Gatlinburg Wildfires Information, Resources & How You Can Help #prayforgatlinburg #prayforthesmokies

Gatlinburg Wildfires Information, Resources & How You Can Help

Wildfires are currently destroying parts of The Great Smoky Mountains and Gatlinburg, Tennessee. The Gatlinburg wildfires are also threatening the surrounding areas of Pigeon Forge and Sevierville. Though The Great Smoky Mountains are the nation’s most visited national park with over 307 million visitors last year alone and Dolly Parton {one of the most popular recording artists in history} owns Dollywood, a theme park currently being threatened by this wildfire, there has been little to nothing on the national news about it. My husband and I have had to search the internet all morning long just to get information. So, for those of you who want to know about this disaster like we do, I am going to share everything we know here, and update it as needed. We will post based on information from reputable news sources as well as address pervasive rumors. If you have something to add, please let us know.

Gatlinburg Wildfires: Updated Information

UPDATE 8:00 AM EST 12/1
There are now 7 confirmed deaths and 1 victim has been identified. Over 700 structures have been damaged. More than 15,000 acres of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park were destroyed and the fire, which was human-caused, is only about 10% contained at this point. You can now donate to the Dolly Parton, My People Fund to help those who lost their homes in the wildfires. I have the link for that in the “Resources” section below.

According to a 4:00 PM press conference there have been 3 fatalities and there are 14 other injuries. There have been 150 structures damaged and 70 homes lost. Search and rescue operations are currently underway in Gatlinburg. The evacuation in Pigeon Forge has been lifted. In Gatlinburg, there is a 6pm curfew. This has been the largest fire in Tennessee in 100 years. You can donate to the Gatlinburg Relief Fund. I have included information for that in the “Resources” Section below.

Hillbilly Golf – Not destroyed as previously reported by the media. There is some damage, though.

Alamo Steakhouse – Destroyed

It was raining but it has now stopped. However, according to Fire Chief Greg Miller, “the worst is definitely over. 12 people are being treated for fire related injuries, 14,000 people have been evacuated and there are currently 2,000 people in emergency shelters.

Dollywood – Several cabins have been damaged or destroyed. There is no confirmed fire related damage to any of the Dollywood properties otherwise.

Cupid’s Chapel Of Love – Destroyed

Mysterious Mansion – Destroyed

Ripley’s Aquarium – According to WBIR, the animals at Ripley’s Aquarium are all safe and currently being taken care of by marine biologists and other staff on hand. The aquarium will remain closed until the evacuation is lifted.

At least 3 burn victims, in critical condition, are being treated at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Hillbilly Golf – This business has been destroyed.

Space Needle – Intact along with many businesses and properties around it.

Black Bear Falls – It is likely that every cabin is gone.

Ober Gatlinburg Ski Area & Amusement Park – This location is currently intact despite earlier media reports that it had been destroyed.

Here is what we know right now, 10:30 AM EST, and we will add updates as we get them.

Ripley’s Aquarium Is In Danger {Gatlinburg} – The fire is approximately 50 yards away and over 10,000 animals had to be left behind. There is a generator that can power the facility for 24 hours.

No Way Jose’s Mexican Cantina {Gatlinburg} – There is rumor that this restaurant has been destroyed but we have not been able to confirm this.

Westgate Resorts Is Heavily Damaged {Gatlinburg} – You can read more about the extent of the damage to the resort here.

Dollywood and DreamMore Resort {Pigeon Forge} – All of the Dollywood property has been evacuated but we have learned of no damage so far.

Park Vista Hotel {Gatlinburg} – Currently either on fire or surrounded by it. People may be trapped in this area from what we are seeing online.

The only really good news reporting that we have been able to find on this fire {as of initial posting time} is from WBIR’s Facebook page. They have been doing frequent damage and loss updates as well as live posts. Someone also shared this news story on my Cheap Is The New Classy Facebook page. I am disappointed in the fact that the national news seems to either not be covering this at all or only as a snippet. After all, we hear about California wildfires on the news all the time.

Gatlinburg Wildfires: Resources & How To Help

My People Fund – Dolly Parton’s My People Fund will provide $1000 each month to Sevier County families who lost their homes. The purpose is “to provide a hand up to those families who have lost everything in the fires. I know it has been a trying time for my people and this assistance will help get them back on their feet.”

Anyone who would like to contribute to the My People Fund may visit

Gatlinburg Relief FundClick here to donate money to nonprofits to help provide assistance with immediate and long term needs in the area.

Red Cross Safe & Well Database – If you have a loved one who you need to locate, the American Red Cross offers a Safe And Well Database. Search for your loved ones here and also register. You can also donate $10 to the Red Cross by texting REDCROSS to 90999 or you can donate on your computer at this link.

