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Busch Gardens Williamsburg (BGW BGE) Discussion Thread

P. 466: Christmas Town starts on November 11th

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I may go to KI and BGW this weekend. I was trying to figure out which order to do the parks, looking at opening times, driving distance, etc. When I looked up Quick Queue for BGW, all I see are single use passes for seven attractions. Three of which I care nothing about. Are they serious with this? Even at half price for a platinum passholder, this still seems ridiculous. Am I misreading the way this works? Monday through Thursday it is $14.99, $89.99 on Fridays, $149 on Saturdays, and $69.99 on Sundays.

I have decided to do BGW on Sunday because they open at 10 a.m.  vs KI's 12 p.m. and it's a 3.5 hour drive back home. Still not sure I want to pay $35 to skip the line on four coaster rides. I wouldn't buy in advance anyway. The real impetus for this trip is Pantheon and maximizing my platinum pass. So I'll be happy to be there at rope drop and get what I get.

 

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1 hour ago, hoppedup said:

I may go to KI and BGW this weekend. I was trying to figure out which order to do the parks, looking at opening times, driving distance, etc. When I looked up Quick Queue for BGW, all I see are single use passes for seven attractions. Three of which I care nothing about. Are they serious with this? Even at half price for a platinum passholder, this still seems ridiculous. Am I misreading the way this works? Monday through Thursday it is $14.99, $89.99 on Fridays, $149 on Saturdays, and $69.99 on Sundays.

I have decided to do BGW on Sunday because they open at 10 a.m.  vs KI's 12 p.m. and it's a 3.5 hour drive back home. Still not sure I want to pay $35 to skip the line on four coaster rides. I wouldn't buy in advance anyway. The real impetus for this trip is Pantheon and maximizing my platinum pass. So I'll be happy to be there at rope drop and get what I get.

Do you mean Kings Dominion?  KI and BGW are a little far apart to do in a single weekend.

Anyway, yeah that's weird that they're not offering QQ Unlimited on Sundays, but what I think you want is the "Howl-O-Scream Quick Queue Unlimited Plus" option, which for Sunday the 9th is only $130, and includes:

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Unlimited Access: Death Water Bayou(NEW), Inferno(NEW), Killarney Diner, Nevermore Chapter 2 (NEW), Witch of the Woods, Alpengeist, Apollo's Chariot, Finnegan's Flyer, Griffon, Mäch Tower & Verbolten

Single-Time Access: InvadR & Pantheon

That seems like a pretty good deal to me.

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Yes. KD. I have KI on the brain since I was there last weekend. I didn't check the Howl-O-Scream tickets because I assumed they were just for haunts and mazes. Looks like QQ unlimited is sold out for Sunday, so I may switch up and do BGW Saturday. Or just go without the QQ on Sunday.

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On 10/6/2022 at 8:52 AM, hoppedup said:

Yes. KD. I have KI on the brain since I was there last weekend. I didn't check the Howl-O-Scream tickets because I assumed they were just for haunts and mazes. Looks like QQ unlimited is sold out for Sunday, so I may switch up and do BGW Saturday. Or just go without the QQ on Sunday.

It was crazy busy at BGW this weekend, probably thanks to the College of William and Mary's homecoming and the Indigenous Peoples (formerly Columbus  Day) holiday.  

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just a few thoughts on what a difference a night can make at Howl-o-Scream. I went there last Friday night with my brother, who'd never been to Howl-o-Scream before. The park appears to have been tweaking some of the houses, mostly for the better. Here's how my rankings changed from media night (best to worst):

1. Death Water Bayou--they've added more scare actors and stuff to the show scenes (making a good house even better). 

2. Killarney Diner--more actors, more interaction with guests, more going on.

3, Witch of the Woods--this one was much improved over the media-night version. The scare actors were talking more to the guests and just trying harder. It was also our longest wait of the night (next to Pantheon).

4. Inferno--this one seemed understaffed, but they have some good, hellish atmosphere to make up for it.

5. Nevermore: Chapter 2--just kind of "off" that night. Like Inferno, it seemed understaffed, but more "blah."

Terror-tories seemed pretty weak on Friday, but sometimes that's a matter of poor timing. For example, we were strolling through the Garden of the Gorgon, and some annoying group kept taking selfies with every monster they met. 

My brother enjoyed his first Howl-o-Scream, and we were fortunate that we started with the weakest house first (they just got better to him from there). I wonder if I can talk him into checking out Knott's Scary Farm next year. 

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Finally made it back to BGW this weekend. Yesterday was cool and overcast. We were in the park from 10-2:45 and got all the coasters at least twice except Tempesto. The park was pretty dead and with the exception of Pantheon, everything was a walk-on. Nessie was running great.

Pantheon was great! I really didn't expect to like it as much as I did. I enjoyed the launches and every element, from the top hat to the zero-G stall. Probably not in my top ten, but a great addition to BGW. We rode it first and then it went down for a while not long after. It was bit drizzly and windy at times. We got it with about a 20 minute wait when it reopened. The real impetus of this trip did not disappoint.

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Typical wait times:

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Kid was acting up a bit:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Christmas Town starts next weekend! Here's some information from the park about this year's festivities.

