Thursday, April 21, 2011

Off to the Dollywood Harvest Festival!

Today was the big day.  All the dolls had been invited to attend the Dollywood Harvest Festival, and they had been busy getting ready for months.  

Most of the other dolls were ready to go now except for Della.  She had been trying on dresses all morning trying to find the perfect one to wear.  

She thought that there was a teeny tiny chance that she might get to see Dolly Parton while she was at the Harvest Festival, and she wanted to look her very best.

Della finally chose a sleeveless baby blue and cream homespun cotton check print dress as the one that she would wear to the festival. She laid the dress on her chair while she went to search in Myra's scrap bag for two pieces of fabric to tie her blond curls up into ponytails with.

After searching around in the scrap box for a while she finally had to admit that there were no scraps of the dress in the box that were big enough to tie her ponytails with so she decided to pick out two or three different solid scraps to try on with the dress to see which color would look the best on her.

When she retuned with the scraps of fabric that she had found well there was her best friend Maggie Joe admiring herself in the mirror wearing the dress she had left on her seat.  

"Oh! This dress is so pretty!" Maggie Jo exclaimed. "I just love the colors!"

"Thank you!" Della replied. "I was just thinking that I had made the perfect choice myself!  Now will you please take it off so that I can get ready to go to Dollywood?"

"I don't think I will, Maggie Joe answered."  "This is the one I am wearing to Dollywood. You can just go find you another one." 

Della was speechless!  She could not believe that her friend would treat her this way.  "If you don't take my dress off right now then you will no longer be my friend", She sputtered.     

Maggie Joe did not even stop admiring herself to answer.  "I guess we just won't be friends anymore then!" she replied, "I am not taking it off."  she added.

Della walked away steaming with anger while Maggie Joe twirled slowly around in front of the mirror to get a better perspective of herself in the dress.

Della went back to looking at the dresses and finally chose a sleeveless purple and cream homespun check print dress.  She tied a soft cream strip of fabric around her ponytails, and stood back to look at herself in the mirror.

That baby blue dress would have looked so much better on me then it did on Maggie Joe with her dark skin and nappy hair she thought.   She guessed she was ready to go to.  

It was still some time before they were to be loaded into the van for the long drive to Pigeon Forge so she decided that she would just take a nap until it was time to leave.

Della woke up to a flurry of activity. Myra was taking each doll from the shelf and was putting them into a box for their trip to Dollywood, and as Della watched Myra picked up Lucy and her Goosey and placed them into one of the waiting boxes.

Finally it was Della's turn to go in the box.  Myra picked her up and sat her in the box, and there looking back at her with a big smirk on her face was her now X-friend Maggie Joe.

"Oh no you don't!" Della hissed at Maggie Jo. You got to go find another box to ride in!

"No! You go find another box!" Maggie Jo answered smugly. "Myra put me in first!"

Della started to say heck with it and just go throw Maggie Joe out herself, but before she could move Myra put the lid on the box, and placed the box in the waiting van. 

"It was dark in the box except for the cracks left on each side for handholds so after the excitement of getting ready for the trip that morning all the other dolls in the box were ready to settle down for a nice nap all except for Della who was wide awake now.  She couldn't have slept anyway.  She was just too dog gone mad at Maggie Jo.   

"I will pull her kinky little black curls out, and she will learn not to be so darn sticky fingered." she fumed to herself.

Della did not realize that she had spoken out loud until Goosie honked with sleepy surprise. Then all the other dolls in the box started fussing at her for waking Lucy's noisy goose.

After they had all settled back down Della decided to just look out the tiny crack in the box handle and watch the passing scenery through the window of the van.  She also decided to think about how she was going to get even with that sneaky no good X friend of hers when they got to Dollywood.

Finally after what seemed like hours they arrived at the Dollywood. 

Myra could not find the employee entrance that she was supposed to use to get into the park so she had to call the Dollywood office for help.

Chris who was the Harvest Fesitval Director told her to wait right there and he would come out to meet her.

Della was embarrassed for Myra when Chris led the way through the park to their booth on a golf cart while Myra followed closely behind him in the van.

Chris showed Myra where to park near her booth so that the others who were still arriving could get around her, and told her that he would send some employees around to help her set her booth up then he quickly left because he had many things to do that afternoon.

Myra started unloading the boxes of dolls, and sitting them in front of the booth while she waited for the promised help to arrive.

Finally all the boxes were unloaded so she started taking the lids off the boxes.  Finally Della was able to get a good look at what was to be her new home for the next 30 days.

The booth had a rough wall at the back with a small window with no pane.  It had had two flaps that met in the middle with a lock to keep it closed.  The other two rough walls did not have a window.  

The front of the booth was open all the way across.  It had a tent flap that rolled up on a long thick wooden dowel to serve as a door.  This tent flap had to be rolled up in the morning when the store opened at 10:00, and rolled down when the store closed at 6:00 in the evening.  

There was a  It was to be that helped to roll the flap up when the park opened in the morning and then helped keep the flap up when it was placed in a holder on each side of the booth. The dowel was then rolled down to close the booth when the park closed in the evening.

The back wall of the booth had a opening without a window pane or screen. All it had over the opening was two wooden flaps that met in the center and latched, and the two rough 
The only thing in the booth at the moment was a rough wooden counter top type stand that went half way across the front opening of the booth.

A little way in front of the booth was a bunch of seats and a stage, and over top of the stage was a large sign that said Dolly’s Family Reunion and the times that this family reunion were to be preformed.

To the left of the booth was a bridge leading over to the little kid rides, and to the right of Myra’s booth were other shed like booths and the public restrooms.

Myra did not have to wait long until her promised help arrived.

The two girls introduced themselves as Alice and Linda, and they told Myra that they would be the ones who would be relieving her for her lunch breaks.

They talked to her for a few minutes discussing what she needed to display her dolls on and they quickly left to locate the wanted items.

A few minutes later they returned on a golf cart that pulling a small trailer behind it that was holding two wooden bookshelves, what looked like a whiskey barrel, and some other wooden items.

The bookshelves were quickly placed with one on each side of the back wall, and Myra got to work placing the many 18” to 19” dolls on the bookshelves while Linda got to work putting shelf brackets on each side of the window to hold an unpainted wooden shelf board so that Myra could display her many nodders.

On the floor beneath the window Alice placed a wagon with one broken wheel where Myra placed Sailor Andy, and Missy.

On one side of the wagon Alice put a wicker lunch box with two openings in the top where Myra placed Lucy and her noisy Goosie, and on the other side Alice put a tall and narrow wicker basket with a square opening in the front and an opening at the top where Myra placed tall Gracie and Turnip.

The whiskey barrel had a false bottom in the top with a 6” drop which made it just perfect to display all Myra’s mini Raggedy Ann’s and Andy’s, and she quickly placed as many of them as she could in the top of the whiskey barrel.

Beside the whiskey barrel next to the opening of the booth Myra set a 24” tall by 12” square wooden box where she placed Dora with her arms hanging over the top of the wooden box on one side and Maggie Jo on the other side with her arms also hanging over.

Linda and Alice then went to putting hangers on each of the side walls so that Myra could hang her bag holder dolls.

To be continued....

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