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Busch Gardens Williamsburg (BGW BGE) Discussion Thread

P. 449 - Food & Wine Festival report

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No clue or guess when it may be open. I HOPE it's by May 23 as that's the weekend I'll be in VA. 
I'm such a nerd I actually changed my travel plans, I was gunna do FL at the end and head back, but now I'm doing FL first so that way I can give BGW as much time as possible for Pantheon to open XD  With testing going on I don't think that's unrealistic, near 2 months from now, but we shall see.

I'm pretty excited about the airtime hill while you will be accelerating. I was let down by CHS (I didn't know Mack launches were slow) but looks like you're hauling over that thing. It seems quick too through the stall, whole thing looks to be moving fast. Deff has potential to be a top tier ride. 

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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

^^Hmm--I think your assumption is correct.  @Mike240SX I'm certainly not expecting "full operations" before Memorial Day Weekend, which isn't unusual (for example, they usually don' t start operating

I was at the park today and caught the last test train of the day on the way to Apollo's Chariot.   Here's a short video and some stills.  The outward banked airtime hill looks amazing! Also in c

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BGW is mobbed today with most lines overflowing out of the queues...

I’ll be back later so hopefully the crowds die down. It’s most likely a combination of the spring break rush and a lack of staffing.

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1 minute ago, qpb2004 said:

BGW is mobbed today with most lines overflowing out of the queues...

I’ll be back later so hopefully the crowds die down. It’s most likely a combination of the spring break rush and a lack of staffing.

Really? It's like 40 degrees outside.  I definitely don't envy anyone there today.

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Took us about 5 hours waiting in food lines strictly to use our tasting cards we purchased. The rides, wasn't even going to try. Would have bought QQ but Griffon didn't open until 2 or 3 ish, and then by 5 it looked like it closed down again. Other lines looked crazy. We just stuffed or face with food and alcohol. We'll be back again soon I'm sure to do the rides once pantheon reopens, plus we have rides at two Six Flags parks the next 2 days, so we had an enjoyable day out of the house.

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Just finished up my second stint at the park, was an enjoyable time. Lines decreased to around 15-20 mins for the coasters and a walk on at the end for Apollo that allowed for a mini marathon. I can’t feel my face from the cold now though, lol.

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13 hours ago, anonymouscactus said:

Took us about 5 hours waiting in food lines strictly to use our tasting cards we purchased. The rides, wasn't even going to try. Would have bought QQ but Griffon didn't open until 2 or 3 ish, and then by 5 it looked like it closed down again. Other lines looked crazy. We just stuffed or face with food and alcohol. We'll be back again soon I'm sure to do the rides once pantheon reopens, plus we have rides at two Six Flags parks the next 2 days, so we had an enjoyable day out of the house.

We had a similar experience.  My wife and I did wait in line for Invadr (40 minute wait) since we missed it the day before.  It took us 6 hours to work through our 30 punches.  Fortunately, everything was really good!

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I'm going there today, mainly for Food and Wine. I imagine it'll be nuts (Colonial Williamsburg was fairly busy this week, too). A little warmer here today, but still chilly.

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Every time I go to Williamsburg, I make an effort to eat at Food for Thought.  It’s the #1 rated restaurant on Yelp for a reason.  The prices are very reasonable for the quality of the food and the service is fantastic.


Thanks for this recommendation! Our party of 4 all had a wonderful meal. No complaints whatsoever except I got one of the specials and it contained a crab cake as part of it, however that was the one thing of everything we all had that could have been better. From the bread, to the mussels, to the ribs, to everything else we had, all great stuff! And the service was phenomenal as well.
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On 4/5/2021 at 4:51 PM, anonymouscactus said:


 

 


Thanks for this recommendation! Our party of 4 all had a wonderful meal. No complaints whatsoever except I got one of the specials and it contained a crab cake as part of it, however that was the one thing of everything we all had that could have been better. From the bread, to the mussels, to the ribs, to everything else we had, all great stuff! And the service was phenomenal as well.

