Category Archives: business

New attraction coming to Pigeon Forge – Based on Lumberjacks

Looks like there will soon be some movement near the Belle Island site in Pigeon Forge.  A developer has purchased the land with plans to build an attraction that will feature Lumberjacks.  Still not sure EXACTLY what the attraction will be, but you can get an idea by clicking on the company’s website of a show they host in Alaska (http://www.lumberjackshows.com/?q=node/32).

The Belle Island resort area is between the main strip in Pigeon Forge and Teaster lane.  The resort went bankrupt before it could be completed, however you can clearly see they were a ways along in developing it before it was abandoned.  It is nice to see the area around Belle Island will be turning into a productive part of the Pigeon Forge economy soon. 

The new Lumberjack show should be ready by next June. 

Check out the story from Knoxnews.com below for more…

http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2010/jul/17/lumberjacks-coming-to-pigeon-forge/

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NOC Great Outpost opening in Gatlinburg April 1st.

We noticed this when we were in town earlier this month.  The old “Open Hearth” restaurant building has been fully renovated, and will be opening April 1st as the NOC Outpost.  I’ve rafted down the Nantahala river before, and that’s a blast.  Well, you’ll be able to sign up for rafting trips at this new business, but it will be so much more. 

It looks like the perfect match for the last business before you head into the park.  You’ll also be able to buy hiking/camping supplies.  I can tell you we’ll be stopping by there, and it we like it, it could become a regular stop for us on future visits.  I’m glad to see something other than restaurants in the building.  We ate there a few years ago, and while it was nice, it wasn’t anything special.  There are too many special places to eat in the area to spend time in places that are not. 

Check it out for your next trip!

http://www.examiner.com/x-39696-Knoxville-Outdoor-Recreation-Examiner~y2010m3d19-Nantahala-Outdoor-Center-to-open-NOCs-Great-Outpost-in-Gatlinburg

Here’s an older article from back in October on the plans… http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2009/oct/10/adventure-store-open-old-gatlinburg-restaurant/

Raymond

***This post brought to you by www.SmokyMountainTower.com. Stay at The Smoky Mountain Tower for your trip to the Smokies this Spring/Summer.  You’ll be glad you did. That’s where we stay.***

Ghost Town in the Sky could be foreclosed on in June.

It looks like Ghost Town in the Sky could be up for foreclosure in June. According to the article below, if additional funding is not found before then, foreclosure could take place.  I would imagine this is a bad economy to be looking for funding in. This all boils down to a nearly $10 million dollar loan BB&T has with the park.  They are giving the owners of Ghost Town until June to work something out, or be foreclosed on.

The sad thing is, Ghost Town is one of the bigger tourist draws in Maggie Valley.  About 200 people work at Ghost Town in the Sky, so this will surely be bad news for those folks. 

I hope, for the sake of Maggie Valley, that something can be worked out.  If I get more information on this, I’ll post it.

http://www.smokymountainnews.com/issues/03_10/03_10_10/fr_gt_foreclosure.html

Raymond 

***This post brought to you by www.SmokyMountainTower.com. When you’re in the Smokies, you want to stay here.  This is a great place, in a perfect location with only the best views.  Trust me.  Or just click on the site to see for yourself:)***

Research projects currently under permit in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

I was browsing through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s website, and I found a page that lists all the current research projects permitting in the Smokies.  It’s categorized by area of research.  If you have a minute, take a look at some of the projects, from the climbing behavior of salamanders, to research into whether or not short-leaf pine trees in the area might help determine global climate issues.  While you don’t get to see the research, it is quite interesting to browse through and see what kind of research is taking place in the Smokies.  Take a look!

http://www.nps.gov/grsm/naturescience/dispatches-permits.htm

***Next Thursday night, I’ll be headed to Maggie Valley for our 2nd annual GoSmoky.com Ski Trip.  I’m planning another episode of the GoSmoky.com Internet Radio Show on the trip.  I’ll also be adding lots of photos and even some videos when I get back.  The trip is being made possible by Cataloochee Ski Area (www.cataloochee.com) and A Holiday Motel (www.holidaymotel.net.)   Stop by www.cataloochee.com to see a live webcam of the ski resort.  If you’re interested in a ski trip, A Holiday Motel and Cataloochee have a steal of a deal.  Lift tickets, rentals, lessons, a $15 gas card and 2 nights at A Holiday Motel for just $129/person.  Check it out! http://www.holidaymotel.net/skipackages.htm.***

Work continues as more than 500 bolts are being inserted into mountainside at I-40 rock slide location

It looks like things are still on track to get I-40 back open by March.  The rock slide mountain that closed the interstate near the NC/TN border back in October is being drilled with bolts to keep the mountain in place as much as possible.  Eventually, more than 500 bolts will be in place.

You can find regular updates on progress on the mountain at http://www.ncdot.org/travel/i40_rockslide/.

I’m planning on being in the area in a couple of weeks.  I’ll post more about that trip soon. I’ll also keep you updated on what I find with regard to how the slide is impacting area businesses.

Raymond

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Rock slide on I-40 good AND bad for business… and increasing Smoky Mountain traffic

The Smoky Mountains are seeing a major impact ever since the huge rock slide closed portions of I-40 in North Carolina October 25th.  The traffic through the park (from Cherokee to Gatlinburg) as people take that route around the rock slide.  According to this story… http://www.tennessean.com/article/20091228/NEWS01/91228004/2066/NEWS03, officials are seeing about 1,000 cars per day more than what they usually see this time of year.  That’s a significant impact on a winding 2 lane road. 

While I haven’t been up there since the rock slide, my mom and grandmom went to Knoxville a couple of weeks ago, and they said HOURS were added to their detour (around the rock slide via interstate.)  If I were driving up there during the day, I’d take the road through the park.  If I’m going to spend an extra hour or two in the car, I just assume it’s driving through the park.

Business is also seeing a major impact.  I told you back in November…   https://gosmoky.wordpress.com/2009/11/23/rock-slide-work-continues-some-businesses-may-get-federal-assistance/… that some businesses that are seeing less business due to the slide may be getting Federal aid.  Well, it appears that the traffic moving through the park may be helping improve the bottom line for other businesses.  In this article, http://www.tennessean.com/article/20091228/NEWS01/91228005/I-40+shutdown+is+a+blessing++curse+for+businesses one business owner says they have seen a 20-30% increase in business since the rock slide. 

I’m hoping to get back up there myself in a month or so for a long weekend.  I’ll let you know how things go when I take that trip. 

Raymond

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Rock slide work continues… some businesses may get Federal assistance…

The rock slide on I-40 in the North Carolina Smoky Mountains is causing big problems for businesses in the area….  it looks like they could soon get federal assistance.  I’m generally a hands-off kind of guy when it comes to govt. aid.  However, a natural disaster that impacts business is an exception.  The rock slide might not seem like a major natural disaster, but when a small business that depends on people driving down I-40, it’s a major disaster when those drivers are re-routed away from their businesses.  You can read more about the federal aid here…  http://www.citizen-times.com/article/20091122/NEWS01/911220314&theme=ROCKSLIDE

The work on the rock slide is going to take awhile.  12 trucks are working on carrying away the debris… as of Thursday, they had already taken 130 loads of debris away from the interstate.  It looks like they are keeping the debris for future use in road-work.  That’s a great way to recycle the materials.  Read more about moving the debris here… http://www.charlotteobserver.com/breaking/story/1064623.html