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Gatlinburg SkyLift Park raises over $71K for tornado victims

Each chair sold within seven hours for the maximum “bid to buy” of $3,000 each.
The Gatlinburg Skylift Park is “lifting up” tornado victims in Kentucky and Tennessee by hosting a fundraiser and auction that starts Dec. 17.
Published: Jan. 10, 2022 at 11:25 AM CST
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GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WVLT) - The Gatlinburg Skylift Park announced that the “Lift Up Our Neighbors” auction raised over $71,000 in tornado relief for Tennessee and Kentucky.

The fundraiser was held from Dec. 17 to Dec. 27 and included the auction of nine yellow chairs and two black chairs from the SkyLift that survived the 2016 wildfires.

Each chair sold within seven hours for the maximum “bid to buy” of $3,000 each. In addition, the park also donated $1 per admission ticket sold from Dec. 16 to Dec. 22. All funds were sent to The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee and The Western Kentucky Relief Fund.

The administrative director of SkyLift Park said the devastation Tennessee and Kentucky faced reminded him of the wildfires, which sparked the motivation to host the fundraiser.

The tornado disaster in Kentucky and Tennessee really resonated with us at the SkyLift Park, and in Gatlinburg in general. It reminded us of everything we went through in the aftermath of the wildfires, and how so many various areas helped us without question. That experience motivated us to help others who couldn’t help themselves in such a dark time.

It was especially meaningful to us knowing that SkyLift Park and the Gatlinburg area are a home away from home, a safe haven, for a lot of folks from these areas who come here year after year, because our attraction has been around for almost 70 years, we see many of the same visitors every year, introducing new generations to the natural wonders and the great community of Gatlinburg. Our connection to these folks is strong, and we are grateful to have been able to help out in this way.

Marcus Watson, administrative director of SkyLift Park

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