March 10, 2022 at 1:25pm | Brianna Hill
Have you been thinking about making a trip to the Smoky Mountains but are not sure when would be a good time to visit? You don't want it too hot or too cold, well, I think springtime is the perfect time for you! 
With the weather starting to shift here, It's the perfect time to start planning your trip for the spring!

   Springtime is known to be one of the most pleasant times to visit the Smoky Mountains
Be sure to check the forecast when planning your trip to watch out for spring showers, but overall, the average temperatures are mild and there are plenty of sunny days! As the saying goes, April showers bring May flowers!
One of the biggest benefits of visiting the park in the spring is the wildflowers! While wildflowers are abundant year-round, they are captivating in the spring. There are over 1,500 flowering plants in Great Smoky Mountain National Park, and many of them reach their peak March through June.

The park is famous for its displays of flame azaleas, mountain laurel, and rhododendron. The lovely pink and white flowers of mountain laurel bloom in early May through June. Catawba rhododendron, which lives primarily at elevations above 3,500', reaches its peak of bloom in June.

Here is a map of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park if you plan to visit! You can also go to https://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/index.htmto plan your visit and find additional information on the National Park!


April also marks the return of the Pigeon Forge Rod Run – the area’s largest car show.
Now, if you're a car enthusiast- this is a must. Rod Runs are held twice a year, once in April and again in September. So, if you can't make it in April, don't worry, you still have time!!
Here's a little back story! The Rod Run originated in Gatlinburg, Tennessee in the 1970s as an unofficial event hosted by a car club from Maryville called "Shades Of The Past." By 1982 the city of Gatlinburg no longer wanted to host the event, and it moved north to the Grand Hotel in Pigeon Forge to be renamed The Grand Run.
In 1986 another change was introduced and the event split in two. The Grand Run remained at the Grand Hotel and Shades of the Past became its event at a new location.
MCS Promotions took over the Grand Run event in 1991, and at the time the only show was in September - now known as the Fall Rod Run. The spring show was added four years later in 1995. In 2014, both shows were renamed The Pigeon Forge Rod Run.    Rod Runs is a free event. Many people will set up to sell antique cars, trucks, and more. The only downside to Rod Runs is the traffic! So, if you don't plan to attend Rod Runs, don't plan on visiting Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg during that weekend, if you do, plan on sitting in traffic for a while! To find more info on Rod Runs, go to
http://www.rodrun-pigeonforge.com/ 

Springtime also means my favorite..... Farmers' Markets!!! Luckily in our area, there are an abundant amount of Farmers' Markets to chose from! The days and times vary, but here are a few!

1. Maryville Farmers' Market. Located at 200 block of East Broadway Ave, Maryville, Tennessee in the Founders Square Parking Lot. Maryville Farmers' Market opens on April 23rd and is open every Saturday until November! All vendors at Maryville Farmers' Market grow, make, or bake everything FROM SCRATCH and bring it to you fresh from their nearby farm. The Maryville Farmers' Market is producer-only.
2. New Harvest Farmers' Market. This market is located at New Harvest Park 4775 New Harvest Lane, Knoxville, TN 37918 occurs every Thursday up until September. Everything at the NHFM is grown or raised within a 150-mile radius of Knoxville. Products vary by the season, and include fresh fruits and vegetables, meats, eggs, honey, cut flowers, edible and ornamental plants, prepared foods, baked goods, crafts, and much more! New Harvest Park also features a splash pad, playground, walking trails, public restrooms, and a covered pavilion for patrons to enjoy.

3. Greenback Farmers and Craft Market. This Farmers' Market is open every Tuesday from 10 am-1 and can be found at 6736 Morganton Rd, Greenback, TN 37742. This is a real deal small-town farmers market and I LOVE IT! There are so many different options to chose from all the way from baking to crafting! There's something for everyone here.

What else screams spring to you? Did Flea Markets cross your mind too?? We have a TON of Flea Markets around, but MY favorites are the Great Smoky Mountain Flea Market(also called 407 Flea Market) or Sweetwater Flea Market.
Now, 407 Flea Market is HUGE!!! This is a place you will be at from open-close. They are open every Friday-Sunday from 8am-5pm, but vendors typically start packing around 2/3. The location of this 407 Flea market is 220 W Dumplin Valley Rd, Kodak, TN 37764. Here is an overhead shot of 407 Flea Market! YES! It gets THAT busy! There's also the Sweetwater Flea Market can be found at 121 Co. Road 308, Sweetwater, TN 37874. While they're not as large as 407 Flea Market, they still get quite the traffic! Sweetwater Flea Market is open Saturday-Sunday from 9 am-5 pm, and like 407, vendors typically start packing up around 2/3. Sweetwater Flea Market has multiple buildings to go through and you're guaranteed to leave with something!! I'm always guilty and get a funnel cake while I'm here, I can't help it, they're so good!

Well, if any of these activities interest you, you should definitely come to check them out! If you're interested in any other additional activities or family-friendly events, please let me know! 
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