Family vacations in the Smoky Mountains

Fishing In Gatlinburg and The Smokies

Some people may not be aware but, Gatlinburg, TN and The Great Smoky Mountains National Park offer miles of streams and rivers that are full of Native and and, in Gatlinburgs case, both native and stocked Rainbow Trout. For the experienced sportsman the national park has some of the best fly fishing in the area. There are guides available in the area or you can just get your permit and go for an adventure in the park alone or with a friend. The City of Gatlinburg stocks trout in about 5 miles of rivers and streams every Thursday in season. This gives even the least experienced fisherman a good chance at catching his or hers daily limit. There are even 2 specific areas that are stocked heavier than the rest and reserved for the young fishermen under 12. Gatlinburgs stocking season runs March to November. Daily or weekly permits can be purchased at the Gatlinburg City Hall on Hwy 321 across from the Food City grocery store. You can fish in Gatlinburgs stocked streams 6 days a week. Fishing in Gatlinburg on Thursday is prohibited. So bring your family, friends and, your fishing poles and be ready to enjoy some delicious fresh trout off of your grill, out of your frying pan, or out of the oven. And, as always sit back in your rocking chair on the deck of your Gatlinburg cabin and enjoy the view.

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12 Foods to Start Eating on a Regular Basis to Improve Health & Decrease Body Fat

  1. Almonds & other nuts (great to bring along on your hikes in the Smoky Mountains)
  2. Beans & Legumes
  3. Spinach & other green veggies
  4. Dairy (yogurt, cheese, low-fat milk)
  5. Instant Oatmeal (unsweetened)
  6. Eggs
  7. Turkey & other lean meats
  8. Peanut Butter (make PJ sandwiches for good on-the-go vacation meals too!)
  9. Olive Oil
  10. Whole-grain breads & cereals
  11. Extra protein (whey) powder
  12. Raspberries & other berries (We can learn good diet from the Black Bears)

Walking the Parkway in Gatlinburg, hiking the mountains, and river rafting are all good exercise!

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Christmas Shopping in Pigeon Forge, Smoky Mountains, Tennessee!

Tourists brag about the options to show discount prices & name brands when they come to the Smoky Mountains! They definitely don’t leave empty handed and without a smile.  Some of the top brands anywhere have multiple locations in Pigeon Forge and Sevierville, Tennessee.  Brands like Brooks Brothers, Coach, Under Armour, Polo, Calvin Klein, American Eagle, Old Navy, Nike, Reebok, and many other retailers have locations here.

Located in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, Pigeon Forge, TN, has quickly become known as a shopping destination that offers a wide range of merchandise and price points from outlet center deals to one-of-a-kind art and quality antiques. This Thanksgiving, some of Pigeon Forge’s most popular shopping destinations are offering After-Thanksgiving sales, making this a great time to visit.
Many stores will offer Black Friday specials with sales and specials running through the weekend.

Another popular shopping destination is Smoky Mountain Knife Works. They will open its doors at 7am on Friday morning, with great deals on knives, kitchen accessories and bakeware. Their Black Friday sale runs Nov. 26 through Dec. 12.
Bass Pro Outdoor World’s five hour sale, from 6-11am on Friday morning, will also offer lots of great specials.
Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, is conveniently located just off Interstate 40 Exit 407 in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. Within a day’s drive of over half the nation’s population, Pigeon Forge is annually visited by millions of people who enjoy the shopping, attractions, restaurants and shows this quaint town has to offer.

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The traditional Thanksgiving dishes really differ among families and even more so among regions of the United States. For example, there are families who bake a turkey and other families who fry one. There are some parts of the country that cant have Thanksgiving without sweet tea and other parts of the country that dont even drink the stuff! But, the following overview of traditional Thanksgiving dishes are ones that are popular pretty much across the board with a couple of specifications for different parts of the US. Remember, just because a food isnt listed here doesnt mean its not a traditional Thanksgiving food. And just because it is listed doesnt meant that it is a tradition in your family!

