Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
The Incredible Christmas Place in Pigeon Forge is the largest permanent Christmas retailer in the American south, and one of the largest in the United States after Bronners. It is the most popular store in the Pigeon Forge-Gaitlinburg area, which is a major tourist feeder area for Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Thanks to its proximity to the Smokies, the busiest national park in America, the Incredible Christmas Place draws an inordinately large crowd of fascinated visitors.
The Incredible Christmas Place was founded by Hurshel and Marian Biggs in 1986, the same year that the old Rebel Railroad amusement park nearby was reborn as Dollywood. The store began life as a small Christmas collectibles shop close to Pigeon Forge’s historic Old Mill, but expanded quickly with the rapidly increasing tourist traffic during the late 1980s and 1990s. It is now a very large complex and one of the busiest specialty retailers in the south.
The Biggs’ Christmas emporium is now a substantial affair, with over 40,000 square feet of retail space welcoming hundreds of thousands of customers each year. From the outside it appears like a Bavarian village, with Christmas trees and decorations on display year-round. Not surprisingly, the Incredible Christmas Place is the heart of the Pigeon Forge-Gaitlinburg area’s popular holiday celebrations.
The Incredible Christmas Place is located at the center of the very busy Pigeon Forge main tourist district on the edge of Great Smoky Mountain National Park, approximately twenty miles east of Knoxville and approximately 150 miles north of Atlanta. It is open year round from 9:30am-6:00pm (later hours on Saturdays) except for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Web: www.christmasplace.com (official website of The Incredible Christmas Place).