We went in Oct. 2005 and it was not crowded. We did not have to wait very long at all to ride things. Remember though that it is rather chilly in the mts. and the water rides may not be open. We have stayed in the cabins at the golfview resort and it is very nice. It is about 1/4 of a mile (if that far) to the entrance to Dollywood. You can google it or look on VRBO.com. They have cabins and condos. There is also a new condo development close to Dollywood. I think it is called Riverstone or something. Someone else on here may be able to tell you the exact name.
We just got back from the area on Thursday and we stayed in a cabin at Hidden Springs Resort. We got it throughTimber Tops Cabin Rentals. Hidden Springs is off of McCarter Hollow Road. It's the road that goes between Dollywood and Splash Country. There are several different companies that have cabins in Hidden Springs, or you can get them straight from Hidden Springs. They had cabins of every size in this resort area. We found it to be very convinient to PF and Sevierville.
Dollywood has a lot of music in October, especially if you like Southern Gospel Music. There are major groups from that genre of music there nearly everyday. If you don't know what Southern Gospel is, it's the style that Dollywood's Kingdom Heirs and The Miracle Theater's Triumphant Quartet or The Blackwoods at Black Bear Jamboree do.
It will be quite a bit more expensive in October for most kinds of lodging in the area because of the Fall Color Change. If you can go then, it's worth it though.
If you plan to go to Dollywood in October, go on a weekday, not a weekend, to miss the large crowds.
October is the second highest month for visitation in the area, so expect some crowds regardless.
Couple of years ago I went in October and there were alot of music shows. I even got to see John Anderson, from a front row in one of the theaters. I love country music, and Swingin' is a favorite song of mine, so I was delighted to see him perform. Lot's of Gospel acts as someone previously mentioned in October. The Dollywood website usually lists performers.
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