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Dolly Parton officially opens unique Wildwood Grove at Dollywood (Jesicca Hudson Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

County music star Dolly Parton says she often “let my imagination run away with me” growing up in the Smoky Mountains — and she does the same with Dollywood in Pigeon Forge.

Friday she officially opened the family theme park’s largest capital investment and called it “one of the most exciting days” in the vast company’s history.

The new addition’s focal point is the 50-foot tall Wildwood tree that she says comes alive each night featuring 650 lighted butterflies of various colors and 9,000 leaves.

My granddaughter gave up a thumbs up the Dragonflier, a suspended roller coaster, and I really liked the Giant Tree Swing that is the park’s version of a “leaf boat” that simulates a leaf falling through the air.

The water play area in Wildwood is a perfect spot for kids to cool off as well as a terrific indoor play area.

Dolly Parton, as always, was gracious in her welcome to media members at the official ceremony to open the park this morning and was proud of the “diversity” the new addition has.

For more information, go to www.dollywood.com.

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