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Busch Gardens Williamsburg (BGW BGE) Discussion Thread

P. 445 - Busch Gardens' Mardi Gras Celebration

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^ Track tones are warnings that play before a roller coaster starts operations warning workers to clear the track area for moving trains.

 

Verbolten's is pretty amusing. In the voice of Gerta: "Get outzen ze vay! Verbolten ist drivink!"

 

That's awesome! I actually have never heard the Verbolten track tones since it was built after my time, and I don't make it to the park but once a year these days. I wonder if they even bothered with Tempesto track tones! I could see that ride not really needing it, but then again, they are an EXTREMELY safety oriented park.

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Halloween Harvest, or “Howl-o-Scream Lite.” Busch Gardens is sticking with its “reservations only/limited attendance” events with Halloween Harvest during October. This is sort of “Howl-o-Scream

Before this thread derails off course into a COVID discussion, I’ll just keep it simple:  everyone should follow their state and local guidelines.  This isn’t something up for debate on TPR. Now

Let the Good Times Roll: Mardi Gras Celebration at Busch Gardens It's cold and gloomy outside my window today, so it's a good thing that I chose yesterday to check out Busch Gardens' version of M

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Planning a trip to the park this weekend (Sunday). I've only been twice in my life: 2000 and 2009.

 

What advice can you guys give me? Best place to eat? (we'll have lunch there, but probably not dinner). Any other great advice would be awesome.

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^If you're into Howl-o-Scream, you might want to try the Blood Banquet in Germany. They put out a pretty good spread (particularly the roast beef, pork loin, and chocolate tarts), if you can handle the silly show they put on every hour. If that's not your thing, I recommend the brisket at the Smokehouse or the sausage sampler at the Festhaus.

 

It was really busy last Sunday from mid-afternoon and into Howl-o-Scream. You might want to spring for Quick Queue. I also suggest that you get there early and ride Tempesto first.

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^ Thank you.

 

We probably won't do much of the Hallow Scream stuff... we are mostly there to ride... if it gets busy, we'll try to get on what we can early. Are there any major rides shut down this late in the season? (besides water rides... it's looking to be 57 degrees)

 

Also, I looked at the website... what is the cost on parking? Can you use a credit card there?

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It was really busy last Sunday from mid-afternoon and into Howl-o-Scream. You might want to spring for Quick Queue. I also suggest that you get there early and ride Tempesto first.

 

Awesome report Chuck! I am guessing that Saturday night crowds (this Saturday for example) will be pretty heavy right? Debating quick queue for when my girlfriend and I go. Thanks in advance for any tips.

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^On Saturday, Quick Queue is a must--it's also more expensive on Saturday and Sunday than it is on Friday.

 

Sounds good. Ya saw that its $60 for one time use, which I think will be enough. I'll be there during the day so the ride ones will be used as re-rides and the Haunt ones once.

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^If you get there before opening, you can probably squeeze in all the coasters without too much trouble. It will get crazier in the afternoon, and I'd recommend seeing the Howl-o-Scream shows then (they run them during the day).

 

We used the "one-time" Quick Queue last Sunday and got in all the mazes, plus night rides on Apollo's Chariot and Verbolten.

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The park is showing an opening of 10:00am for Sunday.... is that a set-in-stone time or do they open even earlier than that? I want to say I got into the park at 9:30 back in 2009, now granted, that was Labor Day weekend... we came down for final rides on BBW.

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They used to open the countries in stages, where you could get into Scotland and England early, and the advertised opening was when the WHOLE park opened. However, I don't know if they still do this. I don't see any harm in showing up a bit early, but maybe someone from the area knows the "for sure" times. It used to be 8:30 for england, 9:30 for italy/france, and 10 for germany/oktoberfest.

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The Quick Queue was VERY much needed as you mentioned. We were on Appolo around the time in the news post and saw the traffic coming into the park and it makes sense now. Place was rammed with people and right when the event kicked off Catacombs was already posted at 105min wait. The quick queue lines were on average 20-30min for the mazes but the ride quick queues weren't too bad.

 

Highlights from the event would be Catacombs, Unearthed: Scarlett's Revenge and Deadline. The worst maze of the night, and potentially one of the worst mazes I've ever walked through would be Cut Throat Cove.

 

Thanks again Chuck for your tips about Quick Queue as we were able to get all the houses done by about 10pm cause of it.

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^Cut Throat Cove is particularly weak this year. It was neutered the first year they did it, thanks to, of all things, ISIS. The maze featured a collection of severed pirate heads (there were severed heads on display in the vampire scarezone, too), but there was a uproar on Facebook over them when the ISIS beheading videos started hitting the Internet; the heads were then removed. They used to have a pirate in the "armory" section who would "shoot" at people as they exited the room, but he's gone now.

