Gaylord Opryland Resort preps for Christmas as temperatures soar

Chill or Thrill with ‘A CHRISTMAS STORY™,’ Rudolph, Trace Adkins and SoundWaves water attraction.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (July 17, 2019)—It may be scorching hot outside, but staff at Gaylord Opryland Resort have their minds on the colder months of the year and the 36th annual A Country Christmas festivities

Despite the heat, horticulture crews have begun hanging more than 3 million holiday lights in preparation for the resort’s beloved holiday tradition. These devoted “Christmas elves” will work several hours each day to make sure the lights are up in time for A Country Christmas, presented by Pepsi, taking place Nov. 8 through Jan. 1. Packages are on sale now at

“Every year, we are in awe of the care and love our staff puts into decorating all nine acres of our indoor gardens along with the outside of the hotel,” said Gaylord Opryland General Manager John Adams. “Our 3 million lights provide the perfect backdrop to all the other memory-making Christmas activities, which we are excited to announce today.” 

Whether they’re looking for a chill vibe or thrill ride, holiday guests will be able to pick from an extraordinary lineup of events and attractions starting with SoundWaves, the nation’s first truly upscale resort water attraction that seamlessly unites music and water to create an atmosphere unlike any other. The modern oasis maintains a warm 84-degree temperature all year long with something for everyone including 5 thrilling water slides; lazy and rapid rivers; adults-only pool; family activity pool; dining options inspired by your favorite fun-in-the-sun destinations; an arcade with virtual reality and rock climbing wall; and a splash pad area for the smallest of guests. 

More than 2 million pounds of ice blocks have been ordered for the resort’s signature attraction—ICE!, presented by DEI—which is back with a new theme: A Christmas Story. Experience scenes from the hilarious family tale in magnificent hand-carved sculptures made of ice. Kept at nine degrees Fahrenheit, ICE! is hand-carved by 40 master artisans from Harbin, China, and will include iconic scenes such as The Old Man’s Major Award, Aunt Clara’s pink nightmare, the ultimate triple dog dare at the school’s flagpole and many more. 

The beloved TV classic Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer soars off the screen and onto the Grand Ole Opry House stage this holiday season. Guests will be able to experience favorite characters including Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hermey the Elf, the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice, Yukon Cornelius and, of course, Rudolph, as they come to life in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical. For even more Rudolph-themed fun, kids and adults alike will enjoy helping the Misfit Toys return home in the Reindeer Games™ Scavenger Hunt featuring Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Rudolph’s Holly Jolly Feast interactive dining experience. 

Country superstar and Grand Ole Opry member Trace Adkins returns to the resort this year for a new Christmas dinner show: The Gift of Christmas with Trace Adkins and Friends. Select performances will be held at the Wildhorse Saloon. The platinum-selling hitmaker and a few of his closest friends will entertain fans with Christmas standards, Celtic classics and a few of his favorite traditions. The evening starts with a delicious holiday meal prepared by Gaylord Opryland’s award-winning culinary team. 

The Build-A-Bear Workshop® experience lets guests make their very own furry winter friend—a cuddly, cute bear plush, designed exclusively for Gaylord Hotels that can be personalized with cozy winter clothing and accessories. 

Gaylord Opryland takes it up a notch this year with a 9,000-square-foot Ice Skating rink for guests to take a joyful yuletide glide or watch big jumps, fast spins, awe-inspiring throws and lifts during Rockin’ Christmas on Ice skating champions show. Visitors can race friends and family on a 15-foot-high, four-lane ice Tubing hill, hop aboard the Opryland Express kids’ train, stop by the Gingerbread Decorating Corner, or take a turn on the Santa’s Spinners tea cup ride! 

Festivities also include Carriage Rides and holiday cruise experiences on the General Jackson Showboat along with free activities including a Christmas-themed fountain show and the Outdoor Nativity with an audio rendition of the biblical story. Discounted group rates are available for select holiday events; special ICE! field trip rates include a complimentary educator’s lesson guide. 

When it comes to ringing in 2020, Big Night Nashville at Gaylord Opryland is one of Music City's hottest New Year’s Eve events. Rooms are available now at

A Country Christmas has been hailed as one of the “Ten Great Places to Catch up with Santa” by USA Today; “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. For companies wishing to host their staff or customers at an unforgettable holiday outing, Gaylord Opryland offers the ideal “Everything Christmas” setting for onsite catered events with 10 to 3,000 guests, with or without an ICE! experience. To learn more about planning a holiday event, contact Local Catering Sales at 615-889-1000. 

The best value to experience all of Gaylord Opryland’s A Country Christmas is with a two- or three-night package including accommodations and the most popular holiday attractions plus options to include SoundWaves. For additional information and to book packages or tickets, visit or call 1-888-677-9872.

Images for Download: © 2019 Gaylord Opryland 

Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center, located at 2800 Opryland Drive in Nashville, Tenn., is the flagship property of Gaylord Hotels, part of the Marriott portfolio of brands. The 2,888-room hotel offers “everything in one place”— SoundWaves upscale indoor/outdoor water attraction, diverse dining options, a full-service spa, top-notch entertainment, on-site shopping, an award-winning golf course and more. For more information, visit


3 million holiday lights 

• More than 1 million visitors to the resort during the holidays each year 

15,000 poinsettias 

15 miles of green garland 

10 miles of hand-tied, red ribbon 

48-foot-tall Christmas tree 

2+ million pounds of ice for ICE! attraction 

• Nearly 7,000 giant blocks of colored and clear ice 

40 ice artisans from Harbin, China