Busch Gardens Williamsburg (BGW BGE) Discussion Thread

P. 993 - Report from Howl-o-Scream
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Postby snowboard83 » Tue Sep 22, 2009 2:01 am

Devious wrote:
Coasterlvr_nc wrote:Heres a theory for everyone, Maybe instead of "Lying about the service life of the ride being over, even though nessie is still running" just figured that I would throw a probable cause out there.

What about the footers? Yes, the track is steel just like nessies, but the footers on nessie for the most part get only so much lateral force as opposed to vertical compression force. While BBW gets a whole lot more lateral force. Because of the way the supports are set up specifically after the finale drop, they could have basically been pulled out of the concrete footers (in essence)

for a visual, picture a piece of 2X4 stuck vertically in the sand. push it once and it wont go anywhere, push it XXXXXX times and it will come out.


Hey, Look, LOGIC!

For the record, you're dead-on

Arrow suspended supports after a while become loose and move (This is Very obvious in BBW's station, for instance) due to the design, after all BBW is a very early arrow (the first one to remain in continuous operation for multiple years, if memory serves)

Replacing all of the concrete footers and repairing whatever stress damage on the track there is (and supports) and rehabbing the ride for another 25 years isnt honestly a very sound investment, as much as we would like it, it probably ain't going to happen


These are definitely the best explainations I have heard, and am mad that I did not think of them first. ;) Really though, these explainations are probably dead on. It is funny the footer idea did not even come to mind, even after seeing a freshly poured footer that appeared near the wolf's station over the last winter. Honestly, I do not believe the station track shook anymore than it had the past years in reality, I believe it was the change in brake programing. The brakes were programmed to stop the trains in a VERY jolting manner last year, after constantly overshooting the station the year before.

I now believe the reason the Wolf started to get a little rougher, especially during it's final parts, was due to track shaking unnoticeable to riders while going 50 mph. In fact, during it's last days, while riding the coaster intensely, that while in the front seat, shaking was quite visible in the drop track ahead, though did not really seem to affect a front seat riders' ride. There was a small sway that could barely be felt however right as you were approaching the final drop's trim brakes in the front seat. That would be the exact time the last cars of the train were getting yanked out at nearly 90 DEGREES to come around the turn at the top, to drop. Hmm. The support system was under very awkward stress at that moment I now see.

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Postby dammie16@vt.edu » Mon Oct 19, 2009 7:40 am

So I went to Howl-O-Scream this past weekend and I wanted to give my happy review for TPR.

Since I didn't take any pictures I will not start a new thread because I feel it would be pointless!

I will talk about the zones first then houses in order from least liked to most liked! I should also note that I am NOT a jumpy person and rarely get scared, my entertatinment at halloween events comes from good atmosphere and getting to see other people screaming, this year it was the expense of my GF who is not an easy scare so when she did scream, it was because a good job was being done!

SCARE ZONES

I DO NOT really like any of the scare zones because, well they kind of suck. This is not in anyway the fault of the actors but really it is management. The zones are just not set up to allow the actors any ability to get good scares! With this being said here is how I felt about each one. Ranked based on atmosphere and how much they made my GF scream or be scared.

Moors - 4 guys dressed as scotsman standing on a pathway attempting to scare people in a well lit area with no fog...I feel so bad for them! (1/10)

Werewolves - There were three people on an open bridge with nowhere to hide, Im sorry getting scares by sneaking up behind someone is good but it gets old after a while! (3/10)

Watchers - One nice surprise but again it is such a small area with three people only. (3/10)

Strangers Beware - Some great scares on unsuspecting people on their way into and out of the houses behind Festhaus, but not enough of them. (5/10)

Witches - Bedsheets on trees! But a decent area that at least is set up to help the actors surprise people with more then sneaking up behind them. (5/10)

Harvest Hollow - Scarecrows are creepy but not when you walk from the exit of Hunted in the back all the way out of the zone and only see three or four actors, two of which didn't even try to scare anybody but rather just stood there. (5/10)

Mischief and Mayhem - My favorite this year and in the same spot as my favorite last year..why? Because the area is set up to create spots where you CANT SEE THE ACTORS. Dear Busch Gardens, not knowing where scary things are coming from make them a lot scarier! (7/10)

