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  1. #1
    Website Admin Katie's Avatar
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    Red face General Dollywood thread

    This thread is related to anything Dollywood.

    This includes shows, food, rides, anything other than rumors and construction. Please keep those in their designated threads.

    This is my way of showing we can all keep the peace as well as it is now easier to moderate with our new format. Please enjoy.
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    Thanks Katie!!!!!!!!

  3. #3
    So I wonder what's heading to Splash country next year? I'm hoping for something like a tornado slide or an aqua loop. That would be awesome.
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  4. #4
    Moderator Austin's Avatar
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    Id like to see an aqua loop or a water coaster. Tornados are just too common now.
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  5. #5
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    I received a Splash Country survey a few weeks ago about possible additions and it was all related to the little kiddies. I suggested a Tornado also. Even if they are common they still need one in my opinion, I am going to Holiday World tomorrow and can't wait to ride Zinga!

  6. #6
    The wilderness resort has one too. I'd kinda like to see one anyway though.

    Don't they have a kiddie section already?
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  7. #7
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    They're supposed to be building a new one.

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  8. #8
    Moderator Austin's Avatar
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    Headed out to Dollywood today! Can't believe its been this long since I was there.
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  9. #9
    Moderator Austin's Avatar
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    Just saw this on Yahoo. At first I was like Dollywood? It's not every day you see them in the news.

    Gay couple asked to reverse shirt at Dollywood - Yahoo! News

    Gay couple asked to reverse shirt at Dollywood

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A lesbian couple is asking for changes at Dollywood after an employee asked one of the women to turn her T-shirt reading "marriage is so gay" inside-out to avoid offending others on a recent visit to the Tennessee theme park complex.Olivier Odom and Jennifer Tipton said Tuesday they want the park to be more inclusive of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender families after Odom was asked to reverse her shirt when they visited Dollywood Splash Country next to the Pigeon Forge amusement park. The story was first reported by WBIR-TV in Knoxville.

    Dollywood spokesman Pete Owens said on Tuesday that Dollywood is open to all families, but their dress code policy is to ask people with clothing or tattoos that could be considered offensive to change clothes or cover up.

    Owens said the couple was not asked to leave and complied with the rules to reverse the shirt when asked.

    "The park is open every day to everybody," Owens said. "We try to provide an environment for families of all shapes and sizes to enjoy themselves.
    Owens said park officials were discussing the matter and would speak with the couple directly.

    Odom said that they visited the water park July 9 with friends and their friends' two children when she was asked by a person at the front gate to turn her shirt inside out because it was a family park.

    Odom said she complied so as not to make a scene in front of the children, but felt offended.

    "That's what we found so offensive — that he said it was a family park," Tipton said. "Families come in a wide range of definitions these days and we were with our family."

    The two said they felt they needed to file a complaint with Dollywood because they believed it was important to stand up for their beliefs in marriage equality.
    "If marriage equality is going to happen, it's not going to happen if people sit at home quietly," Odom said.

    Odom said they understand the park can have dress code policies, but she felt Dollywood needed to make their policies clear and provide better training for employees when determining what is considered offensive.

    Odom and Tipton are not legally married, but held a ceremony last year in North Carolina. They wrote an email to the park asking the park "to implement policies that are inclusive of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people; conduct staff sensitivity training; and issue a public statement indicating that the park is inclusive of all families."

    Owens said the couple's complaints have sparked discussion at the park about the dress code, a policy that park employees deal with frequently because of the thousands of visitors every year.
    Just out for the money they think they are entitled to. Really a nonstory here.
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  10. #10
    I have an editorial on this coming up later tonight! =)
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  11. #11
    Moderator Austin's Avatar
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    Nice haha. I just really don't see what the big deal is. Alot of my family would have been offended by their shirt. I mean its disgusting enough at "Gay Days" at Disney. Which for those who don't know, we made the mistake of planning our 2005 Disney trip during those days and unfortunately they changed the days around at the park so they ended up being at Magic Kingdom with no warning. Not that there is any thing wrong with it, its just very gross to me because guys were making out with other guys all over the place, wearing what I felt was very inappropriate for the park. If youve ever had the unfortune to visit during that event you know what I'm getting at.
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  12. #12
    Exactly! Like, I'm all for equality and gay rights, but I don't think they should be treated differently than any other person, as in, more special than anyone else. And that means that if a straight person came to the park with a shirt that said so and so "...is gay" they would be asked to turn their shirts inside out just like homosexuals would. I feel like they're only doing it for attention or for their own personal gain. It really annoys me when people do stuff like that. I'd go on, but I better save all my ranting for my editorial though,haha.
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  13. #13
    I'm the good looking one Brian F's Avatar
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    My question to them would simply be this: Would you find that shirt offensive if a straight person was wearing it? Of course they would (and should). If I was running a park, I would ask them to reverse the shirts because I wouldn't want to offend any gay patrons.

