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Ancient Lore Village to open in 2020 with waterfall, animal park, 7 “dwellings”

Ancient Lore Village founder and Knoxville businessman Tom Boyd announced that the theme park is currently taking reservations and is set to open by the end of 2020 with a menagerie of new attractions.
Published: Jun. 12, 2020 at 2:54 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Ancient Lore Village at Boyd Hollow founder and visionary Tom Boyd said the theme park is currently taking reservations and is set to open by the end of 2020 with a menagerie of new attractions.

Boyd said the property will be used mainly as an event venue and will feature seven homes where guests can stay overnight. Each home will be based on a different character from his fiction book called Bokee’s Trek.

“Each of them [the dwellings for sleeping] are unique and each will be totally different and each will reflect a character in the book that I wrote," said Tom Boyd in an exclusive interview with WVLT. Boyd initially indicated there would be eight new dwellings in addition to the already finished prototype, but clarified Monday.

The 40-acre Ancient Lore Village property in South Knoxville was approved for rezoning in Thursday night’s planning commission meeting.

Boyd described a host of new attractions set to open at the property including what he believes to be one of the largest man-made waterfalls which will be 40 feet high and spill 60,000 gallons of water per hour.

There will also be an animal park with walking trails that is open and free to the public. Boyd says llamas and buffalo will reside there.

“And the hiking trails we have, we want the families to do it together," said Boyd.

He wants to take people back to simpler times and let them get in touch with their imaginations. There will not be TVs in any of the sleeping areas and plugs are hidden behind small doors.

“I really wanted to do something nice for South Knoxville,” said Boyd. He said he expects the property to remain a “peaceful garden” as businesses continue to expand down Chapman Highway into the Seymour area.

Boyd said he believes social distancing will remain part of life for the foreseeable future and therefore designed the park with that in mind. He said tables at the event venues will feature computer screens so that loved ones who are not able to be present can attend virtually.

“We’ve had the luxury of building this with the COVID-19 problem in mind. So everything is built for proper distances, our plans for clean up and making sure everybody is safe we were able to incorporate that into what we’re doing now," explained Boyd.

The facilities will be able to host about 700 events each year, Boyd said. Most weekends in 2021 are already booked for weddings.

“We hope you basically enter a paradise. So when you drive through the door you feel peaceful and comfortable being here," said Boyd.

Boyd also indicated a documentary about the property is in the works, but could not disclose any details regarding its production.

The project was initially estimated to cost $40 million, it is now expected to cost $14 million, according to a spokesperson for Ancient Lore Village at Boyd Hollow.

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