The best times to meet folks are during the group times at events. In particular, that would be during lunch or dinner. That is when everyone is together. Another suggestion would be during registration when you pick up your packet. Often there are many people lingering during that time, especially if the park is not open yet.
Many folks use the time spent in line, including during ERT, to again say hello and meet other folks. Since we are required to wear our name badges at ACE events, it can be relatively easy to strike of a conversation since you usually can see someone's name and city where they live.
I know the Southeast Region is a bunch of friendly folks, so hopefully you will have a great time at the Dollywood event. Just be sure to say hey to people if you'd like. At times, people can feel a bit of an outsider when the don't know anyone initially, but others don't necessarily know or understand that. I find that most people will respond and strike up a conversation once prompted, but often don't initiate it themselves. I think it you meet folks part way, you won't have any problems meeting other members.
Hope that helps.
ACE Vice President