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Idol star returns to her roots for performances

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Janelle Arthur performs at the Great American Country Show at Dollywood. (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)

Janelle Arthur performs at the Great American Country Show at Dollywood. (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A country music star that got a start in the Smoky Mountains is back home performing for a weekend at Dollywood.

Janelle Arthur, who appeared on American Idol, started singing at Dollywood at 8 years old. In the Celebrity Theater she returned Wednesday to the exact stage where she got her start.

"It's increadible that American Idol has brought me back here. Yeah it's just been an awesome journey and I'm really excited to be back at Dollywood," said

Arthur spent several years playing a young Dolly Parton in Paradise Road at Dollywood but her memories of the park begin well before that. A native of nearby Oliver Springs, Tenn., Arthur visited Dollywood so often, she said it sometimes feels like a second home.

“Dollywood is so much like home,” she said. “My family went every year. I know the park like the back of my hand. So to be able to go back now, it is like coming full circle for me. I remember my dad telling me, one day you will do your own concert here. It is so crazy that it is happening now.”

Dollywood guests can see Arthur complete the circle as she performs with the cast of The Great American Country Show Sept. 18, 20-23


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