Theme park’s entertainment claims four awards at IAAPA’s annual Big E Awards ceremony.
Dollywood theme park claimed its fourth consecutive international Heartbeat Award along with three additional trophies at this year’s International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Expo’s Big E entertainment awards ceremony in Las Vegas on Nov. 18.
The latest awards bring Dollywood’s total to 15 in the past four years, more than any other theme park in the world.
Sha-Kon-O-Hey! Land of Blue Smoke won the prestigious Heartbeat Award. The $1.3 million production premiered May 9, 2009, featuring eight songs written by Dolly Parton and tells the story of the last family leaving the area that would become Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Sha-Kon-O-Hey! returns May 2010 for Dollywood’s 25th anniversary season.
Dollywood’s previous Heartbeat Award winners are Dreamland Drive-In (2008 & 2006) and The Great American Country Show (2007).
“The true honor in receiving the Heartbeat Award lies in its recognition of our ability to speak to our audience, said Dollywood’s Director of Entertainment Paul T. Couch. “There is no higher compliment.”
Dollywood also took home awards in three additional categories. Creature Adventures starring the Kratt Brothers, a show which premiered in 2008 and headlined the park’s annual KidsFest event for two consecutive years, won Best Live Edutainment Show. Park performer Gabriel Myers from Dreamland Drive-In won Best Male Performer. Dollywood’s Gem Tones, an a capella group that performs ’50s and ‘60s music, won honorable mention as Best Atmosphere/Street Performer.
IAAPA is the largest international trade association for permanently situated amusement facilities worldwide. The organization represents more than 4, 500 facility, supplier, and individual members from more than 90 countries.
Dollywood is a 150-acre family adventure park in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. Open nine months a year, Dollywood offers more than 40 rides and attractions including the award-winning coasters Thunderhead® and Mystery Mine®, live entertainment and crafters. For more information, call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD or visit dollywood.com.
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