 

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Over Ten Million Lights Will Shine Bright at the World’s Most Beautiful Theme Park During Busch Gardens® Christmas Town™

  • Busch Gardens® Christmas Town™ returns on select dates Nov. 11 – Jan. 8
  • One of North America’s largest light displays transforms the Williamsburg park with over ten million lights
  • NEW! Be immersed in the magic of the season with an all-new holiday dining experience, Santa’s Fireside Feast presented by Coca-Cola®
  • NEW! Holiday scavenger hunt celebrates traditions from around the world
  • NEW! Enjoy over 20 rides and coasters including all-new Pantheon™
  • Best Deal of the Season! Guests can save up to 60% on tickets during the Christmas Town Flash Sale, starting as low as $27.99
  • Buy a Membership now to enjoy Christmas Town and receive unlimited visits and unbeatable benefits including free parking, free tickets and more in 2023

 

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 The holidays shine brightest at Busch Gardens® Christmas Town™, returning on select dates from November 11 through January 8. The World’s Most Beautiful Theme Park will once again be transformed with over ten million twinkling lights, one of the largest light displays in North America. Enjoy heartwarming holiday shows, and more coasters than ever before with the all-new Pantheon™, the world’s fastest multi-launch coaster. Christmas Town™ classics such as Santa’s Workshop, the Christmas Town Express and ‘Twas that Night ice-skating show cover the park in holiday cheer. Festive treats, holiday shopping and special photo opportunities complete the festive holiday tradition for friends and families.

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Be immersed in the magic of the season during an all-new dining experience, Santa’s Fireside Feast presented by Coca-Cola®. Families can enjoy a hearty meal and a special Christmas story from the big elf himself during this festive encounter. Santa’s Fireside Feast is offered on select dates in the Killarney area of the park. Guests can reserve their spot at BuschGardens.com.

 

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Families are also invited to participate in an all-new holiday scavenger hunt celebrating traditions from around the world including Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. Guests can pick up a clue sheet in England to identify holiday symbols throughout the park and redeem a prize once all are found.

Visitors of all ages can renew holiday traditions while enjoying fan-favorite shows celebrating the reason for the season. Returning entertainment includes:

Up on the Haustop: It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Warm up with modern-day Christmas classics in a festive performance in Das Festhaus.

Unto Us: A choral celebration of the greatest story ever told. The first Christmas comes alive in this inspiring show in the open-air Il Teatro di San Marco Theatre.

Celtic Fyre®: A Christmas Celebration: Voted USA Today’s #1 Theme Park Entertainment, this iconic performance adds a Christmas touch to the Killarney classic.

‘Twas That Night: The Royal Palace Theatre is transformed into a spectacular ice-skating show that reimagines the classic story of "The Night Before Christmas."

Scrooge No More: Join Scrooge live on stage in this musical at the Globe Theatre as he is swept away by the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future, who teach him the importance of family and friends being together at Christmas. 

In addition to rides on the all-new Pantheon, thrill-seekers can conquer over 20 rides and attractions during Busch Gardens Christmas Town. Enjoy a nighttime ride on more coasters than ever before as well as fan-favorite thrills like Finnegan’s Flyer™ and Mach Tower.

 

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Best Deal of the Season! Christmas Town Flash Sale – Save up to 60% On Tickets
Spread holiday cheer with the best deal of the season during the Christmas Town Flash Sale. For a limited time only, guests can save up to 60% on tickets, starting as low as $27.99. Hurry, offer ends 11/13!

Give the Gift of Unlimited Visits and Unbeatable Benefits with a Busch Gardens Membership
Busch Gardens Membership plans start as low as $13 a month and offer guests unlimited visits to events all year long, including Christmas Town. Plus, Members get unbeatable benefits including FREE parking, FREE guest tickets, in-park discounts and exclusive events and monthly rewards. Busch Gardens Members will be also be among the first to ride DarKoaster in 2023!

Membership is organized in easy-to-use tiers and includes one-park and two-park Busch Gardens and Water Country USA® Memberships. Busch Gardens’ sister park, Water Country USA, is a seasonal water park with over 40 state-of-the-art water slides, kids' play areas, lazy rivers and a mega wave pool. With a two-park Membership, visitors can enjoy thrills at the world’s most beautiful theme park and fun in the sun at Virginia’s largest water park, Water Country USA. The flexibility allows guests to choose the Membership, benefits, and parks that are the best fit. For a full overview of Membership benefits, visit: buschgardens.com/williamsburg/annual-pass/.

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I was at the park yesterday for Member Appreciation Day (they're holding it today, too). Festa Italia was "closed" due to Christmas Town prep, but Pantheon was open; you had to get to the ride via Oktoberfest and walk down a short service road. Pantheon, Apollo's Chariot, InvadR, and Verbolten will be operating during Christmas Town, as well.

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Hi everyone, I'm attending Busch Gardens this weekend. I've been plenty of times before but not during Christmas Town and I see that this weekend is Christmas Town preview! How much of the full Christmas Town will I be missing? Just some of the lights won't be up yet is what I'm assuming. Also, Saturday looks like it'll be a great weather day. Should I expect huge crowds? Final question, can I expect all listed rides to be open barring any maintenence/weather issues? This will be my third time there since Pantheon was built but my first since it has opened. 

 

Thanks in advance :)

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Good question. "Preview" days can be a bit bumpy.  I imagine the park will be pretty well decorated (Italy was "closed" last week for Christmas Town prep). Shows are supposed to be running according to their website, and I think you can count on attractions being open.

But they always have to tweak these events after they start.

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1 hour ago, cfc said:

Good question. "Preview" days can be a bit bumpy.  I imagine the park will be pretty well decorated (Italy was "closed" last week for Christmas Town prep). Shows are supposed to be running according to their website, and I think you can count on attractions being open.

But they always have to tweak these events after they start.

Okay. All good to hear. While I'm excited to check out all their Christmas stuff, the main reason for the trip is to get on Pantheon (and of course get a few laps on Apollo and Verbolten since they're open :)

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