Busch Gardens 12/20/2010

First time at their Christmas event. We arrived at 330pm, thinking they opened at 3, but they actually opened England at 215. Anyway, We were directed to the lot where in the summer they park busses and campers. Therefore, you get to use the shortcut bridge to the gates. If you didn't pre-print your tickets, up the hill you have to go, ho ho ho.

Walked through England, not duck yet, and headed to Ireland. Much outdoor entertainment, and forgot to ride Up in Europe. Next time I will. We saw a standard holiday show in the indoor theatre. I like heated venues.

Into New France, and the q line goes through the amplitheatre, and the stage was closed off for the display of penguins and snow owls. The penguins were from Sea World Texas and California. I think this was the highlight for me, being a Sea World fan, and since the penguins are paid a year round salary, they need to work in the off season now and then. The giant owl was making some loud noises, simply singing we found out.

Continued our walk to France, and into Germany. Griffon was closed, as it was 34', but I was able to purchase a working model of the coaster in the toy shop in England for only $90 with my season pass discount. Oktoberfest was hopping, with all the rides open, and many extra retail booths. Darkcastle broke down, so we had dinner at Das Festhaus. They had a holiday turkey dinner platter, new menu items, and live entertainment. Sort of like Lawerence Welk with food.

Outside, they had singers around a tree, and signage for the new slides at Water Country, and the new Mach Tower. Continued on to Italy, now an addition to the park this year. As with the Smokehouse, Italy also had live entertainment in the food areas, and every county had a different light package with colors, etc. When walking across the bridge to Italy from Germany, the boats were still in the water. It may be time to remove them.

Then we saw the Sesame Street Christmas show in the Globe Theatre, which was actually a good show, with a packed house. I passed on the train ride, as it was getting colded, and opted to stand in line 20 minutes for the skyride. You make the entire circuit nonstop, and its worth the wait. I was actaully able to get some good pics of the Loch Ness Monster and Alpengheist in the dark.

All in all, a 9/10 trip. If I had any input, I would have had Alpengheist open. Its a no brainer, with its alpine theme, music, etc. Its location in a valley helps with real winter winds, but they have their reasons for this year. So, if you want to shop, see some people sing Christmas tunes, and if you like led lighting, then Williamsburg may be the ticket for you!

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