 

Glad that you enjoyed it and that the food/service was as good as I remembered.  I’m hoping to to get out to BGW once Pantheon opens and I’ll definitely be eating there!

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I'm visiting BGW on 28th August for the first time and travelling from the UK. 

Compared to the other places we are visiting the ticket prices seem way over the top at around $89. Is there a cheaper place to buy tickets? And is the extra fast pass thing going to be essential to make it round in one day?

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5 hours ago, Alex Sutcliff said:

I'm visiting BGW on 28th August for the first time and travelling from the UK. 

Compared to the other places we are visiting the ticket prices seem way over the top at around $89. Is there a cheaper place to buy tickets? And is the extra fast pass thing going to be essential to make it round in one day?

Tickets are generally $80+ for the big Orlando parks.  They do run sales periodically.  Buying an annual pass sometimes makes things cheaper for group with the included free tickets.  No reason to buy tickets any time soon.  And you can buy QQ at the park if needed.  No need to worry about that now.

 

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8 hours ago, Alex Sutcliff said:

I'm visiting BGW on 28th August for the first time and travelling from the UK. 

Compared to the other places we are visiting the ticket prices seem way over the top at around $89. Is there a cheaper place to buy tickets? And is the extra fast pass thing going to be essential to make it round in one day?

Wow! Very optimistic! 

That is a very standard ticket price for any of the Sea World Busch Parks. If you'll be visiting multiple days or other parks in the chain it will be a better deal to get a fun card or annual pass.  Sometimes BGW has been on Groupon or other discount sites but I doubt it this summer. 

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Ok if that's the going rate then so be it. I was comparing the cost against the other parks we are going to like SFGA and Hershey but maybe BGW has a lot more to offer or in a different league that justifies the extra ticket price.

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It looks great in the clips, with some really nice speed, especially for early tests.

I'm sooooo hype for this ride, even more so than Jersey Devil which is an hour from me. I'm sure that will be great, but this just looks like a top 5'er for me. It ticks all my boxes, and that its at BGW is the cherry on top.

 

101goodmorningquotes.com

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Yeah I'm praying to the coaster gods its opened when I'm in VA it looks like such a sick ride. Agreed, deff more hyped for it than Jersey Devil despite also being in my home park. 

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41 minutes ago, JJLehto said:

Yeah I'm praying to the coaster gods its opened when I'm in VA it looks like such a sick ride. Agreed, deff more hyped for it than Jersey Devil despite also being in my home park. 

I honestly think Pantheon could be the best new ride of 2022.  We had a trip to BGW planned for last summer that got canceled, so I’m hoping to make it out there this year once it opens.  BGW is one of my favorite parks and it’s been too long since my last visit.

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On 3/26/2021 at 9:26 PM, Mike240SX said:

Maybe I've missed some sort of official announcement, but is it safe to assume that the full park won't be open (meaning everything currently marked "Temporarily Closed" will be running) until May after the Food & Wine festival?

I hate to quote my own post, but just wondering if anyone had any intel on my question.  Was possibly planning a trip on May 1 and would prefer that Aplengeist, Loch Ness. Mach Tower, and the log flume not be closed.

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I'm visiting BGW on 28th August for the first time and travelling from the UK. 

Compared to the other places we are visiting the ticket prices seem way over the top at around $89. Is there a cheaper place to buy tickets? And is the extra fast pass thing going to be essential to make it round in one day?

If you have access to TicketsatWork.com, they currently have any-day tickets for $60.

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^^Hmm--I think your assumption is correct.  @Mike240SX I'm certainly not expecting "full operations" before Memorial Day Weekend, which isn't unusual (for example, they usually don' t start operating the water rides before then). But the park hasn't announced anything officially yet, so who really knows? They also have to bring staffing up to speed.

That being said, who's up for the . . .

