Dolly Parton has announced that she will no longer be involved with Gaylord Entertainment in the development of a new water park in Nashville. The announcement arrives following the approval of Marriott International’s $210 million purchase of Gaylord’s hotel management/operations arm and the company’s subsequent re-branding as Ryman Hospitality Properties.
“Gaylord makes decisions that they feel are good for their company and their stockholders and I have to make decisions based on what is best for me and the Dollywood Company,” said Parton in a statement. “Governor Haslam, Mayor Dean, and all the folks in government have been great to work with. I really appreciate their support through this process.”
The proposed water park was originally announced in early 2012 as a 50/50 joint venture between Parton’s Dollywood Company and Gaylord, with Dollywood Company serving as the operating partner. The 114-acre family entertainment center would boast both water and snow park features, and employ up to 450 full-and-part time features. The original plan was for construction to begin in late 2012 and be ready to open in summer 2014 but with this announcement the park’s future remains uncertain.