    If it's wrong for a straight person to wear it, but OK for a gay person to wear it, then they're really not interested in equality, they want special treatment.

    In this case, it's nothing more than somebody wanting attention or a payday. Nothing more. Dollywood handled it correctly.
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  14. #14
    Corkscrew Poster Daniel Barto's Avatar
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    I agree 1000% they had every right to eject that couple from the park
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  15. #15
    I find it pretty interesting how quick everyone is to defend the park. Personally I love Dollywood and think that they genuinely try to provide the best experience for all their guests. However, I also do not think there was anything on that shirt worthy of it needing to be reversed. And that is really the point this couple is trying to make.

    I just do not see what is so offensive about a shirt saying "Marriage is so gay". Sure it expresses a political opinion which some might not agree with. However so would a shirt saying "Obama is the man" or a shirt advocating pro-life (and entirely different debate, the point is simply that the shirt could offend some). A friend of mine had a shirt on yesterday that read "Drop kicks not bombs"; everyone loves the notion of peace, but that shirt could be construed as being against the war which could offend some people.

    Is it really Dollywood's job to try to prevent every last person in the park form getting offended about something? Sure they have park policies that you can't wear "offensive" materials and you can't go around the park screaming obscenities. But those are in regards more to ideals of what should be considered offensive which are upheld by most Americans. The phrase "Marriage is so gay"... who does this really offend? Brian suggested that maybe it would offend gay people; I don't think I've ever met a single gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, or transgendered person who would be offended by a shirt that is clearly satirically in favor of their right to marry. So would straight people be offended by the shirt? That really depends on the person's views on various political and social issues; namely, do they believe that gay marriage should be legalized or not. But as I said earlier this is simply a political statement; why should it be any more offensive then a pro Obama shirt would be to a Republican? But maybe it isn't the statement itself but the one single word, "gay", that is so offensive. Would a shirt with lyrics from West Side Story be considered offensive ("I feel so pretty witty and gay")? Probably not. Maybe it is just that "Gay" was in reference to "homosexual" in which case does that mean gay people are offensive? I was talking about this with a friend of mine yesterday; she suggested that maybe it wasn't the shirt that was deemed to be so offensive but it was actually the lesbian wearing it. We will never know why the park thought such a mundane shirt was offensive.

    But back to the parks "right" to make someone reverse their shirt. I understand that they can do it. just like if they wanted to they could enforce a dress code that all men have to wear a suit and tie to the park and all women a dress. Should they exercise their right to do that probably not. Dollywood's own "Dress Guidelines" simply state that "Clothing with offensive words and/or pictures will not be permitted inside the park." (Dolly Parton's Great Smoky Mountain Family Amusement Park). Again this goes back to if the shirt was offensive or not. Personally I think not. And even if it was I would support that persons right to free speech. So what if I'm offended? Who am I to pass judgement on the messages they want to display on their clothing.

