By Wes Ramey
Dollywood continues to rack up accolades from Amusement Today’s annual Golden Ticket Awards, this year earning three “best of” awards and placing in the top-five in seven additional categories during the magazine’s 2015 awards ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 12 at Luna Park in New York City.
“Every time they announce the Golden Tickets results, I am so proud to hear how much folks love and respect Dollywood,” Dolly Parton said. “This is our 30th anniversary season, and if you would have told me all those years ago that we would win all these awards, I’m not sure even I could have dreamed it! I truly am thankful for all of the guests who have continued to support us and for all the new folks who visit us each year! I also am grateful for the dedicated team at my Dollywood Company for providing our guests a memorable experience when they come see us.”
Dollywood’s three Golden Ticket Awards include: Friendliest Park, for the fourth consecutive year; Best Shows, Dollywood’s seventh consecutive victory in this category; Best Christmas Event, the only park to ever earn this award, Dollywood celebrates its eighth consecutive win.
Dollywood also ranked in seven additional categories: Best Food, second place; Cleanest Park, second place; Best Water Park for Dollywood’s Splash Country, third place; Best Park, fourth place; Best Water Ride for Dollywood’s Mountain Slidewinder, fourth place; Best Wooden Coaster for Dollywood’s Thunderhead, fifth place; Best Landscaping, fifth place.
Calculated from an international poll conducted by Amusement Today, the industry’s leading trade publication, the Golden Ticket Awards are the results of a detailed survey sent to a database of experienced and well-traveled amusement park fans around the world in balanced geographical regions. Voters are asked to rate the “best” in 25 categories such as best parks, roller coasters, water rides, shows, kids’ area, landscaping and Christmas events.
The Golden Ticket Awards are the most sought after awards in the business of amusements and attractions. The awards have become the subject of much discussion by park aficionados the world over and garnered mentions in such notable media outlets as USA TODAY and the Chicago Tribune, and by the late radio newsman Paul Harvey. The awards also were the topic of a one-hour Travel Channel documentary.
Dollywood was recognized in 2010 at the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions with the Applause Award in recognition of a park whose management, operations and creative accomplishments have inspired the industry with its foresight, originality and sound business development.