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Busch Gardens Williamsburg (BGW BGE) Discussion Thread

P. 455: Opening night of Howl-o-Scream!

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I visited BGT for the first time ever yesterday... Currently in line for Volcano at KD, so I'll condense some thoughts.

 

-Loved Darkastle....Didn't have the same polish as Spiderman and Transformers in terms of scene transitions and forced perspective on the screens, but the ride system was great...Liked the part where you go down the spiral staircase at a tilt.

 

-Tempesto...Good ride but the one at SFDK was better. The comfort straps just make those trains even more of a contortion act, and they are at ear level for me, which wasn't fun

T hitting them on a cold day with cold ears.

Theming was passable...I just think of this type of ride as a big flatride.

 

-Roman rapids shut

 

-Griffon was great! Probably rode it the most of everything. Best in the front with your legs curled back like a skydiver.

 

-Alpengeist...Great too! Loved the bits of theming your feet would pass by, and that snow canyon at the end. The cobra roll had some kick.

 

-Apollos Chariot is probably my least favourite B&M hyper....Levaithan, Behemoth and Diamondback had "some" airtime at least, this on the other hand just seemed to have small little pops on the last few hills, and virtually none at all on the first two big ones. Tried front and back, made little difference.

 

-Verbolten I liked more than Apollos. Great ride and well rounded. I got a ride with wolves, and another with the forest lady. The German girl in the first queue building seemed borderline racist. I did think the entrance to the show building seemed I'll thought out...Just a wall on poles.

The final outdoor bit had some kick to it and was appropriately furious.

 

-Loch Ness monster was one of those special old arrows, and ran very smoothly. I previous had no idea it had a triple helix in the tunnel.

 

- Ate at Festhaus and watched the show. My roast chicken, German vinegar potatoes and hot choc was very nice, and s good reprieve from the cold.

 

-Overall a beautiful park. The Da Vinci gardens and the darkastle outdoor queue stood out.

 

-Escape from Pompeii was pretty cool. Not too wet thankfully. The bit where the ceiling caught on fire was trippy.

 

-One of the best parks I've ever been to. In the future a scandanavian themed land would be a great expansion. Fits well with the landscape, and lots of fodder in terms of ride storylines.

.

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I went to the park for a while today, and rode Tempesto first thing after opening. The wait from the ride entrance to the very back row was about 35 minutes--a little less if you want one of the middle rows. The time to dispatch trains was between 60 and 70 seconds, for the most part (actually timed one dispatch at 50 seconds), which isn't too shabby. I think a lot of it depends on how quickly guests can scramble into the somewhat cramped train. They were still offering the returnable fanny packs for loose items.

 

Thought some of our members might be interested.

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They've announced it...But didn't give a date on when it's supposed to happen. They say it will be available for their 40th anniversary...So I'm assuming this year sometime. This is a very good idea. I like that they are giving a two day option and a four day option. I want the four day option because I've never visited the water parks before. I hope they keep this going cause I want to do this next year.

 

http://www.visitrichmondva.com/things-to-do/vathrills/

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They've announced it...But didn't give a date on when it's supposed to happen. They say it will be available for their 40th anniversary...So I'm assuming this year sometime. This is a very good idea. I like that they are giving a two day option and a four day option. I want the four day option because I've never visited the water parks before. I hope they keep this going cause I want to do this next year.

 

http://www.visitrichmondva.com/things-to-do/vathrills/

 

Did I miss it? or did they not include pricing?

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They've announced it...But didn't give a date on when it's supposed to happen. They say it will be available for their 40th anniversary...So I'm assuming this year sometime. This is a very good idea. I like that they are giving a two day option and a four day option. I want the four day option because I've never visited the water parks before. I hope they keep this going cause I want to do this next year.

 

http://www.visitrichmondva.com/things-to-do/vathrills/

 

Did I miss it? or did they not include pricing?

 

It's $135 for 4 days (2 at Busch/Water Country USA and 2 at Kings Dominion) or $106 for one day at Busch and one at Kings Dominion.

 

http://wtvr.com/2015/05/05/kings-dominion-busch-gardens-deal/

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They've announced it...But didn't give a date on when it's supposed to happen. They say it will be available for their 40th anniversary...So I'm assuming this year sometime. This is a very good idea. I like that they are giving a two day option and a four day option. I want the four day option because I've never visited the water parks before. I hope they keep this going cause I want to do this next year.

 

http://www.visitrichmondva.com/things-to-do/vathrills/

 

Did I miss it? or did they not include pricing?

 

It's $135 for 4 days (2 at Busch/Water Country USA and 2 at Kings Dominion) or $106 for one day at Busch and one at Kings Dominion.

 

http://wtvr.com/2015/05/05/kings-dominion-busch-gardens-deal/

 

huh. . so it seems I maybe still got a better deal with the Bounce Pass (that doesn't include KD, but does have BGW, Water Country, and Colonial Williamsburg, with parking included at all, for 7 days). ($125/person)

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Here's the official press release from today's Busch Gardens/Kings Dominion press conference.

