Historic Arts and Crafts Community
Just because Gatlinburg, TN is located in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, it doesn't mean that this quaint town doesn’t have art and culture. Just ask anyone from Gatlinburg and they will tell you, with pride, about the sundry artisans, musicians and artists that have made their home there. When you are planning your trip to the Great Smoky Mountains, you will not want to miss out on a day at the Arts and Crafts Community in Gatlinburg, located just a short drive away from your luxury cabin rental.
Established in 1937, a small group of dedicated artists decided to band together and form a community all of their own. Originally known as the Glades community, the group was led by John Cowden who invited tourists to visit him and his artistic friends in their own homes. Rather than peddle their wares on the busy streets of downtown Gatlinburg, Cowden created a community of artisans that sold their work in or next to their homes. A community of studios, galleries and showrooms quickly amassed in the area now known as the Gatlinburg Arts and Crafts Community.
Now the community, which is just 1 minute from Elk Springs Resort Gatlinburg cabin rentals boasts over 120 craftsmen and artists within an eight-mile loop just a few minutes from the Parkway. Today’s artists encompass a variety of artistic disciplines and hail from across the country, although most are born and true Tennessee folk. No matter what your level of art appreciation is, you are certain to find something special for your home - not to mention plenty of gifts to bring back for family and friends! At the community, you can find shops selling leather goods, pottery, paintings, candles, handmade quilts, glass pieces, and even chainsaw carvings. When you start to get hungry, we recommend lunch at the Morning Mist Cafe and an adult beverage at the Fox & Parrot English Tavern.
You will never have to worry about parking, as there is plenty of free parking in and near the Arts and Crafts Community. You can easily take a whole day just exploring the multitude of crafts, artists and experience that makes the community an unique and vital part of Gatlinburg culture. To access the community, turn at traffic light #3 onto Highway 321 North. Follow the signs for the entrances at Glades and Buckhorn Roads. Although each shop holds its own hours, the community is open year-round. Depending on the season, the community holds different special events that are open to both locals and visitors alike, so don't forget to check the website before planning your visit.