Sevierville is widely known for its picturesque landscapes and views, the best in shopping in the area, and has a reputation as the perfect vacation destination in the Smokies. Often referred to as the “Gateway to the Smokies,” it is the place to stay for all your Great Smoky Mountain adventures. There are many things you may not know about this area, like where it got its name and what its vibe is all about. Here is the inside scoop and guide with the top seven facts about Sevierville that we bet you didn’t know.
1. John Sevier Inspired Its Name
Sevierville was named after John Sevier, who proudly served as a soldier, frontiersman, and politician throughout the years. He helped form Tennessee as it stands today by first serving in the American Revolutionary War.
As time went on, he began making waves in his position as a politician. John Sevier first served as the State of Franklin’s governor, and then later became the governor of North Carolina. He then was the governor of Tennessee twice over, totaling about 11 years. He was also a state senator and distinguished member of the US House of Representatives. In honor of John Sevier and all his accomplishments, Sevierville is forever known as his namesake city.
2. Sevierville is Dolly Parton’s Hometown
Everyone knows who the forever famous Dolly Parton is, but did you know she was born and raised in Sevierville right nearby in Locust Ridge?
She grew up alongside 11 siblings in a two-room cabin without electricity or running water. Tourists can see a replica of their cabin and learn more about her life with a visit to Dollywood in Pigeon Forge. There is also a statue dedicated to Dolly right in the heart of downtown Sevierville where many stop to take photos on their visit. Despite their hardships as a family, Dolly cherishes her childhood memories and celebrates her roots whenever she can. In addition to her humble spirit, she’s very generous with her contributions in the community and shows support in many ways. Let’s face it, who doesn’t love her pitch-perfect accuracy and classic songs? It’s no wonder she has a huge following of fans that hope to see her when they visit.
3. The Small-Town Vibe Is Alive and Well
In Sevierville, the small-town vibe is alive and well for all to enjoy. With its endless charm and a personality all its own, this friendly and relaxed atmosphere helps you feel right at home from the start. There has been major growth and development in the area in the past few years with the addition of many things to do, delectable restaurants, and boutique shops. On top of that, there is a strong sense of community wherever you go. Although more than 17,000 people live here, it feels like everyone knows one another and shares a tight-knit bond. You will find it easy to form new friendships during your visit since everyone here is so welcoming. Most tourists leave with hopes and dreams of returning for a visit or to make it their future home.
4. The Downtown Exhibits It’s Rich History
Although much of Sevierville has a relatively modern look and feel nowadays, this city got its start back in 1795. It was then that Sevier County named the city as it’s county seat and inspired its future development. Despite new additions and ongoing renovations, you can still see the rich history of the city in the downtown area if you know where to look. The Sevier County Courthouse, for example has been standing tall since it’s inception in 1896. In the 1970’s, the courthouse was renovated while still preserving its history. Even today, you can see the vision of its original builders, the McDonald brothers, as they created the structure in the Beau-Arts classical style. In addition, you can admire the bricks made by hand right in Sevierville by Isaac Dockery.
5. Sevierville Is a Part Of The Smoky Mountain Trio
Despite being known as the Gateway to the Smokies, Sevierville is one of three major vacation destinations in the area. The other two are Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. Together, these three cities provide endless entertainment, shopping and dining to tourists and locals alike.
To get the full experience, you can easily zip down to Pigeon Forge from Sevierville in about 12 minutes tops. Then, continue your way to Gatlinburg in 25 minutes total. Better yet, you can take the Parkway all the way there and back again, making it easy to split your time between the three cities.
6. Over 100 Popular Attractions Await Your Visit
Across the greater Smoky Mountain trio area, you have over 100 popular attractions just begging for your attention. The most popular of which are Dollywood and the mountains with over 800 miles of hiking trails. But here are a few to note:>
- Wilderness Soaky Mountain Waterpark
- Tennessee Silencer
- Wahoo Zip Line
- RainForest Adventure
- Nascar SpeedPark
Across the three cities, the local restaurants, bars, and breweries are second to none as well. There is something for everyone whenever hunger strikes during your adventures. Be sure to check out:
7. Year-Round Festivals Bring the Community Together
Local festivals run year-round to keep the community coming together for tasty food, wonderful music and great times all around. Many local events are hosted at the Sevierville Convention Center, although the local parks and downtown area make excellent venues as well.
Events you might see on the calendar at any given time throughout the year include Ponies in the Smokies, Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland, Sevier County Fair, Rod Run car shows, Bloomin’ BBQ and Bluegrass Festival, and the Dumplin Valley Bluegrass Festival to name a few.
As events land on the calendar, residents and tourists jump at the chance to join the fun and make memories to last a lifetime. Oftentimes, tourists even plan their return visit for the same time each year to make their favorite events a family tradition.
Whenever you get a chance to vacation in Sevierville, TN, let these fun facts guide your way through town. You may find that you have an all-new appreciation for the area, allowing you to see the cityscape in a whole new light. And if not, you are sure to have plenty of memorable adventures as you enjoy all the local attractions, scenic views and so much more. You will have a full understanding as to why residents and tourists are in love with Sevierville, TN and why Dolly Parton herself puts it best in the song, “I will always love you.”