View Full Version : Dolly Parton helps brother start theater - Branson East???

11-13-2005, 08:58 AM
This is good news for the Eastern side of the state that has suffered as tobacco sales have fallen off and farmers have nothing to fall back on.

The thing that excites me is the possibility of another tourist destination with an amusement park. I know that's not in the plans but Branson has 2 parks, Pigeon Forge has 1.

From the Charlotte Observer (www.charlotte.com)

Posted on Sat, Nov. 12, 2005

Dolly Parton helps brother start theater

Development hopes to revive economy, rival Branson, Mo.


Associated Press

ROANOKE RAPIDS - Dolly Parton stepped to a microphone Friday to cheers from an audience of thousands who came for the groundbreaking of a theater being developed by her brother in Eastern North Carolina.

Along with her brother Randy, sister Stella, and a few members of the Grand Ole Opry, they sang a few country songs and the gospel tune, "I Saw the Light."

For much of the time before that, they were making a sales pitch for the planned 750-acre Carolina Crossroads Music and Entertainment District in the poor, rural northeastern corner of the state.

"I wouldn't have missed this for anything in the world," Dolly Parton told the crowd -- estimated by police at more than 10,000 -- that gathered in an open field where the theater will be built. "You're definitely going to be in for some great entertainment."

The Randy Parton Theater is the cornerstone of a district that seeks to rival Branson, Mo., and Pigeon Forge, Tenn., as a hub of country, pop, beach and gospel music. The development could also help reinvigorate an area that has suffered economically in recent years as the state's textile and tobacco fortunes continue to tumble.

The $129 million project could create more than 12,000 jobs over the next five years, according to a UNC study. The first phase of the project, which includes Randy Parton's 1,500-seat theater, is to open in April 2007. That phase could create more than 2,595 jobs, officials said.

"I knew we picked the right place," Randy Parton, a country and gospel singer who has long worked with Dollywood, his sister's theme park in Pigeon Forge. "What I need most is each and every one of you to buy tickets."

Parton brought along Grand Ole Opry musicians Jim Ed Brown, Helen Cornelius, Jan Howard, Ray Pillow, Jeannie Seely and Billy Walker to give the audience a sample of the kind of performers who may come through the area.

"I know that this area is going to be greatly enriched by Carolina Crossroads," said Walker, who sings "Charlie's Shoes" and has been a member of the Grand Ole Opry since 1960.

Many members of the audience spread out chairs and bundled up to get a glimpse of the Partons. Organizers handed out Carolina Crossroads T-shirts.

Pamela Morris attended with a friend. Dolly Parton was the favorite star of her late father and "he would be proud to be here today," Morris said.

"This is my home and I'm excited about the Parton family coming," Morris said.

Eure Lee Wall snapped pictures as Dolly Parton's tour bus pulled away. His wife, Hazel, said she has been to Dollywood several times but had never seen Dolly in person.

"I did get to see her today," Wall said. "It's exciting, like a kid."


For those that don't know (like myself), Roanoke Rapids is located near I-95 up near the Virginia border.

A good stop off for all those people heading south from NY/NJ/PA ;) http://www.mapquest.com/maps/map.adp?searchtype=address&country=US&addtohistory=&searchtab=home&address=&city=roanoke+rapids&state=nc&zipcode=

11-13-2005, 11:42 AM
Maybe if the area is a sucess, Dolly will built the long talked about Dollywood II. :)

Carowinds 73-03
11-13-2005, 03:35 PM
This is great news. I heard about this from a friens a few days ago. A 2nd Dollywood would be awesome.

11-13-2005, 09:11 PM
Too bad Hurricane is already taken, that could have been Dollywood 2's clone of Thunderhead ;) lol

Carowinds 73-03
11-13-2005, 09:13 PM
LOL right........ You never know the Pavilion still might close so maybe those rides will go there.