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Dollywood making changes to enhance your visit

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Even though it's Dollywood's off season, workers at the park aren't slowing down. In fact, News 5 learned this winter is busier than most. Employees have a little more than 30 days to get around 250 projects ready for opening day.

"It did set a record in attendance last year, so we're looking for better ways to serve our guests and provide greater experiences for them," Dollywood Director of Communications Pete Owens said. Our crews spent the day touring the grounds to see what they have in store. It's basically like taking care of a little town, so projects range from fixing, painting, replacing, expanding shops and restaurants, even widening sidewalks to make it easier to get around. "Everybody wants to get through the line quicker, they want to get their food quicker, they want to get through the park quicker," Dollywood Vice-President of Maintenance & Construction said. "As Dollywood grows through the years, we need to make changes and accommodate those requests."

Millions of dollars are being spent on these upgrades, which also include three new rides. For Dollywood, there will be two new family attractions. A kid coaster and a drop tower. At nearby Splash Country, the foundation is already down for the Tail Spin Racer, a new water ride that's a 6-lane mat race. "It should be a fun ride for families," Owens said. "Not an extreme thrill, but certainly a family thrill ride." So while you're away, the park is getting ready to make your visit even more memorable. "We really want to have families enjoy the park together and have their best day of the year," Owens said. Something to keep in mind, a lot of the upgrades come directly from customer feedback. Opening day for season pass holders is Friday, March 17. The park opens for everyone else the next day.

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