(Photo courtesy of knoxvilledailysun.com)

Gatlinburg will be the destination for many of country music’s biggest songwriters past, present and future from August 24-28 at the fifth annual Smoky Mountain Songwriters Festival.

Cyndy Montgomery Reeves attended a songwriters festival in Key West, Florida and decided that the Smoky Mountains should have its own, so in 2011 she planned the very first one in Gatlinburg. Since then, the event has grown to include many different venues for hit songwriters and up-and-coming hit-crafters as well.

This year’s headline performers feature the hit writers for Garth Brooks’ biggest singles. They include: Tony Arata, “The Dance;” Kent Blazy, “Ain’t Going Down Til The Sun Comes Up;” and Pat Alger, “The Thunder Rolls.” They will be performing at Glenstone Lodge on August 27th at 7 p.m. Get your tickets for $22.50 now before they are gone.

Also performing is Emi Sunshine and The Rain on August 26th at 8 on Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort property. Tickets cost $15 for adults but children under 12 can get in for $8.

Even though there are competitions for songwriters at this festival, you don’t have to be a musician to enjoy the sounds, as there are many free concerts by over 100 performers located throughout the Smoky Mountain region. If you are interested in finding out every bit of information about the upcoming festival, visit their website at www.smswf.com for the full itinerary of performers and the locations of where they will be playing. You will be in for a treat if you are a fan of country music or have an appreciation for excellent songwriting.