The most traditional food of all is the Thanksgiving turkey. There are myriad ways to cook it and season it, but almost all Americans consider turkey a mainstay for the Thanksgiving meal.
Although not as popular as turkey, many families serve a pink ham on Thanksgiving Day. This is usually served in addition to the turkey and not in place of. Some families like to have two different meats to choose from and really like the leftover sandwiches!
You cant cook a turkey without cooking stuffing or dressing! There are lots of different boxed and ready made stuffings and dressings you can purchase or you can make your own. When it comes to cooking your own there are so many family recipes that although it is all called stuffing and dressing it has so many different flavors that it might not seem like the same thing!
Sweet potatoes, also called yams, are another traditional Thanksgiving Day food. Some families cook the yams in syrup, others make a souffl or casserole with marshmallows on top, and still others serve baked sweet potatoes with butter and brown sugar.
Cranberry Sauce

It is believed the Pilgrims had some form of cranberry sauce during the first Thanksgiving. And, the tradition continues today with cranberry sauces, chutneys, and more.

Mashed Potatoes
For many families, mashed potatoes are as much a part of Thanksgiving as the turkey!

Corn on the CobCorn on the cob is present at most Thanksgiving meals across the country. Some families may serve corn of the cob as well, but the point is that corn makes it onto the list of traditional Thanksgiving foods.
When it comes to vegetables and Thanksgiving there are many differences. Some parts of the country serve butterbeans, turnips, squash, collards, peas, and green beans while other parts of the country serve a green bean casserole, some kind of salad, or other vegetables.
Pumpkin Pie and Pecan Pie
As far as Thanksgiving dessert is considered pumpkin pie and pecan pie are two of the most popular desserts across the country. There are other desserts that are also popular like mince pies, pound cakes, apple pies, and more.
These are just a few of the most popular Thanksgiving traditional dishes across the United States. There is one thing for sure, though, and that is that each region of the country and even more so each family has their own traditions and favorite Thanksgiving foods.


  • Recipe courtesy Rachael Ray
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan
  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 1 fresh bay leaf, available in produce department
  • 4 ribs celery and greens, from the heart, chopped (save time and purchase celery already washed, trimmed and cut into sticks, this makes chopping fast work)
  • 1 medium to large yellow skinned onion, chopped
  • 3 McIntosh apples, quartered and chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons poultry seasoning
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 8 cups cubed stuffing mix (recommended: Pepperidge Farm)
  • 2 to 3 cups chicken stock, available in paper containers on the soup aisle


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add extra-virgin olive oil to skillet and 4 tablespoons butter. When butter melts, add bay leaf and add the vegetables as you chop them, celery, onions then apples. Sprinkle the vegetables and apples with salt, pepper and poultry seasoning. Cook 5 to 6 minutes to begin to soften vegetables and apples then add parsley and stuffing cubes to the pan and combine. Moisten the stuffing with chicken broth until all of the bread is soft but not wet.
Butter 12 muffin cups, 2 tins, liberally with remaining butter. Use an ice cream scoop to fill and mound up the stuffing in muffin tins. Remove the bay leaf as you scoop the stuffing when you come upon it. Bake until set and crisp on top, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove stuffin’ muffins to a platter and serve hot or room temperature.
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Halloween in Gatlinburg, Tennessee 2010

Share the Autumn Celebration of Halloween this October with friends & family in Gatlinburg, Tennessee!  You’ll enjoy the options of a Halloween bash at Gatlinburg’s Aquarium, a hayride through downtown Gatlinburg, a beautiful drive through the National Park, or maybe a walk along the Little Pigeon River.  Many people come to Gatlinburg to stay in a log cabin rental so they can enjoy a romantic getaway with fireplace and hot tub.  Your kids will have memories of a lifetime as they spend the Fall holiday here in the Smokies with their family.  So come visit & enjoy the beauty of Autumn in the Smokies!

This Halloween will prove to be frightfully exciting when visiting Gatlinburg with a variety of activities that are sure to be spine-chilling! Area ghosts and ghouls come out to play at the Mysterious Mansion of Gatlinburg where visitors can explore the most haunted building in the area as the occupants scare and delight you. From cobweb-covered dungeons to squeaky staircases and hallways, you can tip-toe your way through the horrors of the Mysterious Mansion! If haunted houses aren’t your cup of tea, there are a variety of activities that local shops and venues featuring Halloween fun to reward your little ghost or goblin with some candy! Whether you want a family friendly holiday or a frightful encounter, there are plenty of Halloween activities for your party! Don’t forget about area hotels that are sure to make your stay comfortable and convenient.
 Before the nightly activities, explore more activity options in Gatlinburg like Dollywood The 125-acre theme park provides roller coasters for thrill seekers, shows, dining and more that will fit anyone traveling in your family. With the beautiful terrain serving as inspiration, this exquisite park catches the spirit of the entertainment legend, Dolly Parton, and East Tennessee. This park is open Halloween day, so enjoy over 30 rides and attractions before dressing up to take to the streets of Gatlinburg!
Catch the magic of the Halloween season at the Magic Beyond Belief show where you watch impossible feats and illusions with the Merlin award-winning magician, Terry Evanswood. Acting as his co-star, Terry invites his 400-pound white tiger onto the stage to participate! The theater itself is equipped with two massive video screens and state-of-the-art lighting and sound to provide a magical experience you won’t soon forget. With shows on Halloween night and surrounding evenings, you can find the time to fit in one of these amazing programs!