Food & Wine Festival Report

The park was bustling last Sunday, even with reduced attendance in effect, but this wasn't the busiest I've seen it this year. That was a few weeks ago when all the spring break madness was going on during the first weekend of the Food and Wine Festival. They were really slammed then--especially with two food booths, Brazil and Mexico, closed (on a Saturday).

It was smoother sailing last Sunday, despite the large crowd, thanks to all the booths being open. But the food lines got pretty long as the afternoon wore on. Festival operations were a mixed bag. I visited four booths: South Korea, Brazil, Virginia, and Mexico. The first three acquitted themselves pretty well; for example, Brazil had a fairly long line, but it moved quickly. Mexico, however  . . . ugh! More on that later. On the upside, the food was very good at each booth, and there was no waiting at the Brauhaus (Grogan's in Ireland had a longer line).

Waits for rides were a mixed bag. I waited about 15 minutes for Apollo's Chariot and Griffon. The wait for Verbolten was posted at over an hour. Based on three-train ops and a full queue, I'd say that's about right (at least they were using all the rows). InvadR looked pretty slammed, so I didn't bother, and Finnigan's Flyer was posted at 45 minutes. They had a few more flats open in Festa Italia. They also put up a temporary wall just before the Roman Rapids and the pizza-and-pasta buffet, which hasn't been open all year. (Word is that they want to renovate that restaurant.) The only full-size restaurant open is the Festhaus (and that's with socially distanced seating).

So, get ready for plenty of food pictures, although not quite as many you'll see in a typical Adam TR. ;)  They've been doing some work around Pantheon, too, which I'm taking as a good sign.

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Hmm--a few more people than usual milling around England today. 

 

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Almighty Zeus, Father of the Gods! We humble mortals of Busch Gardens beseech you! Send us a sign!

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Zeus be praised! I think those metal railings on the ramp and stairs were added recently, too.

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The lightning-hurling Zeus has blessed us with two signs! But are we worthy? (I think this is the main queue entrance as seen from the train.)

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Well, being as I'm already in Festa Italia and just got off Apollo’s Chariot, I may as well hit the South Korea booth. There was no wait, so Zeus be praised, again!

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The pork rib was pretty good. I even like the Korean coleslaw.

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What’s this? The Brazil booth at a “Dutch angle”? Is it the lair of a 1960s Batman villain?

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I ordered one Churasco (skirt steak with chimichurri sauce), but they gave me two. Not a complaint, just a yummy observation. 

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The wait for Griffon was a between 15 and 20 minutes. Acceptable.

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The wait for a shrimp taco, however . . .

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At least it’s “crisply.”

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“Crisply-ness” confirmed. It was quite good, but I doubt I’d wait in this line again--especially if there’s another fussy kid in the group behind me. The kid was harnessed in what appeared to be a tricycle combination baby stroller (never seen a rig like that one before); that is, the kid could ride it like a trike, or an adult could push it like a stroller.  It was some Radio Flyer hybrid toy.

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Spring . . . achoo! achoo! . . . time in Virginia. Shore is purty.

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No wait in the Brauhaus! Star Hill “The Love" wheat been for the win!

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Hmm--the Virginia booth in Scotland isn’t too busy.

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May as well score some of these tasty, artery-clogging bacon-and-cheddar hush puppies with honey butter.

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If you have $49.99 burning a hole in your pocket, you may as well buy one of these new models.

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With any luck, we’ll see all three of these coasters operating this summer. Get your vaccine, and thanks for reading.

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@cfcGreat report, and thanks for the intel!  I guess I'll be planning for a trip in June or July.

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On 4/17/2021 at 3:40 PM, VegasBaby said:

I honestly think Pantheon could be the best new ride of 2022. 

It very well could be.  I'm still a tad bit more excited about Velocicoaster, but Pantheon looks amazing also.

If we end up getting Pantheon, Velocicoaster, Iron Gwazi and Jersey Devil all opening the same year.....this will go down as the best year in a long time in terms of new coaster openings.  

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