Walking through a dim forest at twilight, you hear a strange sound, shortly followed by booming howls, odd tree knocks, and rustling leaves… Does curiosity get the better of you, or do you brush it off and head home (aka bolt in the opposite direction)? Yeah, most of us would turn tail and run for safety, and rightly so, but throw a bigfoot enthusiast into this spooky situation, and they would bust out their cameras, audio recorders, and thermal scanners to collect evidence of this covert cryptid (a creature whose existence is disputed). Whether you’d dash away or opt to stay — as long as you have an interest in the elusive bigfoot — you’re welcome to attend the Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference in Gatlinburg, TN!
Held at the Gatlinburg Convention Center on July 22, 2023 this year from 9 AM – 7 PM, this will be the 5th annual bigfoot conference in the Great Smoky Mountains. The 5th annual Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference promises “super surprise guest speakers,” live music, food trucks, competitions, and more. Join fellow bigfoot believers, adventurers, and skeptics and listen to top researchers and investigators as they present their findings and chat about bigfoot encounters – at one of the largest bigfoot conferences in the U.S.
Get advance tickets to the event here. So far, notable guest speakers will include:
- Cliff Barackman, from Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot series and avid North American bigfoot researcher with one of the largest collections of bigfoot casts in the nation
- Ranae Holland, from Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot series, Biologist, Conservationist, and Author
- Matt Moneymaker, from Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot series, President of Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization
Mind already racing with curious questions? Jot them down and let them loose for the Q&A segments after each guest.
2023 Special Event
NEW this year is the Bobo Impersonation Contest, encouraging respectful and fun impersonations of James “Bobo” Fay. There will be categories for “New Bobo” and “Old Bobo,” along with prizes awarded! Contest participants must have a ticket for the event, so be sure to get yours before it’s too late!
Refuel for Round 2
Remain focused for round 2 of the Bigfoot Conference by refueling and recharging at lunch, which will be 1 hour mid-event. Previous years have offered pre-ordered boxed lunches and a concessions stand, but you can also grab something at a nearby restaurant during break. No outside food or drinks will be allowed at the venue.
If you decide to dine out for lunch, dash to a close restaurant as there will only be 1 hour allotted to eat before the conference continues (with or without you). Not to worry, there are great options only a hop, skip, and a jump away!
- Bones BBQ Joint
- Five Guys
- Slice Pizza Bakery
- Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.
Admission + Vendor Pricing
The Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference is open to the public, with (non-refundable) tickets purchased in advance. General admission is only $25 and will guarantee you an open seat between rows 10-40. You can even pre-order an official event T-shirt online for $20 -$24 (picked up at the event info booth) to commemorate your attendance at one of the biggest bigfoot conferences ever held in the southeastern United States! Thinking about waiting a bit longer before biting the buying bullet? We advise against it as VIP seating is already sold out — plus, ticket holders may have the opportunity to hike the Smokies with Cliff Barackman!
Got intriguing bigfoot merch to sell? Set up a 10×10 vendor booth space starting at $150. Sponsor booths are sold out this year, but if you’re already planning for next year, here’s about what you can expect:
Looking to sponsor? Spend $250 for stage and social media mentions, a small logo on the stage banner, 2 admission tickets, and 2 event T-shirts. Offer $500, and you’ll get a prime booth space, stage and social media mentions, a small logo on the stage banner, 4 admission tickets, and 4 event tees.
Gatlinburg Convention Center
234 Historic Nature Trail
Gatlinburg, TN 37738
Where to Stay
Whether you’re attending the conference with a coworker, friend, or your entire squatchin’ crew, Cabins for YOU has everything you’re looking for in a Smoky Mountain vacation rental in East Tennessee. Ranging from 1-16 bedrooms, we have small cabin rentals for 2 to large lodges for 50+. On top of Gatlinburg cabins, we have Pigeon Forge properties and Sevierville properties if you want to stay nearby but not in the middle of it all.
On top of homey conveniences (Wi-Fi, full kitchen, king-size beds, etc.) and entertaining amenities (from a private pool to a home theater to a game room), you’ll appreciate a convenient Gatlinburg or nearby Pigeon Forge location to and from the conference center. Speak with your personal Vacation Specialist at 1-800-684-7865 or fill out our Options for YOU form and start planning your trip to attend the bigfoot conference today.
Lace up your squatchin’ boots and head to Gatlinburg, TN — for the Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference this summer!