In recognition of the city’s special events, the Pigeon Forge (Tenn.) Department of Tourism claimed 25 Pinnacle Awards from the International Festivals and Events Association (IFEA). For the second consecutive year, Wilderness Wildlife Week was awarded the Grand Pinnacle Award for Best Event/Festival.
The Grand Pinnacle is the highest award given by the IFEA. The professional competition recognizes the most outstanding examples of quality and creativity in the festivals and events industry.
Wilderness Wildlife Week received a record-setting 16 Pinnacle Awards, including gold for best green program for projects with budgets less than $500,000.
The outdoor-focused event won five silver awards, including best community outreach program, and six bronze awards, with one for best event/program (for the Appalachian Homecoming) within an event to benefit a cause.
A Mountain Quiltfest took home seven honors, including three gold, two silver and two bronze awards.
Pigeon Forge’s Chuck Wagon Cookoff won two Pinnacle Awards. The outdoor food event won a silver award for best food and beverage program and a bronze for best community outreach program.
“Pigeon Forge’s unprecedented show at this year’s IFEA Awards continues to underscore the caliber of events we offer folks,” said Leon Downey, executive director of the Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. “We’re especially honored that Wilderness Wildlife Week won a second Grand Pinnacle Award. This overall recognition certainly speaks to the efforts that our special events staff, volunteers and special guests contribute to all of our city’s special events.”
“IFEA features 71 different categories, and entries represent events from all around the world,” said Butch Helton, Pigeon Forge special events manager. “This incredible diversity makes our Pigeon Forge awards all the more meaningful. It’s an honor for Wilderness Wildlife Week, A Mountain Quiltfest and Chuck Wagon Cookoff to be recognized among such fine company again this year.”
Other winners at the 2017 convention included the 500 Festival in Indianapolis; the Philadelphia Flower Show; the Fiesta Bowl in Scottsdale, Arizona; the Singapore Garden Festival, and the Rotterdam Festivals in The Netherlands.
This year’s IFEA awards presentation was Sept. 14 in Tucson, Arizona, during the organization’s 62nd convention.