Is it summer yet? Although summer doesn’t officially start until June, Memorial Day serves as the unofficial/official start to the summer here in Lakeside of the Smokies. While planning your three-day weekend, we have some great ideas on where to stay and what to do. The Lakeside of the Smokies offers the perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. Choose from cozy lakeside cabins or charming historic inns in our picturesque towns. Whether you are into watersports or looking for something more relaxing, there are always tons of things to do in Lakeside of the Smokies, especially during Memorial Day weekend. Check out the guide below before you visit the Lakeside of the Smokies and plan your perfect trip! 

Discover Your Lakeside of the Smokies Retreat 

First things first- you need to find a great place to stay for your long weekend.  If you are looking for the ultimate home on the water to enjoy all your lake activities, look no further. Lakeside of the Smokies is full of cabins, air bnbs, campgrounds, RV Parks, and other lodging to call home during your stay. If you need some help deciding, we put together a list of lakeside rentals to consider. Perhaps you would prefer a more historic setting. Lakeside of the Smokies is comprised of 5 historic towns offering quaint bed & breakfasts, inns, and hotels.  

From Fairways to History: Your Personalized Adventure 

Now that you have a place to rest your head, let’s plan what to do while you are here. Get ready for a day of boating, golfing, historic exploration, and delicious food and drinks! 

Dive into Fun on Douglas Lake or Cherokee Lake 

You can’t visit Lakeside of the Smokies without spending a day on Douglas Lake or Cherokee Lake. The lakes feature several marinas to rent boats, jet skis, and water toys for some fun on the water. If you prefer a little slower pace, you can rent a paddle board or kayak to explore coves and inlets around the lakes. Smoky Mountain Lakeside Resort and The Point Marina both feature a restaurant on site to grab a quick bite for lunch or dinner! 

A Golfer’s Paradise 

The Lakeside of the Smokies is home to two golf courses nestled within the hills of the majestic Smoky Mountains. Dandridge County Club carves its way through the woodlands of the mountains offering stunning views of the Smokies and Douglas Lake. It was one of the first courses built in the area and can be enjoyed by all ages! Patriot Hills Golf Club, located in Jefferson City, is the sister course the Dandridge Country Club. While it has a similar design, this course is a little more challenging. Golfers take in views of English Mountain and the Great Smoky Mountains while they play. 

Even the best golfers have bad days! Visit Core Golf Center in Dandridge to shake off the rust or strengthen your game. The facility features a Top Tracer Range, traditional driving range, and putting green. The driving range and putting green are open until sunset. The Top Tracer Range opens after dark and requires reservations. There are suites and rooms for groups to compete or single suites to practice so you can win your next club championship.  

Explore the Rich History of the Lakeside of the Smokies 

For all the history buffs out there, look no further. The Lakeside of the Smokies is a history enthusiast’s dream. East Tennessee was a key area during the revolutionary and civil wars and there are several sites to explore during your trip. There will even be a Memorial Day Celebration in Downtown Dandridge honoring all who have served on May 27th from 11am- 12pm. 

Revolutionary War Graveyard in Historic Dandridge 

Dandridge is Tennessee’s second oldest town. It should be no surprise that you can trace its history all the way back to the beginning of our country. While walking the Revolutionary War Graveyard, you enter the birthplace of Dandridge and Jefferson County, established in 1793. The stone path within the graveyard leads directly to the oldest church in Jefferson County, Hopewell Presbyterian Church. 

Civil War Trail Through Jefferson County 

The Civil War Trail through Tennessee features more than 350 sites. It starts in Memphis and winds its way to East Tennessee, including some very important landmarks in the Lakeside of the Smokies. The landmarks in Jefferson County include: 

  • Attack on Dandridge: Confederate soldiers took the area from union soldiers forcing them to retreat to Strawberry Plains in December 1863. 
  • Battle of Dandridge: The Confederate Army pushed Union forces out of the area in January 1864 safeguarding a vital foraging area. However, due to lack of proper footwear and frigid temperatures, the Confederate troops did not capture any Union soldiers. 
  • Battle of Hay’s Ferry: Corn fields grew between war lines and were a temptation for starving soldiers. In December of 1863, the Union calvary planned to clear out Confederate foragers. Arriving Confederate troops pushed Union troops back. Most of the area around this site is now Douglas Lake. 
  • Blant’s Hill: A battle won by the Confederate troops in January 1864—they were able to push back the Union calvary with “minimal” losses while the Union sustained 300. 
  • Jefferson County Museum & Archives: The antebellum courthouse was built in 1845 and served as a hospital during the Civil War. It never caught fire during the war and kept all its historical records dating back to 1792.  

Victorian Mansion – Glenmore 

Steeped in over 150 years of history, Glenmore Mansion is a must-see when visiting the Lakeside of the Smokies. The five story, twenty-seven room mansion is a true architectural masterpiece. Serving as the only public house museum in Jefferson County, the Glenmore Mansion hosts specials tours and events for the community every year. 

Battery Tasting House at Mossback Distillery 

After a long day of exploring, it’s time to eat. But first, cocktails or mocktails! Recently opened at the Mossback Distillery, the Battery Tasting House pays homage to Captain Eli Lilly’s 18th Artillery Battery that held positions around the Mossy Creek area during the Civil War. The tasting house serves spirits produced by Mossback Distillery. More into mocktails or taking the kids with you? No worries, they have a great selection of mocktails and serve classics like lemonades, tea, and sodas. Battery Tasting House and Mossy Creek Distillery feature rotating food trucks and the courtyard has boardgames and cornhole to keep the kids entertained. 

More Than Memories- Unforgettable Experiences Await at Lakeside of the Smokies! 

We have only given you a glimpse into some of the places to stay and things to do when you visit Jefferson County over Memorial Day Weekend. The lakeside offers hot air balloon rides,  event venues, hiking in the Smoky Mountains, shopping, and so much more! With this much family fun, one weekend is not enough. We know you will be back soon, and we can’t wait to see you!