I’ve reached the age where I can revisit places that I remember from my childhood. Those places where you have a memory about something you saw, somewhere you ate, someone you met that just sticks in your brain for the rest of your life. I know we visited Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge, TN when I was about 14. I remember going to Dollywood (since I hit myself on the head when I stood up into a sign and almost knocked myself out) and I know we stayed at some nice hotel in Gatlinburg with a discount from the Entertainment Book. The only other part of the trip that I remembered was this mini-golf course. It was not a normal course but instead was built into the side of a hill. You got to ride up the incline and every hole went downhill.
It wasn’t until I sent a bunch of old pictures to be digitized that I found the photographic evidence of the place, from our trip in 1987.
You can imagine my surprise when we were driving on US-441 (the main road in Gatlinburg) last year and passed the same mini golf course. I think my reaction was, “That’s IT! I CAN’T BELIEVE IT! IT’S STILL THERE!” It was as if something from a dream suddenly became real. Unfortunately, we were driving past the place around 10PM and didn’t have the time or energy to stop. That was something we were sure to rectify when we made plans to return to the Knoxville area this year. While Sharon’s not a big mini golf fan, she is a fan of kitschy roadside attractions and I think this place also piqued her interest.