ever created before, so it really is something! For me, the most special part is the area called ‘Precious Memories,’ because it’s about my family and everything they have done to support me through the years.”

The Dolly Parton Experience features a number of interactive elements to make guests feel as if they were alongside Dolly as she journeyed from Locust Ridge to stages around the world. The entire Adventures in Imagination area was completely transformed to create The Dolly Parton Experience. Guests can peruse exhibits which span her unparalleled career and include a look at the inspiration behind and the results of her biggest dreams, detail the importance of her family, and highlight many of Dolly’s signature styles through the years.

“I think we can all agree there is no one else in the world like Dolly Parton,” said Dollywood Parks & Resorts President Eugene Naughton. “She is able to shine a light of positivity and inspiration that has influenced millions of people around the world. Our team has created a remarkable experience that shares Dolly’s inspiring story in an authentic, larger-than-life way. I think The Dolly Parton Experience is going to truly move our guests when they see it. We hope they take some of Dolly’s light and share it with the world just like she does every single day.”

In Songteller, guests trace Dolly’s roots from Sevier County to the bus she boarded to Nashville the day after her high school graduation. Several exhibits showcase some of Dolly’s favorite mementos from music, movies and TV shows, while one room is dedicated solely to her record-selling albums. The showstopper for the experience is a massive room which features a 360-degree, projection-mapped story that showcases how Dolly has become one of the most beloved figures in the world. Songteller also honors Dolly’s philanthropy efforts, including a live counter that tracks the number of books given to children through her Imagination Library program. As of opening day, the counter is nearing 240,000,000 books. Songteller is housed in the former Chasing Rainbows Museum.

At Behind the Seams, guests gain an understanding of how this Smoky Mountain girl’s iconic look comes to life, with a number of memorable wardrobes on display as well. To preserve these priceless pieces, Dollywood employed the same techniques used by the Smithsonian in their museums.

At the Precious Memories exhibit, located in the front of Dreamsong Theater, honors Dolly’s friends and family and details how their support allowed her to spread her wings to unimaginable heights. A new show, “Heidi Parton’s Kin & Friends,” also debuted today in the Dreamsong Theater. The show features Dolly’s niece, Heidi Parton, and a cast singing songs and telling stories; and since Heidi wrote it alongside her aunt Dolly, it includes songs and stories that only family would know! Dolly made a surprise appearance prior to the first show and sat in the audience to see the entire performance.

Guests also can get a glimpse of Dolly’s time on the road as one of her former motor coaches also is available to tour in The Dolly Parton Experience. Dolly’s Home-on-Wheels has been a fixture of the park for several years with hundreds of thousands of guests stepping inside the 1994 Prevost each season. The coach is located adjacent to Behind the Seams.

Finally, guests can visit Dolly’s Fan Shop for unique items to remember their trip to The Dolly Parton Experience. Several exclusive items only can be found in this special location. The curated selection of merchandise includes apparel, accessories and iconic keepsakes every Dolly Parton fan will cherish.

After exploring The Dolly Parton Experience, guests can enjoy spring in the Smokies thanks to Dollywood’s Flower & Food Festival presented by Covenant Health through June 9. With more than one million vibrant blooms, the fresh tastes of spring and unique entertainment offerings throughout the park, it’s an event that has quickly become tradition. Already in its fifth season, this guest-favorite festival transforms Dollywood into a breathtaking display of Mother Nature’s finest handiwork. Elaborate floral installations emerge around every corner, translating nature into living art, each coming together to create an unbelievable presentation of color and wonder.

While admiring the bright blooms throughout the park, guests can explore a multitude of menu items crafted with inspiration from spring’s freshest flavors. Returning for this year is the tasting pass, which allows guests to partake in multiple food items at different festival locations.

Festival elements carry over to Dollywood’s resort properties— Dollywood’s HeartSong Lodge & Resort and Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa—with a variety of festival-themed activities, crafts and entertainment that will inspire and delight the entire family. Guests can enjoy live entertainment by featured performers, fresh culinary creations, and rejuvenating spring-fresh spa treatments all alongside blooming festival décor and floral designs.

There is still plenty of fun for Dollywood guests this year. Following the Flower & Food Festival, the Sweet Summer Nights drone and fireworks show takes to the skies above the park as part of Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Summer Celebration presented by Food City (June 15-Aug. 11). A family tradition for many, Dollywood’s Harvest Festival presented by Humana (Sept. 9-Oct. 28) celebrates the beauty of fall with thousands of carved pumpkins, spirited performances from talented singers and the fun of Great Pumpkin LumiNights presented by Covenant Health. The industry’s Best Theme Park Christmas event—Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas presented by Humana (Nov. 1- Jan. 5, 2025)—concludes the park’s 2024 season with 6 million lights, festive holiday shows and the warm Christmas atmosphere guests have come to expect during this joyous time of year.