Stay Off Your Cell Phone & Wifi – The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency is asking people not to use cell phones or wifi except in emergency situations so as not to cause an outage.

Stay Out Of The Area – If you are not already in the area, stay out of it. The roads need to be clear for firefighters and rescue personnel. There are other ways you can help.

Where To Donate Food, Water, Etc – Here is a great list of places that you can donate goods such as food, water, blankets and even supplies for our furry friends. Here is another list of places where you can make donations, too.

Would You Like To Add Some Information?

If you hear of anything that should be added to this list {damage reports, resources for help, etc.}, feel free to leave it in the comments so we can keep this list updated.

About Dawn McAlexander

Dawn is a full time travel and lifestyle blogger. Besides Cheap Is The New Classy, she also owns and writes for, an entertainment site. Her interests include traveling, home decor, DIY projects, organizing her home and enjoying a nice cup of coffee {or two}. She currently resides in North Carolina with her dog, Daisy.


  1. I can’t believe the wildfires are so bad up in Gatlinburg. It’s so sad. We were just there on a family trip, and I was thinking how beautiful it was. Now it’s just char. =(

  2. That is so very sad. Gatlinburg has always been one of my family’s favorite places to visit. It’s so heartbreaking to hear about what’s happening there.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this information on how we can help. Gatlinburg has been a long time favorite of our family, and it just breaks my heart to hear about the devastation that’s occurring there.

  4. This is so sad! I have so many happy family vacation memories in Gatlinburg…I was actually hoping to take my kids there over the summer so they could see it for themselves. I hadn’t thought to donate to the Red Cross though, that’s a great suggestion!

  5. Oh no, what a disaster. I hope there isn’t much more damage. I had no idea this was happening!

  6. This has been a terrible tragedy and my heart goes out to those affected. It is scary how quickly everything you know can be destroyed.

  7. We vacation to Gatlinburg pretty often, so I was devastated to hear about the fire. I am glad that all the aquarium animals are okay. That is a tiny bright spot.

  8. What a horrible tragedy! I have dreamed of visiting The Great Smoky Mountains for years and find this news devastating.

  9. This wildfire is so terrible. I had been trying to find an update on Gatlinburg. Thanks for helping spread the word.

  10. Reesa Lewandowski says

    I have been praying for the people there all day. Thank you for the updates!

  11. Thank you for the updates and direction on how we can help. Definitely prayers are being sent. I can’t believe how many are being affected

  12. Amy Desrosiers says

    I had no idea this was happening until the morning. I watched those FB vids in horror as two brothers were near death in their cars trying to escape. Horrific..I have no idea what to say.

  13. Ann Bacciaglia says

    This is so devastating. My prayers are with the people of Gatlinburg.

  14. Oriana Romero says

    I can not believe how much destruction has happened because of the Gatlinburg wildfires. Thank you for the updates. I am praying for everyone.

  15. This is so sad. I hope Gatlinburg gets some relief soon. I will keep everyone in my prayers.

  16. I had no idea how bad it was. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone there. What a horrible experience.

  17. I was just watching the news about this earlier today, I saw a husband still trying to find his wife and daughters that he has not heard from. Hope he finds them at a shelter etc.

  18. That is so very sad. It’s so heartbreaking to hear about what’s happening there. Thank you for sharing it!

  19. Great information here, I had no idea. These are great resources.

  20. Absolutely devastating! I pray for the safety of all. Our favorite family trip was the one we took to Gatlinburg 2 years ago. We were thinking about a return trip, but that’s just not going to be possible anytime soon. Thank you for the updates!

  21. So sad and scary!! Somehow I had no idea! I’ll be thinking of the area–my friends live there!

  22. It’s just heartbreaking. I haven’t been online for a bit, so I was a little behind on the progress of the fire. It’s great to know how to help.

  23. This is so heartbreaking. Thank you for providing some details and how we can help!

  24. This is so sad. Thank you so much for these updates. I didn’t know that it was that bad. My prayers for Gatlinburg.

  25. It’s a very sad news when I heard this on tv. I really hope that they can recover fast from what happened. My deepest prayer for them.

  26. Jocely Brown says

    Felt so sad for Gatlinburg. I am hoping that the fire will stop soonest in the name of jesus, amen. I will pray for gatlinburg.

  27. Christina Aliperti says

    They are all in my prayers. Fire is terrifying and can destroy so much. I hope these fires stop soon.

  28. wow this is sad. i never even knew this was going on.

  29. These wildfires are horrible. We have definitely been looking for ways to help, and we are keeping Gatlinburg in our prayers.

  30. Oh this is so sad, and I didn’t know all of this was happening. Sending prayers!

  31. Sarah Bailey says

    This is such a sad situation. I hope that everything will work out if people just bound together.

  32. It’s great you shared this information! So sad!