Another busy day for the Glenn's! We slept in a little this morning and then got ready and headed to the Island to have lunch at Paula Deen's and to walk around and see what all there was. We were at the Island two years ago on our last trip to Gatlinburg, but there is alot more stores and activities here this year. We actually tried to go to Paula Deen's the other day for lunch but it was so, so crowded that I knew the wait would be forever, and there was no parking in those close parking spots right next to the restaurant and I wasn't feeling good and didn't want to park in the overflow lot and have to walk or wait on the tram to get us, so we left.
However this morning, we were blessed with a spot right next to the restaurant (I might of said a little prayer in passing asking for a close spot!) and were able to walk right in and be seated.
Their menu is limited and is basically an all you can eat family style meal.
Everyone gets hoe cakes and cheesy garlic biscuits (which are delicious) along with pumpkin butter.
For our meal we chose fried chicken, cheesy meatloaf, creamed corn, whipped potatoes, yams, and mac & cheese. It was all really good!
For our desserts we chose apple cobbler and ooey gooey pumpkin cake.
A few pictures from inside the restaurant and shop area.
After we had lunch, we were so stuffed that we retreated to these rocking chairs by the dancing fountain and relaxed. With fully bellies and the warmth of the sun, I totally could of taken a nap there!
The fountains danced to music!
I noticed this magician setting up a little area in the middle of the shops and stood and watched him. A crowd started to form and he started to perform. He summoned Shawn and another little boy to help him with a trick. The little boy pulled a card out of the deck of cards (it was the 10 of clubs) and showed it to the audience without the magician seeing it. Then Shawn had to write a number down on the piece of paper and crumble it up and put it in his pocket (Shawn's number was 50) without showing the magician.
Then the magician picked up a box that was on the ground behind him and opened it up to a new deck of cards. He counted out the cards to 50 (which was the number Shawn wrote down) and that card was the 10 of clubs (the card the boy wrote down)! It was pretty neat! Shawn and I both like to watch those magician/illusionist shows and try and figure out how they do those tricks! We were both standing there mesmerized trying to see if we could see him do the switcheroo on his earlier tricks. HAHA!
The big Ferris wheel and ropes course at the Island
After we left the Island, we headed down the street to the Wonders of Flight hot air balloon so I could ride that. Once again, Shawn stayed on the ground. The views atop the balloon were spectacular! I had a $2 coupon so it was $15 for me to do this. The total time of the ride was 10 minutes. They have a special if you go before noon and it's $12. This is definitely worth it and recommended for some amazing views of the area!
When I was in the line, there was some Amish men in line to ride. I'm so fascinated with Amish that I wanted to follow them around in their chauffeured vehicle once we got on the ground!
Shawn took this picture from the ground. Do you see me up there? HAHA!
We didn't really have any plans today so we headed to Cades Cove again this afternoon. I had read on Trip Advisor that there is some delicious ice cream cones at the campground store, so we stopped this afternoon for ice cream to eat while driving through the cove. It was definitely yummy!
But then this was at the entrance and I was beginning to wonder if we made a mistake coming here this late in the afternoon. I thought oh no, it's going to be bumper to bumper all the way through. But then I kind of liked it cause it gave me a chance to actually look around and check things out.
We were stopped by the horse fields and noticed about 10 or 15 horses running through the fields towards Sparks Lane. It was such a beautiful sight to watch them running through the fields.
Then we saw where they were running too. Supper time!
As we moved along, we quickly discovered the cause of the backed up traffic at the entrance. We were in another bear jam! Sweet! This is the third time this week we've seen this bear near the entrance of the cove!
We turned down the road towards one of the churches and I spotted this coyote out in the woods.
A group of people were singing some hymnals inside this church.
Such an amazing day! The skies have truly been perfect the entire week!
I've been seeing people post pictures of a hornet's nest in a FB group I'm in for Cades Cove. I looked for it the first time we went through and couldn't find it. I found it today! And of course someone was behind me and there wasn't any pulls near here so I couldn't get a better picture of it.
In planning our trips and googling Cades Cove, I saw a picture of this foot bridge and knew I had never seen it before. Upon further investigation, I discovered it was down the lane to the Abrams Falls trail head. We had never driven down that lane before since we weren't going to hike that trail. Today we did. Wow! Such a beautiful place at the beginning of the trail head.
We continued the drive around the cove. It was starting to get dark and my pictures weren't turning out, so this is the last one. We saw alot of deer on today's drive! Seeing the bear again and the coyote were the highlight of the drive today!
We had a late dinner at Harpoon Harry's tonight. It was pretty good.
I had the lettuce wedge with ranch dressing, and then the Mediterranean chicken.
Shawn had the rainbow trout with pecans and broccoli, and added a side of shrimp.
Completely stuffed from dinner we headed back to the hotel for the night to rest up for the next day's activities!