Need Labor Day weekend plans? Here’s what’s happening in East Tennessee

COVID-19 caused event cancellations and closures across the country, making this Labor Day weekend look unlike any other. Still, there are plenty of ways to have fun and enjoy the holiday at home or out of the house. 

Here are events and ideas to help you decide how to spend your last days of summer.

Go for a socially distanced swim

Soak up the final days of summer at the pool or Dollywood’s Splash Country. Labor Day weekend marks the end of the season for both. 

Ed Cothren Pool at 1737 Reynolds St. and Inskip Pool at 4204 Bruhin Road will be open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Monday. Sunday hours for the pools are 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Admission at Ed Cothren costs $3. Inskip entry is $4. Groups of 10 or more people must call in advance. 

Splash Country is open and offering deals during its last days of operation for the season. Take advantage of the “Splash Sale” and get a one-day ticket for $29.95 plus tax or pay full price for admission and get a free meal voucher. Staying in Pigeon Forge? Book a room at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa and get free entry to Splash Country for a day. These deals and more are available at

Explore attractions

Gatlinburg outdoor attractions are hosting holiday festivities and honoring American workers this weekend. 

Live music, clogging and “Movies on the Mountain” are happening at Anakeesta. The outdoor amusement park will have daily shows at the parkway plaza Friday through Monday. Disney movies including “Brave” and “Frozen II” will be screened at overlook plaza as the sun sets Friday and Saturday. 

All events are included with admission. For an extra hour of fun, visit Friday or Saturday when the park is open 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Anakeesta will be open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m on Labor Day. A schedule of events and hours is available at 

Employees at SkyLift Park will unfurl a massive 30-foot-by-60-foot American flag over the center of the SkyBridge to be displayed until Sept. 11. Marketing manager Marcus Watson told Knox News that the flag will serve as a symbol over Gatlinburg, honoring the American labor force and the people who lost their lives on Sept. 11, 2001. Find out more to do during your visit at

Adventure outside

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is expanding access to campgrounds and picnic areas in time for Labor Day weekend.

Pack a picnic, go for a hike or get some fresh air at these reopened sites:

  • Abrams Creek, Balsam Mountain, Big Creek, Cataloochee and Cosby campgrounds
  • Big Creek, Cataloochee, Round Bottom and Tow String Horse camps
  • Heintooga and Look Rock picnic areas
  • Little Greenbrier Road

These areas also are reopened and ready to explore:

  • All park trails, backcountry campsites and shelters
  • All visitor centers and restrooms
  • Spence Cabin and all picnic pavilions are available for day-use rental
  • Concessions at LeConte Lodge, Sugarlands Riding Stables, Cades Cove Riding Stables, Cades Cove Campstore and Smokemont Riding Stables
  • Cable Mill in Cades Cove and Mingus Mill near Oconaluftee
  • Cades Cove, Elkmont, Deep Creek and Smokemont campgrounds
  • Anthony Creek Horse Camp
  • Big Creek, Cades Cove, Chimney Tops, Collins Creek, Cosby, Deep Creek, Greenbrier and Metcalf Bottoms picnic areas

Plan your trip to the Smokies and learn more on the park’s website.

Email Allie Clouse at and follow her on Twitter @allie_clouse. If you enjoy Allie’s coverage, support strong local journalism by subscribing for full access to all our content on every platform.


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