World Storytelling Day Event in Gatlinburg March 22 2014

Tales Spring to Life at Sweet Fanny Adams Theatre

There’s nothing like a good story, especially one told with passion by a talented storyteller! On World Storytelling Day, telling and listening to stories takes place in as many languages and places as possible across the world, during the same day and night. The date is quickly approaching and thanks to the Smoky Mountains Storytellers Association, you have an opportunity to experience this global celebration right here East Tennessee.

Storyteller Janice Brooks-Headrick

Janice Brooks-Headrick

The Gatlinburg event is scheduled for Saturday, March 22, 2014 from 2-4 p.m. It will be easy to get to as it’s right next door at Sweet Fanny Adams Theatre. Adults and children of any age (that can be seated and engaged) are welcome, and the cost is $7, $5 for seniors and students.

You’ll get to hear tales of mystical fire dragons and stories of fantastical beasts as the 2014 storytelling theme is “Dragons and Monsters.” But don’t be scared!  This celebration is family friendly and all about having fun!

Cuz Headrick of Sevierville and Kathleen Mavournin of Maryville will be performing. Both are members of the Association and highly skilled in the storytelling art form. Kathleen is known for telling rarely heard stories from distant places as well as familiar Appalachian, Native American, and Celtic stories. In addition to being an authentic and energetic storyteller, Cuz is also a musician. He’s pure East Tennessee, so you never know what you may get! The complete storyteller lineup for 2014 is Cuz Headrick, Kathleen Mavournin, Janice Brooks-Headrick, Lew Bolton, Jennifer Alldredge and Peggy Grover.

World Storytelling Day 2014 Storyteller Lew Bolton

Storyteller Lew Bolton

Now, we have a room overlooking the river at Twin Islands or offering mountain views at Crossroads Inn ready for you! Make your reservations for March 22 and plan to attend this one-of-kind global event.

World Storytelling Day is a global celebration of the art of oral storytelling. If you are unable to attend at Sweet Fanny Adams, please contact the Smoky Mountains Storytellers Association for private event. SMSA storytellers are thrilled to entertain at receptions, reunions and group outings. You are also invited to attend an informal concert held on the 3rd Sunday of *each month from 2-3 p.m. at Asbury Place Chapel, Assisted Living Building, Maryville, TN. Click here for directions or visit on Facebook for additional information and a schedule of events.

* Except July, December, and sometimes November

Pigeon Forge Restaurants: Where to Eat in Pigeon Forge

Recommendations for Dining in the Smokies

When it comes to choosing where to eat in Pigeon Forge, your options are nearly endless. From your favorite chain restaurants to local Mom & Pop’s, they’re all here on one side of the Pigeon Forge Parkway or the other. We at Ogle’s Properties have based these recommendations on previous dining experiences and thought you might appreciate the consistently good food, casual atmosphere and pleasant service as much as we have. These three restaurants have the same owner and offer a loyalty “reward” card that allows you to rack up dining discounts. Why not get your card BEFORE you head to town so that when you arrive, you’ll get a free dessert and 10% discount every time you enjoy a meal.


Pigeon Forge Dining at Iron Boar

Great Food, Cold Beer!

The Iron Boar Saloon
Do you like to ride motorcycles and meet others who share your passion? Then Twin Islands or Crossroads Inn is the place to stay, and Iron Boar Saloon is the place to socialize. Stop by, grab a chair and a frosty mug of your favorite icy cold brew and start a conversation about your latest ride. Did you complete the Dragon with its 129 hairpin turns or did you take a leisurely ride in the Great Smoky Mountains? Whatever road you chose, Iron Boar Saloon is here to get you re-charged and back on the open road.

Iron Boar offers big, meaty burgers, jumbo wings, pulled pork, tons of favorite sides and even more. Try the famous “Killin Me” burger, piled high with 2 USDA ground sirloin patties, double cheese and all the toppings. For a different sort of taco, try an Ultimate Taco with a hard and soft taco sandwiched together with melted cheese, lots of ground meat, and spicy ranch dressing. Prefer barbecue? There’s a “Fat Boy” Sandwich loaded with pulled pork and their own roadhouse barbecue sauce. As if that isn’t enough, don’t pass up a few (or a dozen) “oh so hot” jumbo wings.

