I think I can understand why the park would not want to put any coaster cars on display. They are really a one-of-a-kind thing now. It would be terrible for them to get vandalized. Besides that, they have not exactly taken many steps to preserve the cars.
Personally, I would rather see a Drachen Fire car. I would love to see the "fiery" lights in action. I just want to see a real throwback, instead of a video about how they got where they are today.
Of course, I have to admit, I am very excited about the return of several street performers. I hope they return the friendly eagle, or maybe Gordon, the dragon. They had an entire high-tech costume made for Gordon, but they only used it for about one year. The park really doesn't seem to mind wasting expensive costumes up until recently. I guess that would explain why "Dooley" (the tinker leprechaun) is sitting in the costuming department.
I feel like at this point if they haven't debuted it yet, it's not going to happen. I think anything they are going to do for the Anniversary has already happened. I don't expect to see anything "new" (or old) added between now and the end of the season. I think what we've got, is what we've got.
So I came across some surprising 40th merchandise in La Belle Maison today. It ended up blending in pretty well in the back of the store, I didn't even notice it was there until I saw the 40th merchandise sign. I ended up inspecting it further and found something great. To my knowledge, La Belle Maison is the only place this specific merchandise is being sold. It consists of notebooks, photo albums, bags, wine carriers(I suppose that is why it is in La Belle ), and even pillows. Here are some pictures below:
However, the thing that makes these special, is the message inscribed on each of them. Here is a readable(hopefully) version of the full message on the pillow. I myself found it pretty nice, and think it is worth the read.
Just wanted to share this little treasure I came upon today.
Kudos to the park for not skimping out on the street performers for the 40th. I only caught the oompah band and the Enchanted Lab but what I saw was excellent.
Oompah band should come back to wandering around IMO. I liked them when they were still in Oktoberfest. Maybe have them rotate between the Mach stage and the Rhinefeld one (since the Mach stage is pretty much never used for anything anymore).
Enchanted Lab show was great. I caught it halfway through but the actor is great and the magic tricks are a lot of fun.
It would be nice if the park added a mini Castle O Sullivan setup in Ireland. The stage in front of the Abbey Stone would've been the perfect spot for something like that.
Threadneedle Fair as a whole is pretty well-done. I'd love to see the props and stuff stay after the 40th. Too bad they'll probably end up getting removed next summer. I wish the rest of the park was as decorated.
I have purchased quite a few of the items the park has put out for the anniversary. I do wonder, however, why there is no sign of Drachen Fire anywhere. Any reasoning behind this absence? If they had Drachen Fire anything, I'd buy it in a heartbeat. My wife, bless her heart, knows of my love of DF. She got me a copy of an old press-release photo of DF for Father's Day. It's amazing.
going along with the 40th http://seaworldparks.com/buschgardens-williamsburg/pages/sms-secrets/
The “Secrets” of Busch Gardens® Williamsburg
The red double-decker bus in England features names of some of our park Team members:
The bus brand is “LUM”, named after Carl Lum, Park President.
The street names (LEMBKE LANE, DUNKLEE DRIVE, BARBIE BLVD.) are named after Team members of our Merchandise and Entertainment Teams, who helped design the bus.
If you stand on the Rhine River Bridge, you can see where Loch Ness Monster® was welded together. Loch Ness Monster was constructed here on site, while all the other coasters in the park had to be constructed elsewhere and assembled here in pieces.
Loch Ness Monster® is an official ACE (American Coaster Enthusiasts®) landmark.
Along the line leading to the Loch Ness Monster®, you’ll see theme elements meant to look like a camp site and equipment, including a vintage-style diving suit, used in the Loch Ness Expedition to find “Nessie.”
The three frogs seen on top of Grogan’s Pub are a “nod” to the Budweiser® frog commercials from 1995.
The original set from “Irish Thunder” (Ireland’s first show) is still in the Abbey Stone Theatre® and can be seen during Howl-O-Scream®.
Not many remember that there used to be a moat around Royal Palace Theatre – home to the sea lions that resided in the park in 1975. The moat’s pump still exists in the backstage turret.
Griffon®, the world’s first floorless dive coaster, was designed to be floorless in order to get more people on the ride. The removal of the floor counterbalanced the addition of more riders and each car holds 30 people. After Griffon debuted in 2007, our sister park Busch Gardens Tampa, removed the floor from their dive coaster, SheiKra®.
You can still see the footers of the original Germany Bridge that went from behind Kinder Carousel to Mäch Tower®. The bridge was removed in 1991.
The Rhinefeld fountain came to the park from Grant’s Farm, a historic farm and long-standing landmark in St. Louis, Missouri. Grant’s Farm is the ancestral home of the Busch family who gifted the fountain to the park.
The Rhinefeld Cuckoo Clock features figures from three different time periods and three separate artists. Some of the figurines are more than 200 years old. The clock still chimes every hour, just like clockwork.
The signs in the Alpengeist® queue house are a nod to the ski resort theming. The Alpengeist “run” has been rated four black diamonds and skiers C.U. Attbottom, Gunter Gotuslow and O.B. Kareful are requested to report to ski patrol.
One of the original park villages, Hastings, can still be seen on the stained glass window in Das Festhaus®. Hastings was re-created as Ireland in 2001.