HAUNTED HOUSES

Ok now here is where my great pleasure can really happen. I freaking LOVE the haunted mazes/houses at this park. It makes me feel like they put so much effort into making these 100 out of 10's that they forget to make good scare zones lol. Again the ranking is based on atmosphere and how much my GF screamed :)

Pompeii (SP?) - Same house as last year, good story and some better scares this year then last but still my least favorite. (7/10)

Cavern of Darkness - This house was REALLY good, until there is a large well lit dead spot near the end. It killed the mood a little bit but still some good scares in here. (7.5/10)

Cursed - The scenery was similar to Wicked Woods last year but the atmosphere was brand new! There was too many actors doing the standing jerk with their props but it worked overall. There was also a long corridor that had no one in it but it didn't take too much away from the experience as a whole. (8/10)

Hunted - This one scared me the most only because I was so afraid of werewolves as a kid. It was a great set up with lots of really good scares, my GF actually needed a break afterwards to settle her heart lol. So overall this maze was fantastic just a little short! (9/10)

Catacombs - This was actually my favorite maze of the night but I don't give it my highest rating because Bitten was easily the best overall from a non-biased viewpoint. This maze had a lot of great scares and prompted the funniest thing that happened all weekend when my GF shouted balls after being scared. The actor started repeating balls over and over and it was freaking hilarious! This was also the maze that came the closest to making me jump, had the actor waited another 2-3 seconds he would have had me, but no spoilers here! (9.5/10)

Bitten - If ever I was to say a maze was set up perfectly it would be this one. It was long, EXTREMELY creepy, had a GREAT story, the actors were fantastic, the scares were never the same twice. It was just amazing. If I had time only in my life to see one more thing I would probably go through this house again even though I mark Catacombs as my favorite lol. (10/10)

So overall I had a great experience this past weekend. The event has, IMO, improved 10 fold from what it was last year. If they keep doing the same thing or better for the mazes and actually set up some good outdoor scare zones it will be even better next year! If you read this whole thing thanks and kudos to you!
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Postby cfc » Thu Oct 29, 2009 11:28 am

Scarezones have always been the weakest part of BGW's Howl-o-Scream, largely due to geography, I think (lots of narrow, hilly pathways and bridges). Mischief and Mayhem is easily the best, but Harvest Hollow can be good as long as the scareactors avoid clustering in one spot (it's very well lit with lots of fog).

Bitten is definitely the big winner among the mazes this year (with Cursed a close second, I think--kind of depends on how many witches are out and about).
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Postby dammie16@vt.edu » Thu Oct 29, 2009 12:41 pm

^Yes I agree and that is why I don't blame the actors more the layout. They could take the time to just put a light and a fog machine facing the path and walla you have an effective scare point!
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Postby pkdcoaster » Sun Nov 01, 2009 5:52 am

Went to BGW for the last time on Friday 10-30-09

Very dead in the Morning from 10-1:30, I rode
Griffon-12 times
Alpengeist-8 times
Apollo-6 times
Loch Ness-3 times

Pretty pissed to see that they have not touched BBW at all with the exception of removing the trains. So much for closing it on Labor day so we can start dismantling right away :?r .
I will not be renewing my pass till the replacement coaster is built.

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Postby alpengeist04 » Sun Nov 01, 2009 5:56 am

^Well, at least you have a new Intamin to occupy your time next year at KD. ;)

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Postby cfc » Sun Nov 01, 2009 7:46 am

^^I'm not surprised that they haven't started dismantling BBW yet. They'd have to bring in a crane, and there are two HOS mazes and a scarezone right behind the Wolf. And I'm not entirely sure that the Labor Day closing had to do with taking it apart right away as opposed to other operational issues with the ride.
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Postby mike541x » Sun Nov 01, 2009 9:49 am

Went to Busch Gardens last Sunday on the 25th. My friend and I were there from 2-10. Lines moved pretty quick, (Good job BG crew). Rode everything except for Griffon and BBW (Obviously). These coasters are great at night too.


Loch Ness Monster-7.5/10-I enjoyed this ride a lot. Pretty smooth compared to most Arrows.

Alpengeist-10/10-Probably my favorite ride at the park. Very smooth and fun. The only thing is the cobra roll and going to the brake run. But nothing horrible. Rode a couple of times without getting up before closing.

Apollo's Chariot-10/10-Back row is the best place to be on this ride.