 

I've always liked Catacombs due to its atmosphere. No other park does a maze quite like that one. The oldest maze is Bitten, with Catacombs the second oldest.

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I remember hearing about the ISIS stuff causing problems for the severed heads. It's halloween people, lighten up! It's funny that happened and there is SO much headless figures in the maze as well as the amount of gore in a maze like Unearthed.

 

I found the scareactors lacking any enthusiasm, the maze having any real flow, and just seemed to be a lot of areas where nothing happens. Very odd and lacking.

 

Bitten had some very impressive sets and we actually really enjoyed that one.

 

The one two punch at the end of Catacombs if you get both scares, which we did, was really well done and left us walking away with huge smiles on our faces. I would say the only thing they could MAYBE improve, and keep in mind this may really be nitpicking, would be to cover up some of the ceilings. To be able to see the building so clearly that its in kind of through off the feeling of being underground.

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I was chatting with someone on opening night who mentioned that Cut Throat Cove was their "evil clown maze," only with pirates. It seems like a "starter maze" for kids--see if they can handle Cut Throat Cove first.

 

Bitten has held up pretty well--more so than Club Blood at Kings Dominion (which is the oldest maze there).

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Ya, Club Blood at Wonderland here has gone downhill to being horrible.

 

I don't know, I mean I guess looking at Cut Throat as their "training wheels" house then I can understand but I don't feel it really allows it to be as bad as it is. I loved the amount of gore in there, so it wasn't ALL negative but when it came to pacing/scares/etc. it was just lacking greatly. When all your other mazes are so good it really makes the weaker ones stand out that much more.

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^That's just my take on Cut Throat Cove. The "Ports of Skull" "TERROR-tory" is weaker this year. In that past, the "Torture Hill" photo op area had more going on (for example, they had two pirates that would always talk to the crowd over the PA system); "Ports of Skull" also gets my vote the most awkwardly named scarezone ever. They've had better mazes in Festa Italia in the past (such as "Wicked Woods").

 

But, overall, HOS is pretty strong this year.

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Hi everyone,

 

I'm new to the board. We went for our annual Howl O Scream trip to BGW last night (Sunday 10/18). I think I'm always more impressed with the zones than I am with the mazes. I usually get at least one pretty good scare in each maze, but maybe I'm just getting older.

 

I actually think my favorite maze was Cornered, though a camera crew went in right before us, so I'm not sure all of the actors were in place as there seemed to be several areas where I would have expected a scare but there wasn't one. Catacombs is usually a favorite, but again it seemed very light on actors. The atmosphere was great, but not many scares.

 

Lumberhack was a nice outdoor maze. I'm probably in the minority, but I enjoy Cut Throat Cove. I'd not be broken if it was gone next year, but I like it better than the clown one before that. I think the beginning of Deadline is a bust, but I've always like the last few rooms.

 

I was disappointed with Scarlett's Revenge. I don't think the use of the "Europe in the Air" screens added anything to it (though I'll say that I hate Europe in the air, so wasn't sad about the ride not being in use, lol). It was a better maze than Number 13 (or whatever the one from the last 2 years was), but still not all that. We actually missed the final scare because the exit was slightly confusing.

 

I always enjoy the Rum Apple Cider and I LOVED the Scarlett's Potion. I wish I had paid closer attention to what was in it.

 

We did the Blood Banquet. The food was SO good and perfect for how cold it was yesterday. I actually didn't mind the show. Yes, it was silly, but it was self-aware that it was silly and Igor was a really good ad-libber. We've seen Monster Stomp in the past (several times) so we went with Fiends. Which I liked well enough for what it was.

 

As usual the theme-ing throughout the park was great and allows for many photo opportunities. I do wish they'd add back the train ride. I'm sure it was the most elaborate thing to set up, but I always enjoyed it. I sort of miss the "Jack is Back" street party, too...

 

QQs are a MUST. Lines were not too bad during the day (we got there around 1pm and got on Tempesto in less than 20 minutes), but people started streaming in around 6pm and most of the mazes had at least an hour wait, so we got to do them all in about 2.5 hours with QQ. Also, several times our QQs were not even marked out and we could have done those mazes and rides again (though we had so much to do and it was a Sunday) we opted to leave when we were done with everything. I don't think the park ever reached capacity like it did on Saturday (10/17). Though I was slightly worried we wouldn't be able to get back in when we went to the car to get our coats.

 

We have season passes to BGW, so I know we'll go again and of course I've never had a bad experience there (at HOS or during the year) that makes me want to cancel. Kings Dominion has more rides, yes, but the overall presentation of atmosphere at BGW cannot be beat.

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^Agreed. Last time I rode Transylvania Express was ten years ago, such a great HOS attraction! Six Flags America used to do the same thing with their train ride, even since the Adventure World days but they no longer do that anymore. What a shame...

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