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Before Thanksgiving and after New Years are the only times to go without enormous crowds at this point. 😋
The after New Years Christmas town theme is a bit odd by that point in the year, particularly when they've gone an extra week in January. If they transition into the january event quickly, that solves that problem and may drive bigger crowds than years past.
 
Apr 11, 2017
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All of the park is open and themed. Most of the flats and some of the coasters are open. Bolt is usually operating.

That is so cool. I wouldn't have thought that Bush would operate the entire park, simply because of it's size. But maybe they see enough profit, that they feel it's worth decorating the entire park for the holiday season.

And Verbolten being open is a life saver to me. Generally there are a few rides at a park that will grabs my interest. KD closes 95 percent of it's attractions for WinterFest. The only attraction that I feel draws people is Twisted Timbers. But they decided to keep it closed for the recent Taste of Season they did for pandemic. If Bush is operating Verbolten and the rest of the attractions, then it's a go for me.
 

horsesboy

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That is so cool. I wouldn't have thought that Bush would operate the entire park, simply because of it's size. But maybe they see enough profit, that they feel it's worth decorating the entire park for the holiday season.

And Verbolten being open is a life saver to me. Generally there are a few rides at a park that will grabs my interest. KD closes 95 percent of it's attractions for WinterFest. The only attraction that I feel draws people is Twisted Timbers. But they decided to keep it closed for the recent Taste of Season they did for pandemic. If Bush is operating Verbolten and the rest of the attractions, then it's a go for me.
Busch closed part of the park the first few years but has expanded it as the event has grown. Normally it's Verbolten and Invadr open for coasters. Last year they added Alpengeist to that but that was with the shows and indoor stuff closed and only half of the park open to to Covid so it's anyone's guess if they would repeat that I'm the future. Mach Tower operates in a tame mode with no drop giving you an amazing view of the lights from above. They train has operated as both a full loop ride and transportation so we will have to wait and see which they use it for this year. The park also has some really great show for Christmas.
 
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I'm still trying to learn a bit about BGW's management. Since I'm not a regular of the park; this is all new to me.

Most parks look at operation cost. How many people are visiting the park vs how much it's costing them to operate. The holiday events are getting popular on the east coast. That's as long as weather permits. So I'm sure Bush Gardens see's a decent attendance to justify opening a lot of it's attractions during the winter holiday. Other parks will generally run most of their family rides and a couple of coasters. But, it does make sense for Bush Gardens to push for the upper hand on KD. My guess is that they are depending on people to make updated reviews about their events.

Don't quote me, but one could assume that BGW has been paying close attention to KD ever since they started doing a winter holiday event. Most of the greater Washington Metropolitan area would have to drive an additional hour, on top of what they are use to driving to visit KD. But they would need a good reason for skipping a park like KD. Outside of shows and good; the rides are a major crowd drawer. If your competitor is only going to operate two coasters, then it only makes sense that you open more coasters. Of course, this would require additional holiday theme to accompany the area that the ride is in; but if your see a return in profit; then it's all worth it.

BGW has a fine selection of coasters to choose from. I'd be just as happy with them only opening Tempesto, Apollo's Charriot, Verbolten, and Alp; along with some family rides. If the food is good; I'm all in. That's still two more big coasters operating than your competitor that is an hour away. It all comes down to how you market this. Obviously BGW, knows what they are doing. After all, they still managed to open last year during the Fall; while their competitor remained closed until the winter holiday.
 
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Nicole

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CT is a long-established holiday event with a huge, dedicated audience. For several years, their problem has been finding ways to manage the overwhelming crowd, not attracting guests. They have tried variably-priced tickets and adding days. Yet, there are still nights, when the paths are nearly unnavigable.

BGW pulls massive numbers of guests from Hampton Roads (which isn’t to say that some of us don’t also make the trip down from NOVA). I don’t think it makes a lot of sense to apply SFA/KD logic to BGW.
 
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Apr 11, 2017
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CT is a long-established holiday event with a huge, dedicated audience. For several years, their problem has been finding ways to manage the overwhelming crowd, not attracting guests. They have tried variably-priced tickets and adding days. Yet, there are still nights, when the paths are nearly unnavigable.

BGW pulls massive numbers of guests from Hampton Roads (which isn’t to say that some of us don’t also make the trip down from NOVA). I don’t think it makes a lot of sense to apply SFA/KD logic to BGW.

Forgive me, I'm learning.

But that's news to me. Crowds are overwhelming? That makes me want to go more. In my imagination, I picture that crowds can be just as busy as a regular Saturday during the summer? Based on my 2019 Winter Fest experience at KD; that tells me that BGW see's a higher attendance. But I also, feel that having more rides open helps draw more people. I doubt those crowds would visit the park if only two coasters were running.
 

horsesboy

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Forgive me, I'm learning.

But that's news to me. Crowds are overwhelming? That makes me want to go more. In my imagination, I picture that crowds can be just as busy as a regular Saturday during the summer? Based on my 2019 Winter Fest experience at KD; that tells me that BGW see's a higher attendance. But I also, feel that having more rides open helps draw more people. I doubt those crowds would visit the park if only two coasters were running.
The Crowds around Christmas are unbelievably bad. The park reaches capacity probably about 15 or more times during the event. And yes by that I do mean actual capacity as in we are at the number that the firemarshal will let us let in and both over flow lots are full. Part of the issue is that the lights which are a big attraction in themselves mean that the paths are where everyone is not ride waits. The shows actually have queues because there is that much demand. It's not un heard of for Gloria's wait wait to longer then the show us where you have to get in line for the show before the show that you want to see. Fest House has a queue like we saw during the limited events but it has it with full capacity and it might be 45 minutes to an hour before you get in. There litterly times and places in the park that look close to Time Square on New Years Eve.
 
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Apr 11, 2017
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The Crowds around Christmas are unbelievably bad. The park reaches capacity probably about 15 or more times during the event. And yes by that I do mean actual capacity as in we are at the number that the firemarshal will let us let in and both over flow lots are full. Part of the issue is that the lights which are a big attraction in themselves mean that the paths are where everyone is not ride waits. The shows actually have queues because there is that much demand. It's not un heard of for Gloria's wait wait to longer then the show us where you have to get in line for the show before the show that you want to see. Fest House has a queue like we saw during the limited events but it has it with full capacity and it might be 45 minutes to an hour before you get in. There litterly times and places in the park that look close to Time Square on New Years Eve.

😮

This is amazing. I am so going. I love crowds like that. Are most of the restaurants still open or do some of them close for the holiday event? I really enjoyed eating at the place that is across the bridge of Verbolten. I forget the name of it. Trapper's Smokehouse was good too. But more importantly; how is the holiday food. The food experience at Bush Gardens has definitely hooked me. I drive a long way, so I really love to enjoy myself when me and my buddy go.
 
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Nicole

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They have specially themed food, but honestly, it isn’t as good as it was in the past. Most of the eateries are usually open, but it is hard to predict right now.

There are always a couple coasters and several flats open, but as @horsesboy said, people are generally not there for the rides. The lights, shops, food, music, and shows are the main attractions.
 
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