By Leif Palmer
Posted on April 19, 2023
If you're a fan of Mother Nature, this is a prime time of year for visiting the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee. We're well into spring now, so all sorts of colorful changes are taking place, not only in the national park but outside its borders. From the emergence of wildflowers and tree blooms to a heightened awareness of our planet's natural resources, the next couple of weeks have a lot to offer Smokies visitors in search of outdoor beauty and wonder.
One way to show an appreciation of nature is the Earth Day Celebration at Gatlinburg SkyLift Park on April 22. Special events are planned at that attraction from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. At the Earth Day Information Booth, visitors can learn ways to implement sustainable lifestyle practices at home, and they'll be given a packet of native Tennessee wildflower seeds to scatter on the mountainside from the pedestrian SkyBridge attraction. Earth Day photo opps and selfie spots will be located throughout the park.
An organization called Discover Life in America will be hosting free Earth Day events on the 22nd. There will be an open house at Twin Creeks Pavilion in the national park from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. featuring live music, lunch, tours of natural history collections, nature programs and meet-and-greet time with scientists and park biologists.
If you plan your visit to run anytime between April 26 and 29, you'll get the chance to attend the 73rd Annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage, which takes place at dozens of different sites within Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Over the course of four days, experts in a variety of naturalist fields will lead group hikes and explorations of the park's diverse species of flora, from colorful wildflowers to gorgeous flowering trees and shrubs. Along the way, specialized programs dive deep into all sorts of subject matter, from moss walks to photography seminars.
Those planning to attend the Earth Day festivities at SkyLift Park can easily find parking in one of our many lots located within a couple of blocks of the SkyLift entrance on the Parkway. Our Gatlinburg parking garage rates make it super-affordable to leave a vehicle in a secure location throughout the day. Those attending Wildflower Pilgrimage outings or the Discover Life in America events will need to have their own individual transportation to access the many different gathering locations within the national park.
About Leif Palmer
Leif Palmer loves residing in Gatlinburg. He is an avid outdoorsman: rowing for exercise on the lake, trail hiking, and free climbing rocks in the mountains. He indulges his arty side by periodically beating up pieces of marble by sculpting. He is always frustrated by his inability to sink long putts, and hates his curly hair (but his wife loves it). Leif has been known to muster enough courage to change a diaper, and hopes his son will become a chip off the old block.