The Scarezones were alright. The walkway between EFP and Apollos made me jump a few times. Some were predictable though. As for BBW, it was pretty disappointing to see it still there not in operation. Didn't see any activity going on around it. Hopefully they get something good. Overall, we had a great time and I'll be visiting again next year.

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Postby cfc » Mon Nov 02, 2009 7:21 am

Went to BGW last night for the closing evening of Howl-o-Scream. I figured it wouldn't be crowded, and, boy, was I right. We had torrential rain earlier in the day, which probably scared a lot of people off. They were using the Germany and France (preferred) parking lots; neither of them were full.

So, unless you wanted the front seat, every ride was a walk-on, as were the HOS mazes, making for a very relaxed, low-key evening at the park. I even had dinner at the Festhaus and checked out the Frankenrock show--OK (still better than the magic show at Tampa).

The earlier darkness and chill in the air were perfect for HOS, too. All in all, a nice way to end the week.
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Postby cfc » Wed Nov 04, 2009 6:03 am

Here's the latest news about BGW's new holiday offering.

BUSCH GARDENS READIES NEW CHRISTMAS TRADITION

Christmas Town: A Busch Gardens Celebration opens Nov. 27

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (Nov. 2, 2009) – For the first time in Busch Gardens’ 34-year history, guests will experience the park in a whole new light this holiday season. Christmas Town: A Busch Gardens Celebration is creating a new family tradition by combining an immersive holiday experience with one-of-a-kind shopping and dining opportunities, all-new holiday shows and a spectacular light-dancing Christmas tree.

“The world’s most beautiful park will transform into a Christmas wonderland in just a few weeks,” said John Reilly, Busch Gardens’ executive vice president and general manager. “We’ll create Virginia’s newest holiday tradition while our guests create memories that will last a lifetime.”

Starting Nov. 27, park guests will stroll under a canopy of more than a million twinkling lights while the aroma of hearty soups, smoked meats, fresh-baked holiday cookies and peppermint hot chocolate waft through the air.

Christmas Town begins in a bustling English town square complete with carolers straight out of Victorian England and set amid traditional greenery, classic red bows, holiday lights and candles glowing in every shop and restaurant window.

Leave the city lights behind with a quiet stroll through the Scottish countryside where horses roam and life slows down enough to contemplate this special time of the year.

While in Ireland, visit the Abbey Stone Theatre for an all-new Christmas show that will fill the audiences’ hearts with Christmas spirit through moving imagery, choral harmonies, and a full live orchestra. The little ones can dine with Santa and Mrs. Claus, and even have their picture taken with the jolly old elf.

France offers new twists on holiday traditions with contemporary takes on Christmas traditions. Guests can explore an ice-themed world with dazzling lights, falling snow and an up-close encounter with live penguins at the Royal Palace Theatre. Then join a down-home Christmas in New France where the sights and smells of country Christmas will fill the air.

Make sure to visit Santa’s workshop at the North Pole to meet St. Nick himself before heading to Oktoberfest to view Virginia’s tallest lighted Christmas tree. This 45-foot LED tree stands taller than Das Festhaus and features computerized lights that dance and change color during special evening light shows that will fill everyone with Christmas cheer.

Christmas Town opens at Busch Gardens on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 4 - 9 p.m. beginning Nov. 27. The park will open each evening Dec. 18-27, excluding Christmas Day. Some sections of the park will remain closed for the season, and some rides and attractions are weather dependent.

Christmas Town admission tickets are available for $19.95. Guests with active Busch Gardens passes save 50 percent on Christmas Town tickets as well as free parking and in-park discounts.

Event details are available on the new Christmas Town Web site at http://www.christmastown.com.


Here's a list of rides that are scheduled to be open during Christmas Town (from http://www.christmastown.com):
    Train (Tweedside & Caribou Train Stations)
    Griffon (weather permitting)
    Der Roto Baron (Red Baron)
    Wirbelwindchen (Kiddie Swings)
    Der Werbelwind (Waveswinger)
    Der Autobahn Jr. (Kiddie Bumper Cars)
    Der Autobahn (Bumper Cars)
    Der Katapult (Katapult)
    Curse of DarKastle
    Kinder Karussel (Carousel)
    Corkscrew Hill
    Lil’ Clydes
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