In the queue room where all the Black Forest plant clippings can be found, there are static TV’s. If you look closely, you will see “Little Red Riding Hood” in the static video feed. “Red’s” footage was taken from the show Entwined that ran in Das Festhaus from 2012 – 2014.
There are 137 suitcases along the queue.
The lockers seen as you are getting on Verbolten® are actually from the ride manufacturer’s factory in Germany.
There are three “surprise” sequences in the dark portion of the ride. One features a storm, another a wolf and the third the Lady of the Forest. The wolf sequence pays tribute to The Big Bad Wolf.
There are a couple more tributes to The Big Bad Wolf in Verbolten®: the track is built on some of its predecessor’s footers and one of the car license plates reads, WOLF XING.
In fact, each of the cars has a license plate that features a different message:
Yellow: BR1DG OUT
Blue: BLK 4ST
Green: FALN ROX
Red: YLB DROPN
Orange: WOLF XING
Verbolten® is currently the only coaster in the nation with a vertical drop. The vertical drop is 16 ft.
In the inside portion of Verbolten®, a moon is painted on the ground of the building, but due to the speed and force of the ride not many can see it.
The beech tree grove by Verbolten® is home to the oldest trees in the park, more than 200 years old.
Mollie our border collie is in the family pictures in Beste Brezeln und Bier (Best Pretzels and Beer), located in Oktoberfest (next to Mäch Tower®).
At Curse of DarKastle:
The Curse of DarKastle ride and building is modeled after Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria, Germany home of “Mad King Ludwig II” and several of the scenes reference the lore surrounding the real Ludwig.
The books in the “library” are autographed by the crews that worked on the ride.
This is one attraction where vehicles can be added and removed while the ride is in motion.
3-Point Shot (Festa Italia):
The backdrop for our 3-Point Shot basketball game features members of the park’s Merchandise team. Carl Lum (3rd from the right) was added in 2010 when he became Park President.
If you look closely at the “Roman” in the middle of the group, he has 6 fingers.
Tempesto™ features a reference to “Gerta” one of the characters from Verbolten®. A “Gerta Recommends” sign can be seen at the right of the queue entrance.
From the peak of Apollo’s Chariot®, you can see the James River Reserve Fleet (aka ‘The Ghost Fleet’), home to retired Navy and Merchant Marine ships.
Did you know there is an “abandoned” subway system below Escape from Pompeii®? The Howl-O-Scream® haunted house Deadline stays intact all year long. Who knows what else will be “Unearthed” for Howl-O-Scream this year?
The landscaping in DaVinci’s Garden of Inventions is modeled after a traditional monastery garden. These gardens are typically structured as a square with a water feature at the center and pathways that form a “cross” pattern. The statues each represent a season of the year. You can tell which is which by what they are holding:
Spring = Bow & Arrow
Summer = Wheat
Fall = Cornucopia
Winter = holding nothing
Bonus Park Facts
Camp Wallace, a United States Army installation, served from 1918 to 1971 as satellite facility of the army base which became Fort Eustis. It was the first site of the Army's aerial tramway. Camp Wallace is still visible as you ride the train, right after you pass Das Festhaus® on the approach to the Caribou Station.
Our trains were built by Crown Metal Company. The red and blue trains are original to the park. The green train was purchased in 1997 from Boone, N.C. at Tweetsie Railroad Co. They each use six 125 lb. propane tanks if they run all day. The locomotives are 90 HP and have original steam-driven air compressors.
All the coins found in the fountains throughout the park go to support the SeaWorld® & Busch Gardens® Conservation Fund, providing resources for a wide variety of conservation programs worldwide: animal rescue and rehabilitation, conservation education, habitat protection, and species research.
The most expensive souvenir items for sale in the park are (*plus tax):
Balmoral 12-arm chandelier (Emerald Isle® Gifts) $1688.88*
Balmoral 8-arm chandelier (Emerald Isle® Gifts) $1588.88*
Black Forest cuckoo clock (German Gifts) $825.95*
Black Forest cuckoo clock (German Gifts) $799.95*
Italian mask with feathers (Artisans of Italy) $799.95*
We make all our own bread at the park.
500 cakes are made fresh daily.
The park has a machine that can ice a cake every 5 seconds.
There is an accelerometer toward the center of the cars on Griffon®, Alpengeist® and Apollo’s Chariot®. Accelerometers are long clear tubes that measure how many “G’s” a coaster is pulling. These accelerometers are used during the park’s educational outings for physics students.
According to the Busch Gardens® Williamsburg Operations Team, for the best seat on a roller coaster, always sit in the back if you are true daredevil.
Griffon®: the back right seat catches the most G force
Verbolten®: the back row feels the exciting launches
Alpengeist®: the back left seat will feel the twists and turns the most
Apollo’s Chariot®: any seat in the back row will allow you to catch more air time
You are now part of an elite group of fans who know just how much attention to detail goes into what we do at Busch Gardens®. Thank you for being a fan and we look forward to seeing you again soon.
I don't see how branding(literally) an astronomically tacky bus is considered "attention to detail." Also, notice how they excluded Gasparish in the next stop section. It makes me sad that they skipped all of the other cool things that BC had to offer from its original theme, but focused on the tacky LR decor.
But otherwise, there are a lot of cool facts on this list, some of them I didn't even know, but it's quite refreshing to see them.