Travel to Gatlinburg and find the heart of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, eat in bountiful pancake houses, and play in the town’s quirky museums. The Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditoriums have a stronghold but venture off the main drag to find quirky Gatlinburg attractions, one is a museum celebrating condiment containers and another pays homage to The Dukes of Hazzard television show.
The Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum: Quirky Gatlinburg Attraction is Kitchen-Kitsch
The personal salt and pepper shaker collection of Andrea Ludden outgrew her kitchen cupboards years ago so she opened the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum to display more than 20,000 pair of condiment containers. Meticulously arranged by themes such as holidays, religion, and animals, the collection sits protected behind glass.
Visitors to the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum will enjoy browsing the quirky collection and pointing out sets similar to ones belonging to grandma. The dinner table accents are made from everything ranging from seashells and wood to glass and ceramic. Some shakers look cute and cuddly. One pair doubles as a set of snow globes. And some containers are just plain creepy and don’t belong on dining room tables. In addition to the growing shaker collection, pepper grinders and the history of salt, pepper and other seasonings are sprinkled throughout the museum.
“Achoo” will likely follow “I do.” Gatlinburg is a popular place to get married and the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum doubles as a wedding chapel.
Admission to the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum is $3 per person and the price can be applied towards any salt and pepper shaker set for sale in the gift shop, which also sells locally made art and fine jewelry. Children 12 and under are free. This quirky Gatlinburg attraction is open daily and is located in Gatlinburg’s Winery Square; Tel: (865) 430-5515.
Cooter’s Place: Quirky Gatlinburg Attraction Preserving The Dukes of Hazzard
Tweens and teens welcomed Bo and Luke Duke into their living rooms during the early 1980s when The Dukes of Hazzard aired on CBS. America tuned in to see the country cousins outsmart the bumbling sheriff’s department and the corrupt commissioner Boss Hogg. The General Lee, a 1969 orange Dodge Charger, was the show’s true star alongside Catherine Bach (cousin Daisy Duke), James Best (Boss Hogg), Denver Pyle (Uncle Jesse), John Schneider (Bo) and Tom Wopat (Luke).
Ben Jones played Cooter, Hazzard County’s mechanic and Duke clan ally. Following The Dukes of Hazzard, Jones served two terms as a U.S. Congressman in Georgia. He’s also a musician, author (Redneck Boy in the Promised Land; published by Harmony Books, 2008), and proprietor of Cooter’s Place, a gift shop housing the Dukes of Hazzard Museum. This quirky Gatlinburg attraction has scripts, costumes, props, photographs and fan memorabilia, such as lunch boxes, puzzles and t-shirts. The General Lees sits outside Cooter’s Place, making it hard to miss. Cooter’s tow truck and police car from the show are on display, too.
Jones and other Dukes of Hazzard cast members frequently visit the museum and meet with fans. For a nominal fee fans can sit in the General Lee and have their photo taken. And unlike the television show, the car doors open. This is a must-see visit for every Dukes fan and child of the ’70s and ’80s. The museum is open daily, admission is free and is located at 157 Parkway; Tel: (865) 430-9909.
Quirky Things to Do in Gatlinburg
Vacations are meant to be fun and memorable. The dash of kitsch from the Salt and Pepper Shaker Museum and the pinch of Dukes of Hazzard nostalgia are the ideal ingredients for a quirky Gatlinburg vacation.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links in order to support my traveling habit, this blog and my special-needs dog. This post originally appeared on Suite101 which no longer exists.