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Skycoastin' Steve's 2011 Season Extravaganza!!

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Ok time for my first trip report in a while!


Last night I went to the opening night of Christmas Town at Busch Gardens Williamsburg, and it did not disappoint! I also had a chance to check out the progress that's been made on Verbolten, and they've definitely made a lot of it since closing weekend. I was also able to get a few laps on Alpengeist before the line got long, which was a nice bonus. As for Christmas Town, the park put up over 5 million lights all around the park to transform it into an absolutely breathtaking display. I've honestly never seen anything like it, I was VERY impressed. Basically take the lights show at your local zoo and give it a few shots of steroids. I'm not sure if there was anything of importance inside the park that DIDN'T have lights on it.


As far as the food and entertainment were concerned, I had the Christmas dinner at the Festhaus, which was delicious, as well as a "Christmas S'more" with some peppermint hot chocolate in England on my way out of the park, which were also very tasty! I caught the Deck the Halls show in the Festhaus, which consisted of traditional, upbeat carols. It was a bit corny (of course), but an enjoyable show, especially for kids. I also happened to catch a little bit of the Miracles show in Festa Italia as I was walking by, and it seemed like a beautiful show. I was able to see the new show, Gloria, before I left, and it was also very, very well done. They had a live symphony accompanying the singers, and they performed the more mellow, religious carols that told the story of Christmas. I would definitely recommend anyone to check this show out, just make sure you get there 20 minutes beforehand to get a good seat! I also waited 45 minutes to do the Sky Ride lap around the park and took video of that, so that will be posted here, as well.


The only drawback for me on the evening was the outrageous number of people that were in the park, but that just goes to show how popular this event has become. And it really didn't detract away from the experience too much (except for the crazy parents using their children in strollers as battering rams to get through the crowd).


I do have a facebook album with almost 100 pictures in it, and it's public, so you can check that out here. I'll just be showing off about half of those in this report, so if you want to see the rest, check them out on facebook!



Christmas tree in the front entrance. The appearance of Christmas trees is going to be a recurring theme. ;)


Apparently they relocated the North Pole to BGW for this event, these guys go all out!


As you can see here, the launch track is in place!


Let's just launch one through now, see what happens.


The framework of the event building is now up!


And this building is HUGE!


They've also constructed the track almost all the way back to the station.


As you can see in this picture, they've connected the track all the way to the launch and into the building.


Looks like it will be a relatively tame portion of track before hitting the launch, but it's not bad for a pre-launch section.


They were also reinforcing the old Big Bad Wolf footers. I had been wondering if they were going to do something like this, and as it turns out, they are.


And they've done more work on the footers for the bridge.


I loved this, they even re-themed the teaser signs to Christmas!


Ok super dorks, someone tell me what's wrong with this picture.


The giant tree in front of the Festhaus, this will look much different later!


The Festhaus was decked out and looking......festive.




Little drummer boys.


The Festhaus band made a return for this show.


And I had Christmas dinner the day after Thanksgiving!


Peace on Earth, there's a concept.


Festa Italia was looking beautiful.


Especially this tree!


Polar Pathway at Escape From Pompeii was the highlight of the entire night!


I mean come on, they even put blue lights down where the water usually is!


It looked really great at dusk, wait till you see it at night!


And I'm not joking, I heard someone ask if the ride was open.


Attraction sign.


At this point, I went and stood in line for the Sky Ride tour of the park, and like I said before, waited 45 minutes. When I got off the ride, the line was probably up to at least 90 minutes. I did take video of the experience, though, and here it is in spectacular HD!




Back to the Polar Pathway and its purple trees.


I'm not entirely sure, but I think this might have been bright enough to see from space.


Anyone who cares to count how many lights there are, you'll get a Skycoastin Steve Bag-O-Crap!


(no, literally, a bag of my crap)


Bye bye, Santa, just be careful of that volcano.


The white tree in Festa Italia was gorgeous!


As was the Christmas tree in the gardens!


As were these two orange trees!


That streak of light over the Peace on Earth sign is the train going by.


I like trying to find where the ground ends and the water begins.


The signature Skycoastin Steve reflection photo!


One of the several mini Christmas trees on the bridge.


The Festhaus and ginormous Christmas tree looking spectacular!


This whole plaza was amazing, BGW definitely didn't spare any expense.


Meanwhile, back at the North Pole, it has begun to snow (although you can't really see it in the picture).


The only picture I took in "New France." I just don't like Canada.


Over to regular France, this little display was very pretty.


As was this little tree. I think someone should walk through the park and count how many Christmas trees there are. Anyone who does gets a SSBOC! But in order to get my crap in a bag, you have to prove that the number of trees you counted is correct. I don't hand my crap out to just anyone!


Joyeaux Noel!


Over to Ireland, where the trees are lit up green (imagine that).


I did laugh at the number of people who were taking photos like this with their flash on. I bet those turned out REALLY well.


This show did not disappoint!


And of course, they had shamrocks lit up at the entrance to Ireland.


Back to Scotland and its absolutely stunning display of blue trees with TONS of white Stars of Bethlehem over the midway.


My video of the Sky Ride gives you a great view of this whole area, it was amazing!


Definitely breathtaking, they did a wonderful job on everything in the park.


I had this "Christmas S'more" before I left. It was tasty, but I may have temporarily blacked out from the sugar high.


Carolers singing in England, the one chick is staring a hole through me.


Save the clock tower!


The front entrance was also very pretty.


They had all these snowflakes over the walkway leading up to the entrance. The end! Thank you for reading!

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To add another thing wrong with the picture...

Verbolten will go through the woods and THEN over the river....


Plus what the other guy said about the inverted track. I get that the Thanksgiving song is "Over the river and through the woods to Grandmother's house we go...." but while we're being proper enthusiasts pointing out what's wrong


Edited by KCForce
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Nice TR! Anyone know if there are supposed to be catwalks on the launches?


Yes, there will be. You can Sorta tell in one of the pictures, but there are little branches coming off of some of the supports a foot or two below the track (exactly like there are on the indoor sections with brakes/catwalks).

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Great trip-report - the log-flume looks amazing!


I loved this, they even re-themed the teaser signs to Christmas!


I don't know about the US but this sign - of course minus the tree - is a regular traffic sign here in germany: Warning that you enter a harbour area....

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