Iron Boar is so committed to the art of riding, that while you reminisce over lots of great rides you can enjoy their own Iron Boar Lager! Stop in to dust off the road and refuel so that you can get you back in the ‘saddle’ for another Smoky Mountain adventure. The Iron Boar Saloon is the ONLY biker bar in Pigeon Forge – and right next to Smoky Mountain Harley Davidson!
Walden’s Landing Shopping Center
Near Light #3 in Pigeon Forge – Next to No Way Jose’s
Hours: 11:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. or Later!
865-429-7779 • Web Site


Where to Eat in Pigeon Forge

Excellent Appetizers, Ribs, Steaks, Sandwiches

JT Hannah’s Kitchen
JT Hannah’s namesake meant great American fare in the 1930’s and his tradition is being carried on today in Pigeon Forge. The restaurant’s atmosphere will remind you of a slower time when food was lovingly prepared and served. On display are some of JT Hannah’s kitchen and restaurant treasures that you’ll enjoy viewing as much as the owners did finding them.

Head to JT Hannah’s with your family and friends for award winning St. Louis style spare ribs and mouthwatering steaks to satisfy a hearty appetite. But the choices don’t stop there as this Kitchen prepares it all and refuses to let anyone leave hungry! There’s truly something for every one and every taste with appetizers, chicken entrees such as Chicken Quesadillas, Smoky Mountain Grilled Chicken, and the popular Country Fried Chicken smothered with homemade white pepper gravy. In the mood for a burger? You’ll find it in Big Al’s chili burger, the Mexican City burger, or the Black Bear. There are salads, fresh vegetables, and hand cut fries or homemade potato chips to round out every meal.  Visit their website to see the full JT Hannah’s Kitchen Menu.

If you’ve still got room, there’s dessert too! Try Mama Laura’s Famous Strawberry Shortcake for a sweet treat! The large, freshly baked shortcake is full of strawberries, vanilla ice cream, and whipped cream. Ask for an extra spoon!
3214 Parkway, Near Light #6 in Pigeon Forge
Hours: 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. or Later!
865-428-4200 • Web Site


Pigeon Forge Mexican Restaurant

Dinner & A Movie Deals!

No Way Jose’s Mexican Cantina
“Our Commitment is Fresh!” Freshly prepared salsa is sure to be a big hit when your taste buds say “Mexican!” At No Way Jose’s, you can choose from traditional favorites like tacos and burritos and gluten free menu items, but don’t stop there. Try a new twist on Mexican with No Way’s award winning Chicken and Sour Cream Enchilada or the Jose’s Baja Chicken and Shrimp. Are you looking for lighter fare? How about the hot, sizzling Fajita Salad made your way with grilled steak or chicken or their famous Tostada Grande Salad. And for dessert the Grande Ice Cream made with vanilla ice cream and rolled in a crispy deep fried shell is enough to share. Adults will appreciate a full bar and the kids will love the authentic Mexican sodas!  On Tuesday and Wednesday nights, No Way Jose’s offers a dinner and a movie deal that includes appetizer, entree and dessert plus 2 tickets to the Forge Cinemas. (Read all about the No Way Jose’s in Gatlinburg, next door to Twin Islands.)
Walden’s Landing Shopping Center
Near Light #3 in Pigeon Forge
Hours: 11:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. or Later!
865-429-7779 • Web Site

There you go… three great restaurants for dining in Pigeon Forge. Please let us know when you return to Crossroads or Twin Islands how you enjoyed your meal!

2013 Gatlinburg Veterans Day Celebration

Honor American Veterans on November 11

There are never enough ways to say “Thank You” in order to recognize and honor the sacrifices our military men and women have made for us.  However, in what has become one of the most popular  Smoky Mountains celebrations, Gatlinburg TN will strive to do so in a very special way during the 11th Annual Veteran’s Day Celebration at Ripley’s Aquarium Plaza.  This free admission event begins at 11 a.m.

Downtown Gatlinburg Veterans Day Celebration and Military Discounts

Monday, November 11 at 11 a.m.

One of only two cities in the state of Tennessee, Gatlinburg has the honor of being an official Regional Site for the observance of Veterans Day; which is exactly why you want to be part of the celebration as they salute our veterans of the Armed Forces with words of tribute and inspiring musical numbers.

Your heart will soar hearing the stirring patriot music performed by the Gatlinburg-Pittman High School band and choir, and will no doubt fly even higher during the Tennessee Air National Guard’s flyover.  Special recognition will be given to the attending veterans and there will be a moment of remembrance for fallen comrades who sacrificed their all.  Along with notable veteran speakers, the American Eagle Foundation will present an American bald eagle program.

