Dolly Parton Announces Massive Dollywood Expansion

Dolly Parton opened her amusement park, Dollywood, in 1986, adding to the area over the years with [...]

Dolly Parton opened her amusement park, Dollywood, in 1986, adding to the area over the years with various rides and attractions. She will now expand the park once again, announcing on Friday that the park will be undergoing its largest expansion yet.

Parton made the announcement at Dollywood, which is located in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, sharing that the expansion will be called Wildwood Grove and will feature 11 new attractions for guests to enjoy.

The project will cost $37 million and feature experiences including six new rides, a live entertainment venue and a 55 ft. tall Wildwood Tree which will serve as the area's centerpiece. The expansion will also add to Dollywood's famed culinary options, with a new restaurant called Till & Harvest set to offer items including burritos "with a Southern twist," churros and ice cream.

(Photo: Dollywood)

People shares that Wildwood Grove will become Dollywood's 11th land.

Rides include The Dragonflier, a suspended roller coaster, Black Bear Trail, which offers children the chance to ride on a mechanical bear, and Treetop Tower, which will elevate guests for a stunning view of the surrounding landscape, Knox News reports. The area will also include family-friendly splash pad Wildwood Creek and other rides channeling the nature theme with animals including mockingbirds and frogs.

(Photo: Dollywood)

At night, Wildwood Tree will light up in a stunning display to cap off the day's activities.

Parton said that Wildwood Grove was inspired by the landscape and wildlife of the Smoky Mountains.

"I've told you before about how I'd let my imagination roam free when I'd be out exploring in the hills around our home in the Smoky Mountains," the singer said in a press release, via Sounds Like Nashville. "I'd pretend that the frogs and butterflies were my friends. I'd imagine about what it'd be like to fly with a dragonfly or to follow a bear family through the woods. Now all these things are coming true for our guests to experience in Wildwood Grove; it may be my new favorite part of Dollywood!"

"This area is going to give families a place to explore, play and imagine together—but more importantly—it's a place where they can spend more time together," she continued. "I believe everyone has a song in their heart that needs to be set free. Wildwood Grove will be a place where families can learn together about what their heart song truly is."

Wildwood Grove is scheduled to open in 2019.

Photo Credit: Getty / Ron Galella, Ltd.