 

Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion Proclaim Region

Virginia’s Gateway to Family Thrills

Partnership is the first in 15 years between the two theme parks

 

RICHMOND, VA (May 5, 2015) – Virginia’s two largest theme parks are celebrating 40 years as the commonwealth’s premier family entertainment venues. To mark the occasion, the parks are joining forces this summer to raise awareness of Virginia’s Gateway to Family Thrills, the 75-mile corridor connecting Kings Dominion and Busch Gardens®.

 

Busch Gardens’ Marketing Vice President Dan Dipiazzo and Scott Clemons, director of marketing for Kings Dominion, announced the partnership today during a joint news conference held on the State Capitol grounds. The partnership is the first between the two theme parks in nearly 15 years. It was made possible in part because of a $25,000 matching grant from the Virginia Tourism Corporation, and includes a digital advertising component as well as a combined ticket offer so guests can experience both theme parks at a reduced price.

 

The parks developed two ticket deals to support the Gateway to Family Thrills promotion.

 

The Virginia Thrills Ticket costs $106 and is valid for one single-day admission each to Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion within seven consecutive days. The promotion represents a $34 savings off the combined retail ticket prices to the parks.

 

The Virginia Thrills Ticket Plus costs $135 and adds each venue’s water parks to the package. The Virginia Thrills Ticket Plus is valid for two single-day admission tickets to Busch Gardens and/or Water Country USA® and two single-day admission tickets to Kings Dominion and/or Soak City within seven consecutive days. The promotional price represents a $121 savings off the parks’ combined retail single-day admission prices.

 

“This partnership highlights the friendly competition between Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion, and brings our resources together to create a much larger voice in a crowded market,” Dipiazzo said. “Why drive a thousand or more miles for a vacation when we have Orlando-quality attractions right here in Virginia.”

The two parks individually offer an assortment of rides, shows and family-friendly entertainment. Combining their resources lets the parks, the state and local tourism boards representing Richmond and Williamsburg to reach out to families living in the Northeast who may be unaware of what is available to them just a few hours down the road.

 

“We are both going after similar guests,” Clemons said. “Joining together, Virginia’s premier theme parks offer an attractive option for families who want a thrilling vacation closer to home.”

 

The Greater Williamsburg Chamber and Tourism Alliance and Richmond Region Tourism are also participating in the partnership, which further extends the advertising resources available in the affluent Northeast markets of Philadelphia and New York.

 

“This is an unprecedented partnership between two of Virginia’s best entertainment options,” said Rita McClenny, president and CEO of the Virginia Tourism Corporation. “The friendly competition between Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion has created two world-class theme parks. Combining their resources with the state’s grant program, creates a unique opportunity to market the corridor from Richmond to Williamsburg to families who may not otherwise consider Virginia as a thrill vacation destination.”

 

Visit www.virginiathrills.com for information on purchasing tickets or to learn more about the Virginia Gateway to Family Thrills.

 

Combined Park Thrills

Nearly 600 acres of rides, shows and attractions

 

21 rollercoasters, featuring Intimidator-305, one of the world’s tallest and fastest giga-coasters, and Tempesto™, Busch Gardens thrilling new launch coaster with three launch experiences and slow-roll inversion.

 

3 kid areas featuring more than 20 rides designed for families to enjoy together.

 

63 acres of water parks, including Soak City at King’s Dominion and Water Country USA® in Williamsburg, Virginia.

 

 

 

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Not a bad deal, but did I miss somewhere that King's Dominion water park is an additional cost now that they changed the name to Soak City and added a few new slides? The water park was always included with admission before, right?

 

Edit - From the KD website:

 

"Soak City will continue to be available at no extra charge for Kings Dominion visitors. “We’re happy to offer two parks for the price of one,” says Jones. “The improved look and feel of Soak City will add to our guest’s experience. We can’t wait to share that with them.”

 

Good marketing ploy for folks that don't understand that the KD water park is included in the regular admission. Although, if you buy online, it would be $143 if you buy the Water Country/BGE combo and just a one day KD ticket.

 

So it would still save $8 per ticket (and $43 per ticket if you go to KD for two days) by buying into this deal - and might not be as lengthy/complicated to buy them all from just one site. Not bad if you were buying as a family of four or more - that certainly adds up.

 

Although to me, KD is not really what I would consider a two day park. I think my preference would be two days at BGE, one day at Water Country and just one day at KD. Maybe they will add that option later?

Edited by Philrad71
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Not a bad deal, but did I miss somewhere that King's Dominion water park is an additional cost now that they changed the name to Soak City and added a few new slides? The water park was always included with admission before, right?

 

Edit - I don't see anywhere on the KD website that SC is no longer included in the park admission so I assume that this is just wording to make the deal seem more attractive?

