Dollywood announces $37 million Wildwood Grove, including family suspended roller coaster

Posted Friday, August 3, 2018 8:13 PM | Contributed by OhioStater

Wildwood Grove will sit adjacent to Dollywood's Timber Canyon area. Its entrance will be located across from Mystery Mine. It will feature 11 themed attractions, including The Dragonflier, a suspended family roller coaster.

Read more from The Knoxville News Sentinel.

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Saturday, August 4, 2018 2:11 PM
OhioStater's avatar

We have great timing. I heard something was coming, and when I read about the scope of the project I honestly didn't think it would be done by 2019. That said, we booked a trip to the Smokies for a week a few months ago.

I get to ride a bear.

Promoter of fog.

Monday, August 6, 2018 8:20 PM

so is the bear thing like Legoland's (California) "Royal Joust Ride", or is this the first of the new S&S Steeplechase rides?

Tuesday, August 7, 2018 9:35 AM

I looked up that Royal Joust. It’s cute.
And I’d say from the rendering and description we’re looking at that type of ride at Dollywood. It’s definitely for the kids and will be gentle with constant speed. The only mention of an actual coaster is the Vekoma.

I have to laugh a little at the homespun vibe in the video. The new area is made to seem downright ethereal, and the little mountain girl is exploring a dense, damp forest which from recent construction photos I’ve seen is clearly not happening. Any trace of a tree there behind Thunderhead is gone. They’re gonna have to do a lot of plantin’ and disguisin’ - the place backs right up to the parking lot.
My absolute favorite thing about this announcement though, as usual, is Dolly herself. It never fails that they include her for background and regional lore, and rightly so, but bless her heart. She always sounds a little clueless about the actual project, doesn’t she? Oh well, love me some Dolly.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018 11:29 AM

I agree it looks like Royal Joust. I was confused because the concept art shows a parent and child riding. I'm pretty sure that Royal Joust ride is a low weight limit kind of thing.

So for now, we'll just assume that the concept art was flawed.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018 10:55 PM
OhioStater's avatar

^ From the pictures I have seen RC, you are spot on. That said, Dollywood seems to have traditionally done a good idea of incorporating the natural landscape with their new installs. This just isn't a ride, though, it's a place. I'm not sure how they could realistically go about it without having to do some major clearing. I would bet they have something up their sleeves to do exactly what you said; major plantin' and disguisin'. Give it a couple seasons and it will all be an afterthought.

Dolly is something else. :)

Did I mention I get to ride a bear?

Promoter of fog.

Sunday, August 12, 2018 6:58 PM

I agree. For a an area themed to a grove, they sure did take out all the trees.

They didn’t even leave a berm of trees between the area and railroad. The railroad ride that used to be through the woods up the Milton is feeling pretty pair of these days between this expansion, the ugly parking lot they build interview, and wilderness pass tree removal back when they built that area. The wilderness pass is starting to grow back.

I’m all for expansion but part of the magic of Dollywood was its isolation in the woods. They don’t seem to be doing a good job of keeping up with the expansions

Sunday, August 12, 2018 10:39 PM
OhioStater's avatar

I thought part of the magic was that it was built between huge....tracts of land.

Promoter of fog.


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