    In comparison to other parks Dollywood's "Dress Guidelines" are pretty open to interpretation. Cedar Point clearly states what is allowed and what is not: "Profanity, obscene gestures, obscene statements, pictures of illegal substances, motorcycle colors, insignias of para-military groups, all gang related items on clothing, costumes or disguises that conceal identity are prohibited." (CP Mobile). By those standards the shirt would have been perfectly acceptable. SixFlags Discovery Kingdom's dress code states: "Clothing with rude, vulgar or offensive language or graphics is not permitted, and shirts cannot be turned inside-out as a solution." (Park Policies: Six Flags Discovery Kingdom). Again the open ended term "offensive" rears its head. But I would argue that the "rude and vulgar" part of that sets the assumption that "rude and vulgar" are the type of offensive statements they are looking out for, not simple political ones. Busch Gardens Williamsburg's policy is as such: "Clothing featuring suggestive, explicit language or insulting statements is prohibited." (Busch Gardens Virginia Amusement Park Information). Again by this standard the "Marriage is so gay" shirt would have been perfectly acceptable. It was suggested that Holiday World's policy's are similar to those of Dollywood however their dress code clearly states: "Clothing or body art with rude, vulgar or inflammatory language or graphics is not permitted" (Rules & Services |). Which again would allow the shirt into the park. So should Dollywood change their "Dress Guidelines" to be more inline with most other parks? Personally I think so. They can do whatever they want but it seems that they are pretty lacking in this area.

    Lastly, there seems to be a backlash on here against the couple for going to the media. Seriously? Is it no longer acceptable for people to turn to the media to right an injustice (If this was or not is immaterial here)? Sure the media has become more of a joke lately with their flashy graphics and controversial headlines but that doesn't mean they aren't still a force for social change. If it wasn't for the media no one would have uncovered the Watergate Scandal, there wouldn't be as strict of child labor laws, etc etc etc. Just because they complied does not mean they forfeited their right to complain about it later. Some seem to think that they are looking for an easy payout; but, where is the money? What financial gain could they possibly have from this? They aren't suing the park over it. They are simply making their voices heard.
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  16. #16
    Corkscrew Poster Daniel Barto's Avatar
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    All I'm going to say is that shirt (to me and to a lot of people probably) is really offensive. You need to remember that Dollywood is sitting smack dab in the middle of the "Bible Belt," and that to most of the people down here that shirt is boarder line offensive. Yes it's a judgment call by the park. But you have to remember Dollywood is trying to satisfy a majority of their guests. I've seen gay couples before at Dollywood and never had a problem with them. Nor did the park. In fact most of them are some of the nicest people you will ever meet. Also, I would expect the park to react no differently if I showed up with a shirt on that said, "The Bible Sux" or "Marriage is gay." This is a case of Dollywood taking preventive steps to try to make the most people happy.
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  17. #17
    I completely understand that some find the shirt offensive and that Dollywood was trying to placate to the masses by attempting to avoid offending any park patrons. However, you have to keep in mind that Dollywood does not only have a local social responsibility (which as you pointed out might be more conservative than other parts of the country) but has a national social responsibility. Dollywood's actions made national news because gay marriage is a hot button issue at the moment. No matter if an institution is a small mom and pop store or a major theme park like Dollywood they are still subject to national scrutiny for their actions. Another thing that is important to remember is that Dollywood's actions reflect upon Dolly Parton's image just as her actions reflect upon the park. Dolly Parton has publicly supported gay rights so the interesting question becomes "why doesn't her amusement park reflect this?".
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  18. #18
    I don't think it's that offensive, but I think other people would have. Like I said in my rant, I believe the problem with the phrase was the "is gay" part. Like if you were to say "hey,that is so gay." a lot of the youth say things like that,and probably could be taken as offensive. I'd say that's how they took it. I do think they had the right to complain to the park,but to go whine about it to media was stupid. Now because dollywood are being portrayed as the bad guys here,they're going to have to change their policy,which was fine the way it was.
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  19. #19
    Moderator Austin's Avatar
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    They better not change their policy. They need to stand strong on this issue. This isn't a media worthy issue. Maybe media worthy of Pigeon Forge area but not nationally. And really, you were going to say you was discriminated against by being asked to reverse your shirt? If they had asked you to leave then that would be discrimination, but they didn't.
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  20. #20
    The park did nothing wrong. This is a controversial subject in our country at this time. When you go to a park, you're there to have fun. Leave the political statements at home and go to the park to enjoy yourself.