 

if you go to the linked website about the deal, it has this under the "Soak City" description:

 

Soak City

 

Come explore the coolest way to beat the heat this summer at Soak City at Kings Dominion. Soak City is the premier waterpark in the region and features 20-acres of water activities for guests of all ages, two gigantic wave pools, exhilarating water slides, a lazy river, a children's splash pad and much more. Soak City is included free with park admission to Kings Dominion.

 

bolding is mine.

 

so yeah. .trying to make it more attractive. (would be nicer if they included parking tho!)

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The menus are online for this year's Food and Wine Festival. Many returning favorites, of course; of the new stuff, I'm most intrigued by the Mushi-Gyoza and Ginger and Lemongrass Custard at the Eastern Asia booth.

 

You can sample Scotch this year, too.

 

What are other people looking forward to at Food and Wine?

Edited by cfc
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what really sucks is that we will be there during the festival, but not on days it's open

 

We're gonna be in BGW on a Tues/Wed. . which I'm sure will keep the crowds lighter than on a weekend. . but sucks that we'll miss the chance to try some of the food!

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what really sucks is that we will be there during the festival, but not on days it's open

 

We're gonna be in BGW on a Tues/Wed. . which I'm sure will keep the crowds lighter than on a weekend. . but sucks that we'll miss the chance to try some of the food!

 

Well, you might try a Tempesto Panini over in Festa Italia--a grilled provolone sandwich with sun-dried tomato pesto.

Edited by cfc
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The menus are online for this year's Food and Wine Festival. Many returning favorites, of course; of the new stuff, I'm most intrigued by the Mushi-Gyoza and Ginger and Lemongrass Custard at the Eastern Asia booth.

 

You can sample Scotch this year, too.

 

What are other people looking forward to at Food and Wine?

 

Food and Wine is quickly becoming my favorite . I'll be 21 this year for it to so I guess I'll get to experience the wine side of it. Last year my top three favorite were probably the Chocolate Lava Cake from American Southwest, the Halloumi from Greece, and the Cheddar and Lager Chowder from Canada.

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Made it over to the park yesterday to get on Tempesto for the first time, as well as enjoy the other rides in a more comfortable temperature.

 

I arrived around opening and got my first ride without waiting too long. I really liked the way the launches build up anticipation, and that final one does give you a nice little pop at the top. The roll is alright, and then I had no idea what went all with all the twisting in the loop, guess I was expecting it to invert or something. Overall, what stuck with me was "cool launch, no idea what came after". I liked this, as it was something different. I had two rides later in the day, both quite fun but those dang shin restraints where a bit rough on my legs. I'm around 6'-1" or 6'-2" which I believe is where you are supposed to start having trouble with the Premier trains, but this felt worse than SkyRocket or YOLOcoaster- I don't know if it's actually different or just me, tired legs, etc.

 

I did highly enjoy watching Tempesto- it's just such bright colors, the riders all love it, and it's such an interesting layout to watch the trains go through. Operations are fantastic, as Chuck mentioned- there's never a long wait to see a train go through, and while I didn't time it I did notice that generally a train would launch while I went up Apollo's lift and a second train would be launching as we hit the brakes- seems pretty quick to me! Festa was more crowded than I've ever seen it (excepting Christmastown), and the line held at 45 minutes- 1 hour all day (out to the ride sign).

 

Other random musings:

-Apollo's crew was amazing, rolling trains pretty consistently and keeping their line super short despite all the increased foot traffic in the area. Just as Tempesto was consistently on the course, it was rare to see Apollo's lift without a train.

-New ice cream is great! Strawberry Shortcake with cheeseake bites is strange but tasty.

-Smacked a tree pretty bad on Alpengeist. Someday I'll learn to keep my arms inside the train.

-London Rocks has changed. Story is easier to follow, show overall is much less trippy. Funny how that worked...

 

A few pictures:

01.jpg.7ce59734edb2dbddbf34ea6d4378afa9.jpg

Saw some stuff falling out of the train during the roll- use those free fanny packs! It's what a real daredevil would do!

IMG_1791.jpg.04c5b8783ea34b5a283f22044564ae77.jpg

Still my favorite coaster in the park ^_^

IMG_1792.jpg.b1c275eae686e840939b08ab95744dfb.jpg

Lunch!

IMG_1804.thumb.jpg.9045a8719e164d35b6e3f1900b48c819.jpg

Side-Tempesto

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I had two rides later in the day, both quite fun but those dang shin restraints where a bit rough on my legs. I'm around 6'-1" or 6'-2" which I believe is where you are supposed to start having trouble with the Premier trains

I'm about that height, and my shins were sore for days afterward.

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This may be a dumb question, but why does the lead car on Alpengeist does not have a row of seats. And same with NAMTAB trains?

 

Ok so I think this is why but if I'm wrong oh well someone correct me and we can all learn something.

So I think it's because that from car is to like take off shakiness/rattling that the rest of the train would have if it didn't have that car. It's like I guess taking off all of the shock so that the rest of the train can be smooth. It's hard to explain someone help lol

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