KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Flowers used during Dollywood’s opening celebrations are being used to spread a little extra hope and encouragement.
Last week, Dolly Parton celebrated the start of Dollywood’s spring season in style and now she’s paying it forward. On Friday, the park gave season pass holders a sneak peek of what’s to come this year and Parton made several appearances including starring in an opening day parade through the park in a beautiful horse-drawn carriage covered in beautiful pink and white flowers.
Now that the parade is over, the flowers aren’t going to waste. Parton and Dollywood donated the blossoms to Random Acts of Flowers, a Knoxville nonprofit. This is the second year the nonprofit has received flowers from Dollywood.
“Dollywood reached out to us last year and they were so generous about bringing these to us and so it was a relationship that got started. In the spirit of Dollywood and Dolly Parton and her generosity and what she gives out to the community, I think it makes perfect sense that we would end up with them. They’re beautiful, they made everyone smile on opening day and now they’re going to be able to do that again,” said Jackie Schmitt-Booth, a program associate with Random Acts of Flowers.
Volunteers are using the leftover blooms to make bouquets that will be shared with hundreds of hospital and nursing home patients across East Tennessee.
“It just shows that not only do you have a community of people that care about our folks in hospital, but Dolly herself and Dollywood also care about trying to give people a little extra hope and encouragement at a time that they might really need it,” said Schmitt-Booth.
The Dolly pink bouquets will be delivered to patients at Tennova North Hospital along with several nursing facilities on Tuesday.