Skip to main content

The Island and The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel

If you have visited Pigeon Forge, Tennessee within the last year or so, you might have noticed something new.  An entertainment complex opened on June 21, 2013 and is continuing to develop in phases, with eateries, arcades, shops and other attractions.

The development is called The Island. It is situated between the Parkway and Teaster Lane on Island Drive in Pigeon Forge. Locating it, however, is not a problem. Just look for "The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel." It certainly is not difficult to spot, as it towers some 200 feet(20 stories)high and it is covered with colorful LED lights!

Granted, it is not the largest permanent observation wheel(a term that seems to be preferred by wheel designers and developers over ferris wheel) in the world. No doubt, some of you may have seen larger ones, such as the London Eye in London, England. There is an enormous one called the Singapore Flyer, which is located in Singapore in Asia. The concept seems to be growing in popularity and more seem to be being constructed as this is being written. Nonetheless, it is the tallest wheel that I, personally, have had the experience of seeing for myself.

It is an impressive structure. As a matter of fact, it is so fascinating to me that I have made it the main topic of this post, which is an account of our first visit to The Island and the wheel. Here is how it went:

It is a cloudy late afternoon this past October when we arrive. We cross over this bridge to get to The Island.

Bridge Leading to The Island in Pigeon Forge
It is impossible to miss The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel from the moment we set foot into The Island Complex. This photo is taken quite a distance from the wheel. According to FAQs on The Island's website,, there are 45 gondolas on the wheel.

Here is a close up shot. This better illustrates the size of these gondolas which are said to accommodate up to 8(eight) passengers per unit. Can you imagine that some 360 passengers could ride at once?

Close Up of Gondolas on The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel
Another close up of the gondolas:
Another View of the Gondolas
Another view of the wheel taken in the late afternoon. We begin to get some idea of how the lights change color on the structure, while some daylight still remains.
Light Appear Blue in This Photo
The lights are turning to a red hue:

Lights Turning to Red on the Wheel
Here we have green and bright yellow:
Lights to Green and Yellow
Now a mix of pink, yellow and white:
Pink, Yellow and White Lights on the Wheel
Dusk has arrived and the lights are beginning to appear more vivid. If you will, try for a moment to envision yourself standing at the very bottom and quite close to the wheel, head tilted back and looking straight up while the lights appear to be dancing. Meanwhile, the wheel is turning. Then, perhaps you will begin to get some idea the case of dizziness or vertigo I am experiencing while attempting to capture the colors as they dance. Here we have white, turning to pink:

Wheel in White Lights
And here dressed in green:
Wheel in Green Lights
Then, yellow, white, blue and red:
Lights of Yellow, White, Blue and Red

Night has fallen and the dance starts on a cool and sultry blue note: 

On this chilly night on The Island, things start heating up:
And, then, culminate with this mesmerizing ensemble of lights dancing in a glorious blaze of spectacular colors.

Hope you enjoyed your visit to my blog and checking out The Great Smoky Mountain Wheel! I am sorry to say that I could not convince my husband to ride with me and I was not quite brave enough to go it alone. Maybe, next time, as long as I don't get dizzy, like at the bottom! We still had a great time touring The Island with its great wheel and all the other fun things.

If you like observation(dare I say ferris?) wheels, shopping and fun day and night time entertainment and, if you happen to be in the area of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, The Island has a lot to offer! If you care to find out more about it, you might want to try their Facebook link:


Popular posts from this blog

How to Make and Use a Stencil Using Cricut Expression

My family and many of my friends know how much I adore French inspired creations and design. The flourish of the curly-cues and curves are so appealing. An image of the Eiffel Tower in any form sets my imagination into high gear. It will come as no surprise to people who know me well that when I feel the desire to get creative, it is often with a French flair. So, when pondering what to make for Joanne, a dear friend of mine, I designed the stenciled pillow covers shown in this post. 
I constructed the pillow cover/shams myself from a twin sized white cotton sheet and embellished the opening edges with black grosgrain ribbon before sewing the side seam together. If you prefer not to sew your own, you can purchase a pair and begin from there. This image could be reduced a little in size and applied to hand towels, etc.

My Cricut Expression was used to make the stencil for the design and the cartridge used was Storybook. The design used was a flower design which is associated with the …

Victory Sports Soccer Season and the Blessings of Friends and Family

This past Saturday marked the beginning of a new soccer season for Victory Sports, the church league in which my daughter, Angela, her husband and their children have been involved for a good many years now. All three children have played sports with this league and/or have assisted in coaching the younger children for basketball and soccer. Angela does all the things that mothers of children who are involved in church or school sports activities do. Up until now, Jimmy, our son-in-law, has been very active in coaching the children for soccer and basketball. This soccer season he, because of complications and side-effects involved with his treatments, has not been able to coach.

Shiloh Baptist Church is a sponsor of Victory Sports and is the place where all the games are played and where children from all around the Aiken area are blessed to be able to participate in the games and activities associated with Victory Sports. Angela, Jimmy and the children are members there and have bee…

Homemade Fresh Chunky Peach Ice Cream

One of the best things about summer is the abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables. Farmer's markets and roadside stands boast baskets of all sorts of beautiful, tempting regional produce. Georgia is called the Peach State but the area where we live in South Carolina grows the most juicy, sweet and delicious peaches you could ever hope to eat. The month of July, particularly around Independence Day is when the best (in my opinion) are ripe and ready to be harvested and sold.

Our family eagerly anticipates the appearance of those beautiful peaches!
There are all sorts of delicious ways to prepare and eat this luscious and delectable fruit. They are simply scrumptious when peeled and sliced like this:
You can add a splash of milk or coconut milk and a little sugar, but it really is not necessary. They are so very sweet and satisfying. Eaten fresh they are quite good for the health. Peaches contain lots of vitamins A and C and minerals, such as potassium. The average peach is said ha…