    I went to Splash Country a couple weeks ago for the first time, despite having free admission for the last 5 or so years thanks to Dolly's platinum pass. Went on Swift Water Run (with a 2 seater) and my girlfriend and I ended up going down it backwards. We ended up head butting each other because of that and the lifeguard jumped up to see if we were okay. Then I twisted my back on Slick Rock Racer and had to sit awhile (have to go see a chiropractor now). But it was awesome! lol. I hope they add a new attaction there next year. Went to Dollywood afterwards. The bubble show is awesome! Stopped in to say hey to the Kinfolks band. Got a Qbot for the rides. Very useful this day (except on River Rampage where the older employees were so confused about it so we still had to wait a little while there. Oh, and for the first time ever, they would not take my backpack and sit it over to the side. They made me put it in the middle of the boat where it ended up getting wet. Not enough to get to our cellphones thankfully!) Has anyone did the text messaging thing? I txted "Jukebox" and ended up getting a free magnet out of the Cas Walker store. lol.
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  21. #21
    Still no word on any Splash Country additions?
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  22. #22
    The Original Dollywood Poster tntornadox's Avatar
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    I will re-post this here, a statement released by Dolly Parton regarding T-shirtGate.

    "I am truly sorry for the hurt or embarrassment regarding the gay and lesbian t-shirt incident at Dollywood's Splash Country recently. Everyone knows of my personal support of the gay and lesbian community. Dollywood is a family park and all families are welcome." Dolly adds that the policies on clothing or signs with profanity or controversial messages are in place to protect the person wearing the shirt and keep disturbances at the park to a minimum. Dolly concludes saying, "I am looking further into the incident and hope and believe it was more policy than insensitivity. I am very sorry it happened at all."
    Source: Dolly Parton apologizes to couple who claimed discrimination at Splash Country | wbir.com
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  23. #23
    Giga Poster CoasterKid_2006's Avatar
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    Anyone want a bedroom suite? How about one that's more than likely nothing but pink? Ha! Dolly is auctioning off her bedroom suite from her former DW apartment.

    Did you guys realized that at the end of last season, they renovated the space above applejacks, Dolly's apartment, into office space? Where is she now?

    Here's the link to all of the info.

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  24. #24
    2012: EVOLUTION of DOLLYWOOD ! DollyWould's Avatar
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    ^^When Dolly is in town, she usually stays at the family's original Tennessee Mountain Home in Locust Ridge. She had it updated, modernized and expanded to be more comfortable and liveable. I do have to wonder if the new offices are for either park administration or for the PR department (Pete's office) or both.

    The rumors for Splash Country's 2012 addition only being for something minor or small for kiddies make sense, given the large captial expenditure being made at Dollywood next year. I would hope for a Tornado or a Water Coaster, but I'm not counting on it!!!! Looks like Holiday World is trying to take the crown for best waterpark with their 2012 "Mammoth" announcement today. However, Splash Country is overdue for a major addition since nothing was added this season.
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  25. #25
    Mystery Miner Dollywoodlover1's Avatar
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    Dollywood has posted a new ad for Mystery Mine, I think they should've used this one to start with, it seems more suitable to the Mystery Mine tale






    Anyway....What do you all think may be our next hint? OH and I will be going to Dollywood next weekend (The weekend of the announcement!)
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  26. #26
    Looping Poster Coug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dollywoodlover1 View Post
    Dollywood has posted a new ad for Mystery Mine, I think they should've used this one to start with, it seems more suitable to the Mystery Mine tale





    Anyway....What do you all think may be our next hint? OH and I will be going to Dollywood next weekend (The weekend of the announcement!)
    Awesome song they did for the ride too! Sounds like a mix between Harry Potter and Edward Scissorhands.
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    Anyway... ready for next hint... come on!!!

  27. #27
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    I was just curious if anyone knows if Dolly is like a 50/50 with Herschend in the Dollywood Company or what. She seems to have alot of input and it is her name in the title so I was just curious. Seems she may be more than 50%. I just say that she has gotten alot from her initial five million dollar investment. To think Wild Eagle alone is four times that amount!

  28. #28
    Dollywood Pete Dollywood Pete's Avatar
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    We do not ever discuss percentages. Dollywood is a partnership between Dolly and Herschend Family Entertainment of which, Dolly is integrally involved.
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  29. #29
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    Thanks Pete, it is good to see you here!

  30. #30
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    I'm also wondering if there will be anything new for Splash Country 2012? I didn't get the survey, but did read about the options. I for one, am really hoping that it will NOT be another kiddie play area as there are already a few areas of the waterpark for the kiddos only to enjoy. We went to SC often this past summer and while we love it, they are always so crowded. Time to expand!

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