Christmas 2014: ICE! Extravaganza at Gaylord Opryland

Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tennessee. Photo: PRNewsFoto/Gaylord Hotels

Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tennessee.
Photo: PRNewsFoto/Gaylord Hotels

Gaylord Opryland Resort’s 31st annual “A Country Christmas” is officially underway for the 2014 season. A festive ceremony ushered in the hotel’s two million sparkling lights for the Christmas season. With acres of decorations, dazzling shows and family-friendly activities, A Country Christmas has become a holiday destination for more than one million visitors.

From the press release …

“It’s our favorite time of the year as our resort is transformed into a magical winter wonderland inside and out,” said Gaylord Opryland General Manager Pete Weien. “Our horticulture team has been working since July to meticulously hang the stunning lights and create magical settings for families to create holiday memories.”

Shows, Events, and Attractions at “A Country Christmas” at Gaylord Opryland:

The Radio City Christmas Spectacular starring the Rockettes – This high-stepping show returns to the Grand Ole Opry House for its 13th and final season in Nashville. America’s number one holiday show celebrates the magic of Christmas with an all-new, unforgettable experience as Santa Claus takes center stage with a re-imagined second act featuring technological enhancements and dynamic Rockettes choreography. Show-stopping numbers include the holiday celebration of New York at Christmas as well as classic favorites like Parade of the Wooden Soldiers and The Living Nativity.

Country music group Restless Heart – Restless Heart brings its rich harmony to Gaylord Opryland’s “A Country Christmas” with an all-new “A Season of Harmony Dinner Show.” Known for songs such as “That Rock won’t Roll,” “Why does it have to be (Wrong or Right)” and “I’ll Still be Loving you,” the band will perform favorite hits as well as holiday classics and original songs from its new Christmas album.

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas in ICE! – Two million pounds of colorful, carved, and sculpted ice bring the classic poem to life. Carved by 40 artisans from Harbin, China, ICE! is the Gaylord’s signature seasonal attraction. A series of inter-connected rooms features breathtaking 3D sculpted ice pieces, including two-story ice slides and memorable holiday scenes. Each ICE! display concludes with a Nativity scene carved in crystal clear ice and an audio of the story.

The ICE! attraction is kept at a nippy nine degrees so dress accordingly. The Gaylord offers big blue parkas for guests to wear on their trek through the frozen frontier of ICE! I also recommend layering on the sweaters, scarves and gloves. And maybe some cute fur-lined boots.

New this year is the Frostbite Factory, an interactive area where visitors can watch artisans carving sculptures. Visitors age 21 and up can “chill out” at the new On The Blocks bar at ICE! This new upgrade option includes signature drink samples poured through an ice luge plus a souvenir glass.

Arctic Plunge Snow Tubing – Guests can brave the hills on an extreme six-lane tubing hill covered in 1.5 million pounds of real snow, or go for a yuletide glide at the new 6,000 square-foot outdoor ice rink, complete with private rink-side cabanas and a DJ spinning tunes on the weekends.

Parade of Trees – This new self-guided tours takes guests through beautifully decorated Christmas trees throughout the resort. Each tree’s decorations and presents are up for grabs to the highest bidder. All proceeds benefit favorite charities. Zac Brown Band, Charlie Daniels, Sara Evans, Martina McBride, Brenda Lee and more will have trees featured at the resort.

DreamWorks Animation characters – Guests will be able to interact with lovable characters from DreamWorks movies such as Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and Madagascar.

Photos with Santa – Santa himself makes a special stop in Music City. Children can join Santa in his guitar-shaped chair surrounded by giant record albums to share their Christmas wishes.

General Jackson Showboat – Toe-tapping performances await audiences on one-of-a-kind Christmas cruises down the Cumberland River aboard one of the largest showboats in the country.

In addition, the resort offers Delta Riverboat Rides on the Gaylord Opryland’s ¼ mile long indoor river. Back for 2014 are favorite FREE activities like the Treasures for the Holidays craft Show and the Outdoor Nativity with its audio rendition of the biblical story of the birth of Christ.

A Country Christmas has been called “The Most Christmassy Hotel in the Nation” by the Travel Channel’s Extreme Christmas,” one of the top 10 places to spend Christmas in the world by Travel + Leisure and a “Nashville Treasure” by Southern Living.

The ICE! attraction takes place at all four of the Gaylord’s resort destinations, with unique themes and attractions offered at each resort. Locations and Gaylord ICE! themes include:

  • Gaylord Texan’s Lone Star Christmas (Grapevine, Texas) – “Frosty the Snowman”
  • Gaylord National’s Christmas on the Potomac (National Harbor, Maryland, near Washington, D.C.) – “Frosty the Snowman”
  • Gaylord Opryland’s A Country Christmas (Nashville, Tennessee) – “Twas the Night Before Christmas”
  • Christmas at Gaylord Palms (Kissimmee, Florida) – “The Nutcracker”

A Country Christmas at Gaylord Opryland is presented by Kodak Event Imaging Solutions and runs through January 3, 2015. Tickets and vacation packages are now on sale at

Gaylord Hotels is part of the Marriott family and offers a resort environment with “everything in one place” – diverse dining options, a full-service spa, on-site shopping, entertainment and more. Tickets and holiday vacation packages are now on sale at

Gaylord Hotels presents ICE! Photo: Marriott/Gaylord Hotels

Gaylord Hotels presents ICE!
Photo: Marriott/Gaylord Hotels

To read about past ICE! events, please visit:

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas in ICE! at the Gaylord National

Shrek the Halls: Gaylord National goes ogre with ICE! 2012

Going Ogre at the Gaylord National with ‘Shrek the Halls’ in ICE!


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