5 Reason's To Visit Alcatraz East In Pigeon Forge

Fans of NCSI, crime drama’s and mysterious will find a visit to Alcatraz East a entertaining and enlightening experience. On your visit you'll encounter a unique journey into the history of American crime, crime solving, and our justice system. And, here are 5 things everyone should know about Alcatraz East Crime Museum when visiting the Pigeon Forge area:


Inspired By Alcatraz - This Museum Is Unique

While the famous prison inspired this attraction, Alcatraz East is a crime museum, featuring an in depth look at American crime history, with artifacts from different eras and topics. The one-of-kind building was designed as a combination of Tennessee’s first state prison from 1898, and guard towers inspired by the Alcatraz lighthouse in California. The two-story building offers over 25,000 square feet of exhibit space.

“We’ve had an amazing response since opening our doors in December,” states Janine Vaccarello, chief operating officer for Alcatraz East, “We have something for all ages, and most families spend 2-3 hours going through the exhibits. Guests walk away saying they knew they would love it, but it was better than expected, and that makes us feel very proud.”

Crime Is Among America’s Favorite Subject

With all the movies and TV shows related to the topic of crime, this museum is a must see. The museum features five themes that give you a glimpse into notorious crime history, forensic science, law enforcement, our justice system and pop culture. There are over 100 interactives throughout the museum that offer a hands-on experience and take you deeper into the engaging world of crime and justice.

One-of-a-Kind Artifacts To Explore

From white-collar crimes to Old West gunslingers, the museum features original artifacts from Jesse James to Whitey Bulger. Things to watch for include the famous O.J. Simpson chase white Bronco, John Dillinger’s death mask, Al Capone’s rosary, a submachine gun from the movie Scarface, Ted Bundy’s VW Beetle. Throughout the museum Tennessee is well represented, with objects such as the Old Smoky electric chair and moonshine stills as well as notable Dr. William Bass, highlighting his achievements- which advanced forensic anthropology.

Engaging Exhibits

Beginning mid-May, Alcatraz East debuted the first of its temporary exhibit programs, which will be an annual rotation in two areas of the museum. Currently they are revealing how endangered species are affected by poaching and what the public can do to help end the practice in their exhibit, “Ivory, Tortoise Shell & Fur: The Ugly Truth About Wildlife Trafficking. The museum’s future exhibits will be just as educational and engaging.

Interact with the Museum

Having fun and learning go hand and hand at Alcatraz East, so bring your family and friends and take the museum’s Top Detective Challenge. Follow clues throughout the museum to solve the crime of a stolen artifact, and receive a prize if you crack the case! There is also an opportunity for parents and kids to enjoy the thrill of The Heist Laser Maze.

“Every year, families make lifetime memories here in the Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge area,” states Vaccarello, “We are happy to now be a part of those memories, giving them a look at history, crime prevention, while having an interactive experience.”

Plan Your Visit To Alcatraz East

Alcatraz East is located at the entrance to The Island, at 2757 Parkway in Pigeon Forge, near the Margaritaville Hotel and Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen. For ticket information and current exhibits visit their website at www.alcatrazeast.com.

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