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Dixie Stampede Christmas show 2010 -- Clam Chowder and All

By John Disque
All images and video by John Disque

skylar mcallister

I attended the Pigeon Forge Hospitality Association (PFHA) meeting on November 11 which was held at Dixie Stampede. Being it was Veteran's Day they naturally started the meeting with a salute to our country's veterans.

Tom Headla, PFHA President, and association member Jack Cook fought hard to fight back tears as they spoke about our military and asked us all to honor the men and women currently serving as well as those who served in the past. They both told brief stories about their time in the military and explained, from a soldier's perspective, the urgency of having the support of the people you're fighting for. Most speeches bore me, but theirs were very touching in ways that I simply was not expecting.

dixie stampede christmas show 2010


After the speeches, it was on with dinner and a preview of the Dixie Stampede Christmas Show for 2010. I must say I was a little taken back by the dinner. It certainly looked good; clam chowder in a bowl, a cheese biscuit, a whole rotisserie chicken, pork tenderloin, garlic baked potato, and corn on the cob. Everyone just sat there looking around. There were no utensils. The guy next to me started slurping his clam chowder right out of the bowl as if he didn't want to waste the leftover milk from his Frosted Flakes. Finally the MC announced to everyone that if they were waiting for silverware they can forget it: Dixie Stampede doesn't have any. I thought it was a joke, but, at that moment, the lights went dim and the show started. I was still waiting on silverware and noticed at some point that everyone was eating and talking about how good it was when I realized it wasn't a joke.

I take great pride in my table manners: "How am I supposed to pick up this chicken and just bite into it?" Was it some kind of southern heritage thing? Was it supposed to get people talking about Dixie Stampede? Were they cutting expenses on dish soap or was it just plain weird?

I decided to leave "turnoffs" behind me and concentrate on the reason I was there. All the while I was considering doing what everyone else was doing. However, with an expensive camera in one hand, a pen in the other and only one paper napkin I didn't want to take the chance. Besides, I wasn't hungry anyway.

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Mixed with audience participation, bluegrass and country music, comedy, breathtaking colors and beautiful horses, the show was very entertaining, for the most part.

Although there are many different skits and songs, all based on the Christmas season, one of my favorite parts was a neon colored skit were an angel-like ballerina flies around the arena casting her magic and bringing Christmas toys to life.

dixie stampede christmas show 2010

The highlight of the Dixie Stampede Christmas Show was a slow, melancholy medley of Oh Holy Night, Silent Night and Joy to the World. The colors and music were phenomenal and managed to have even the toughest amongst us surrendering to the Christmas spirit and the strange family-like atmosphere of Dixie Stampede.
www.dixiestampede.com

Published November 15, 2010

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