10 MUST-DO EVENTS IN SEVIERVILLE, TENNESSEE
Fill your calendar with a year of incredible experiences in the Smoky Mountains. From sporting to literary events, history to food fests, musical performances to spooky encounters, Sevierville, Tennessee is a community that knows how showcase the spectacular in every season. These ten events rank as perennial favorites with locals and visitors. Take your pick or attend them all for a year of exceptional fun in Dolly Parton’s hometown.
Rose Glen Literary Festival connects authors and readers. Local, regional, and national best-selling authors are showcased throughout a roster of presentations, book signings, and workshops. Some of the southern Appalachian region’s leading writers participate, including 2023 keynote speaker Jenny Hale, who wrote the romantic fiction best-sellers “The Beach House” and “Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses.” Other scheduled authors’ genres include nature, crime, recovery, memoir, and publishing. The 13th annual event will be held on Saturday, February 25, 2023, at the Sevierville Convention Center from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a lunch at Noon. Attendance is free with optional luncheon tickets available on the website for $25 per person; advance purchase recommended. The 2024 date has yet to be announced, but the festival typically falls on the fourth Saturday in February. For more details visit roseglenfestival.com
Bruce Street Brewfest Microbrew Festival serves up craft beers, tasty food, and upbeat music. The 6th annual event will take over a section of Historic Downtown Sevierville on Saturday, May 6, 2023, from 2 to 6 p.m. Guests of all ages may attend, but adults age 21+ are invited to sample from dozens of home and professional brewers to enjoy a wide range of beers from hoppy IPAs to malty stouts. Admission includes beer, a souvenir glass, and musical entertainment. Food will be available for purchase from a variety of food trucks. Festival goers can cast votes in the People’s Choice competition; there’s also a judged competition among homebrewers. Tickets are $40 per person (designated driver tickets are $15 each). Advance tickets are strongly recommended. All proceeds benefit local charities. For more information visit brucestreetbrewfest.com
Bloomin' BBQ, Music & Food Festival presents a toe-tapping, lip-licking good time. Sevierville’s signature spring event showcases a wide variety of musical entertainment, top BBQ cook teams, a vocal competition honoring Dolly Parton’s songwriting, a late-night Bluegrass Jam, and kids’ games. Three stages feature incredible regional and national talent. Catch headlining acts on the Swaggerty’s Farm Main Stage including Yonder Mountain String Band and Sawyer Brown, plus Kentucky Just Us, Jimbo Whaley & Greenbrier, Breaking Grass, Tray Wellington, and more. Six-time world’s banjo picking champion Gary “Biscuit” Davis will lead the late-night jam. Twenty-five of the nation’s top BBQ cook teams will compete for top honors in Bush’s Best Tennessee State Championship Cook-Off. Cooking demos, historic walking tours, 50+ crafters, and a kids’ area are also part of the fun. Join the fest on Friday, May 19, 2023, from 5 to 10 p.m. and Saturday, May 20, 2023, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. in Historic Downtown Sevierville. Learn more at bloominbbq.com
Smallmouth King Bass Tournament invites anglers to cast their luck and test their skills on Sevierville’s world-class bass waters. The 4th annual event—which ranks as one of the South’s best smallmouth bass tournaments—is a smallmouth-bass-only, catch-photograph-release event set for June 3 and 4, 2023. Competitors can fish from the shore, wade, or kayak the Little Pigeon River and its tributaries, all of which will be teeming with thousands of migrating bass on their spring runs. Winners are crowned based on their two-day total length of smallmouth bass greater than 12 inches long. Four prizes are awarded at 3 p.m. on the final day of the competition: Grand prize, $1,000; 2nd place, $400; 3rd place, $200; and biggest fish, $100. Entry fees run $50/$75 depending on date of registration; register early for the best price and to ensure a spot since the total number of competitors is limited. Discover more at Smallmouth Bass King Tournament
Dumplin Valley Bluegrass Festival celebrates music, food, and camaraderie in a rural setting. The 23rd annual event will take place September 14, 15, and 16, 2023, rain or shine. Shows start at Noon and wrap up around 11 p.m. This year’s lineup includes Lonesome River Band, The Malpass Brothers, Po’ Ramblin’ Boys, Wildfire, Appalachian Road Show, Sideline, and more. Fifteen performers are scheduled; five acts perform two shows each day under a covered performance area. Picking and jamming sessions take place all week. Tickets are $40 to $110, depending on how many days you’ll attend; parking is free. Bring your own chair and make advance reservations if you’d like to camp on the property. For more information visit www.dumplinvalley-bluegrass.com/
Robert A. Tino's Smoky Mountain Homecoming celebrates original art, traditional mountain crafts, bluegrass music, and good old Southern food for three days. Staged in the fields surrounding the Robert A. Tino Gallery, it presents works by the host artist who is best known for his paintings inspired by the Smoky Mountains plus works by other local artisans and heritage crafters from blacksmiths to weavers. This wholesome, family-friendly event also offers art classes and a pick-n-paint pumpkin patch. The 2023 event is set for Friday, October 6 , 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, October 7, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, October 8, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free on Friday, $5 per person on Saturday and Sunday (children age 12 and younger are free). For details visit www.robertatinosmokymountainhomecoming.com
History & Haunts offers a family-friendly peek at the darker side of Sevierville’s history with walking tours, frights, lawn games, costume contests in several categories (including one for leashed dogs), storytellers, a Halloween-themed dance party with classic tunes spun by a DJ, fireworks, crafts, and some ghoulish surprises. Sevier County historian Carroll McMahan will lead two historical walking tours that reveal true tragic tales from Sevierville’s past. Admission is free; some activities may have a nominal fee. Join the fun on Bruce Street on Thursday, October 19, 2023, starting at 6 p.m. and ending with fireworks at 9 p.m. Find more information at www.visitsevierville.com/historyandhaunts.aspx
Christmas at the Courthouse is a fun kick-off to the festive holiday season. Held Friday, December 1, 2023, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the iconic courthouse in Historic Downtown Sevierville, the celebration for all ages offers live musical performances by local talent, seasonal decorations, holiday treats, special appearances by the Grinch, photos with Santa Claus, children’s crafts, face painting, hot cocoa, wagon rides, and the evening’s highlight: a traditional lighting of the official Christmas tree on the Courthouse lawn.
Sevierville's Annual Christmas Parade is a longstanding tradition that will fill the streets with fun for the 61st time beginning at 11 a.m. on Saturday, December 2, 2023, on Court Avenue in Historic Downtown Sevierville. Themed “A Hometown Christmas,” it offers the chance to experience a small-town Christmas parade. Marching bands, car groups, pageant winners, baton twirlers, Santa Claus, and some surprises will be featured. For details including the parade route visit Sevierville's Annual Christmas Parade
Santa Hustle Smokies invites runners and walkers to lace up for a festive 5k and 10k. The 13th annual event is set for Sunday, December 10, 2023, and everything—including the candy stations, cookie stations, music spun by a DJ—is Santa- and/or Christmas-themed. The entry fee includes a hoodie, a Santa-themed hat (the hat designs and styles vary each year), goodies along the route, plus medals for winners in eight groups. Learn more and sign up at Santahustle.com/smokies/