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Cabin Rentals vs. Gatlinburg Hotel Room or Pigeon Forge condo

Benefits & Advantages of Vacation Rentals in Gatlinburg & Pigeon Forge

Vacation home rentals are, hands down, the best way for you to enjoy a truly relaxing, rewarding and budget-friendly family vacation – one you’ll remember forever! Pigeon Forge Cabin Rentals give you the room to relax after a long day and provide unique and luxurious amenities and services versus the limited accommodations and space found at even the highest-rated resorts and hotels. And for some, vacation homes are a vacation unto themselves.

Exclusive Luxury, Unmatched Privacy

Gatlinburg & Pigeon Forge rentals provide – luxurious amenities like:
Private pools, spas, patios or decks, fireplaces, river/creek access State-of-the-art home theatres
Multiple master suites and bedrooms
Game rooms with amenities like billiard tables, air hockey, stand-up arcade games and more
Full kitchens plus large and multiple dining areas
Entertainment and electronics amenities like TVs and DVD players throughout, computers with high-speed Wi-Fi internet access and even Wii, Xbox and PlayStation video game systems!

When it comes to privacy, Smoky Mountain Cabin Rentals are second to none. You’ll rest easy knowing that you’re in a spacious cabin as opposed to just a single room. Moreover, many vacation homes are located in cabin communities in the mountains with some homes featuring seclusion and added privacy.

Want more vacation luxury? Many cabins provide access to premier services like pre-arrival grocery shopping, massage delivery and in-home chefs.

In essence, Aunt Bug’s Cabin Rentals give you more luxury than the top resorts plus the privacy and comforts of home.

Location, Location, Location
Whether you’re looking for a secluded mountain cabin, a quiet wooded cottage or a home close to the ski resort or attractions and theme parks, vacation cabin rentals are the best choice for getting away from it all while staying close to the fun. Most vacation home rentals are just minutes away from your favorite sightseeing spots, attractions, golf courses, restaurants, shopping centers and other vacation area hot spots.

Renting from a Professional Property Management Company like Aunt Bug’s Cabin Rentals
When renting from a management company, guests enjoy additional benefits and services that are not typically offered by single homeowners, including a 24-hour emergency customer service contact, concierge services, housekeeping, partnerships with local vendors, and the ability to search and reserve a home securely online. If a vacation home is not managed, the individual homeowner is responsible for the property’s maintenance, upkeep, and the customer service offered to renters, often as an absentee owner from other states or even countries abroad. We handle all of this for individual homeowners, ensuring consistency and quality in both customer service and the level of accommodations.

Major Savings. Priceless Value.
You’ll discover great savings and value when renting a cabin or chalet– sometimes in ways you’d least expect! Vacation homes make it easy to save on:
Dining – with full kitchens, you can make your own meals and snacks at a fraction of the cost you’d pay at restaurants and area attractions

Entertainment – with private pools, community playgrounds, clubhouses, game rooms, theaters and other unique amenities to enjoy, you’ll save big when staying in

Accommodations – with multiple bedrooms and bathrooms, you’ll keep your family or group together instead of spending more on additional rooms

Beyond saving you money, vacation homes provide truly unique values you can’t put a price on:

Time for yourself and family to kick back and relax

Room for your group or family to play – indoors or out

Lasting memories of a truly relaxing, one-of-a-kind vacation experience.

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Pigeon Forge Cabins by Aunt Bug’s Cabin Rentals

For your next weekend getaway, why not get a cabin in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. Aunt Bug’s Cabin Rentals is the recognized leader in luxury cabin rentals in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, & Smoky Mountains offering the finest of furnishings for the romantic getaway and family fun. Whether you are looking for a cabin with a spectacular mountain view or a cabin on the Little Pigeon River, Aunt Bug’s Cabin Rentals offers affordable deluxe cabins & economy chalets to suit your family’s needs and vacation budget. For more info please call 1-866-286-8284 or visit