We hope you’ll plan to bring your family to Gatlinburg for the long weekend and join with others extending your heartfelt thanks to those who put service before self!  Book your lodging with us at The Best Western Twin Islands or Best Western Crossroads Inn so you’ll be close to the event and receive your Active and Retired Military discount.  Our staff is also ready to provide suggestions of fun things to do after the Veteran’s Day Celebration!  Visit local shops in downtown, have a delicious lunch and get in the Christmas spirit by enjoying the lights and activities of Winterfest!

Shocktober at the Space Needle

Gatlinburg Halloween Attraction

Looking for something a little scarier than witches, goblins, and ghouls during your Halloween vacation at Ogle’s Properties this year?  Something akin to the supernatural? How about getting your shriek on with a few mind tricks?  In the crazy spirit of Halloween the Iris Theater at the Space Needle in Gatlinburg TN wants to mess with your mind; but don’t worry, it’s in a good way.  This year’s Shocktober program, “Shrieks and Mindfreaks,” features hypnotist Guy Michaels who will fill your evening with laughs, gasps, wonder, and great memories.

Halloween Shocktober Shocktober at the Gatlinburg Space Needle

Now through October 31
7:15 p.m. Nightly

Celebrate the spookiest time of year by joining the ghosts and ghouls of Shocktober!  Guy Michaels’ mind-bending mysteries will both amaze you and make you laugh as friends and members of your group become the stars of the show.  And more than once you will ask yourself or your neighbor, “How’d he do that?”  Come unlock your imagination and learn the power of your mind….if you DARE!

Messing with your mind isn’t all Shocktober 2013 wants to do; they also want to mess with your face!  New this year is their extreme spooktacular face painting.  This sure isn’t the butterflies and balloons hometown fair kind of face painting.  No, sir!  Their extreme face painting artists take “shock and awe” to a new level – don’t miss out on the chance to have the scariest face on the streets of Gatlinburg!

Shocktober is celebrated in the Iris Theater located at the Gatlinburg Space Needle on Historic Nature Trails just off the Parkway at traffic light #8.  Guy Michaels’ surprisingly funny and mysterious show starts at 7:15 p.m. every night through October 31st.  Check availability for your stay at Crossroads Inn or Twin Islands and then purchase your Shocktober and face painting tickets by calling (888) 482-3330 or online here:  Shocktober Tickets.  We hope you’ll stop by our frontdesk so that we can see your scary face painting!



Smoky Mountain Songwriters Festival August 2013

Free Music Concerts in Downtown Gatlinburg

Hotel Discounts for Gatlinburg Lodging During Smoky Mountain Songwriters Festival

August 15-18, 2013
4 Full Days of Entertainment

The first Smoky Mountain Songwriters Festival held in 2012 was such a big hit, that it’s now become an annual event.  Reserve your stay at Best Western Crossroads Inn or Twin Islands to join the festivities for the 2nd festival in downtown Gatlinburg August 15-18.  When you call to reserve your rooms, ask for the SMSWF discount to save 15%!

This festival is held to “Celebrate Our Appalachian Musical Roots” by promoting and encouraging singers and songwriters and will include 4 days of live entertainment, songwriter workshops with record label guest speaker, a battle of the bands, and Songwriters Competition Finale.

Seven workshops are planned that feature industry standards in writing, pitching, presenting and honing skills.  A 3-day luncheon series with a west coast record promoter is the highlights the workshops.  Workshop participants also receive an opportunity to pitch their best songs to a panel of publishers.

New for the 2013 festival is a band playoff.  Selected bands will have a chance to battle in front of a panel of A&R Reps, record labels, publishers, booking agents and you.  Do not miss the possibility of hearing an up and coming band before they become famous!

The Songwriters Competition Finale takes place on Saturday, August 17 from 5-7 p.m. and will feature finalists from the over 200 original song submissions that were received from across the country and hit writer’s of songs such as “Rock my World” (Brooks and Dunn), “Ain‘t Goin’ Down Till The Sun Comes Up,” (Garth Brooks) and “Don’t Blink” (Kenny Chesney) among many others.  Musical venues include Bluegrass, Country, Folk, Pop, Rock, Gospel, and Inspirational.

If you love music, like to hear the stories behind the songs, and want to see the ‘songwriter’s to watch,’ don’t wait to make your plans for 4 days of entertainment and inspiration.  Click here for the guide to festival events and locations of scheduled performers and then call our hotels directly and request your Smoky Mountain Song Writers Festival discount.  We look forward to entertaining you in downtown Gatlinburg!