As the news of the fire spread, earlier this week, I couldn’t help but watch in horror as people posted videos of their escape down the mountain and photos of their homes and businesses destroyed by the fire. I can’t imagine the terror they felt as they drove through the fire, not knowing if they would escape or not.
I have been so impressed by the outpouring of support from people in my own community. Local churches, businesses, fire departments, and civic groups have organized efforts to collect donations which are being delivered to churches and groups in the Gatlinburg area.
Many people have asked what they can do to help the people of Gatlinburg and Mike Werner, mayor of Gatlinburg recently told us what we can do to help. “Come back to Gatlinburg.” Gatlinburg depends heavily on tourism and it will be important that tourists continue visiting the city to help boost their economy and the efforts to rebuild the city. As of this time (12/3/16) the city has not reopened to tourists but once it does it’s important that tourists return to the town we love.
In the past we have shared with you several of our favorite restaurants, attractions, and lodging recommendations for the Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge area so we felt like this was a good time to share those with you again. When you are ready to visit the Great Smoky Mountains again we have some great tips and deals to help you plan your trip and save money. Be sure to check out the posts listed below.
Relax With a Weekend Get-Away
Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies
Top 10 Favorite Restaurants in the Great Smoky Mountains
10 Family Friendly Attraction in the Great Smoky Mountains
Top 10 Outdoor Activities in Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains
Review of the River Terrace Resort in Downtown Gatlinburg
Our prayers and support continue to be with the residents of Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains area. If you would like to support those effected by the Gatlinburg fires I encourage you to donate to the My People Fund through the Dollywood Foundation. Dolly Parton has created the fund and promised to support local residents effected by the fires by providing $1000 each month for up to 6 months to Sevier County families who lost their homes due to the fires. 100% of your donation will go toward the families effected by the Gatlinburg fires.
Have you or someone you know been effected by the Gatlinburg fires? We would love to hear your stories. Feel free to leave us a comment below and tell us about your experiences.